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New: FreshBooks for Gmail

by Jamaal Montasser  |  October 17/2011  |  , , ,

Nine times out of ten, you work out of your email inbox.  Email is the place you often deal with clients, check off to-do lists, and manage projects.

Client emails can brighten your day when they tell you how amazing your work is. That brightness can fade when you’re trying to find how much your client owes you or trying to log hours for the emails your writing all because your spending so much time going back and forth between FreshBooks and your inbox.

Today, email and billing just got simpler by combining FreshBooks with Gmail.  It’s now easier than ever to track time and manage invoices because you can do that directly in Gmail.  What else can you do with FreshBooks for Gmail?

  1. Save time by adding that new client you just closed right into your FreshBooks account.


  1. Quickly track time for projects directly in your email and get paid for all the hours you put in.

  1. Get paid faster by knowing how much every client owes you in outstanding invoices and send them a gentle email reminder.

To get started with FreshBooks for Gmail, you need a Google Apps account.  Once you have your Google Apps account setup, follow these steps to add FreshBooks to your Gmail:

  1. Visit the FreshBooks for Gmail listing in the Google Apps Marketplace.
  2. Click the big, blue “Add it Now” button the top-right side of the page.
  3. If you’re not already logged in to your Google Apps account, you’ll be prompted for your username and password.
  4. Next you’ll have to click agree to the terms of service by clicking the “I agree. Continue” button.
  5. From there, you’ll have to grant access to your Google Apps domain in order for the extension to work.

Please note that once installed, FreshBooks for Gmail can take several minutes to start working in your Gmail. Once you’ve installed the extension in your Google Apps account, you’ll have to input your FreshBooks account credentials (Subdomain and API Token) by clicking the “Settings” button in the top right of the gadget.

If you’re looking your FreshBooks API token, follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your FreshBooks account
  2. Click on ‘My Account” in the top right of your account
  3. Click on the FreshBooks API page
  4. Volla! Your API token
If you like FreshBooks for Gmail, please leave a review in Google Apps Marketplace. If you have any feedback that could make your experience better, add a comment below or send us an email.  We’d love to hear from you.

  • http://www.karlfrankjr.com Karl Frank

    I had already linked Freshbooks with my Apps account. Now when I try and add these features it says I am already linked. What do I need to do to activate these features on my Apps account?

    Thanks,

    Karl

  • http://www.karlfrankjr.com Karl Frank

    Nevermind…I think I got it. I had to follow a different link in this blog post than the one I followed…I guess.

  • Payam

    How does it detect which client to load up? Currently, it loads up an incorrect account for every E-mail…

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Payam,

    Here’s the process the gadget uses to look up clients:

    1) First it takes the list of email addresses and looks for clients associated with those in FreshBooks. If there is numerous email addresses associated with different clients, it chooses the first one.

    If this is a problem, you can add email addresses to the ignore list under the “settings” button in the top right.

    2) If there’s client with a given email address, it checks to see if there’s staff associated with any of the email addresses. Next you have the option to add that email address to the ignore list.

    3) Lastly, if there’s no clients or staff associated with the email addresses, you have the option of creating a new client.

    Does that help, Payam? Don’t hesitate to drop us a line if you’re still having trouble with FreshBooks for Gmail.

  • http://gabearnold.com Gabe Arnold

    I have been a Freshbooks user and fan for years. Thanks for adding this you guys! It’s awesome!

  • http://www.webenergy.co.za Justin Whittaker

    This would be great if it was possible to add to normal Gmail as I use my Gmail account for various email addresses.

  • Web-Kong

    looks great! but the pricing is a bit discouraging for us little guys. :(

    this would double my monthly freshbooks expense which is difficult to justify. it appears to offer some nice conveniences albeit things already had through phone apps and other integrations.

  • http://www.mobilevantage.ca Ted Gorsline

    Jamaal, I love this idea. I think its great and frankly will save so much time.

    I already have widget access for Nutshell CRM, will this conflict with Freshbooks? It doesnt seem to be working yet and was wondering if this was why?

    Thanks

    Ted

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Web-Kong,

    Thanks for your message.

    Which pricing are you referring to? You can use Google Apps for free (http://www.google.com/apps/intl/en/group/index.html) and using FreshBooks for Gmail is free as well.

    Don’t hesitate to drop me a line if you have any questions about this – support@freshbooks.com.

