Sending invoices as email attachments in PDF format is straightforward. All you have to do is compose a new email, address it, attach your invoice, hit send, and boom! You can now sit back and wait to get paid. But, there’s more than meets the eye when sending PDF emails. This post will tell you why you shouldn’t be sending PDF emails and what you should do instead.
We’ve got you hooked.
Let’s take the plunge.
PDF Invoices Aren’t Safe
Cybersecurity – that’s what we’re talking about here. Think about the following for a sec. According to Gartner, global spending on cybersecurity will hit a staggering $133.7 billion in 2022. Even more shocking, Cybint Solutions reported that 62 percent of businesses experienced phishing and social engineering attacks in 2018. Do you know what this means? Well, it implies that there’s a chance of your emails getting intercepted by cybercriminals searching for info they can use for fraud. Sure, your email provider may encrypt your emails. Still, you will send invoices as attachments, so this encryption doesn’t do you any good. Your best bet is using a paid third-party add-on, which can prove costly over time. Invoices don’t come across as the kind of documents data hackers would target. After all, they contain names, addresses, and phone numbers that are, in most cases, in the public domain. There isn’t much a hacker can do with this information, right? Wrong!
It turns out that a person can’t steal your identity if they have access to only your name and address, according to LifeLock.
Even then, they can plug your name and address into public databases and collect other pieces of information that will lead them to things such as your birthdate or social security number.
On top of that, identity thieves track information that’ll enable them to open financial accounts in your name or business. Guess what? PDF invoices contain a good chunk of information to help fix missing bits and pieces.
Why Would Anyone Target your Invoices?
Data Breaches Aside, Why Else Should you Stop Sending PDF Invoices?
Apart from the risk of leaking crucial personal and business information, here’s a rundown of other reasons you shouldn’t be sending PDF invoice attachments. It is Time Consuming, remember when we said that sending PDF invoices is a pretty straightforward process?
Well, that’s only true if you’re sending one or two invoices. Any serious business owner knows that time is a valuable resource.
Add the fact that it takes about 18 minutes to find a document, and you can see why sending lots of PDF invoices will eat into your precious time. Besides;
- Your employees have to create and compare templates for each customer.
- The recipient can miss the invoice. It can go straight to the spam folder, for instance. The ripple effect is that you won’t get paid promptly.
- There’s always a chance of mixing things up, such as sending the wrong invoices to the wrong customer.
- It is hard to keep track of your invoices.
- PDF invoices mean you’ll have to do a lot of filing, increasing unnecessary bulk in the office.
- PDF invoices require paperwork. And then there’s the printing and photocopying bit. That’s hectic and messes the environment in and around your office.
As you can see, there are many reasons to stop sending PDF invoices. The next question becomes – what should you do instead? The answer is – you should switch to electronic invoicing.
The world is going digital, and that’s the direction your business should take. And no, a PDF invoice isn’t an electronic invoice. To be clear, an electronic invoice is issued, sent, received, and processed electronically. It remains digital from the time you send it up to when it is processed. An e-invoice moves directly from one company’s ERP system into another. A PDF invoice, on the other hand, is exchanged over an email or MsWord files. For your invoice’s information to get into the receiver’s systems, you must key or capture it manually using an OCR. With that out of the way, here’s a glance at why you should integrate an automated invoice process into your business.
- It Reduces Cost – Routing, processing, and approving e-invoices is faster, saving you time and money. Plus, you don’t have to incur printing, storage, and delivery of paper invoices.
- It Promotes Better Account Reconciliation – Sending e-invoices allows you to receive details of the invoices paid and the payments. That way, account reconciliation becomes easy and manageable.
- Fewer Disagreements and Rejected Invoices – Disputes and rejections are the primary reasons your invoices will get paid late. That doesn’t have to be a problem if you’re using an e-invoicing solution. Because data moves from the account receivable to accounts payable directly, there’s a lesser risk of errors brought about by manual data re-entry.
- Improved Business Relationship – Because e-invoicing is faster, with few payment disputes, trading partners can relate better, resulting in a higher rate of supplier-buyer retention.
So, What you Should you Do?
The Bottom Line
As much as some quarters would like to disagree, the place of PDF invoices is narrowing down as the world becomes a digital marketplace.
The sooner you start using e-invoicing for your business, the sooner you’ll say goodbye to the problems and inconveniences of PDF invoicing.
The trick here is choosing an experienced and reliable e-invoicing solutions provider to help you set up and manage your invoicing system.
In other words, your journey to adopting electronic invoicing into your business starts with partnering with a professional e-solution company.