Key Payment Changes from version 4.2 to 4.3
The biggest changes we introduced in version 4.3 are about how members and any other contacts can view invoices and payment history and make online payments
What was added?
- Profile access for all contacts - all contacts now have a profile where they can login and edit their information and make payments
- New profile section "Invoices and Payments" - it shows all pending invoices and a history of payments - which can be paid individually or in bulk.
- Invoice generation and payment are separated into two processes - with the exception of recurring renewal payments, payments can be made individually or in bulk via "Invoices and Payments"
- New notification box - this appears in the bottom right of the page with a list of links to open balances or other unfinished (in progress) transactions
- Each message links directly to the incomplete item (e.g. continue event registration or pay balance) and will disappear automatically once the user completes the task.
- the user can also hide it manually by clicking the expand/collapse arrows.
A session is a special temporary key that allows Wild Apricot to automatically login a user into their profile without requiring a password. These sessions are specific to the browser and computer the user is using while completing a registration. However these 'keys' don't give the user access to anything beyond the current payment or contact details. This means that even if they are an existing member and decide to not login but use the e-mail associated with their membership, they will not be able to see other payments they've made or change their contact details until they login. Also, this session will be destroyed if they close their browser or once it expires in about a day. What was removed?
- Manual payment option (e.g. checkbox in admin and option in applications) is no longer necessary - simply inform the user about the proper payment process in Payment instructions
- All "in progress" payments (e.g. not completed) are no longer tracked or displayed - instead it is only shown to the current contact while they complete a registration process
- Prior to 4.3, a contact was created immediately after a user started any registration process (e.g. membership, event, etc.), however, in 4.3 records are created only when user clicks on "Confirm and proceed with payment"
Invoice and Payments section in the profile
- Invoice can only be cancelled by administrators after it's generated
- Any unsettled payment can be used by a user to settle invoice(s). This means that an administrator can create credit payments or discounts by manually recording payments to specific contacts.
Changes to Invoices
- As soon as a transaction is confirmed and an invoice is generated, its status changes to "Pending" (e.g. Membership - Pending New, or Events - Not paid)
- An Invoice for any transaction can now be reassigned to another contact (e.g. event registration of "John Smith" can be billed to "Mary Jane").
Changes to Contact/Member Self-service
- If a contact has an open balance, it is always shown in the notification box in the bottom right of the page. Clicking on the link will take the user to that specific payment.
- Any failed payments can now be repeated from a contact's profile since as soon as invoice is generated, it stays in the profile forever and can always be paid.
- When an invoice is generated, Wild Apricot sends an email with a direct link in the email to pay the invoice without logging in
- However, to pay other open invoices or to see a full balance the user needs to log in.
- Recurring payments are visible to members and include the expected payment date and amount as well as a cancel button to cancel the recurring payment completely.
- The invoice for recurring payment is automatically generated as soon as payment is received. If it fails, then no invoice is generated and an email is sent to the member (see membership changes)
- The Membership section has also been changed slightly - it now shows a yellow box when a membership is not Active with corresponding buttons like "Renew"
Changes to Event Payments and Registrations
- A member who has membership in "Pending status" will also have access to member only events for the membership level they chose.
- Membership applications (or renewals) and event registrations can now be made together and paid with a single payment transaction.
- User can now enter several event registrations - for the same event or for different events. The system will generate several invoices (one per registration) and the user will be able to pay all of them at once later
- When a user is logged in, all invoices are assigned to their record (e.g. even if they are registering others)
- When a user is not logged in, the email used in the first registration is considered the primary billing person.
- Registration confirmation - sent when invoice was either paid or an admin manually confirmed it without payment
- Event emails are simplified - only 2 registration emails (instead of 4). Registration pending - sent as soon as invoice is generated
- Event registration limits are only updated upon registration confirmation
- A logged in contact has the ability to view and pay registrations
- A registered person cannot cancel or change confirmed unpaid registration, only "not finished" registrations.
Changes to Membership Payments Workflow
- As soon as any membership action is completed (i.e. application, renewal, level change) a corresponding invoice is generated and the user is redirected to the Invoices and Payments tab where they can complete the payment
- A member record is created only after the application is confirmed (i.e. when the "Confirm and proceed with payment" button is pressed). Before pressing this button, the system will not create a contact or member record.
- An admin can assign membership to a contact, generate invoice, send it to him and member will be able to pay it online
- A member can renew their membership together with an event registration - and pay once
- Non-member can apply to membership together with an event registration - and pay once
- Once an invoice is generated, the status of the application will be "Pending" (except if application policy allow activation without payment)
- A member cannot cancel the membership invoice once generated, they can either pay the invoice or contact the administrator
- Renewal confirmed - when invoice was paid or renewal approved manually by admin
- Renewal recurring failed - when next recurring payment is failed
- An archived contact or suspended member can now apply for membership. Their profile will be re-activated.
- When a user tries to apply using an email with a lapsed membership, the system suggests that the user logs in to restart the lapsed membership.
Changes to Donations
- Donation workflow is the only exception in the new payment process - e.g. they can't be combined with other payments and must be paid individually
- Any failed donation (e.g. credit card problems) can still be paid later and are shown in the notification box as well as the profile
Changes to Payment Emails and macros
- The invoice notification email contains a direct link to the open invoice. This will allow a user to make a payment without logging into the system
- The number of event and membership emails has been reduced to simply "Pending" and "Confirmed" emails
New or Changed Macros
- Macro Invoice_details_URL is added for invoice emails
- Macro Member_profile_URL renamed to Profile_URL and is now available for any contact (not only members)
- New macro for public comment Invoice_PublicMemo (Payment_PublicMemo, etc.) is added into the relevant financial document emails (invoice, payment, refund, donation)
- New macro Contact_Balance_amount macro shows contact balance amount and link to contact profile (invoices and payment tab)