We are happy to announce the ability to customize the frequency of credit card retry logic for past-due accounts in dunning.

This was a highly requested improvement that provides many benefits to help merchants reduce churn while avoiding potential issues with their payment gateway. Read on to learn more.

First, if you’re not familiar with dunning and Chargify’s dunning features, dunning is the process of retrying credit cards and communicating with past-due accounts (caused by failed transactions) prior to account cancellation. An effective dunning strategy is proven to recover revenue and reduce churn.

How it used to work:

Previously, our dunning settings allowed you to define the duration before the final action was taken such as “after 14 failed attempts, cancel the subscription.” If a credit card transaction failed, the account would enter dunning and we would attempt to process the card once a day until either the transaction was successful or the final action was taken (i.e. account canceled).  

[New] How it now works:

You can now customize the frequency of retries so we do not attempt to process the card every day the account is past-due (unless you define this logic). Start building your dunning strategy by adding dunning steps:


For every step, we will attempt to process the credit card. Optionally, you can add an email message to each step that is sent out if the transaction fails. So, you may want to retry on day 3, 7, 10, 14, and 21 but only send emails for attempts on days 7, 14, and 21.

Consider this new improvement “dunning legos” that allow you to build the ideal workflow that suits your business’s needs.

Additional benefits:

The granular control is a huge benefit in and of itself, but there are many other reasons for this update:

  • Reduced transaction fees for our merchants since gateways charge for both successful and failed transactions.
  • A large percentage of failed transactions vs successful transactions can negatively affect the rates a merchant pays their processor. The fewer failed transactions, the better.
  • Merchants can now retry cards the same amount of times but over a longer period of time which may lead to more recovered customers.

If you’re not taking advantage of Chargify’s dunning features, now is a great time to get started!

But I’m already using the dunning features, how is my account affected?

Great question! For existing Chargify merchants, we created a step for every day to match the logic that was in place prior to the update:

  • If no action is taken, your dunning will function the same as before the update.
  • If you want to tailor your dunning strategy, visit the Settings > Retries and Dunning page to add, edit, or delete steps to customize your retry logic.

For more information about configuring Chargify’s dunning features, check out the Dunning Settings documentation.