How to get started with Customer Invoicing

Getting started with Invoicing

The invoicing module within ExpensePlus allows you to create and email out invoices to customers, keeping track of outstanding invoices and payments received. You can view the invoices by outstanding invoices, by customer, or by month. You can change between these filters using the tabs at the top of the screen (see below). Similarly, you can issue credit notes within this module.

Setting up your invoicing templates

Before invoices can be created and issued, you will first need to configure your 'invoice templates'. To do this, go to 'invoicing' (on the sidebar menu), and then click on 'settings' on the top right of this screen, where you can create one or more invoice templates. Multiple templates may be useful for different activities such as bookshop sales, room hire, weddings, different premises, or specific branded projects.

Each template can be customised with:

  • Name and logo
  • Brand colours (using a 6 character hex code, see Color Picker to identify your hex code if unknown)
  • Invoice address
  • Payment details (bank account number and sort code, or Stripe)
  • Payment terms
  • Contact details
  • Footer text to communicate further details or instructions
  • Income allocation defaults

Note: It is not currently possible to customise the font or the default email text. However, you can edit the email text when emailing out invoices to customers.

Using a logo

Logo files can be uploaded as jpeg or png files. The file size needs to be 3MB or less. Logo files can be rectangular or square in ratio. They should have a resolution of 300dpi and a height of approximately 500 pixels. When the system generates a PDF of your invoice, the logo will appear in the top right corner.

Adding Customers

Click the 'Manage Customers' button at the top of the invoices screen to add customers. If you would like to import customers, please download this import template, add your customers, then send us the completed file using the 'send us a message' button at the top of this screen and we will import your customers for you.

Creating an Invoice

To create your first invoice, go to the invoicing screen on the sidebar menu, click 'create invoice' and select the customer you wish to invoice. If the customer isn't in the dropdown list or you need to update a customer, you can do so directly from within the create invoice screen or from the 'Manage Customers' screen.

Next, populate the following sections of the invoice:

  • Invoice details: The 'Invoice Title' is an optional field that will display in large centred text underneath your invoice header - see the example of 'Exam Room Hire- June 2023' in the image above.
  • Invoice items: You can choose to invoice a single aggregate total within your invoice or to break down line items. Using individual line items can be helpful for your customer to understand the total invoice value.
  • Invoice notes: Any notes added to the invoice in the section 'Notes for the Customer' appear in the smaller text above the itemised invoice table.
  • Income allocation: If using an invoice template with a default allocation, you can choose to use the default or switch to 'allocate manually' for this invoice to set the income category or categories to which you want ExpensePlus to allocate the income. You need to specify the fund, income category, and optional transaction group for your internal income reconciliation, but this detail does not appear on your customer-facing invoice.

Top Tip: For future invoices, you can simply click the 'copy invoice' button to the right of any invoice you have previously created. This duplicates the invoice and you can then edit any details you want to update.

Sending an invoice

Once your invoice is complete, click 'Create' and then follow the instructions to either preview, download, or send it out by email. If you choose to send it to the customer by email, ExpensePlus will send the email on your behalf. The itemised invoice table will appear in the cover email as well as the invoice being attached to the email as a PDF document.

You cannot customise the covering email however you can add a note that will display below the itemised invoice table in the email. If you don't want to send the invoice immediately by email, select 'Not Now'. The invoice has still been created but hasn't been sent out. You can choose to send it at a later point, either through ExpensePlus or by downloading it to print or email separately.

When you create an invoice

When you create an invoice, two things happen in your accounts:

  1. Your customer ledger and monthly ledger within the invoicing module will be updated to show an increased outstanding total;
  2. If you create accounts on an accruals basis AND you have auto-accruals enabled, an 'Accounts receivable' transaction is created automatically for the money you are owed, and your balance sheet total for accounts receivable will also update to show an increased outstanding total.

Allocating income received to an invoice

When income to pay an invoice appears on your bank statement, you have two options for matching.

Either 'tick' the bank transaction in the left-hand table of the bank matching screen. If your system settings allow it, outstanding invoices will appear in the right-hand table, among the payments and bank deposits. You can simply match the invoice payment with the corresponding invoice, as you would for any other type of transaction. 

Alternatively, click on the transaction in the left-hand table, and in the popup that appears, under 'Transaction Type', select 'Invoice Payment' from the drop-down. This will allow you to allocate the income as a full or part payment against one or more invoices. By default, bank reconciliation is set to full allocation. So when you tick the relevant invoice line, ExpensePlus will allocate that line's value in full from your banked amount.

If the payment is a part payment, click the 'Switch to Part Allocation' option at the bottom of the screen and you can type in the figure of your choosing as free text. Please see this help article for more details about part payments.

When you have allocated the payment and clicked confirm the outstanding invoice balance displayed on the invoicing screen is updated.

If you create accounts on an accruals basis AND you have auto-accruals enabled, another 'Accounts Receivable' transaction is automatically created for the money no longer owed to you, this time as a negative transaction.

You can also record invoice payments in the 'bank deposit' screen for invoices paid by cash or cheque. See our module overview articles on Bank Reconciliation or Bank Deposits for more details.

To help you better understand the invoicing module as a whole, please visit the module overview page here.

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