It’s the end of the day. You’ve just finished an exciting project, and it’s time to bill the client. You pull up your invoice template and instantly your good mood is gone. It’s so boring! Why can’t your invoice reflect your branding and express your thanks to the customer for their business?
Just because the invoice is a business document, doesn’t mean it has to be boring. An invoice is usually your last contact with a client, so why not leave them with a lasting impression? Done properly, your invoice can be an effective part of your marketing strategy.
One of the major problems with invoicing is that many of the tools available make it difficult for a company to customise the invoice. There may be a set range of templates available, but these don’t always work for everyone. Luckily, WorkflowMax offers excellent customisation for invoice template design (quotes, too), so you have the functionality to get creative with your invoice. Why not take some inspiration from some of the beautiful designs?
1. Oh Mr Postman! – Letter Invoice Design
Cute Little Factory is a great blog written by designer Andrea Austoni, and features tons of interesting tutorials and articles about the design process. She created a funky and unique invoice design modelled from old-fashioned envelopes. I love how the design clearly invokes the sense of the inspiration, without losing any readability or functionality. You can see more details of the design and learn to design one of your own in their great invoice creation tutorial, or check out the designer Andrea Austoni’s portfolio.
2. Bold and Brillant – Drive Business in the Future
Dashang Tiwari is an Indian App developer and flash animator. His invoice is a very clever example of an invoice created to send a brand message. Nearly 1/3 of his invoice is taken up with a bold footer detailing the types of work he accepts and his contact details. This is a great way to drive home to clients the range of services he offers – in case they have other work that needs doing, or they can refer him on to another client.
3. Modern Minx – Bold Black and White invoice design
Shauna Haider is a designer with an a unique brand. Her love of simple, bold typography and modern, black and white colour schemes not only infuses her design work, but her personal style and home décor as well. Here you can see her invoice as an extension of her Nubby Twiglet brand, featuring the typographical elements and bold black and white theme that shows off what she can do. Shauna says she created this invoice from the Adobe Illustrator free invoice template, so you can see how easy it is to create a professional-looking branded invoice from a template.
4. Vintage Vibe – Bold Typographic Features
Designer Alexa Gordon created this beautiful vintage invoice, featuring a variety of typography and graphic icons. Every inch of the space has been used to create an informative document that really gives an impression! This invoice has been designed specifically for a Grateful Dead-Inspired event, and this branding has been carried through with the thank you message (“Have a Grateful Day!”) and the collection of Grateful Dead lyrics on the bottom left corner. If I’d attended this event and then seen this invoice, I would definitely be recommending the company to everyone I knew!
5. Typographic Twists – Landscape Format Invoice
16 Mile Creative are behind this beautiful typographical design. Created for Nancy Roy Creative (their old brand), this invoice is in an unusual landscape format, which automatically stands out. But add some cleverly conceived white space and the beautiful typography artwork on the left, and you’ve got an invoice that can’t help but be noticed.
6. Get ‘em Giggling – Funny Invoice Characters
Mario Carpe is a designer and illustrator in the Czech Republic who wanted to do something unique for his invoices. So he created a series of “invoice characters” who would appear on his invoices and remind customers to pay on time. Here are two of my favourites, and you can see the others on Carpe’s Behance profile.
7. Friendly and Bold – Catch attention with headings
I love, love, love this design from BGG Design Studio. The first thing your eye lands on is the friendly and catchy heading, and what I love is that the company has included a thank you for the business right at the top of the page, as well as in the footer. This invoice sounds so friendly and personal, it almost makes you happy to pay it. Almost :)
8. Ooh la la! – Friendly, Feminine and French
French designer Pascale Dufour has given the friendly invoice a feminine twist. One thing I particularly like about this invoice is the fact the date and invoice number are in big, bold lettering directly underneath the heading. I always have trouble locating these on the invoice, and they’re both very important. The coloured bands help to separate out the information and make everything easy to navigate. A stunning job! You can check out more of Dufour’s work on her Behance Profile.
9. Type Triumph - Crisp and Elegant
Stereo Types are a German typographic design firm. This design uses ample white space to create a beautiful, minimalist invoice that brings to focus to the company logo (on the right) and the beautiful, simple typefaces used. One common piece of advice for designing invoices is to keep the most relevant information away from the edges, because in a large company an invoice may be copied multiple times, and it’s always the edges that are cut off during that process. In this invoice, you can see the itemised list and payment details are all away from the edges.
10. Get Handy – Pretty and Practical
Lisa Polsinelli from Ink and Paper creates beautiful, playful designs, and these invoices for a handyman are no exception. The challenge of this invoice is slightly different to most, in that it’s made to be filled out by hand rather than on a computer, so the emphasis is on large lines for writing and an easy-to-read form.
11. Get Folked – Folk Art and Nature
Made in England (by Gentlemen) is a blog and graphic design/illustration business run by a long-haired hippie named Cookie. I love the way the company logo is the central focus of the invoice, and the folk-art type and colour choices give the invoice a real handmade feel. This is a fun and personable invoice – another one you almost don’t mind paying.
12. San Serif Sensation – Modern and Elegant
The Hei Design Company are responsible for this next unique invoice. The coloured border and dans serif type are just perfectly matched, and the use of a coloured box for the invoice content itself makes this area really stand out. Printing out this invoice will was a lot of coloured ink, but for a document this stunning, it’s worth the extra cost.
