New feature: Date Variables for Recurring Profiles

February 17, 2009

Last week we added the ability to manage temporal date variables on recurring profiles. What are temporal variables you ask? Great question.

Let’s say you invoice a customer every month for “one month of web hosting”. If you sign a customer up for 12 months and charge them monthly, the line item on your invoice will read “one month of web hosting”. The trouble with that is, there is not much context. For example, a customer might wonder, “is this bill for this month’s hosting or next month’s, or was it last month’s?” Using temporal variables, you can answer this question.

As you can see, your invoice line items will now dynamically generate the month name (for example “February” for this month) when you insert the ::month::.

If people prepay for your services and the invoices are for next month, simply add a +1 (like this ::month+1::) and March will display instead of February when the recurring profile creates the invoice. You can add -1 if the invoice is for last month’s services.

This feature is really useful for companies like web hosts and ISPs who charge monthly, quarterly or annual recurring fees.

To access a legend of the variables you can click on the “Learn more about dynamic invoice variables” link in the blue help section we’ve added to the “New recurring” page. When you do you’ll get this pop-up legend:

We hope you find this useful.

about the author

Co-Founder & CEO, FreshBooks Mike is the co-founder and CEO of FreshBooks, the world’s #1 cloud accounting software for self-employed professionals. Built in 2003 after he accidentally saved over an invoice, Mike spent 3.5 years growing FreshBooks from his parents’ basement. Since then, over 10 million people have used FreshBooks to save time billing, and collect billions of dollars. A lover of the outdoors, Mike has been bitten so many times it’s rumored he’s the first human to have developed immunity to mosquitoes.