You not only want you customers to pay you faster, but you want to get paid on time. Is that really to much to ask? No! However, it can’t be done without work, so it’s time for a little small business make over. You’ve got to commit to change, you’ve got to help your customers and you’ve got to take charge of your receivables so you CAN get paid on time.
Sounds great, right? But we know you’re thinking….How? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Check out this receivables starter kit for small businesses that has everything from collection letter templates to collection call scripts that are aimed to transform your receivables management and help you get paid on time. Dive in today!
Get Paid On Time: Your Receivables Starter Kit
Late paying customers are a touchy subject since most of the situation is out of your control. However, receivables management is a process that takes intricate little steps to help achieve an amazing goal (i.e. get paid on time). Revamp each of these steps to truly increase the effectiveness of you debt collection process.
1) Build an infallible credit process – If you want to have customers who pay on time, you must effectively screen them. Don’t just extend credit to anyone and everyone. Be smart. Follow this sample credit process list for help.
2) Get the facts you need to know to screen a new customer – New customers are tricky. You want to open your credit doors to them but you don’t want to end up making a decision that will clog up your cash flow. Use a sample script for new customers to make sure this conversation helps you make the right credit decisions.
3) Always keep note of your conversations with customers who operate on trade credit - All your customers are important, but when it comes to net terms, it can, at times, be a game of “he-said, she-said”. The customer might say you told them they could mail in a check late when really you didn’t. Use a credit log book to keep any confusion out of the mix.
4) Have an action plan for common late payer responses – “The dog ate your payment? Oh really?” The best way to be successful is to be prepared. Your customers will come at you with the craziest late payment excuses imaginable. Prepare yourself by following this action plan for common late payer responses.
5) Use effective language when calling customers to remind them of payment – Late invoices are a touchy subject. Having to CALL someone about it is even touchier. However, phone calls are an extremely effective method to help get paid on time. To make them easier, practice beforehand. Utilize a friendly reminder call script for help.
6) Strategically use payment reminder letters – When notifying your customers about late invoices, it’s all in the wording. Not all late payers are created equal. Therefore, don’t just have one generic payment reminder letter, have multiple that apply to different situations. Feel free to utilize these unique collection letter templates to ensure you get paid on time.
7) When working with a collection agency, choose the right one – Working with a collection agency should always be a last resort, but sometimes they are the answer. However, you are trusting someone else with your customers, so choose wisely. Having trouble navigating those scary debt collector waters? Follow this collection agency due diligence list to make the decision.