    Jamaal

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Ted,

    It’s taken around 15-25 minutes for FreshBooks for Gmail to appear in some users’ accounts.

    I also have several apps installed in my Gmail and they don’t seem to be conflicting. I will to install Nutshell CRM to double check.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Ted, I’ve got 3 apps running in my Gmail without problems: FreshBooks, Nutshell, DokDok.

    Has FreshBooks for Gmail appeared in your inbox yet?

  • http://www.7questdesigns.com Charlie Coutts

    Has anybody had any luck running this for two separate Freshbooks accounts with two separate Google Apps domains?

    I have 2 businesses, each with their own domains, and their own Google Apps account. I’m using Gmail with account switching and the “settings” data carries across the different domains. It other words, it seems like I can only use one Freshbooks account. Is there a way to hard-set one Freshbooks account for each Apps domain?

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Charlie,

    When using FreshBooks for Gmaill, your subdomain and authentication token are stored in the the browser cache. That means the browser saves and automatically uses them in FreshBooks for Gmail.

    The way to make this work for two FreshBooks accounts would be to use two different browser (like Chrome and Firefox) for the two different accounts. Understandably this is not ideal, but it is the only way to have the authentication token safely stored.

  • http://razorfrog.com Max

    Awesome start so far! Would it be possible to add an option to auto-hide the entire toolbar if the email is added to the ignore list? I love the functionality, but it’s a lot of wasted space for non-clients to display “No clients found”.

    Thanks!

  • http://www.safeharbourtech.com Neil Tancock

    Thanks guys – this is really useful. Any chance we can choose the currency symbol on the outstanding amount? I’m in the UK and would like to use £ :-)

    Neil

  • http://www.julioandrade.com Julio

    We are on the process of rebranding, so our Google Apps account will change. Can I connect my FB account to my current GA account, then in January connect my new GA account instead?

  • Mike

    Great addition to a great service. We notice that so for the addon is not seeing recognizable addresses from email
    We have set up contacts for every person in our client org but still does not recognize .

    Wonder if it could be useful to be able to do a manual association between an email and an account?

    Thanks for a great system

  • harry

    I tried to access but got following message.

    http://awesomescreenshot.com/088mml610

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Max,

    I will certainly bring your suggestion to the team, but I’m not sure its possible to make the the toolbar completely disappear. If an email was accidentally added to the ignore list and you wanted to remove it, it would not be optimal if the toolbar was completely hidden.

    Nonetheless, I’ll make sure you’re suggestion is heard.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Neil, good call on the currency. I will mention that to the team to see what we can do.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Julio,

    That shouldn’t be a problem. You can install and connect as many GA accounts to FreshBooks as you like.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Mike,

    FreshBooks for Gmail cannot scan the contacts you have under clients in your FreshBooks account. It can only read the primary email address for a FreshBooks client.

    Send me an email via support@freshbooks.com, I’m curious how you’d like to use the Gmail extension.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Harry – unfortunately it’s not possible to use a vanilla Gmail account (youremail@gmail.com) with FreshBooks for Gmail. It’s only possible to use it with a Google Apps Gmail (youremail@yourdomain.com).

  • Mike Mallinson

    So if I have multiple contacts for certain clients, it will only recognize the one listed as primary? I’m getting prompted to “Create New Client” for a contact who is listed as an additional contact under a client already…

  • Danny

    I really like the idea of this new tool however I have the following observations:

    - Currency doesn’t seem to be locale specific, I’m in the UK and it displays $. Alternatively, can this be connected to the clients locale?

    - When clicking the “Log Hours” link, the projects and tasks drop-down lists never populate despite projects and tasks being defined for the client.

    Other than that, this is a great addition, keep it up.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Mike, that’s correct. FreshBooks for Gmail only checks the first (primary) email saved under a client.

    I can definitely understand your frustration. I’m compiling a list of suggested changes and quirks with FreshBooks for Gmail and yours will certainly be on the list.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Danny,

    Thanks for letting us know about the currency issue.

    As for the issue you have with logging hours – can you drop us a line at support@freshbooks.com. I’d like to take a closer look.

  • http://newmindgroup.com Daniel

    We are seeing an error when trying to use the gadget. Every time the gadget loads it throws and error like:

    The page at https://qcoie7jpo6po4085ksfnpef3n078vfi8-a-gm-opensocial.googleusercontent.com says:

    Exceeded maximum number of daily requests (5000).

    Any help?

