Difference Between Invoice and Bill

Difference Between Invoice and Bill

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Anshuman
Anshuman Singh
Senior Executive - Content
Updated on Dec 12, 2022 09:16 IST

Invoice and bill are frequently used interchangeably. However, this is not always appropriate. Using the correct term between invoice and bill solely depends on whether you send or receive it. So, to clarify the topic, let’s discuss the difference between invoice and bill in depth.

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The main difference between invoice and bill is that a business uses an invoice to collect money from its customers. On the other hand, the term bill is primarily used by customers to refer to payments owed to suppliers for goods or services.

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Before we further dive into exploring the difference between invoice and bill, let’s go over the topics listed under the table of contents (TOC) that we will cover in this article.

Table of content (TOC)

Difference between invoice and bill 

As both these terms: invoice and bill, are pretty confusing, so for a better understanding and clarity, let’s explore the difference between invoice and bill in a tabular format.

Benchmark Invoice Bill
What is it? A term used by a business in order to collect money from its customers. A term customers use to refer to payments owed to suppliers for goods or services.
Acts as a Legal document that comes in handy, while financial reporting Proof of a transaction.
Does it consist of a unique number? Yes. Invoices consist of unique numbers for accounting and tax purposes. No. Bill does not have a unique number on them.
Which type of transaction is it used for? Invoices are frequently used in credit transactions to request payment from customers for purchased products or services already rendered. Bills are often used for cash transactions that are completed in one go.

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What is an invoice? 

Invoice definition: The term invoice is used by a business in order to collect money from its customers for products already purchased or services already rendered. 

An invoice is a business record that describes and itemizes the product or service that has already been rendered. It is optional for invoices always to be printed on paper. As technology has advanced, most businesses have abandoned paper documents in favor of digital documents such as PDFs.

Most businesses now provide invoices in the form of a PDF that can be easily downloaded and sent to the customer without regard to geography. Each invoice has a unique invoice number that the business can use for accounting and tax purposes. To validate the authenticity of an invoice, most businesses now use e-signatures or digital signatures on an invoice.

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Here are the main contents of an invoice:

  • The term “Invoice.”
  • Unique invoice number
  • Date of purchase
  • Details of the product or service already rendered
  • Due amount
  • Customer information, such as name, phone number, address, etc.
  • Business information, such as name, phone number, address, etc.

What is a bill?

Bill definition: The term bill is used by customers in order to refer to the payments owed to suppliers for goods or services.

A bill is a document describing that payment is due and needs to be paid before moving out or going out from where you have purchased goods or used services. A bill is often given in the form of a paper and doesn’t consist of any unique number to differentiate it from other bills or to be used for accounting or tax purposes.

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The main objective of a bill is that it works as proof of transaction. When you receive a bill, it implies that you owe money. Consider the itemized bill you receive at the end of a dinner. In that case, the term “invoice” would be inappropriate because you must pay your “bill” before leaving.

Here are the main contents of a bill:

  • Details of the product or service already rendered, such as price, description, etc.
  • Amount to be paid

Key differences between invoice and bill 

Here are the key differences between invoice and bill:

  • An invoice consists of a unique number, whereas a bill does not consist of a unique number.
  • Invoices are frequently used in credit transactions, whereas bills are often used for cash transactions completed in one go.
  • An invoice is a legal document that comes in handy for financial reporting. On the other hand, a bill acts as proof of a transaction.
  • An invoice is a term a business uses to collect money from its customers. On the other hand, a bill is a term customers use to refer to payments owed to suppliers for goods or services.

Conclusion

The main difference between invoice and bill depends on how they are viewed, i.e., based on whether you are the sender or the receiver. A company may send you an invoice for services rendered, but you will acknowledge it as a bill when you receive it.

This article has explored the difference between invoices and bills in great detail. If you have any queries related to the article, please feel free to send your query to us in the form of a comment. We will be happy to help.

Happy learning!!

About the Author
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Anshuman Singh
Senior Executive - Content

Anshuman Singh is an accomplished content writer with over three years of experience specializing in cybersecurity, cloud computing, networking, and software testing. Known for his clear, concise, and informative wr... Read Full Bio

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