When invoicing a customer for products and services with recurring subscriptions (i.e. monthly, yearly), partners may want to automate creating and sending invoices, or automate the charging of an account’s saved credit card. This can be done in one of two ways:
- By setting default billing automation preferences for all newly-created accounts
- By editing the Billing settings of a particular account
Note that to automatically bill an account based on their active products, retail prices must be manually set for each product.
Default billing automation settings
By default, a new account will have no Billing settings. This means that, by default, a new account will not be invoiced or charged for any recurring product subscriptions without manual intervention by a Partner Center user.
If you would prefer new accounts to be created with certain billing automation settings already enabled, these defaults can be changed for all new accounts (per Market, if applicable) under Partner Center > Administration > Account Billing.
Note that setting or changing your Default billing automation settings will not override the billing settings of any accounts that already exist—only accounts created after you save these settings will use the defaults you specify here.
Follow these steps to set or change your preferred Default billing automation settings for new accounts:
- Go to Partner Center > Administration > Account Billing
- Select a Market (if applicable)
- By default, these settings will be Off. Switch the toggle to On to begin changing these settings.
- Select your preferences for Collection method (how you will notify and collect payment from an accounts) and Collect on (what day or days you will collect payment from an account)
- Review the summary at the bottom of the page
- Hit Save to apply your changes
Once you have finished configuring these settings, they will be automatically applied to the Billing settings of all new accounts.
Whether or not an account is already using Default billing automation settings, an individual account’s Billing settings can be changed at any time. To edit these settings for a particular account, go to the Products section on the account's page under Partner Center > Businesses > Accounts and click Billing settings.
With the exception of billing based on a recurring invoice template, all the Billing settings available for individual accounts are also available as Default billing automation settings. The sections below will detail each of these options in depth.
Automatically generate and send invoices
Under an individual account’s Billing automation section, you can configure how an individual account is invoiced or charged automatically for products and services with recurring subscriptions.
You can specify a default Recipient and Payment method for invoices sent to an individual account under the Billing defaults section. If no users exist for the account, click + Add a new user to quickly add a user to the account and designate them as an invoice recipient.
- Automatically generated and/or sent invoices can be viewed at any time on Partner Center > Billing > Invoices. These invoices will be tagged as Renewal to differentiate them from manually created invoices.
- When Billing automation settings are active for a certain account, manually invoicing an account for a certain product will not prevent an automatic invoice from being created when that product's subscription renews.
- Alternating between Each renewal and Day of month collection schedules may result in duplicate or missed charges for product subscription renewals. For this reason, we recommend that these settings are not adjusted often.
To enable Billing automation settings for an account, turn the toggle at the top of the section On. The following settings can then be adjusted for that account.
There are two options for Recurring invoice generation: Bill based on active products and Bill based on recurring invoice. Each of these has different options for the Collect On section, described below.
Bill based on active products
A product's renewal date is based on when the product was activated, as well as the product's retail billing frequency (i.e. monthly, yearly). You can find the renewal dates of each product active on a customer’s account in the Active products section of their BIlling settings page. A product’s retail renewal date is used to determine whether that product will be added to any automatically-generated invoices for your customer accounts, according to the billing frequency and retail price that you set for the package or product in your Marketplace Store.
Note that a product’s wholesale renewal date is the date that you (a partner) will be charged for the wholesale cost of the product by Vendasta. If you have set a product’s retail price to have a different billing frequency than the product’s wholesale billing frequency, you may not be billed the wholesale cost for that product on the same day that your customer is billed. The wholesale renewal date of a product can be viewed at any time in Partner Center > Administration > My Billing > Active Subscriptions.
- Select Bill based on active products to include only products whose subscriptions have renewed on the account.
- The amount is determined by the retail price set on each product or package within the store
- Select Each renewal, up to once per day to automatically generate an invoice for the recurring price of a product or service on the day that that product or service renews.
- If multiple products renew on the same day, they will be included in the same invoice. Note that an account may receive multiple invoices throughout the month if their products renew on different days.
- Select Day of month will create a draft invoice that renewing products will be added to as the month progresses. On the day of the month that you specify, the invoice will be automatically sent out to the recipient.
Bill based on recurring invoice
When using the Bill based on recurring invoice setting, the account you’re billing will receive an invoice on the day of the month specified, based on the invoice you design in the Recurring invoice section. Because this method requires you to create a template invoice that will be sent to the customer every month, this setting is only available for use on individual accounts, and cannot be used as a Default billing automation setting.
- Select Bill based on recurring invoice to send an invoice based on the Recurring invoice that you specify below.
- By default, prices and contents of packages and products on your recurring invoice will remain the same even when you update them in your Store to ensure that your customers receive the cost you agree upon. If an amendment to the recurring invoice needs to be made, that can be done anytime manually through the Billing Settings page for that account.
- For Billing based on recurring invoice, you can only select Day of month. Choosing the day will create an invoice on the day of the month specified, regardless of what and when active products renew on the account.
- The day of the month that you specify, the invoice will be automatically sent out to the recipient.
When an invoice is generated and ready for collection based on the Recurring invoice type and Collect On settings, you can collect in one of three ways:
- Select Manual collection to keep the invoices automatically generated for this account in Draft mode. These draft invoices can be reviewed before being sent or charged for, and will only be collected by manually clicking Send or Charge when viewing the invoice.
- Select Send Email to send automatically generated invoice to the account, which the customer can pay by manually entering their credit card. The invoice will be created with a due date 10 days from the date it is created.
- Select Charge automatically to charge the account’s saved Payment method automatically on the collection day (which is based on the Collect On section). If a user on the account being invoiced has previously paid an invoice via credit card, their card will be automatically and securely stored by Stripe as a Payment method on that account. After a successful charge, a receipt will be sent to the default Recipient for the account.
- If the recipient has not previously paid through your Store or an invoice, and does not already have a credit card saved, a payable invoice will be sent. After the invoice has been paid, the card will be saved and used for future automatic charges.
- If the charge fails, you will be notified and your customer will receive a "Failed payment" email directing them to the invoice landing page, the customer can pay by manually entering their credit card. If they have new credit card information, this new information will be saved for future purchases.