A subscription is a customer's version of your plan. A subscription will match the plan rules by default, but you can override the subscription's price, quantity, subscription term, or list of add-ons to create a custom subscription for the customer.
When you create a subscription it can start immediately, start with a trial, or have a scheduled future start date.
You can create a subscription via the Admin Console, Hosted Payment Pages or the API. Please see our getting started guide to see which integration method is best for your business.
Recurly provides an out-of-the-box checkout page for each plan. Send customers to the Hosted Payment Page of the plan you want them to subscribe to. When they subscribe, Recurly will automatically create an account for the customer with the subscription and billing information on it. Hosted Payment Pages do not support manual collection. Learn more out Recurly's Hosted Payment Pages here.
In the Admin Console, create an account for the customer or find their existing account. Under the Account Actions dropdown at the top right, select Add Subscription. Select the plan you want to subscribe the customer to and configure the subscription options.
The plan the customer is subscribing to.
The subscription's billing period will have the billing period length defined on the plan. You cannot set a custom billing period for a subscription, but you can set a custom number of billing cycles for the subscription term.
The currency of the subscription will default to the site's default currency. If you are on Recurly's Professional plan or higher, you have Multiple Currency support and can select a different currency for the subscription. You will not be able to change the currency of the subscription once it is created.
The subscription's base price per billing period. The default price can be overridden here for the specific subscription.
Quantity defaults to 1. Set multiple quantities for the subscription if you have a per user / per license billing model.
This is the initial term, or number of billing periods, that a customer is committed to when subscribing. The default subscription term can be overridden here for the specific subscription. See Subscriptions Terms for more info
This determines whether a subscription should auto-renew for another term when the initial term completes or if it should expire at the end of the initial term. The renewal term behavior will default to the plan, but can be overridden for the specific subscription. See Subscriptions Terms for more info
If the subscription is configured to automatically renew for another term, then you have the option to configure a Renewal Subscription Term. This is the commitment following the initial subscription term. The renewal term defaults to the plan's term length but can be overridden for the specific subscription.See Subscriptions Terms for more info
The subscription will charge a setup fee on the first invoice if there is a setup fee on the plan. You cannot add, remove, or set a custom setup fee at the subscription level. If the subscription will start with a trial, the setup fee will be charged on the trial invoice.
Select which add-ons should be included in the subscription. Add-ons in the subscription can have a pricing model, price, and quantity.
If add-ons were configured on the plan, then only those add-ons will be available to select on the subscription. If you have enabled item-based add-ons to be configured directly on subscriptions, then all items in your item catalog will be available to include on the subscription as add-ons. In this case, when creating add-ons via our API, you will need to specify the add-on source so the add-on data is pulled from the correct object.
For Tiered, Volume, and Stairstep Pricing Models, the tiers and prices can be updated to be specific to the subscription. To use a different pricing model, create a new add on for the plan.
You can choose to have the subscription start immediately or on a future date. If selected, the subscription will be created now, but will not issue an invoice until the future start date. It is not currently possible to set a past date.
If the subscription has a future date and a trial, the trial will start on the future date you select.
Some businesses want their customers' subscriptions to always renew on a specific day, like the 1st of the month. If the subscription is forced to renew on a specific day, the initial invoice needs to prorate to that day, since the subscription will bill for a full new billing period. If you would like the subscription to renew on a specific day and have the initial invoice prorate to that day, use the "first bill date" option when creating the subscription (API only).
If you are on Recurly's Professional plan or higher, you have the Manual Invoicing feature and will see a collection method option. Automatic collection will try to collect on the new invoice immediately by creating a transaction with the account's billing information. Manual collection will create the invoice, but will not create a transaction, allowing the customer to pay later.
If the subscription's collection method is set to manual, you can set a PO Number for the subscription. This PO Number will show on all invoices for the subscription.
Subscriptions billed with automatic collection will have payment terms of "On-Receipt". If the subscription's collection method is set to manual, the subscription will default to the payment terms specified in the Admin Console on the Invoice Settings page. The payment terms can be customized for the specific subscription. Note that the payment terms will be the same for all of the subscription's invoices moving forward, unless you change the subscription to update the terms.
A subscription's invoice will show Customer Notes if your Admin Console has a default message defined or if you set specific text for the subscription. If you set specific text for the subscription, the same note will show on all invoices for the subscription until you change the subscription to take it away or set a different message.
A subscription's invoice will show Terms and Conditions notes if your Admin Console has a default message defined or if you set specific text for the subscription. If you set specific text for the subscription, the same note will show on all invoices for the subscription until you change the subscription to take it away or set a different message.
A subscription's invoice will show VAT Reverse Charge Notes if you have European Union VAT enabled and the customer is a business customer exempt from taxes (reverse charge scenario). You can set specific text for the subscription if needed. If you set specific text for the subscription, the same note will show on all invoices for the subscription until you change the subscription to take it away or set a different message.
A subscription will automatically have the same free trial configured on the plan. If you want to give the customer a custom trial length, you can redeem a free trial coupon, or set a custom trial end date (API only). Trial length can be completely customized with some examples being monthly, weekly, or daily to support your business.
If the plan does not have a trial, you can still give the subscription a trial with either method, coupon or API trial end date. Note that an added trial will not have the Trial Ending email or the ability to have a cardless sign-up, since those options are configured at the plan level.
You can remove a default trial via the API by setting the trial end date to "timenow" when creating the subscription.
You can redeem a coupon when creating a subscription as long as the subscription's plan is an eligible charge for the coupon.
You can redeem a gift card when creating a subscription to help pay for the subscription and flag the subscription as starting with a gift card.
Revenue Recognition schedules are defined at the plan level, but they can be overridden at the subscription level if needed. This option is available in the API only.
Physical goods subscriptions or merchants needing to tax on a physical location can define a shipping address for the subscription when the subscription is created. This address will show as the "Ship To" on the invoice and will automatically be used as the taxable address if taxes are enabled. Learn More
By default, Recurly will require valid billing information in order for an automatic collection subscription to be created. Manual collection subscriptions can be created without billing information.
An account may signup for multiple subscriptions, where each subscription is invoiced and billed separately. There are a couple of ways that Recurly supports multiple subscriptions.
- You can use increase the number of subscriptions with the Quantity field for a plan.
- You can create multiple subscriptions of the same plan for an account that has separate renewal periods.
- You can also use the API's purchase endpoint to create multiple subscriptions in a purchase. The subscriptions can be the same or different plans. This will result in a single invoice and transaction that includes all subscriptions. See Multiple Subscriptions for more information.
When you are creating a new subscription, and would like to see what the resulting invoices will be, click on the 'Preview Invoice' button before adding the subscription. This will give you a snapshot of what invoices, both charge and credit, will be created for the customer when the subscription is added.
When 'Save Changes' is selected, the final amounts will be created and applied to the customer account. This amount may be slightly different than the amount seen on the preview invoice(s), since the final amount is calculated down to the exact second the change is made.
The preview invoice functionality can be viewed from the button at the bottom of the page, or from the 'View' link in the Preview of First Invoice section on the right side of the page.
To have the multiple instances of the same plan enabled for your site, please contact [email protected]. Please note that there is a 60 second delay when creating multiple of the same subscription per an account, unless you use the bulk flag via the create subscription API.
Updated 11 months ago