How do you make a good payment reminder?
With a payment reminder, you inform your client that payment has not been made on time. You also request this debtor to still pay the payment. But how do you create an effective reminder that ensures that your customer pays your invoice as soon as possible?
Tip 1: Inform them that your invoice is outstanding
It may sound like an open door, but it must be immediately clear to the recipient that it is a payment reminder. Let your customer or client know that the invoices have not yet been paid and that you are requesting them to pay the outstanding amount.
Tip 2: Refer to the unpaid invoice
Make it easy for your debtor by letting them know which invoice it concerns. Specify the invoice number, the invoice amount and the due date. Also state the products or services for which the invoice has been sent. This means that your debtor does not first have to find out which invoice it concerns but makes it easy for your debtor to pay quickly.
Tip 3: State a concrete payment term
Let your debtor know when you expect the invoice to be paid. Be as concrete as possible in this. Specifying a specific date is therefore better than asking for payment within a certain number of days. It is different for every country which payment term is best to use. We recommend using a payment term of 14 days.
Tip 4: Tell the consequences of a late payment
What happens if your debtor still does not pay the invoice after the reminder? Put this clearly in the reminder. For example, you will hand over the claim to a collection agency if it is not paid on time and collection costs will be charged to the debtor. This way your customer not only knows what to expect but is also more inclined to pay your bill quickly.
Tip 5: Stay professional and positive
An outstanding invoice often causes a lot of frustration. Refrain from showing this in your communication with your customer. Keep your communication, especially with regards to the reminder, polite and businesslike.
Tip 6: Do not declare the amount of warning in the reminder
Do not state on the letter that this is the first reminder. The word 'first' suggests that there is also a second one. And maybe a third or more. It gives insight into your debt collection process and allows some debtors to take advantage and postpone the payment further.
Tip 7: Limit the number of reminders you send
Although you do not indicate on your reminder how many reminders you usually send, you can always send a second reminder to your customer. Just make sure that you do not send too many. After all, it is not desirable to have the debt collection process take an unnecessarily long time. If your customer still has not paid after a few reminders, the advice is to outsource your debt collection case to a specialist.
Tip 8: Follow the legal rules
When you send a reminder to a private customer, you must consider the legal rules that apply to the contents of a reminder. In some countries your letter must meet certain requirements, otherwise your demand letter is not valid. Please make sure you will follow the legal rules.
Tip 9: Communicate in the language of your debtor
To quickly move your debtor to pay, it is important that your debtor understands the text in the reminder. Do you have a foreign debtor? Do not send a standard reminder in your own language but use the same language in which you also communicate with your client. Sending a reminder in the language of your customer ensures that they can read and understand your letter.
More information about payment reminders
Would you like more information about sending a reminder? Or would you like to send a reminder in the language of your debtor? Our international debt collection specialists are happy to help you with collecting your outstanding invoice. They not only speak the same language as your debtor, but also know the laws and trade traditions from that country. This means they can quickly convince your debtor to pay your outstanding invoices.