How to invoice someone: 5 templates, tools from a 6-figure freelancer


Disclosure: This site is sponsored by affiliate programs. We may earn money from the companies mentioned in this post. As an Amazon affiliate partner we may earn from qualifying purchases.

You’ve nailed the hard part.

You’ve found a few quality freelance clients, you’ve completed some work, and now it’s time to get paid.

The problem is – you have no idea how to go about creating and sending invoices.

Never fear, I am here to help.

For a bit of background on me – I am a six-figure freelancer and blogger. I quit my last salaried job in 2017 to pursue a life of self-employment.

Read Also: I quit my job without a plan and it was the best decision I ever made

And over the years, I’ve used just about every invoicing method known to man.

This is why I thought it would be helpful to create this handy dandy list of real tools and techniques that I and other professional freelancers use on a daily basis to create and send professional invoices, and even collect payments.

Read Also: Best tools for freelancers: 15 essential resources for your business 

What is the best way to invoice someone?

But before we get started, let’s address the elephant in the room: What’s the best way to invoice someone?

The best way to invoice someone is to use either a template or invoice software.

Ideally, the more you grow as an entrepreneur, the more invoices you’ll need to create over time. And you really want that process to be as automated and painless as possible. This means you don’t want to recreate the wheel every time payday rolls around.

Templates can be a cost-effective time-saving tool as most of us already own Microsoft Word and Excel or at least have access to Google Docs and Google Sheets (the free and open source version of Word and Excel).

However, most pro freelancers, like myself, are using software to automate the entire process. Sure, there’s a bit of cost involved with this option, but to me, it’s a nominal expense given the time it saves every week.

Can I create my own invoice?

Yes, you can create your own invoice. In fact, most small businesses usually handle invoice creation on their own, or, occasionally, hire a Virtual Assistant to lend a hand.

And again, the best way to do so, at least in my opinion, is by either using a template or CRM software.

No matter which way you decide to go, just remember to include the following information in every invoice:

  • Your company logo and company name
  • Your contact information
  • Payment terms
  • Invoice number
  • Issue date
  • Due date
  • The client’s company name
  • The client’s contact information
  • Itemized list of services
  • Total amount due
  • Sales tax information (if applicable)

Now, without further ado, below you will find a list of my favorite invoicing templates and tools to help you get started.

woman creating invoices on her computer
(photo by create jobs 51/shutterstock.com)

1. Microsoft Word (or Google Docs)

Price: Free

If you’re just starting out and on a tight budget – you might want to consider creating a template using Microsoft Word or Google Docs.

Google Docs is the ultimate budget-friendly solution as it’s free to use as long as you have a Gmail account. And, in my opinion, much more user-friendly than Microsoft Word.

Not sure how to create your own invoice in Word or Google Docs and have a couple of dollars to spare? Just check out my ETSY (more on this below).

a woman creates an invoice in excel
(photo by panitanphoto/shutterstock.com)

2. Excel (or Google Sheets)

Price: Free

Excel is another great option for invoice creation.

It offers a little less design capability than Word or Google Docs, however, where the program is lacking in design, it makes up for in function.

Excel – and its counterpart, Google Sheets – can incorporate reusable mathematical calculations and functions which make the process easier while improving overall accuracy.

Again, if you aren’t sure how to create your own invoice in Excel or Google Sheets, ETSY might be a great place to start.

Speaking of ETSY …

a woman browses etsy for invoice templates
(photo by Farknot Architect/shutterstock.com)

3. ETSY Templates

Price: $3-$5

When most people think of ETSY they think of custom handmade goods like t-shirts and custom koozies.

But ETSY is actually also a treasure trove when it comes to digital downloads and business tool templates.

It’s a great place to find templates for invoices, receipts, order forms, proposals, business cards and more.

These templates aren’t free – but they are quite affordable. In fact, you can generally pick up an invoice template for between $3-$5 which could potentially save you hours of work versus creating your own.

ETSY templates are usually available in Word, Excel, Canva and even PDF.

A woman looks at fiverr workspace
(photo by Ground Picture/shutterstock.com)

4. Fiverr Workspace

Price: Free-$24 (And get a $20 instant account credit when you use my referral link)

This is what I personally use to manage my online invoicing.

In recent years, my needs have grown too great and too complicated for simple Word or Excel templates.

I normally work with somewhere between 40-60 clients in a given year. This means I’m usually toggling multiple projects at a time and sending out multiple invoices each month.

This is why I use Fiverr Workspace.

Fiverr Workspace is geared toward freelancers and service-based professionals.

It’s essentially a mini CRM where you can create individual client profiles, manage projects, create proposals, create contracts, track your time (both automatically and manually), create invoices and collect payments.

You can even send late payment reminders and track online payments, all with a click of a button.

It’s streamlined my invoicing process tenfold.

And no, you don’t have to be a freelancer on Fiverr to use this service. It’s a completely stand-alone piece of in-browser software that you can use to manage and invoice your real-life clients. Nor does it take out any sort of processing fees (unless you’re accepting credit card payments through PayPal or Stripe, where standard processing fees may apply).

Fiverr Workspace also integrates with over 5,000 applications including Dropbox, Mailchimp, Slack, Google Sheets, Trello, Toggl, Asana, Google Drive, Wave, HubSpot, QuickBooks and Gmail, just to name a few.

Fiverr Workspace currently offers users two plans: Free (single client) and Unlimited (unlimited clients).

a woman looks at bonsai
(photo by Andrey_Popov/shutterstock.com)

5. Bonsai

Price: $24-$79

And finally, we have Bonsai, the premium option.

Bonsai is similar to Fiverr Workspace in that it works like a CRM capable of handling client invoicing, contract and proposal creation, tasks, time tracking and payments.

The main difference between Bonsai and Fiverr Workspace, at least as far as I can tell, is that Bonsai offers a bit more wiggle room for scalability.

For instance, Bonsai offers three plans: Starter, Professional and Business.

Their starter plan is similar in functionality – and pricing – to Fiverr Workspace. And the features include pretty much everything a freelancer or a solo entrepreneur could ever want.

But they also offer upgraded Pro and Business plans, which are catered more toward larger and multi-member companies.

Pro features include a completely white-labeled customer experience, a number of workflow automations, a client portal and up to 15 project collaborators.

Business features include subcontractor management, 1099 contracts, accountant access, multiple bank accounts and unlimited collaborators.

Bonsai, like Fiverr Workspace, also integrates with a number of other popular business suite applications including Gmail, Google Calendar, Zapier, Slack, QuickBooks, Calendly, ClickUp, Trello, Google Drive, Google Sheets, Xero and Hubspot.

How do you invoice your clients? Let me know in the comments section, and don’t forget to connect with me on social media using the links below.

Leave a Comment