The ability to invoice your clients using a smart file provides yet another way to reduce friction for your clients and make sure you get paid with no back and forth.

Whether you’re building the invoicing experience out by adding a contract to sign, questions for your clients, and beautifully branded text and images; or, simply using the file to design a functional, eye-catching, standalone invoice, invoices always make it easy for your clients to pay.


Your account look a little different? You might have a different version of files! Check out this article for more info on creating an invoice with legacy files. Smart files are still in beta, but they’re coming soon and offering more power and customization than ever. Join the waitlist to get access ASAP!


In this article, we’ll review:


Adding an invoice to a smart file

Once you’ve created your smart file, find or create the page where you want the invoice to go—you can even pull an existing invoice into your new template to save time. If you make edits, they’ll take effect only in the template you’re working on.

To add an invoice to an existing page:

1. Click the large plus (+) button to add a new block.

2. Select Invoice & Pay.

3. From here, you can:

  • Click + Start from blank to add a new invoice & pay block; OR

  • Select an existing smart file template to pull in its invoice

  • HoneyBook Tip: If you used the old saved blocks feature, any saved invoice blocks will appear in the list for easy addition, too!

PLEASE NOTE: To increase your chances of booking, you will not be able to add an invoice to a page that already contains a contract or services.

Adding an invoice will add just that—an invoice—and it will also add a payment page to your smart file. The invoice page is where you’ll build out the services you’re charging for, as well as the payment schedule. From the payment page, you can adjust payment settings (the payment methods you'll accept, whether clients can add gratuity, etc.).

Once you send a smart file containing an invoice to a client, here's what they'll experience.

Added your invoice successfully? Skip here for more details on building your invoice out and customizing it.

To add an invoice to a new page:

1. Click the Pages icon at the top of the builder.

2. Click Add Page.

3. From here, you can:

Adding an invoice will add just that—an invoice—and it will also add a payment page to your smart file. The invoice page is where you’ll build out the services you’re charging for, as well as the payment schedule. From the payment page, you can adjust payment settings (the payment methods you'll accept, whether clients can add gratuity, etc.).

Once you send a smart file containing an invoice to a client, here's what they'll experience.


Adding services, items, and/or packages

1. Click the search bar in the first empty service item field to start adding. From here, you can:

  • Add existing items, services, or packages (any that you’ve sent to clients before) by selecting from the available list, or typing to search for something specific.

  • Add something new by typing in the name of the item/service and clicking the + New button.

2. Edit the details for each item or package by clicking on the field you'd like to update: name, image, quantity, price, tax, etc.

  • HoneyBook Tip: Remember that, though you can toggle the visibility of columns on or off by clicking the column headers, you’ll need to have columns toggled on in order to edit.

3. Continue adding items or services by clicking + Add an item/package.

  • HoneyBook Tip: Need turn a standalone item into a package (a set of items grouped together)? Click the item, then select Add a Sub-Item.

Clicking an individual item will allow you to edit further: you can check or uncheck tax and toggle the image on and off in the right side bar; click the move icon to rearrange the order of items with drag and drop; and delete items with the trash can.


Customizing your invoice's settings

First, click the outline of the invoice block to open the invoice settings sidebar.

From here, you’ll be able to adjust a number of areas.

Bill To

  • If you’re building/editing this smart file in a project, you will be able to select from the list of project participants in the drop-down. Selecting a participant will pull their name (and any contact info that’s been saved) into the Bill To field. (You can also add a project participant right from here by clicking + Add participant in the drop-down.)

  • If you’re building/editing this smart file in your Templates section, you will not see any contacts available to select—since it’s a template, there are no participants to add yet. However, you can enter any text in the field that reads “Type contact info here…” or leave it blank.

HoneyBook Tip: You can also hide the Bill To area entirely under the invoice’s Design tab.

Send recurring invoices

Toggle this option on if you’d like to send the invoice on repeat.

  • HoneyBook Tip: You can learn more about recurring invoice set-up here!

Discount

Toggle the discount field on in the settings sidebar, then click into the field below to adjust the amount. You can set a discount for a dollar amount, or a percentage of the subtotal (pre-tax).

Tax

If not already added, click + add tax to add a tax or fee and rename the field if you’d like. Click into the field below to adjust the amount—you can set a dollar amount, or a percentage of the total taxed packages/items.

Tax 2

Click + add tax to add an additional tax or fee, such as a service charge, to the invoice summary. Name the field in the settings sidebar, and click the field below to adjust the amount.

  • HoneyBook Tip: You can delete any tax by clicking the trash can icon next to its name. Just make sure no line items have the tax applied before deleting!

Tax 3

Click + add tax to add an additional tax or fee, such as a service charge, to the invoice summary. Name the field in the settings sidebar, and click the field below to adjust the amount.


