Image by: 401(K) 2013
By Theresa Grant
There are times when your business gets a client who either is late to make a payment or simply doesn’t pay. It could be a monthly service that you provide for them and suddenly; they don’t pay you or they are late.
What do you do in that instance? How do you make the client pay for the services that you’ve already provided? Let’s go through some of the solutions on how to avoid having this happen to you in the future.
Chase The Payment
The first thing [and the most stressful thing] to do is to chase down the client to receive the payment. Whether you have to go through a collections agency, continue to pester the client via phone or email, or simply just give up on snagging the payment… this is the last thing you should have to worry about. You have a business to run.
So how do you prevent it? The first thing you have to do is have the ability to accept all kinds of payments up front. Even if it’s some kind of deposit… get it up front. I know businesses that make you fill out your PayPal information to purchase their service up front.
It’s rare to find a business who will let you pay for the month of service offered after you’ve received the service. Another option is if you have a smartphone, to purchase a $20 card reader and swipe their card before going forward with your products or services.
How can you avoid this though, ladies? We don’t want you to have to chase down clients for their payments so let’s discuss some ways to avoid the stress of the chase.
1. Discuss Stipulations Up Front
Before starting your service with the client, make sure that they fully understand everything that’s in the contract [verbal or written]. Draw up a payment schedule and set up automatic bill pay. That way, you know for a fact you’ll get paid on such a date at the same time every month.
Another thing you could do is only do bits and pieces of your service and with each step; request payment to go forward with the next step. It’s a whole lot easier and more efficient than having to chase down the payment after fully completing the project.
2. Discounts, Discounts, Discounts
An effective way to avoid having to chase down the payments is to have a discounted rate if you pay in full up front. It could be anywhere from 15% off to 50% off… or it could be 50% off your next purchase. People love saving money and if they like your company; they will be more than happy to utilize said discounts.
You could also utilize this for your online site. If they pay for your services via the internet before they come into the store or contact you; you’ll be done with the project faster and have an internet discount associated with the project!
3. Accept The Loss
After weeks and months of chasing down something that will never happen; accept the fact that you lost out on this payment. Learn from the lesson, implement certain rules in the future to avoid this, and if all else fails; use a 50% deposit on initial startup costs (beginning of project) and 50% immediately after completing.
Make sure to have all of their information including; home address, phone number, emergency contacts, credit card information, and a few others. That way you could always approach them at their home to collect the payment… if worse comes to worse.
Overall, it’s more effective to implement certain rules to avoid having to chase down a client’s payment in the first place.