Payment Gateway Setup
Payment gateways are the heart of the collection process. You need at least one Payment Gateway for uCollect to function properly and will be prompted to set one up when you create the organization. If you don't know exactly what you are doing yet we recommend choosing "_Manual CSV" initially and then adding the real one when you are ready (you won't be able to configure contacts or process collections until you do).
The Payment Gateway page (from the Edit menu) is where you control all the settings that apply to your collections and the options that your customers have.
In this top section of the page you will see a list of all Payment Gateways that you have added to the organisation. You can edit or delete an existing gateway.
When you delete a gateway it will also delete all uCollect contact data connected to that Gateway, but will not delete any content that has already been sent to the gateway (account details, future-dated collection requests, etc.) or your account with the gateway. Deleting a gateway does not change any data stored in your accounting system.
In the bottom section of the page you will see a list of recommended Payment Gateways for your country. You can change the country selector if you are dealing with other countries. If your payment gateway is not listed as a recommended gateway you can click "See other gateway options" at the bottom of the list to see all other available gateways.
The settings for each gateway may differ depending on the gateway type (upload or API) and the features that the gateway makes available. Getting these settings correct is very important. Many problems we have with processing comes down to errors in the gateway setup. Be sure to read all instructions carefully and follow them to the letter (if they weren't important we wouldn't have bothered writing them down).
Here are the options that you will find in most gateway settings:
- Bank Account: This should be a bank account from your accounting ledger (or in Xero, a ledger account that is "enabled for payments" - but we recommend a bank account). This should be the same bank account as the proceeds from this gateway are physically deposited to (unless you are using a clearing account). Please note that changing this account setting DOES NOT change the actual account that your payments are deposited to - you need to contact your Gateway provider first, and only change this setting once the switch has been confirmed.
- Internal Description: This is the gateway description. It is only seen by your users within uCollect.
- External Description: This is what may be displayed on email messages sent to users on a receipt or if a payment fails.
- No. of days in advance: Setting this to more than 0 will force uCollect to look for transactions the selected number of days prior (e.g., if today is July 4 and NDIA is set to 3 then it will look for invoices due up to and including July 7). This option is intended to help you manage gateways that need transactions set up in advance (SEPA, Forte ACH/PAD) or where you need time to upload a file to the bank and have it approved. It can cause unexpected results. We recommend that you DO NOT use this feature unless you have a specific reason - see our Number of Days in Advance article for more guidance.
- Payment Reference: When we process a collection we create a payment record in your accounting system. We put a value in the payment reference field. This is displayed (for example) in the Xero Customer Statement. We include this value plus the batch number. We recommend that you keep this very short and meaningful to the client. For example, say "CC" not "Stripe" or "ACH" not "Forte."
Automatically send receipts to customers?: set this on if you want to automatically send a payment acknowledgement to your customers after a payment has been initiated. See Payment Receipts article for more assistance.
- Automatically send reminders to customers X days in advance?: set this to send a reminder X days prior to the due date. See the Payment Reminders article for more details. Please note that any reminder window will be strictly enforced. If an invoice is created with the due date set for same day as it was created then the Reminders module will send the reminder in the next cycle and wait the instructed number of days before initiating collection. Automatic Collection must be on for this feature to work.
Automatically Allocate Credits: instructs uCollect to automatically apply various credit transactions (in Xero: Prepayments, Overpayments, Credit Notes; in QBO: Adjustment Notes) against invoices as they are collected to reduce the collection amount. See the Allocate Credits article for more details.
How should we handle multiple amounts to be collected from the same contact on the same day?: If we have more than one invoice for a contact to be collected on the same day we can "Group them together and collect one amount" so that your customer will only see one entry on their statement (recommended) or "Collect each amount separately" (which may increase transaction fees for you and your customer). This setting is your default setting and can be changed for any contact.
- Failed Payment Options: Fields for On notification of a failed payment what should we do?, How many days later should we reprocess? and Who should we notify when a payment fails? help managed filed payments. These are not yet available on all gateways. See Auto handling of failed payments.
- Calculate Commission/Fees on Settlement: This option allows you to calculate the expected commission you pay to your merchant account (for example, Stripe's 2.9% + 30c fee per payment) and post it to your ledger. This does NOT pass this fee on to your customer. See our Settlement Commissions article for more details.
- Make available as a Pay Now option: allows you to send invites and use the Pay Now screen to accept one off payments or setup automated collection. See our Pay Now article for more information. Not all gateways are eligible for Pay Now.
- Payment Gateway Additional Data: Where necessary, we may ask additional questions needed to setup your integration and/or process your payments correctly. Pay attention to comments here about max length and formatting as we don't necessary validate your information and errors may cause your bank to reject transactions.
- Default Values for Contacts: Where necessary, we may ask additional questions needed to setup your payments from customers. This data may appear on their statement or be needed to process correctly. Pay attention to comments here about max length and formatting as we don't necessary validate your information and errors may cause your bank to reject transactions. These values are default values - what you enter here will be automatically created on the contact screen where you can change it for the needs of that contact. You can enter "[Contact]" to have the Contact name inserted or "[Invoice]" to have the invoice number inserted at processing time.