Payments 2.0 Update & Overview
We are in the final stretch to fully launch the new payments 2.0 functionality. This project was announced here in March 2022. Nearly 17 months later, the enrollment process is ongoing, and we are preparing for the final cutover. I'd like to take a moment to revisit what we shared then and reiterate the changes while highlighting anything that either did not make it, was added, or is just not quite done yet.
Refund Automation ( 🟢 ) - Launching at cutover. Some components are live already. If voids are available, they will happen automatically. Reversal of purchased sessions has already been automated. Refunds of the charges from card or ACH funding sources will be submitted immediately and processed as quickly as possible. All manual intervention has been removed.
ACH Payment Capability ( 🟢 ) - Available for activation at cutover. We have added ACH as a completely new payment method that you can offer to your customers. This may not make sense for all businesses as there are some trade-offs, but many will find this beneficial. You will have to pro-actively activate ACH payments which will be priced lower than card at 1.9% + $0.30 per transaction. Lower price is the major benefit. Though settlement times are slower than card. There will be a $5/month subscription fee for this Add On Feature.
Point of Sale / Terminal Capability ( 🟢 ) - Available for activation at cutover. Another major addition to your payment arsenal, you can now easily swipe, key, insert, or tap to process payments either over the phone or in person. The pricing of 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction is the same as online and is not changing from current card pricing. There will be a $5/month subscription fee for this Add on Feature.
New Fitli Wallet ( 🟢 ) - Launching at cutover. We are very excited about the new Fitli Wallet. The current Braintree UI that we use, is extremely limited. It often causes confusion and often requires manual intervention by Fitli support. Users will be able to add, edit, and remove up to 5 payment sources (either card or bank). This also sets us up to be able to start adding additional funding sources more easily. For example, we are thinking about gift cards, credit balances, and other exciting options.
Gross Settlement ( 🟢 ) - Launching at cutover. This is more a process change than a new feature. Essentially, instead of 'net settlement' where fees are deducted for each transaction and you receive only your funds after fees, gross settlement deposits 100% of the amount processed from customers. Fees are calculated and levied at the end of each month as a deduction from your bank account. We understand some may prefer 'net settlement' vs. 'gross settlement'. Unfortunately, net settlement is not an option.
New Notifications & Payment Handling ( 🟢 ) - Launching at cutover. Some components are live already. Some may launch shortly after. We have been steadily adding functionality to help both business users and clients to manage the potential payment failures on recurring memberships and packages. We have made it easier to recognize when there is a failure and to retry the transaction, presumedly, after updating payment method info. You will soon also have the ability to allow your customers to cancel a recurring membership or request cancellation of one requiring your approval.
Payment Vetting and Activation Process ( 🔴 ) - As part of changing to a new processor (Usio Inc.) we need to adjust our onboarding process for businesses who choose to process payments on the platform. Payment processing involves significant financial risk for the processor, the platform, and the business. Fraudsters are constantly attempting to circumvent our security and controls. Braintree had extremely lax requirements to open a merchant account. That made it fast and easy, but it also added risk and contributed to thousands of dollars of fraud losses due to invalid merchants gaining access to process on our platform. We have learned much from that and increased scrutiny. However, Usio is on the other end of the spectrum. They prefer to fully vet the businesses who they offer a merchant account to. This has created a more challenging enrollment process (we are very sorry for that), but it also means the risk of fraud is extremely low. We still have work to do in terms of automating the validations during enrollment in order to ensure smooth sailing with Usio. For that reason, and because of the challenges being experienced by many of our existing customers, this topic is scored as red.
Monthly Statements ( 🟢 ) - Launching at cutover. At the end of the first month you are processing after cutover with your Usio/Fitli merchant account, you will receive your monthly statement / invoice via email. There will be one statement for cards and another for bank and these will come directly from the processors. They will include details of all fees charged and total to the amount which will be debited from your bank account on the same day. We still have more we'd like to do here, but you will have everything you need to understand your account activity.
Chargeback Handling ( 🟡 ) - Launching at cutover. Today, the credit card chargeback process is completely manual and handled wholly by Fitli support. You, the business, find out only when we receive a notification from Braintree and then share the same with you. We follow up to understand how you'd like to respond and update your choices in the system along with any uploaded documentation if necessary. One very challenging aspect of Chargebacks with Braintree is that the chargeback funds are taken from Fitli's bank account, thereby requiring us to obtain those same funds from you (typically via a charge on your card). With Usio, Fitli is removed from the process. You will be notified directly of chargebacks from the processor and have complete control to respond. Any debited funds will come directly from your account similar to the processing fees. We've colored this yellow as it's not a huge new benefit to you vs. being more of a process change which improves efficiency and reduces risk.
Improved Reporting ( 🟡 ) - Launching at cutover. We have already launched a few additional versions of existing reports including the Sales Report by Customer, Booking by Service, and Attendance by Customer. The biggest change upon launch will be a new Disbursements Report. This report will show you on a daily basis the breakdown of your processed payments by funding type (card type, ach, etc) grouped by the amount that will be sent by the processor (Usio) to your merchant bank account. This report will make it much easier to reconcile your bank deposits with the actual transactions they match to. We had planned to add some additional reporting around estimated fees during the month, but that won't be ready until later. That is also why this is scored as yellow.