Under invoicing, both invoice and a bill contain details about the money owed by the buyer to the seller for the sale of goods or services. In the normal course of business, the word invoice is used by the seller of goods. The buyer often uses the word bill to refer to payments made to the seller immediately upon the completion of the transaction.
An invoice refers to an accounting document issued by a business to its customers containing details about goods sold or services provided and the amount charged for the same. It is a legal document that is to be prepared in a specific invoice template.
A bill states the amount owed by a customer to the vendor. Both invoice and bill contain the same information regarding the business transaction. Still, the word invoice is used by the provider of services, whereas the customer records the same as a bill against which payments are to be made. It serves as proof of transaction. Some of the common examples of billing are billing done at supermarkets, restaurants, etc.
Bill is a generic term for documents, whereas the invoice is a specific term. Some of the differences between an invoice and a bill are discussed in the below table:
|Contents||The invoice contains customer information.|
Invoices are issued in a specified invoice template containing specific details such as invoice number, date of issue, due date, business name and contact details, customers contact details, tax details, amounts due, etc.
|Bills usually don't contain customer information.
Bills contain limited details such as the amount charged for the sale, including any taxes charged on the same.
|Unique invoice number||Invoices are assigned a unique invoice number for accounting and tax purposes.||Bills aren't numbered. Even if they are numbered, it doesn't have significant legal importance as it is used only for the businesses’ administrative purposes.|
|Type of transaction||Invoices are usually used for credit transactions with specific due dates for payment. They are used to request payments from their customers for goods already sold or services already provided.||Bills are issued for cash transactions that are completed in one go.
For example, when Mr X has dinner at a restaurant, he will be issued a bill to be paid upfront.
|Purpose||It is a legal document used for financial reporting.||Bill serves as proof of transaction.|