Debiting client account

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BILLmanager provides a flexible system of accounting for the services that a customers purchased. The document below describes how to set up accounting and pricing.

Contents

Periodicity

When creating a service, you need to specify how it will be charged. Most hosting services are provided recurrently. There are several methods of charging account:

  • based on the ordered period is a traditional and non flexible method. It can be used for services, which configuration cannot be modified or can be changed very seldom (e.g. domains, certificates or dedicated servers).
  • daily charges is believed to be the most convenient method. Every day a customer's personal account is charged off with the amount equal to his package price per one day. At any time a client can change his package or order add-ons without recalculation of the paid period or additional payments.
  • monthly charges is also a convenient method, however it allows to reduce the number of records in the expenses list. It can be used for services, which configuration can be modified, such as per-paid server administration. Actually, this method is similar to "based on the ordered basis", that is ordered for one month and can be automatically prolonged for one more month.
  • yearly charges - its principle is similar to the previous methods, but the account is debited once a year.
  • calendar-based - the account will be charged on the 1st of each month.

Note: the calendar-based billing type is used. The service was ordered on the 10th of June, but it was activated on the 15thJune. BILLmanager will add 5 days to the service expiration date.

Please note! You can specify a billing type when creating a service. It can be modified, if the service was never ordered.

Customizing prices

A service cost includes:

  • Setup fee is charged only once while ordering a service. It is defined in the package parameters, but can be modified at any time. It is charged when the service is activated. I.e. if the price had been different when ordering the service, but service was activated later (it was not paid for a long time), and the setup price changed since then, finally, the modified cost will be applied.
  • Recurrent fee - is charged periodically during the whole period when a service is provided. It includes package and add-ons cost. The recurrent fee is set up in the "Order periods" tab of the package properties pages. The recurrent fee of an add-ons can be set up in the "Package content", their billing type should be set to "by ordered values", and the price should be set to "one item per month". For example, when you crate the "disk space" add-on and choose MB as a unit of measure, you need to provide the cost of one additional MB of disk space per month.
  • Additional price is based on extra usage of services, such as overuse of traffic, CPU, RAM. It is customized in the "Package content", the billing type should be set to "Based on statistics". The add-on price is specified per 1 unit of an overused service. For example, you create a "Traffic" add-on, choose GB as the unit of measure and set limit to 1000. If this limit is exceeded, the account will be daily charged off with the mount equal to the number of extra GB multiplied by the specified price. On the 1st of each month the "month statistics" is resetted.
  • One time fee is charged when a service is provided (e.g. technical support questions). It is customized in the package parameters. The account is debited when a ticket with a paid category is closed.

Calculating periodic expenses

  • "order period" - the cost of the selected period is added to the cost of the add-on multiplied by the number of months included into the period. If the period is specified in days or weeks, the add-on's cost is divided by the number of days of a current month (when calculations are carried out) and multiplied by the number of days in the period ("1 week" equals to "7 days" without additional conditions).
    This amount is charged once, the service is set to "paid period". If the automatic renewal is set up, once the paid period is over, the procedure will be repeated.
  • "Daily billing" - the package daily cost is calculated. Calculations are made on the basis of the existing order periods. The smallest period (day, week, month) is used. If this is a day or week (7 days), the cost is divided by its length. If the type is set to month, its cost is divided by the length of the period and then by the number of days in the current month. If the type is set to year, the calculation is same as for the month type, but the resulting sum is divided by 12.
    The resulting daily cost is added to the add-on's daily cost. As the add-on cost is always set to one month, it is divided by the number of days in the current month.
    Please note, that when calculating the cost you must use only one period (the smallest).

You can also create several periods for your clients (if they want to order a service for one year and forget about payments), but consider that cost of the periods should be proportional, i.e. if one month costs 100 Euro, then 3 months should cost 300 Euro, one year - 1200 Euro. If you want to give a discount depending on the length of the order period and set 1000 Euro for one year, use the discounts system, instead of specifying 1000 Euro for annual period, because, if your client is invoiced by 1000 Euro and pays it, his account will be charged 3.33 every day and the sum will be enough only for about 10 months.

  • "Monthly billing" - the procedure is the same as for that described above, but the periods specified in days and weeks are not considered. They can be customized for trial packages with zero price.
    When debiting the account the date is stored. The account will be charged in a month. If the due date is not present in the following month, the account will be debited on the last day of the month. E.g. if the account was debited on 31 March for the first time, the next due date will be 30 April.
  • "Annual billing" - the same as for the monthly payments, but the periods set to years only are used.

Discounts and add-on prices

A discount affects the add-on's cost, if it is set in percent. One should calculate ratio of the service's cost without discount to that with discount. If a discount is specified as a special price, it won't be applied to the add-on's cost.

Customer has insufficient money

If the client's account is set to daily charges and has insufficient funds, the ratio of the remaining amount to the service cost per day will be calculated. It allows to determine the period at which the amount will be sufficient. The account is fully charged off, the services will be suspended in a specified period of time. Accordingly, if the account is negative (or zero), the service will be suspended immediately.

For example, the full service cost (including add-ons) is 4 Euro per day. There is 1 Euro in the customer's account. This sum will be enough for 1/4 of 24 hours, i.e. is for 6 hours. We will charge him 1 Euro and suspend the service at 6 a.m.

If the customer adds funds to his account on the same day (regardless of his service being suspended or not), the expense for the part of the day is removed and the service is charged for the whole day.

If other billing types are set up, and the customer has insufficient funds on his personal account, the service will be suspended immediately.

FAQ

Q: (periodic billing) If a client originally ordered additional service "Internet, 50 MB", and in the middle of the month upgraded to 100 MB, how much will he be charged?

A:

  • His service period will be reduced in proportion to the price difference.
  • The service will be renewed according to its new price
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