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When I first got in the business there was a time when I had about $4k worth of business cards/postcards in my back room that customers had only paid a deposit on yet they never came back to pick up the product. Some of it was party stuff with dates on it. So I changed my approach. With most of our orders there is a design fee and then a charge for the actual product. If the customer does not want to pay for their order in full then we tell them they can pay for the design now. Once they approve the design then they have to pay for the actual product before it goes to print.

For corporate customers our invoice we still require the payment in full before it goes to print. Some have issues but I remind them that we have a store. We are not working out of the trunk of our car. You know how to find us. Most of our customers end up paying us up front. There is the rare occasion when we don't take the payment up front. We just did 150 shirts for a large hospital who typically pays their bills on a net30. ONLY because they were so large did we do it. At the same time, we refuse to do business with the city of Chicago because they have a reputation amongst a lot of vendors and printers for not paying their bills for 6-18months down the road. It's good to know other printers in your area.

Hope this helps.


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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the advice! In my line of business where i digitize designs and vector redraw for screen printing, clients wants to pay weekly or monthly.

Also they pay, like they sometime say that certain order got delayed from client end and they not received payments, or certain client order was cancelled

I have to reduce those orders from invoice, and in certain cases after 7 or 8 designs done, when i send invoice, i do not receive any emails, however i understand that for 8 to 9 designs, amount is only $80, how can i collect such payments, i have around 40 to 50 such invoices
 

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how can i collect such payments, i have around 40 to 50 such invoices
Make these folks keep a CC # on file with you. Tell them when the bill hits $50/100 dollars that you will charge the card to pay the account current.

You are doing work for them as a customer, it should not matter one little bit if the folks they are working for have paid or not!
 

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I get a feel for the customer and play it by ear. If it seems like they're full of crap or if they give me the "lets make a deal" routine I usually collect half or all of it depending on what I feel like. Most of the time I can tell when a customer is legitimate and I don't mind a COD payment. Schools, larger businesses, government offices, Boy Scouts, or parents needing shirts for a club, etc. None of them are going to screw you, especially after they tell you they like the design. But like any business, you're going to have some bad debt here and there. I still have a check on my wall for $269 that bounced in 2007 at the same time that the customer conveniently vanished from the face of the earth. I kept it just in case I ever run into her somewhere.
 

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This isn't hard, 100% up front. I don't know anyone in your line of work that doesn't do it that way.

If you want to offer terms then get a name, address, ssn, and do a Credit comtract. When they don't pay, ding their credit
 

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I charge half up front to purchase the tshirts or items and ink if I dont have that color. then once Iget the shirts I contact them and say the balance id due before It goes to print and its cash and no checks.
 

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Hi

How you deal with non paying clients, specially when they stop responding emails

Hey gnizitigid,

If you charge a fixed rate for your digitising then taking payment before you start is something your customers will just have to get used to doing.

If you prefer to charge after the design is done, which is how I work, send the customer a screenshot of the 3D stitchout picture and ask them to approve the work and pay before you send the actual embroidery program.


I hope you collect those payments! There are always businesses out there who will buy your uncollected payments for anything between 70-90% of their value to you, so if you get really sick of trying to collect give the stubborn customer a couple of warnings and then sell the unpaid invoice to a collector.

On that note though, to stop the money chase from happening at all there is a company local to me called Scottish Pacific who do all the invoice handling for businesses. I haven't used them, but have worked with people who have. (www.scottishpacific.com)
 

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If they are in the same country as you, you can probably contact the police and show them your dialogue, and let the police harass them over their unpaid bill. I doubt they'll ever stiff anyone again after something like that.
 

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We request payment before we even get started on the order for new clients. If they are a return client, after a while we give them Net 15 terms. If it is a large order we accept 50% up front and then rest at the time of pick up.

We have had to use a collections service for some other services we offer and they have been helpful about 50% of the time. Check out Collection Agency | Accounts Receivable. We work with Rosa but you must have a ton of information about your customer for it to work.
 

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A good collection agency will send letters written by an attorney. Some of them just call on the phone. I had one once that I called to see what was going on and they told me they had left a message and he hadn't called back. Well DUH! (Like I can't do that myself.)
 
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