Using the Clientside

⚠️ You may not be working with Clientside!

Clientside is a way that folks used to work with clients in Basecamp. It's an older feature that is no longer available. You may be working with your clients in Basecamp 3 projects directly. If so, here are those help pages.

How do I know if I'm using Clientside or Clients-In-Projects?

A quick look at your project home page will tell you! Here's how Clientside will look:

And here's how Clients in Projects will look:


If you're working with Clients in Projects, here are those help pages once more for you!


Now back to Clientside!

Jump to:

If you'd like your clients separate from the internal side of your account, you may want to stick with the Clientside. Your clients won't need to log in to your account — they’ll receive everything via email. If you need to get client approvals on the record, or if you'd like to keep clients out of the internal side, you'll stick with the Clientside

Adding clients to the Clientside

Clients won’t need to set up an ID or password to work with you in Basecamp. In fact, they'll never need to log into your account at all! Use Basecamp to sends updates to your clients via email, and they'll respond back to you the same way.

Note: You can only add a Clientside to Projects, not Teams.

To add a client to a project, click the Add/remove people... button right beside people’s avatars.

On the next page, click the green + Add people... button, and you'll have several options for inviting people. Choose Invite a client to this project...

From here, you'll be asked to choose between using Clientside or the new way of working with clients ( directly in your project). Select I'll stick with the old way to use Clientside.

Then, you can begin to add a client by typing in the client company name and then their personal information, like their name, email, and title.

You'll then have the option to send a kickoff message to get things rolling. You can skip this as well, of course!

Adding more clients

When you're looking at the project page once again, you can get to the Clientside by clicking on the button at the top of the project page.

Now that you're back in the Clientside, you can add contact info for anyone in the client company you’re working with. Click  Edit client contacts at the top of the Clientside Message Board. 

Type names, emails, and job titles (optional) for those people.

When you’re done, hit the Save changes button, and you’re all set to work with your clients!


Emailing your client

When you've added a client to the Clientside, you'll see a tab that says  Email the client. Go ahead and click on it to send an email to the client.

Choose who in the client organization should receive the email, and write your message! Everyone on the Clientside will be automatically listed as a recipient, and you can CC people on your team too.

Note: The Clientside works like email — once you add a message to the Clientside, it’s not possible to edit or delete what you've sent.

Client replies

This is what your client sees when they receive a message from you when you use Clientside. When your clients get an email, they can simply hit the reply button to respond to you.

Basecamp will thread that reply along with the original message. It's simple for them, and for you!

Getting the client's approval on record

Sometimes you need an official YES or NO sign-off from the client. Basecamp can help with that! Click  Request their approval

Now you'll be able to write up what needs to be approved and send it to someone on the Clientside. You can attach files, too.

You'll also have the option to set a due date for the approval as well!

  • Basecamp will automatically remind your client to answer 24 hours before the approval is due
  • Basecamp will remind your client once every day if their approval is overdue until we receive their answer

Once the request is sent, it goes into WAITING status in Basecamp. You can still change the request or cancel it while it's waiting.

The client will receive an email asking them to answer your request.

When they click the green button to view the request, they'll be taken to a simple page with the request, where they can answer YES or NO and leave a comment. (They won't need to log in or anything like that.)

After the client answers, their response will go back into Basecamp. You'll get a notification about the answer, and the original post will be updated with their yes or no.

If you need to follow up, just reply to that thread. Then the client can reply via email like normal.

Forwarding client emails

If your clients take the conversation back to regular email, Basecamp has your back!

If a client sends an email to you outside of your Basecamp account, just forward it to "client@3.basecamp.com." If you're working with that client in a just one Project, the email will be filed on the Clientside for their Project. If that client is in multiple Projects, you'll get an email asking which one the email goes to.

You can see this same information here:

Note: You can also  forward non-client emails into Basecamp!


Send a copy to the client

You probably have important stuff in your account that you’d like to share with your client. You can send that along too!

In your side of the project, click the menu button for the item you want to send.

Then click   Send a copy to the client

You can add a personalized note to give your client a little more context. Clients will get a read-only copy of the item via email.

Note: Basecamp only sends the original item — comments on the to-do list or on the to-dos themselves are not included.


Clientside Message Board

The Clientside Message Board collects all the messages you send to your clients. It gives them a place to view and read all your communications. They can download attachments and answer your approval requests too!

Here's what the client sees:

Your clients get to the Clientside Message Board by clicking on a link in the email messages sent from Basecamp.

Securing your Clientside Message Board

Each Clientside Message Board has a 4 digit PIN to keep it secure. Basecamp can resend the PIN to your clients if they forget it. Only clients can send themselves a PIN. Basecamp keeps everyone else out!

To change the PIN, just head to the Clientside and click on the PIN.

Click 'Reset this PIN'

If you remove people from the Clientside, make sure to reset the PIN. Removed clients won't be able to send themselves the new PIN, so they won't see any new additions to the Clientside Message Board.