Creating your first invoice

Get your first invoice up and running so you can start collecting payments.

Updated over a week ago

To help you get started, the steps below will walk you through one way to start building an invoice, but there are a few other places you can get started. Learn more about the other ways to create an invoice.


Create and name your first invoice template

1. From the top navigation menu, select Tools → select My Templates.

2. Select Create New → select Invoice.

3. Your new invoice will open in the template builder. Click into the title field to the top left of your screen and give your template a name.


Add your services to the invoice template

Services are what you’re billing for. You’ll add services to your invoice along with descriptions, costs, and more.

If you’re creating a template, make sure you add services that are relevant to the situation. For example: if you’re creating a template for premium clients, add your premium package to the file.

1. If you’re working from a new invoice template, you’ll see that a generic service has already been added: My Service.

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

3. Continue adding items or services as needed by clicking + Add a service/item.


Add tax details to the invoice template

Need to add tax or other fees to your invoice? Read on below. Otherwise, you can skip these steps!

1. First, select the outline of the invoice block to open the invoice settings sidebar → Add tax details.

2. Select + Add tax to add a tax or fee.

3. Optionally, select the name field and type to rename it.

4. Select the field below to adjust the amount—you can set a dollar amount, or a percentage of the total taxed packages/items.

5. Once you've added tax and set the rate, remember to apply the tax to all of the appropriate packages/items. To do this, select the checkbox under the tax column by the package/item in question.

✅ Note

You can select + Add tax to add an additional tax or fee, such as a service charge.

Once you start exploring packages (which can be used to build up invoices) and how they fit into your workflow, you can add taxes to them as well.


Create the payment schedule for your invoice template

The payment schedule is where you’ll set when your client will pay, and the amounts.

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:

  • Invoice date: 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 payment: halfway between the day the invoice is sent and the project date

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

  • Milestone payment: manually request payment once a project milestone is completed (e.g. completion of a deliverable). If selecting this option, be sure to enter the Milestone name


Decide how you want your client to pay

Payment option settings are where you’ll edit how your client can pay–the method, gratuity options, and autopay.

1. On the right side of your screen, select the Pay page → select the outline of the payment block to open the payment settings.

2. Here, you can adjust:

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

    • At the moment, HoneyBook cannot process ACH bank transfers for Canada-based members—only credit card payments can be accepted for these accounts.

  • Client can add a tip: Allow your client the option to add gratuity/tip, then select if this option will be turned on for all payments, or just the last payment

  • Client must use 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 turn it on themselves.


Configure the invoice template’s file settings

The Settings section of a file allows you to make adjustments to your clients' experience and interactions.

1. Select the gear icon to open the configure settings.

2. From here, you’ll be able to adjust a number of settings for the file. Learn about the different settings options and how to adjust them here.


Share your invoice with your client

Once your invoice is set up to your liking, it’s time to send it to a client.

As a first step to sharing, you’ll need to create a new project, or locate an existing one. In HoneyBook, projects are the folders that house all of the communication, files, and details related to a specific job. In order to share a file, you need to first have a project.

There's two ways to find the project you'll share the invoice in:

Create a new project to share the invoice in

1. From your HoneyBook home page, select + NEWProject.

2. Add the required project details: name and type.

📚 Tip

While not required, you should consider adding the lead source and project date in as well. You can always edit these details in the future.

3. Select Create Project.

4. Add a participant (your client) to the project. You can create a new client or search for an existing one. Once you’ve made your selections and entered any required info, click Add.

5. From within the project workspace, select Create File Invoice.

6. You’ll see a list of your existing invoice templates; select the appropriate one.

7. Your file will open in the builder. Next, jump to how you’d like to share the invoice: via email or direct link!


Locate an existing project to share the invoice in

1. Search for a specific project via the search icon to the top left of your screen, OR select theProjects tab to review your full list of projects (theproject pipeline).

2. Once you’ve located the project in question, select it.

3. From within the project workspace, select Create File Invoice.

4. You’ll see a list of your existing invoice templates; select the appropriate one.

5. Your file will open in the builder. Next, jump to how you’d like to share the invoice: via email or direct link!


Once you’ve created a new or opened an existing project, there's two ways you can send the invoice to your client:


Share your invoice via email

1. The steps in this section will always come after adding your invoice to a project. Follow the steps in the section above to do so.

2. If you’d rather send a direct link to your client, skip down to the next section.

3. Once your invoice is open in the builder in the project workspace, feel free to make any project-specific edits–they won’t affect the original template.

4. When you’re ready, select Share.

5. From here,, you can either:

  • Compose a new message by typing directly in the email composer

  • OR, select an email template that you’ve already saved to send with the invoice

6. If you’d like to adjust the button text (the text on the button that links out to the invoice, automatically included at the bottom of your email) that will appear to your client, select the Edit button text icon. From here, enter the button text of your choice in the text box that appears, then click Save.

📚 Tip

Not quite sure what this will look like in your client’s inbox? Select the eye icon from the email composer to preview.

7. Select Send when you’re ready.


Share your invoice via direct link

1. The steps in this section will always come after adding your invoice to a project. Follow the steps in the section above to do so.

2. If you’d rather send the invoice to your client via email, return to the section above.

3. Once your invoice is open in the builder in the project workspace, feel free to make any project-specific edits–they won’t affect the original template.

4. When you’re ready, select Share.

5. Select the Create a Link button.

6. Creating a direct link will change the status of this smart file to Sent, but won’t actually send an email. To confirm you understand, click Create & Change to Sent.

A direct link will be generated that you can copy and share with the project participants however you'd like. Any project participant who receives the link will be able to access the file and take action on it; the project participants will also see the sent invoice within the project.

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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