Invoices give your customers information about their order for their records. They’re important, and they need to be accurate. It’s also a terrible waste of your time to create invoices manually. No worries, though – because in Ontraport, the process is all automated. After you make the sale, you can high-five yourself instead of creating an invoice.
Invoices are created from templates that use merge fields. These merge fields will insert the customers’ name, products they bought, the price they paid and more. And you can design it to look however you like around those merge fields.
Because they’re templates, you can use the same invoice when your customers buy access to your course or when they buy your ebook – or when they buy both! Your invoice will automatically populate with the information in each transaction.
Invoices are usually sent to your customers right after they buy. But you can choose not to send them, if that works better for your business. You can also make choices about how to handle invoices on recurring payments. And you can pick which invoice you want to send when you log a manual transaction. Lots of possibilities for invoices.
Before we jump into the app, I’ll talk about transactional emails real quick. Transactional emails can include only information about a customer’s purchases. So in a nutshell, business notices and invoices.
Transactional emails can be sent to contacts who have opted out of your marketing emails. In other words, they bypass the ‘opt-out’ setting and land in the inbox anyway. They’re not blocked from being delivered because of their important content – delivering products that customers have bought.
But because they get this free pass to the inbox, your invoices absolutely can’t have any marketing information, call to action or sales language.
To make sure that you always have an invoice to send, your account comes with a default invoice that’s ready to go. But it’s a good practice to personalize your invoice to match your branding.
Your Double Opt-In / Invoice Manager is where you’ll go to create new invoices in your account as well as manage the invoices you’ve already created. To get there, go to your account, then Administration, Email, Double-Opt-In / Invoice Manager.
The “Status” column is unique to your invoices, and it shows you if your invoice has been submitted for approval, approved or rejected.
When you go to your Invoice Manager, you’ll see the default invoice. It automatically has the “Approved” status. Since your default invoice will be used if a custom invoice is rejected, we’ll want to make sure that one looks right.
Let’s just jump in there and put our logo on it like this. And then we’ll want to make sure our social icons link to our own stuff, so we’ll edit those by clicking on them and just pasting our links in here.
You’ll notice that there’s some filler content in the invoice block here in the middle. Of course, when this is sent to a buyer, that will all be replaced with the items and amounts that were actually purchased.
Ok. That should be good enough for a basic invoice, so let’s save that. And maybe that’s all you ever want to do, and that’s fine.
But since we’re learning all about it, let’s create a custom invoice from scratch.
From your Invoice Manager, click “add New Message Template,” “Invoice Ontraport Email,” and then “Start from Scratch.” Click Add Block. Click Invoice from the left sidebar and then pick the invoice block you want to use. Make sure to customize any contact information text that’s on the block.
Then we’ll Click “Add block” again to add a header… and then again to add a footer to your invoice.
You can learn all about how to edit ontramail messages in the video in the marketing course, so we’ll skip that for now but you’ll find the link to that in the resources section on this page.
Then click “Settings.” Add your invoice subject line. I’ll name mine 3 Marketeers: Invoice. Click “Copy from HTML” in your Plain Text Email section, and then Save.
You’ll see that your invoice has a status of “Submitted for Review.” Remember you can still use invoices when you’re waiting for approval – just not if they’re rejected. I’ll explain more about that in a minute.
I’m not going to cover the legacy HTML invoice editor here. Just know that if you choose to make your own HTML invoice email, you’ll add the required information to your template using merge fields. You can find the right merge fields in the “Transaction Info” and “Last Credit Card Used” section of your “insert merge field” dropdown menu.
Invoices are reviewed to certain standards. First, every invoice requires a few merge fields from the Invoice Information section including Business name, Contact info, Purchased items, Grand total, and Date. And as I mentioned before your invoices can’t include any marketing lingo whatsoever. Invoices are only for information about their transactions.
For that reason, our team reviews any invoice you create. Your template will always be reviewed within two business days, and you can use it while it’s under review. If it doesn’t meet our standards, it’ll be deactivated. But if that happens, your sales activity won’t be interrupted – your default invoice template will just take its place. And the administrator of the account will get an email explaining what happened.
Last thing. I want to show you where to go to edit your order form’s product settings or log a transaction. You’ll see this product information screen, and your invoice details are always in the bottom right corner. You can pick from any of your approved invoices or invoices you’ve submitted for review from your “Invoice template” dropdown.
That’s a wrap for invoices in Ontraport! Now you know where all of your invoices are stored, how to use your default invoice, and how to create a custom invoice that meets our standards.