Because invoices are such a regular, recurring part of doing business, most people don’t think much about invoice design. And that’s fine, a simple invoice still gets the job done. But when you do put in a little extra effort and create a unique invoice design, people notice.

invoice design illustration
Time to get a little more creative with your invoice design. Illustration by OrangeCrush.

A well-designed, on-brand invoice engages clients one last time before you part ways, but also increases your chances of seeing them again. Take a look below at the amazingly unique ways small businesses are branding their invoices. You can find invoice design inspiration by looking at how brands like yours are making their invoices—or their letterheads and stationery they’re printed on—stand out with great design.

In-your-face invoice design ideas

Nobody wants to chase down invoices that clients “lost” or “forgot to pay,” so save yourself the headache. Make it harder for clients to miss your invoices… by making them unmissable—and unforgettable.

bold, busy yellow and white invoice design
Just like caution tape, this bold yellow invoice is impossible to ignore. Via Canva

Punchy invoices feel like they’re shouting the contents for the whole world to hear. They’re not for the faint-hearted, but rather bold and brazen brands that aren’t afraid to stand out and demand attention.

stationary set with watermark smiley faces
You can’t ignore a big yellow smiley. Stationery design by Fatima Baloshi

With any invoice design, clarity is key. It’s not effective if your design is so busy that the client can’t find the bottom line, where to send payments, due dates, etc. In fact, if a cool design gets in the way of the payment terms and your client finds themselves facing a late fee or a service charge they didn’t know about, they’re not going to be happy… and that won’t reflect well on your brand. So if you decide to go bold with your invoices, make sure you keep clarity and readability as your top priorities, so nothing gets lost in the noise.

black and white stationary with an embossed logo and a gold corner logo
No matter what’s printed on it, black paper is impossible to ignore. Stationary design by rusko

The eclectic-patterned invoice design below uses conversational language to make the invoicing process more like a quick chat than a stiff, formal transaction. The invoice itself is bold, but it’s a warm boldness that’s led with “Hello, this is your invoice” and completed with a “Thank you!” watermark across the bottom of the page.

white invoice design with a colorful left-side border
Making the invoice conversational is an easy way to make its purpose clear. Via Canva
color blocked invoice design
Most customers aren’t expecting this much color in a utility invoice. Via Hongkiat

Invoices that get straight to the bottom line

Minimalist doesn’t have to mean boring. In fact, it shouldn’t. Minimalism is clear and gets right to the point, which isn’t boring at all. When you’re invoicing, a design that cuts straight to the bottom line is often the clearest way to communicate.

invoice design and compliance letters in red, green and white
Color blocks guide the viewer’s eye to exactly where it needs to go in this design. Invoice design by tadaam

In tadaam’s design for Safety Watch, a single color is used to guide the viewer through the invoice they receive. This single color highlights the key points of the invoice: the vendor’s name, the purpose of the invoice, the items billed and relevant bank details for the client.

This template is used in other documents that are issued to clients, like compliance notifications. In the compliance notifications, designer tadaam uses color to make the document’s purpose very clear—if the client’s property is non-compliant, critical information is in red. If the client’s property is compliant, this information is in green.

minimalist white invoice with red accents
Minimalist is simple, but not boring. Invoice design by Applefresh
minimalist invoice design for consultant
A clean, clear invoice design leaves no room for misunderstanding. Stationary design by undrthespellofmars

Two kinds of brands tend to go with minimalist designs: brands that focus on providing straightforward, to-the-point service and high-end brands that provide quality goods and top-tier service. The former uses them in a “what you see is what you get” kind of way; no surprises for the client. For the latter, a minimalist design says “we don’t have to justify our prices, you know you’re getting quality.”

The colors and fonts that brands use identify which of these two groups they fall into—with their luxe gold footer, the Paszt invoice below broadcasts their position at the top of their industry. Conversely, the Centrinet invoice uses cool blue and neutral gray to signal that they’re all about giving the customer exactly what they want, no surprises, no frills.

white and gold invoice
Gold is glamorous, and just a little bit goes a long way. Invoice design by rockstar-creations
purple and white invoice with green text
A simple, yet unique, invoice makes for a quick, but not generic, checkout. Via Hongkiat
white and blue invoice
Follow straightforward service with a straightforward invoice. Invoice design by creaticca-kepitink

Invoice designs that make paying fun

Okay, so maybe paying your invoices isn’t ever going to be fun, but these custom invoices get as close to it as possible. For example, take designer choky art’s design for Steamworks. A steam-heating installation, restoration and service company isn’t the first thing that comes to mind for most people when they think of “fun.” But by giving their invoices a steampunk look, designer choky art makes them pleasantly stand out from all the other contractor bills their clients get.

steampunk-inspired invoice
Have a little fun with on-brand invoice design! Invoice design by choky art
vintage-inspired block print-style invoice
A little bit of vintage whimsy can be a lot of fun for clients who are used to bland, boring invoices. Invoice design by duwi.sleman

Playful invoice designs are a fun choice for any creative entrepreneur, like an illustrator or a graphic designer. Illustrator Kevin Luong leans into his illustrating skills and gives his clients one last pop of playful with his custom, cartoony invoice design.

black and white invoice design with a boy mascot
Getting a little bit cheeky can take the sting out of paying an invoice. Via Canva
black and white invoice design with a hammer worked into the page break
There are lots of ways to make an invoice design fun, like this subtle, whimsical hammer design. Invoice design by Xclusive16

Unexpected invoice design inspiration

When you pay for a service, you expect an invoice. And when you get the invoice, you expect to see what you’ve been billed for. But what if you sent your clients something they weren’t expecting? No, we don’t mean hidden fees here, we mean an unexpectedly creative invoice.

restaurant bill folded like origami
A unique invoice can be a work of art. Via Canva
unfolded blue and brown restaurant bill
And it can make your brand unforgettable! Via Canva

Sending an invoice that’s unlike any your clients have seen before guarantees they’ll never forget you. Choosing a weird, unconventional invoice is a bold move, which makes it perfect for weird, unconventional brands. The origami bill design for Maaemo is part of a larger brand identity where everything, from the menu to the to-go bags, is made of folded paper.

black and white invoice arranged to look like a newspaper
Hot off the presses! It’s your invoice! Via Hongkiat

Since most (or even all) of the invoices your clients receive tend to be pretty similar-looking, you don’t actually have to get too crazy to deliver something unexpected. Sure, you could invoice them by sending a barbershop quartet to their doorstop to sing them a bill ballad—but that’s time-consuming and everyone knows barbershop quartets aren’t cheap!

Instead, make your clients both smile and remember your brand with an invoice that’s still paper, but not the kind of paper document they’d expect. Just look at designer heribertus haryo’s old-school, grime-stained invoice design.

vintage-inspired, block print stationary
We bet the client wasn’t expecting something that looks so roughed-up and rugged. Stationery design by heribertus haryo

Custom invoice design pays off

Stop sending generic, boring invoices. Anybody can grab a plain invoice template and send it to their clients… but you’re not just anybody. Maybe you’re the fun option, or the bold option, or the unconventional option who always blows your clients’ minds with your groundbreaking approach to business. But the one thing you’re not is plain.

Hire a designer to create an invoice that’s uniquely you and guarantee your clients never forget your brand… or their outstanding balance!

Want a unique invoice design for your brand?
Our talented designers can create the perfect one for you.