Getting Started with Volusion: Recurring Billing

Businesses looking to sell subscriptions or products with a recurring price can get everything they need and more with Volusion. Check out this post to learn more about our Recurring Billing feature and how it can help boost your store success.

recurringpayments

If you’re in the business of selling subscriptions, renewable software licenses or any other kind of product or service that needs to be billed recurrently, then Volusion is for you. Within your store admin, it’s easy to create products with a recurring price, as well as manage all recurring orders and collect payments. In this post, we’ll look over the set up and management of the recurring billing feature of your store.

First, let’s take a look at how you can add at product with a recurring price into your store:

 

Adding a product with a recurring price

In order to sell a service or product with a recurring price, such as a subscription to a magazine or renewable software license, you’ll first want to add it as a product in your Volusion store. To do that, go to your store admin and create a product as you normally would, filling in all basic information like Name, Code, Price, Weight, and adding any product photos. Note that the number you put in for the Price in the Basic Info section is not the product’s recurring price. Instead, it will be any set-up cost of the product, and will only be charged to the customer once. Additionally, if your product is online only, be sure to enter 0 for the Weight.

In order to set up recurring price capabilities for your product, go to and expand the Advanced Info section of the product creation page, and then select Recurring Pricing. Once there, you’ll see all of the options you can set up for your recurring price product.

Here’s a quick run-down of the recurring price options and what they mean:

Recurring Pricing Text: This text is basically the label for your recurring pricing, such as “Monthly Subscription”

Recurring Price: The price that will be charged every payment period

Promotional Starting Price: If you choose to use it, this will be the special introductory price charged during the Recurring Start Duration.

Recurring Frequency (in Months): The period, in months, the customer is to be billed. For example, enter “1” to bill the customer monthly, “6” to bill them every 6 months, or “12” to bill them annually.

Starting Price Duration (in Months): If there is a reduced price for an introductory period, enter the number of months this introductory period will last.

Recurring Duration (Months): This is the number of months this subscription is for. If you want it to continue indefinitely, set to “0” or leave it blank.

Once you’ve filled out the rest of your product information and hit save, congratulations! You’ve just created your first recurring price product. Now that you know how make them, you can follow this same process to create as many different subscriptions, licenses or other recurring price products you’d like to offer.

 

So you’ve created your products with recurring pricing, and soon after, you’ve started receiving orders. Now it’s time to find out more about where you can go to manage all recurring price orders.

 

Managing Orders with Recurring Billing

To view and manage all of your orders with recurring billing, head to your store admin and navigate to Orders > Recurring Billing. This is the page where you can easily see all orders and get their details, such as their balances and when their next payments are due. For ease you use, you can also use the Filter dropdown menu to see just the payments that are Due, or just the payments that were Declined.

Let’s take a moment to learn a little more about the filtered views and what you can do in each of them:

 

Recurring: All

When you select Recurring: All from the Filter dropdown menu, you’ll be able to see all recurring payment orders in your store. Whether they’re active, inactive, due or declined, they’ll all be listed on this page and can be easily accessed for more information.

In order to get the details of a specific order, click on its ID number. Here, you’ll be able to see everything from the Order ID to when the customer last paid, as well as any notes you’ve left yourself. To get a full list of what details you’ll have access to, check out our Knowledge Base article on Recurring Billing. For added convenience, when you go to a record’s detail page, you’ll also be able to see all of that customer’s active recurring billing records above the Details section.

 

Recurring: DUE

When you select Recurring: DUE from the Filter dropdown menu, you’ll see all payments that are either due or overdue. This is also where you’ll process recurring payments.

To collect or process recurring payments, filter your recurring orders by Recurring: DUE, and then click the Charge button above the table. Once you’ve done that, you’ll get the chance to specify how many payments you’d like to collect. Payments are collected in order of the date their original order was placed with your store. For example, collecting 6 of 10 due payments will collect payments for the first 6 payments based on their starting dates.

Once this is done, those payments will be collected and those billing records will be removed from the Recurring: DUE table. If you’d like to look at one of these processed payments again, you can find them within the Recurring: All filter.

 

Recurring: Declined

In order to see any recurring payments where the payment was declined, select Recurring: Declined from the Filter dropdown menu. When an order appears in this filter, it means you attempted to collect this payment, but it was declined.

There are several potential reasons why a payment was declined. For example, the customer may not have had enough funds in their account or their credit card may have expired. When this happens, it’s best to contact the customer and try to resolve the unpaid order from there.

 

Tips and tricks

Here are a couple more tips, tricks and tidbits you should know about recurring billing:

  • Dealing with a declined recurring payment is similar to dealing with a typical declined payment. Check out this quick how-to for details.
  • At the moment, recurring billing isn’t compatible with Paypal (Express, Standard and Pro), Google Checkout, Skrill, Realex, SagePay and BeanStream.
  • Our recommendation is that you only accept credit cards as methods of payment for recurring billing.
  • Remember to set your store’s credit card storage policy option to “Never” (as in “never remove data from the system”), as well as specify the default number of days to keep credit card data to help your recurring billing run as smoothly as possible. To get the specifics on how to do that, skim through our walkthrough.

 

With recurring billing on your side, you can easily sell the full range of products and services that you’d like. If you’d like to learn more about this feature in particular, don’t forget to check out our Knowledge Base article on Recurring Billing to dive even more in-depth.

 

Happy selling!
-Gracelyn Tan, Volusion

About 

Gracelyn was a Communications Specialist at Volusion. She has a BA in English and Philosophy from Rice University, and when not reading or writing, she's dancing, meeting new people or winning staring contests with her cat.

6 Responses to “Getting Started with Volusion: Recurring Billing”

  1. Joe

    You mention that you recommend using credit cards only for recurring payments. You offer Strip as a vendor but I’m told by online support that you don’t support recurring payments with Strip. What credit card companies that you offer will work?

    Reply
    • Andrea Kinnison

      Hi there! Our recurring payments tool does work with Stripe; we just can’t support Stripe’s recurring payments tool. This page may help you out: http://support.volusion.com/article/using-stripe-volusion

      “Note that Stripe Connect and Stripe’s subscription billing are not supported. Merchants can configure and use Volusion’s built-in recurring billing system to offer subscriptions and recurring pricing. For more information, see our Recurring Billing article.”

      Hope this helps! Please let me know if you have additional questions.

      Reply
  2. Gareth

    Would also like this recurring billing to be in weeks if possible.

    Reply
  3. Gareth

    Paypal recurring is a big must – any idea when this feature will be available?

    Reply
  4. Ken

    is there a way t set-up a recurring order? For example an automatic shipment of a certain product(s) every 3 months…

    I think I could set-up an automatic billing but it wouldn’t be tied to an order that would generate a packing slip and shipping notice.

    Thanks

    Reply
    • Sharanya Srinivasan

      Hello Ken,

      You can set up recurring billing with Volusion. This automatically bills but does not automatically ship. To automatically ship, you would need to configure a third-party fulfillment or order processing service that integrates via API with Volusion Orders.

      In our experience, most merchants who have a “club” product (with auto-billing and monthly/quarterly shipments) will simply run the recurring billing through the Volusion software and visit the Orders > Recurring Billing page to see who to send packages to.

      Hope this resolves your issue.

      Reply

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