Table of Contents

Where to start

Custom fields support the collection of key data points not available in standard NationBuilder fields. This feature is relatively complex to implement. If custom fields have not been enabled in your nation, please read the introduction to custom fields HOWTO for information on accessing them. 

Custom people fields are added to a person's profile, while custom donation fields are added to donation records. Below you'll find information on creating custom people fields, adding that information to profiles, and searching those fields.

Create custom people fields

Custom people fields can be created from  Settings > Nation Defaults > Custom fields > People

1. Define the field name. (Required)

2. Create a slug for the field - no spaces can be included in a slug and it cannot be changed later. (Required)

3. Decide what type of field to create. The options are text, number, checkbox, or multiple choice. (Required)

4. If you are creating a multiple choice field, create options. (Required for multiple choice fields)

5. Click the Create field button.

Once a custom field is created:

  • the slug cannot be changed
  • the field type cannot be changed
  • if you delete the field, all stored values for that field will also be deleted

You can create up to 20 people custom fields and up to 20 donation custom fields using the Team or Organization plan (additional custom fields available for Enterprise and Network plans).

Once created, custom people fields will be listed at Settings > Defaults > Custom fields > People directly below the area to create a new field.

For example, here is a list of fields I created:

We strongly recommend limiting the number of text fields created. Often, an open-ended survey question is the better way to solicit this type of feedback rather than using a custom field. Text custom fields are case sensitive which makes searching exact responses particularly difficult. 

Edit custom fields in a profile

In the People section, from single-person view, go to Edit > Custom fields. You'll be able to create or update information in the fields.

Import custom people fields

You can import information and map it to the custom field slug. Note that people custom fields will be listed within the Signup section of the import.

  • When mapping your fields for import, the system will validate that custom number fields are numbers - you won't be able to complete the import if you try to import text into a number field.
  • Each profile can choose one option in a multiple choice field. 
  • Responses to a multiple choice field must already exist as options for the field. If you import a response that doesn't exist for a multiple choice field, the profile will not be updated for that field and no error message will appear.
  • Checkbox fields can be updated with the following: Check the box: true, yes, t, y, or 1. Keep the box unchecked: false, no, f, n, or 0. Import is case insensitive, so tRue, TRUE, and true will all result in the box being checked.

Filter options

1. In the People section, click on the filter button to begin filtering.

2. Click Add criteria.

3. Either select the Custom fields category or begin typing the slug of a custom field to add it to the filter. 

The way you can search the field depends on its type.

If you search within a text field, the data in the field must match your wording in the filter exactly and it is case sensitive. For example, if I was searching for the response "Los Angeles and San Diego," people who had responded "Los Angeles and San Diego" would not be included in the filter results. 

Here is an example filter for custom fields:

Related HOWTOs

Introduction to custom fields
Requesting custom people fields on webpages
Creating custom donation fields
Requesting custom donation fields on webpages
Liquid variables available in email
How to import
How to filter

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