With BidPal, you can process payments at any time during or after your event. Processing during the event is called "live payment processing."
For details on how to batch process credit card payments, check out this article.
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WHEN TO PROCESS PAYMENTS LIVE
Live payment processing is most useful at events where:
- Your guests are not well known to you and could be difficult to track down for payments post-event.
- You have a lot of high-ticket items and you don't want them to leave the event until payment is secured.
- Everyone is required to swipe a credit card at Registration.
Live payment processing is less necessary at events where:
- Your guests are your parishioners or parents and would be easy to contact post-event for payment issues.
- Many guests pay by check or multiple credit cards, or need to change payment methods.
- Not everything is done through BidPal and you will be importing additional charges later.
HOW TO PROCESS PAYMENTS LIVE
Processing payments onsite follows the same steps as batch processing them post event. If you do plan to process them onsite, however, you'll need to have a plan to handle rejected cards and corrections:
- BidPal staff do not have access to process your payments, so someone on your team who has access to Planner will need to run the cards.
- That team member should stay logged into Planner at your checkout desk to help with questions. If a guest's payment is rejected, they will want to know why. iATS Rejection Codes are visible in Planner, and you can find a full list of rejection codes here.
- The team member should be comfortable discussing rejected cards and alternate payments with guests; ideally, someone from your finance team or staff should play this role.
- Alternate payments can be entered into Planner or through Checkout mode of SmartPay.
- If a guest did not want their card to be processed, you can refund that payment in their Supporter record in Planner, and then collect & record an alternate form of payment. Let the guest know that refunds typically take 3-5 business days to post to their card.
- If you are using live payment processing, you should process payments before Item Pickup begins.
- Don't run cards the moment the silent auction ends; instead, give guests some time to go to Checkout and change their payment method.
- While you are able to run separate batches of payments after your silent auction, after your donation appeal, and after your live auction, guests may not appreciate having multiple charges on their cards. Wait to process payments just before Pickup opens to ensure most guests will only see a single charge.
HANDLING REJECTED PAYMENTS
- If a guest's card is rejected, they will want to know the reason. Rejection codes are visible in Planner by clicking on the rejected transaction under Payments > Manage Payments > Rejected Transactions.
- You can find a full list of rejection codes here for your reference.
- Guests with rejected cards may be confused as to why the card rejected; we've found it's best to avoid discussions about their finances or card status at the event, and to instead simply see if they have an alternate form of payment available.