13. So Noted! – Showing off Your Skills
Robert Dress is a NYC-based illustrator and animator. Being a creative type, you’d expect a creative invoice, and you won’t be disappointed. Robert uses some of his sketches in a notebook format to make it appear as if he’s just dashed you off a personalised, handwritten note. I love the way this design is highly personalised without being over-the-top.
14. In the Good Old Days – Vintage Style
Another classic vintage style design from David M. Smith, looking a bit as if its been photocopied direct from an old ledger. The only clue as to its true age is in the email address emblazoned across the page. A fantastic example of how a simple design can be used to a great effect, especially when it evokes a long-ago, “back in the old days where things were done the RIGHT way” kind of vibe.
16. Prestiege – Monograms and Elegance
Rich Sullivan is an accomplished wedding and portrait photographer in Florida. His clients want to see a brand that’s prestigious, professional and elegant, and that’s just what he provides – from first meeting right up until invoice. The elegant logo, clever use of white space and well-proportioned columns make this invoice a joy to read.
16. Epic Enough? – Bold and Elegant
A name like “Epic” is a lot for a brand to live up to, but this . One unique thing about Epic’s invoice is the way the price has been made the stand-out feature of the invoice. Well, if you want to get paid, this is the way to do it! Epic’s design utelizes white space to create an elegant feel, but not so much that you lose vital information. We’ve featured Epic on the blog before, because their About Page is also quite spectactular. Epic are definitely a firm to watch in the next few years.
17. Oh, Sugar! – Wrapped in a Bow
Sugar Rush Creative (which is a fantastic name in and of itself) has an invoice/estimate form that looks as though it has been wrapped up in a bow to give at Christmas time, much like the onslaught of candy their name cannot help but invoke.The invoice gives plenty of space for detailed descriptions of each stage of a project, and the total of the invoice is in the top right corner, along with the payment details, for easy processing.
18. Thanks Y’all – A Texan Treasure
Julie Fitzgerald is a texas designer with a bold eye for layout. I love the way this invoice incorporates boxes and lines to create an almost maze-like form around the page. The eye is immediately drawn to the logo in the top left corner, and the boxes lead the eye across and down the page so the recipient won’t forget to check a single detail. The friendly Texan “Thanks Y’all!” in the footer is a sweet touch.
19. Read between the Lines – Elegant and Timeless
Designer Cameron McEfee gives another twist on the vintage invoice with his dainty offering. Almost reminiscint of a library card, this beautiful piece of design work uses elegant typefaces and columns to create an easy-to-understand design. The calendar in the bottom left corner, with the rows of numbers like an index, add to the literary feel of this invoice.
20. Simplicity Itself – Inspired Invoicing
Hicks Design is a UK-based design agency with a reputation for trustworthiness and transparency. No wonder, with invoices as clean and well-laid out as this. The logo is incorporated in both the top and bottom corners for instant brand recognition, and the bulk of the page is taken up with the itemized list itself. Clear columns explain exactly what you’re paying for. Did you notice that on this sample invoice, a Scotch Egg is listed as an expense?
21. Banners and Bombshells – Classic Design
This invoice template design was created by the Corner Studio Collection with photographers and other creative in mind. Elegent, scultural typography work seamlessly with vintage-style banners and borders and boxes keep the page organised. A touch of vintage elegance with modern sensibilities.
22. Pop Art – Bold and Modern
This bold, modern invoice is designed by Chase (Holdsnowater), and you’ll find it in every article about the best invoice designs. That interesting use of typeface and colour, the modern, almost pop art shapes and layout, the huge THANKS! in the footer making it feel friendly and personable. A great invoice template that would work well with any creative company.
23. Make it Pop! – Clever Use of Colour
The branding of web development firm Another Coder is bright and fun, and their invoice is too, although it’s also extremely slick and professional, too. Simple headings and subheadings break down the invoice into easy-to-read sub-sections, and at the end, you’re in no doubt as to what you owe. The designer, Rayz Ong, pulls many colours together into an extremely effective design.
24. Cool Cucumber – Corporate Identity
This Metro invoice from Bouncy Studio in India offers a beautiful corporate design. I love how this invoice looks as though it’s torn straight from a page in a corporate magazine. The coloured columns make this invoice easy-to-navigate, and the pared back design suits a global corporate firm. A truly elegant design.
25. All this for a Pizza? – Daughter’s Invoice
I just had to include this invoice. A technology-impaired Dad got his daughter to replace the hard-drive in his laptop. She then billed him for his services – for a trip to the local pizza parlour.
Her home-made invoice is actually really cool. A great idea for injecting something cute into your business if you regularly do work for family and friends. Read more on Huffington Post.
Bonus: Day-Ruining Invoice
I couldn’t resist this beautifully-designed and wonderfully snarky “Day-Ruining Invoice” by designer Jessica Hische. Does any of this seem uncannily accourate to you?
Which of these invoice designs do you like best? What elements will you incorporate into your own work? If you need a way to generate free invoices online you might try the handy invoicegeneratorapp.com.
Are you using WorkflowMax to manage your invoices? If so, you might be interested in some of the exciting changes that are coming with the new Work-In-Progress Ledger. We're conducting FREE webinars in Nov and Dec to explain how the changes impact users and all the exciting new invoicing tools available - so sign up now!