The ability to easily invoice clients is a crucial part of running a business—which is why we've added enhanced invoice features in the new smart files builder.
To save you the time and effort of recreating your legacy files as smart files, we've already updated your invoice file templates. But not to worry—you can also find your original legacy invoice templates in the Legacy Files tab of your Templates section.
In addition to having updated templates ready for you, you’ll also still be able to quickly create new invoices as you know and love them, easily pulling in a list of services/prices, customizing a payment schedule, and allowing your client to seamlessly make their payments online—even with all the enhancements of smart files.
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:
Legacy invoice files vs. smart files
Just as you could with your legacy invoice files, you can easily create simple, beautiful invoices with smart files (or, simply send out one of the templates we've already updated for you).
When creating an invoice, smart files will allow you all the same options as legacy files, including the ability to:
Add a header image
Display packages and items included in the invoice
Customize the images, descriptions, and prices of those packages or items
Create a payment schedule (or use a payment schedule template you've saved)
Customize how clients can pay (credit card/bank transfer, autopay, optional gratuity, etc.)
What’s new with smart files? Instead of being limited to individual documents and emails, you can create a file that combines elements of your process (think service selection + dynamic invoice, for example), as well as customizing the look and feel of the file with additional branding options and more opportunities to add in content.
But, of course, you can also keep things simple and send over a file that contains a single action—such as an invoice that simply allows the client to review and submit a payment—just like you were used to doing with your legacy invoice files.
Locating & sending your updated invoice templates
You can access your updated templates in your Templates section—we've automatically updated all of your legacy file invoice templates for you.
To find your updated templates:
1. Click the Tools menu in your top navigation bar.
2. Select My Templates.
3. Click Filters and select Invoice.
This will filter your templates to only show those that include an invoice. All the templates you see here are your own, and they'll each have the same name as they did when they were file templates.
Either way, when you're ready, you can click Use Template to send the invoice in a project, just as you would with a legacy invoice file.
HoneyBook Tip: Want to start organizing your updated templates into folders? Learn how here.
PLEASE NOTE: Your original file templates are still there, too. You can find them in the Legacy Files tab of your Templates section.
Making changes to smart file templates
You shouldn't have to make changes to these updated templates (since they'll come complete with all of your original content and branding), so you can always simply send them out as-is. That said, you can also add in some of the new smart file features.
Make small changes like updating the font and color scheme, adding an image or two, or including a couple questions you'd like clients to answer; or, take it up a notch by adding a few more actions to the file (like contract or services blocks).
Each smart file template can be as simple or as detailed as you'd like, and just as you could with legacy files, you can make adjustments for specific clients before you share the file with project participants.
Recreating traditional invoice formats as smart files
Want to start from scratch and create a brand new invoice or invoice template in the smart files builder? Here’s what you’ll add to match the components of the invoices that you’re used to.
1. Start with a custom (blank) smart file:
To create an invoice template: head to Templates, click Create New, and select Custom Smart File.
To create an invoice in a project: open the project in question, click Create New, select Custom Smart File, then + Start from blank.
2. Select the Invoice & Pay block.
3. From here:
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!
4. From the Pages menu, click the first page title to customize (you can simply rename it "Invoice"). You'll also notice a Payment page (this is automatically added in whenever you add an invoice)—where you can adjust payment settings, and where your client will add their payment info—and a Thank You page.
If you'd like to keep your invoice short and sweet, feel free to delete the Thank You page by clicking the 3-dot icon next to the page title and selecting Delete.
5. Build or edit your invoice as necessary.
HoneyBook Tip: If you don't need to add a header to your invoice, you can simply skip the remaining steps and share your file when your invoice looks good.
6. To fully replicate the look of legacy invoice files, you can also add a header image, with or without your company name and/or logo. To add, hover over the invoice block and click the Add a block button at the top.
7. If you'll be adding your company name on top of the header image, select Text from the block options. Otherwise, you can simply select the Divider block.
Either way, click the block container (outside of the boxes that contain the elements) to open that block's settings.
8. Click Choose next to Background Image.
9. Select an image from your Library, or click Upload to upload something brand new. From there, you can click Replace to choose a new image, Crop to adjust the view, or change the opacity of the image.
HoneyBook Tip: You can adjust the height of the header by changing the Top & Bottom Padding settings in the block's settings.
10. If you'd like to add your company name, click the text box in the block to add & format your text.
HoneyBook Tip: You can also add your logo next to you company name in the header, or add the logo by itself. Just add an image element and resize as necessary; and, if you'd like the logo and company name side by side, make sure you've formatted the block with two columns.
When everything looks good, click Preview at the top of the builder to preview the client-side view of the invoice. Then, click Update Template to save it. The result will be an invoice that looks very similar to your legacy invoice files:
Then, you can send your invoice off when you're ready.
Next steps to customize your smart files
Now that you know how to create a simple invoice, you can start thinking about how to add on and continue to customize your documents in this new smart files builder—and in ways you never could before.
Once you've added an invoice to your smart file, you can:
Add a contract (essentially recreating a legacy proposal file)
Add a services block, so clients can quickly select services, then pay via invoice
Then, you can send your beautiful smart files out to your clients.
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!