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Daniel, can you email support@freshbooks.com so we can diagnose the problem?

  • Andrew

    Hi,

    The gadget looks nice, but after using it I don’t think I need it. Can you post instructions on how to uninstall/remove?

    Thanks.

    Andrew

  • http://www.jsncafe.com @angeladenby

    I am so impressed with Freshbooks. Many of my clients ask what system I’m using for invoicing since they’re pleased with the interface on their end as well.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Andrew,

    To delete a Google Apps Marketplace app:

    1) In the Google Apps Dashboard tab, click the app name to open the settings page.
    2) Under Delete application, click the Delete link.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Glad you like it @angeladenby!

  • http://www.chrisgraeser.com Chris Graeser

    +1 on displaying the wrong person. In fact, in displays the SAME (wrong) person for nearly every email, only displaying the right client a few times and never just telling me it didn’t find the person so I can ignore or add as client. Any thoughts?

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Chris, please email support@freshbooks.com so we can diagnose the problem.

  • Gordon

    I already had Freshbooks attached to my Apps account. I’m not seeing how to attach this gmail bit to it.

  • Luis Rojo

    Hi, I have just installed this. It is really good to have Freshbooks in Gmail.

    Is the email address recognition case sensitive? The gadget did not recognise one of my clients, but did once I entered the address with the exact case she uses.

    Another vote for local currency!

    Thanks

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Gordon,

    There are two separate Google Apps Marketplace Listings – you need to have both of them installed. The link in the article are for FreshBooks for Gmail.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Luis,

    Unfortunately what you’ve pointed out is a bug. Currently FreshBooks for Gmail is case sensitive. This will be corrected in the future.

    And your request for local currency has been noted.

  • http://www.huronlaw.com Doug Gower

    I do tech support for one of your Freshbook customers. We just got Freshbooks for Gmail up and running. But problem:

    It seems to identify by default every email as being from the same client. How do we correct this? Thanks.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Doug,

    FreshBooks for Gmail takes all email addresses in the From, CC, and To fields and scans them against your clients. The first match it finds, it loads. If it isn’t the right one, you can add it to the ignored email list.

    If this doesn’t resolve it, please contact our support team and they should be able to assist you.

  • http://bluenotion.com Cameron Mitchell

    I would LOVE for this to work in our company Google apps setup.

    However, EVERY time I open an email I get a popup warning me;

    “You do not have access to invoices”

    And the Project dropdowns are empty.

    I am staff. Must I have access to Admin information in order to log my hours?

  • Jenna Dixon

    I could really like this but does your stuff have to be q u i t e so loud? the freshbooks inserts really take over the screen… gak!

    Am hunting around trying to figure out how to uninstall now… would try again with a quieter look… thanks

  • Brad

    Is it possible to add an option to create a “Support Ticket” from the Gmail addon.

    This would be a massive addition and also an “Create Estimate” option

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#jamaal Jamaal Montasser

    Cameron, FB for Gmail should still work for staff. The admin on the FreshBooks account can set what staff can access. If you’re still having trouble, please contact support@freshbooks.com.

    Jenna, thanks for the feedback; we’ll keep that in mind for future iterations.

    Brad, currently it is not possible to create a support ticket with the add-on. We will take note of your suggestion if we decide to make changes to the gadget.

  • http://www.damascusapparel.com Josh Lyon

    This isn’t truly valuable until I can see ESTIMATES. I would love the ability to see the status of estimates (sent, replied, viewed) within Gmail. Can we make this happen guys?

  • Ben Lachoff

    Nice start! Really look forward to using this in the future, however for now I have uninstalled due to: (1) Needs option to specify emails from any_user@client_domain = single freshbooks client. (2) The BIG BOLD BLUE design of the widget is distracting. We want to focus on the email we are working on, not your integrated product.

    Fix these issues and we will reinstall, Thanks!

  • http://www.theotcentre.co.uk Mark Spencer

    My company uses contractors who login to my Google Apps domain, but are “Contractors” in FBooks, so have their own Freshbooks account. I invite them into Projects in Freshbooks as Contractors.

    Is there any way they can use the Gmail plugin under this arrangement?

  • Brian

    How do we get the gmail app to recognize the secondary and tertiary contacts so we can update projects and such using multiple contacts in an organization?

  • Tim

    Hi Brian! Tim from FreshBooks here!

    The application doesn’t support additional contact at this time. Sorry! I’ll put this in as a feature request for consideration for future updates.


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