Customizing your invoice's design

First, click the outline of the invoice block to open the invoice settings sidebar. Then, select the Design tab.

As with any smart file, you’ll be able to adjust the basic design of the block—background color, background color opacity, and padding. Unlike other block types, you’ll also be able to further customize the appearance of the invoice columns and header.

Columns color

Toggle the column appearance between Plain (white background) or Theme Color (background will pull the Highlight Color from your theme).

Header Area

Under the Header Area section, select which areas should be visible to your clients. You can adjust the visibility of the following areas:

  • Title

  • Purchase order (PO number)

  • Recipient name (Bill to)

  • HoneyBook Tip: You can also edit the text that appears in these areas by clicking directly into the corresponding field in the invoice block! For example, to edit the Title text:

Display

Next, select if package and item images, as well as what columns, should be visible to your clients in the invoice. All columns except Description and Total can be toggled off.

PLEASE NOTE: To edit the quantity and price of itemsor to turn tax on for any itemsyou’ll need to keep those columns toggled on until the edits are complete. Once toggled off, the totals will still reflect the quantities and prices that you set, and any taxes for selected items will still be totaled up in the invoice summarythe toggled-off columns just won’t be visible to your clients.

Tax 2 and 3your secondary and tertiary tax or fee fieldswill first need to be added in the invoice settings section. You can then turn that charge on for select items, and toggle the column off again if necessary.


Using service blocks with invoices

If you’ve created a services block that allows (or requires) your clients to make a service selection, including an invoice on a subsequent page of the smart file will dynamically pull in your client’s selections and automatically calculate the total amount.

Smart files that contain selectable services and an invoice will automatically include this dynamic section of the invoice (no need to add it manually), even if you began with an invoice section.

You can also include any additional services, fees, or payments in the invoice. Simply add services to the invoice, just as you would in a standard invoice; then, when your client selects their service of choice, that cost will be added to the static services you’ve included.

Finally, in invoices that dynamically pull in service selections, you can customize exactly what your client will see on their invoice for each possible service. Just click the Edit button in the dynamic services section to adjust. You can learn more about editing your clients' invoice view here.


Editing your payment schedule

In the payment schedule section, you can adjust the amount and date of each payment; add payments to the plan by clicking + Add A Payment; or remove by clicking a payment, then clicking the trash can icon.

Amount options

Click on the dollar amounts to edit the values. You can choose from:

  • Custom amount: the dollar value of your choice

  • Percentage: automatically calculate dollar amounts based on percentage of the total

  • Divide equally: the total invoice amount, divided equally across all payments

Due date options

Click on the dates to edit the values. You can choose due dates from:

  • Upon Receipt: payment due on the date the invoice is sent

  • Custom date: select a fixed due date on the calendar

  • Smart date: due date is based on a variable such as specific number of days, weeks, or months before a project date, after a project date, or after the invoice has been sent

  • Mid-project date: halfway between the day the invoice is sent and the project date

  • Project date: the date your project set for. If your project has a start and an end date, this will pull in the project start date.

  • Milestone date: manually request payment once a project milestone is completed (e.g. completion of a deliverable).


Customizing your payment settings

Navigate to the payment page, which will have been automatically added upon adding an invoice, then click the outline of the payment area to open the settings sidebar.

Here, you can adjust:

  • Payment method: Set which payment methods you’ll accept (credit card, ACH bank transfer, or both)

  • Autopay: Automatically charge clients on the due dates set in the payment schedule. You can toggle required autopay on, which will require clients to opt in to autopay before they’re able to submit payment to you. If toggled off, clients won’t be required to opt in to automatic payments, but they’ll still have the option to.

  • Gratuity: Allow your client the option to add gratuity/tip


Sending your smart file

Once you’ve built out the invoice and the rest of your smart file (check out more smart file building tips here), click Share.

You can then share the smart file with your project participants via email, or click Create a Link to copy & share a link to the file via text, DM, or another avenue.

  • HoneyBook Tip: Want to make sure you know what your clients will experience? Select Send a test file from the Send drop-down menu, then click Send Test. You'll receive the smart file in your email inbox, so you can review before sending to the client.

When your client makes a payment, you’ll be notified right away. You can also track payments, contract signatures, and responses to questions when you open the smart file.


And remember, the beauty of a smart file is that it can be more than just an invoice. Add pages with text, images, and videos to introduce your company and showcase your brand; add questions to get more info from your clients (or allow them to ask more questions of you) without any back and forth; or round out the booking process by adding a contract to the experience. Whatever make sense for your business and your process!

Not sure where to start? Check out examples in our Smart Files Template Gallery to find some smart files that work for you!

Want to learn how to create and share an invoice from the HoneyBook mobile app? Check out this article.

Want to learn more?

Still have questions? Feel free to send us a message by clicking the Question Mark icon on any HoneyBook page. Our team is always happy to help!

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