While credit cards lead the pack as the primary payment method for subscription businesses, processing and transaction fees can quickly add up, especially for businesses with higher Average Revenue per Account (ARPA).

Today we’re happy to announce that Stripe ACH has been added to Chargify’s growing list of supported payment options. This enhancement allows Chargify customers using Stripe to decide how payments are processed – automatically with credit/debit cards, invoice billing (paid by check or card), and now ACH.

ACH payments through Stripe cost 0.80%, capped at $5. How does this impact high ARPA businesses? Let’s assume a business offers a subscription for $1,000/month billed annually. With the industry standard 2.9% + $0.30/transaction fees, this business would pay $348.30 in fees for every annual renewal with a card. With Stripe ACH, the same transaction would cost $5. Multiply that by 100 customers and it adds up to an annual savings of $34,330.

How to enable ACH with Stripe:

It is important to note that Stripe ACH support is only available for Chargify customers that are on the latest Chargify/Stripe integration. Learn how to check your status and migrate to our upgraded Stripe integration in our documentation. The migration only takes a few minutes and also enables Stripe’s Smarter Saved Cards (a.k.a. Automatic Card Updater) to help reduce failed transactions.

With the latest Chargify/Stripe integration connected, you will now see an ACH/eCheck submenu option on your Site’s Settings page:

To enable Stripe ACH, click “Allow my customers to pay with a bank account” and then “Save ACH Settings.”

After ACH is enabled, Bank Account Verification emails and ACH Authorization Agreement emails will automatically be turned on, by default. This will ensure that your customers receive proper instructions to verify their ACH bank accounts and will ensure that, if you use self-service pages, you are following proper authorization procedures. We highly recommend that you review and edit the email content before setting up customers on ACH billing.

Keep in mind that ACH payments require additional time to set up since customers will need to verify their bank account before you’re able to charge their account. This process generally takes 1-2 business days.

During the verification window, you will want to ensure customers are either on a free plan, free trial, have a delayed start date, or have an alternate payment method on file until the bank account is verified. In the case that the first ACH payment does fail, you can set up ACH retries in your dunning configuration.

There are multiple ways to enable ACH for new and existing subscriptions:

  • In Chargify’s interface, you can manually create a new subscription with ACH as the payment method
  • For an existing subscription, you can manually add a bank account OR send your customer a link to Chargify’s hosted self-service page where they can enter their bank account info

Once a bank account has been associated with a customer’s subscription, Stripe will initiate two small (less than $1.00) deposits into their account. Their verification email includes a link where the customer can confirm these two deposits to verify their account. Alternatively, Chargify’s interface offers a verification page where you can manually enter the deposit amounts, which is helpful if you want to verify an account over a phone call with the customer.  

If a more custom workflow is desired, you can also verify ACH accounts on your end and pass the verified bank account information to Chargify through our API.

ACH payments require special authorization in accordance with NACHA regulation, so it is important that you collect proper ACH authorization agreement documentation from your customers. If you use Chargify’s self-service pages, we provide an ACH authorization agreement that may be sufficient for your organization.

After a bank account has been added and verified, make sure it’s set as the preferred, active payment method to process the subscription through ACH:

Helpful Resources:

  • For more information on how to configure, test, and launch Stripe ACH support, check out our ACH Documentation.
  • If you use Chargify’s API and want to automate the ACH verification workflows, check out our Payment Profiles API Documentation.
  • If you’re a current Chargify customer that’s interested in migrating to Stripe from another payment provider, check out our migration documentation or reach out to support at 1.800.401.2414 or support@chargify.com for more information.   
  • Finally, if you’re currently evaluating Chargify and want to learn how Stripe + Chargify will help your subscription business move faster and grow quicker visit www.chargify.com/stripe or contact our sales team to set up a quick chat.