Direct Debit (DD) orders continuously take payment and extend the entitlement each time. This documentation will explain how to process a Direct Debit order in the backend as well as some things to keep an eye out for.
Important things to know about Direct Debits
Direct Debit orders should never be backdated
The order should start the day that it is processed or in the future. Backdating a Direct Debit order will misalign the entitlements and the payments. If the customer already has a subscription in place, you will have to wait to process the Direct Debit order as the payment date will automatically generate on the day of processing.
The first Direct Debit payment will not be taken straight away
Unlike other orders, the first payment is not taken at the creation of the order. The AUDDIS takes 14 days to be confirmed, so the first payment instalment will be taken 2 weeks after the order date.
Do not discount Direct Debit variants
You should always process the Direct Debit order with the price that is on the variant. If you discount the payment in the backend order processing then subsequent instalments will not reflect the discounted rate and will instead charge the customer the price on the variant.
You need to know the account holder, account number and sort-code in order to process the subscription.
If you do not know the bank name, you can use an online sort-code checker to get this information.
Creating a Direct Debit order
A Direct Direct order can be a personal subscription or a gift subscription. If it is on a company account, it can be a company donor subscription.
Once you have selected your subscription type and your billing address, you will need to select the correct DD variant. Note: DD variants should be separate to all other payment types. You should have a variant purely for Direct Debits.
The entitlements page should not be amended and no discounts should be applied.
Continue with the order as normal until you reach the payment details page.
Select the channel through which you received the order. The payment type is always Direct Debit.
Account holder is the bank account holder’s name.
Bank is the account holder’s bank. If you do not know this, you can use a sort-code checker.
Account number is always eight numbers.
Sort code is six numbers with no dashes or hyphens.
Preferred day is the preferred day of the month on which the order should be taken. This will be populated by default and can be left blank, but if a customer prefers to be charged on the 1st of each month, for example, then you can input 1 to reflect this.
Please note: This box will only work if the order is created 14 days before the day you have selected. In this scenario, the 13th is the earliest day the payment will be taken. You can make this later, but cannot bring this date forward as AUDDIS takes two weeks.
Once you’ve completed the rest of the order flow, you can process the order. You will see the standard order confirmation page.
When setting up DD orders (except in very special circumstances), you will always have to send the order confirmation as this contains the customers Direct Debit guarantee. This is mostly sent by email, however, if the customer does not have an email address you can send this by post.
If DD customer does not have an email address:
Go into the order and use the actions drop-down menu to find the ‘Copy direct debit’ function.
This will export a letter containing all the details of the customer’s Direct Debit.
You can then print this letter and post it to the customer.