How to make an invoice: A beginner’s guide (2024)

The best way to create an invoice is by using invoicing software. You can either use a paid tool or a free invoicing app such as Conta. Here you'll find everything you need to know about making invoices in 2024.


The best way to create an invoice is by using invoicing software. You can either use a paid tool or a free invoicing app such as Conta. Here you’ll find everything you need to know about making invoices in 2024.

Whether you’re running a small or large business, invoicing is a vital part of your business operations.

In this guide, we will help you find the right invoicing tool for your business and explain how to make an invoice, step by step.

Create free invoices now

Important steps before making an invoice

Pick a method to create your invoice

The two most popular tools to make invoices are invoicing software and invoice templates.

Invoice templates are easy to use and can be downloaded for free online. With an invoice template, you have complete control over the design of your invoices and can tailor them to your needs. A downside, however, is that the invoicing process takes unnecessary time. You have to fill out fields manually and invoices have to be sent as attachments in manually written emails. Another limitation is that invoice numbers are not assigned automatically, which is illegal in some markets.

Invoice software helps you create and send invoices in an efficient manner. Fields such as date, invoicing number, and contact information are filed out automatically and it takes less than a minute to create an invoice. Furthermore, invoices can be sent from the system to your customer’s email address. Invoice software also helps you streamline the invoicing process through powerful automation functionality, such as automated payment follow-ups and recurring billing. The main downside is that most types of invoicing software charges a monthly fee. However, there are some free invoicing systems on the market, such as Conta.

Create a free account

Choose the right software

For small business owners, invoicing can be quite stressful because it takes a lot of time.

That’s why you might want to consider choosing an easy-to-use software, without advanced functionality you’re not likely to use.

Here’s how to choose the best invoice software for your business:

  1. Create a list of all your needs: What do you need in order to work efficiently? Is it important for you that it’s easy to use?
  2. Find software that you would consider choosing: Software can be found in a simple Google search and through friends. We’ve also compared the best invoice creaters.
  3. Pick the most affordable alternative: Make an estimate of how many invoices you are going to send and pick the right plan for you. The software which has the lowest price and meets your needs, is the one you should choose.

Remember to try free alternatives, like Conta, before going for a paid alternative.

Create your free Conta account

How to make an invoice, step by step

1. Include the essentials

There are some elements that have to be included in invoice in order for it to be valid.

Start by making sure that the following elements are included:

  • The word “invoice” at the top of the document
  • A unique invoice number
  • The invoice date
  • The due date

Most invoicing software will automatically assign this information to your invoice, but if you’re using an invoice template, you have got to make sure it is in place.

2. Include the invoice recipient

Include the company name, email and address of the recipient, to make sure that there’s no doubt about who the invoice is meant for. Also include your own contact information, to make sure that your customer knows that the invoice is from you.

3. Optimize for timely payments

There are some things you should include in your invoice to help you get paid on time.

Research finds that companies using polite language in their invoices, for example by including the words “please” and “thank you”, get paid five percent faster.

You should also nudge customers to pay on time by creating a sense of urgency, for instance, by adding the following information: “Payment must be made within 14 days of the invoice being issued, otherwise 4 percent late fees will apply”.

Ready to send your first invoice?

Create free invoices now

How to make an invoice for free with Conta

Creating an invoice using invoicing software is even more straightforward.

Conta helps you include all the necessary information on your invoice and guides you through the process of sending the invoice.

Here is how to create free invoices in Conta:

  1. Create your free account
  2. Click on “Create invoice”
  3. Fill in the blank fields
  4. Click send

If you want to customize your invoices with your own branding, you can upload your company logo.

Your invoice is sent – what’s next?

Invoicing is an essential part of running a business. If you don’t send invoices, your business will not be able to stay afloat. Before creating an invoice, pick an invoice software that serves your needs without being too difficult to use. We suggest that you try Conta.

After successfully sending your first invoice, here are some tips to consider:

  • Remember to check whether your customers are paying on time. When they don’t, you should quickly send a payment reminder.
  • Consider automating repetitive tasks. If you are sending the same invoices each month, for instance, you can set up recurring invoicing (which creates and sends invoices from period to period automatically). Recurring invoice is coming to Conta soon.

Free Invoice Template vs. Free Invoicing Software

Email to clients
Track sales and sales tax for accounting
Unlimited invoicing
Send automatic payment remindersComing soon!
Recurring invoicingComing soon!
Track invoice status
Add collaborators

Create free invoices with Conta

Frequently asked questions about how to make invoice

Can I just create an invoice?

Both companies and private individuals can issue invoices. The only requirement is that you have sold a product or a service. In fact, many companies require an invoice when making a purchase, even when thye buy goods or services from a private individual.

Can an invoice just be an email?

In most cases, asking for payments via email without an invoice document is not sufficient because emails are not considered proper sales documentation. That’s why you got to send an email with an invoice attached.

What should you include in an invoice?

An invoice should contain the following:
• Invoice number
• The date of sale
• The seller’s name and organization number
• The buyer’s name and address or organization number
• A description of the product or service sold
• The time and place the goods or service were delivered
• Price including VAT or GST specified in your currency
• Total price
• The due date

If you are exempt from VAT or GST, you should refer to the applicable directive indicating that the goods or services are exempt or subject to reverse charge.

Are you looking for an easy and affordable way to create, send and manage invoices? Sign up for Conta’s free invoicing software.