ContractorTools can send any report or document that it generates to your customers by either attaching it to an email, or uploading it to the ContractorTools Web Portal. To send a report or document, select the email icon in the lower right of the screen while viewing it.
ContractorTools will save the report/document as a PDF file, and then either attach it to an email to be sent, or, if you turn on the "Use Web Portal" option, upload it to the ContractorTools web portal. See "Use Web Portal" below for more information.
Emailing Documents ("Use Web Portal" off)
When "Use Web Portal" is turned off, ContractorTools uses the email system on your iOS device (iPhone or iPad) or Mac computer to email the PDF document.
When you select the email icon while viewing the document, ContractorTools saves the document as a PDF, attaches that to a new email message, and then takes you to the "New Mail" screen in your system's Mail app where you can enter a message in the body of the email message, and select "Send" to send it.
Email Account Setup
Since ContractorTools uses your system's default email app to send the document PDF's, any setup or change in how the emails are sent must be made in your iPhone or iPad operating system setup. In iOS 10 and earlier, this is done in the email app. As of iOS 11, this is done in the "Accounts and Passwords" section of the Settings app. On a Mac, this would be done in "Preferences" in the Mail app.
Setting the Email "From" Address
Email messages have a "from" address. If the email recipient replies to the email you send, the reply will be sent to the "from" address.
To set the "from" address on the Mac, click on the "Select Visible Header Fields" button in the toolbar at the top of the email message, then click on "Reply-To Address Field". Now there will be a prompt for "Reply To:" in the heading of the email message where you can specify the address the email message should be "from".
In iPhones and iPads, the "from" address is the "default" email address that emails are sent from. You can configure your default email address in the Mail section of the Settings app.
Default Email Message Text
When you select the email icon to email a document, you can enter any text in the body of the email message. You can also set up default messages to be automatically loaded into the subject and body of the message, so you don't have to enter it each time you email a document.
To set the default email message to be included when you send an estimates (for example), please follow these steps:
Select a job,
Tap on Estimate,
Tap on Document (in the upper right corner).
While viewing the estimate, tap the Email button in the lower right tool bar; this will display the Email Options popover screen.
Tap "Estimate" in the Email Template section at the bottom.
Now tap "Manage Templates".
Select the template you want to edit ("Estimate").
Here you can edit the default contents for either the Subject, or the Body (text) of the email. The text you enter here will be automatically inserted in the email the next time you email an estimate.
Notice that each type of document (Estimate, Invoice, Job Report, and Payment) has its own email template, and you can set the default email text independently for each type of document.
Use Web Portal
If you turn on the "Use Web Portal" option in the Email screen, instead of emailing the document, ContractorTools will upload it to the ContractorTools web portal, and then send an email with a link to the document in the web portal. When your customer clicks on the link in the email, they will be taken to the web portal where they can view or download the document, or, in the case of an invoice make a payment.
Here's a video about how to use the web portal:
Problems Sending Emails
Emails Take A Long Time To Arrive
When ContractorTools sends estimates by email (not through the web portal), it creates a PDF of the estimate and attaches it to the email to send to the customer. The speed of sending the email with the PDF file estimate will vary depending on two things:
1) How large the PDF file is. The size of the PDF file can vary dramatically depending on whether there are any photos, and how many photos there are, in the estimate document. If you have a photo in the cover page of the estimate document, that also adds to the size of the PDF file.
2) The speed of your internet connection. Sending emails over a cellular data connection can be very slow, so it's best to avoid that and only email estimates while you are connected to a WiFi data connection.
3) Most email services limit the size of emails being sent to something like 2MB. PDF files with photos in them can be much larger than that. In that case, the email may seem to get sent, but it my never arrive (or take several days to arrive). When sending estimates with photos, it is recommended that you use the "Use Web Portal" option instead.
If you have trouble sending emails with the PDF file attached, it may be because the PDF file is too large to be sent by email. In that case, it is recommended that you use the "Use Web Portal" option instead.
Emails Never Get Sent
Sometimes the Mail app stops sending outgoing messages (on the iPhone or iPad). When this happens, ContractorTools acts like messages are being sent, but they don't actually go, they just sit in the outbox.
If this happens, try rebooting your iPhone or iPad. Sometimes this alone fixes the problem.
If that doesn't work, check your email and password settings in the Mail section of the Settings app. Here are the steps to do that:
From Settings > Mail > The email account you are having problem with > password, erase and re-enter the password.
Also, from Mail > The problematic mail address > Outgoing Mail Server (smtp.xxxx.com) > Password, re-enter password.
Then you should try sending an email directly from the Mail app to see if it works. If you can send emails directly from the Mail app, then sending emails from ContractorTools will work.