Invoices are sent from a seller to a buyer to request payment for itemized goods and services. Browse our free invoice templates before creating your own to understand better what an invoice looks like.
- Invoice Templates - by Format
- Invoice Templates - by Industry
- What Is an Invoice?
- How Do Invoices Work?
- Who Needs an Invoice?
- What's the Difference Between a Purchase Order and an Invoice?
- How to Fill Out an Invoice
- Frequently Asked Questions
Invoice Templates – by Format
Our invoice template library below features four leading invoice formats — Microsoft Word, Excel, Google Docs, and PDF file formats.
Browse these free printable invoice templates—download, edit them, and start getting paid for your hard work.
Invoice Templates – by Industry
Our resident small business experts designed the following free invoice templates and have been field-tested by contractors, freelancers, and small business owners.
Choose your industry from the list below, select your preferred file format, and download a blank invoice template you can customize. Or, scroll down and find professional invoices that suit your unique business in Word or Excel format.
This commercial invoice template has a well-defined, structured layout perfect for contractors and small business owners with strong organizational skills and a desire to maintain a professional demeanor. In addition to outlined fields for each billable item, it also has a place for item numbers. Ideal for those who have an extensive catalog of products and services.
For contractors, use our free printable invoice template designed specifically for contractors on the go. As you can see in the sample, this invoice is a clean, to-the-point, no-frills option for contractors who need a basic yet professional invoice.
Created to suit small businesses and those working in the service industries, our service invoice template is sleek, modern, and streamlined to get payment information across as quickly as possible.
Straight-forward and rugged, our construction professional invoice template is suited for anyone in the construction field — be it in a freelance, independent, or corporate capacity. With its clearly defined fields and minimalist structure, this design is all about simplicity. Send a solid message to your clients with this construction invoice template.
As a freelancer, setting yourself apart from your competition is essential. Our basic invoice template for freelancers is another way to separate yourself from the rest of the field with its unique, straightforward design.
Below you can find more invoice templates and help with how to write one:
What Is an Invoice?
An invoice is a request for payment for itemized goods and services sent from a seller to a buyer. Invoices are used by a person or company (offering goods or services) to tell a buyer that payment is now due.
A basic invoice should include the following details:
- Seller: person or company offering goods or services
- Buyer: person or company purchasing the goods or services
- Description: detail of each item sold or service provided
- Due Date: when payment is expected, either in 30 days or by a specific date
- Payment: whether the buyer should pay by check, money order, or other means
- Purchase Order Number: a unique identifier used to keep track of orders
What Is an Invoice Used For?
As a commercial document, an invoice is needed whenever a business transaction involves paying for goods or services. Invoices are used to track inventory, accounts receivables, and expenses. The seller can send one to the buyer once a transaction is completed or within 14 days of the transaction.
An invoice can be sent to the buyer immediately or within 14 days of the business transaction.
How Do Invoices Work?
Invoices provide those in a business relationship with a formal account of all goods and services rendered and a statement of the total sum owed. Once sent to the buyer, an invoice is an official transaction record.
Without a written invoice, the seller has no proof that a business transaction occurred. After the seller provides goods or services, the buyer cannot pay if an invoice isn’t sent. Practically speaking, invoices also serve as a professional reminder that payment is still due. Legally, they’re enforceable in court if the buyer continues not to pay or the seller provides terrible goods or services.
|Seller’s Preventable Consequences||Buyer’s Preventable Consequences|
|Loss of Money||Loss of Money
|Loss of Time||Loss of Time
The seller can issue the buyer a receipt once payment has been received and/or processed.
A properly sent invoice will address the following basic questions:
- Who are the seller and buyer
- What item or service is being purchased, including a description
- Where items should be delivered or service performed
- When the payment is due (i.e., 30 days from the invoice date or before a certain day)
- How the payment should be made (i.e., check or money order)
Who Needs an Invoice?
You should send an invoice to get paid for goods or services. Freelancers, businesses, and service providers of all shapes and sizes use invoice templates or specialized apps to collect client payments.
Here are just a few of the professionals who may need one:
|Attorneys/Lawyers||Advertisers||Computer & IT Service Providers|
|Photographers||Shipping and Package Providers||Landscapers|
|Technical Writers||Traders||Pet Sitters|
What’s the Difference Between a Purchase Order and an Invoice?
An invoice is a payment request sent to a client from a vendor after the order has been fulfilled. It details the goods or services involved and the amount of money owed. A purchase order (PO) records a business transaction between two parties, typically large orders between a buyer and a seller.
Purchase order vs. invoice – key differences:
|Request for payment sent from a vendor to a client||Indicates the intent for purchase to take place|
|Created by the vendor after an order is fulfilled||Issued by the buyer when large purchases are made|
|Details the confirmation of sale or service||Defines the terms of a purchase|
|Acts as a payment reminder and prevents duplicate or overpayment||Helps prevent overstocking of inventory|
How to Fill Out an Invoice
Filling out an invoice is a reasonably straightforward process, made even easier by using a template or our step-by-step builder, which includes all the important details:
Step 1 – Company Name and Contract Details
Start by including your business name so your clients can quickly identify you. Follow up with the contact details of your business, including address, phone number, and email address.
Step 2 – Client Contact Details
Next, you’ll want to include the client’s contact details. Ensure you’re billing the correct client, whether an individual or another business. Include the client’s name, phone number, and email address.
Step 3 – Invoice Number
Use a unique invoice number so you can easily refer back to it when doing recordkeeping for your business or if you need to refer back to a specific invoice. If it’s your first invoice, you can label it as invoice one and increase the invoice number as you create more.
Step 4 – List the Goods or Services
Provide an itemized list of the goods or services provided. If you’re selling goods, you must list each specific item with the amount and the price. If it’s a service, you should document the hours worked and the hourly rate charged (alter as necessary if charging a day or project rate). Don’t forget to include the total cost.
Step 5 – Billing Information
Include details regarding your accepted payment options, such as cash, credit, or debit card, and payment terms. You could include a payment link if you have one available – if not, don’t forget to include your account or bank information. You can include an invoice due date at the top or bottom of the page to get paid faster.
Frequently Asked Questions
How to send an invoice
You can send an invoice through:
- Online invoicing
Sending an invoice by post puts it straight in the receiver’s hands, but it can be slow. You can send invoices by instant email, and the email can be saved, forwarded, and found easily. Online invoicing allows you to send a link and include paying now, an option to request payment and get paid immediately!
What is an invoice number?
An invoice number is a unique identifier systematically assigned to individual invoices. Invoice numbers ensure that invoices can be easily documented and identified, making it easier to track payments. An invoice number can be automatically generated using invoicing software or manually created.
Is an invoice a receipt?
No, an invoice is not a receipt. An invoice is issued before payment and is a request for payment for goods or services that have to be rendered. A receipt, on the other hand, is a document issued after payment or services are made.