How to use Freedom to send invoices to customers and have them pay them online

May 5, 2016 12:57 pm

Going through the following steps may take some time if you're a newer Freedom user, and some parts may be confusing. If you want me to elaborate any parts of this walk-through, please let me know and I will respond and edit this post in order to make it clearer.

We will be using the following modules to accomplish online bill pay, so turn them all on in the Green Interface, Toolbar:
-Payments (not mentioned in the walkt-hrough, but useful to have if processing credit cards)

Edit the Commerce Module configuration (Green > Toolbar > edit Commerce). Set Bill me later to Yes and Accept Credit Cards to Yes. Set the Credit Card Payment Processor to "TEST MODE" for now, but change this later to your payment gateway.

Press Save, then edit the configuration for the Billing Module (Green > Toolbar > edit Billing). By default and for this use case, the Billing Method will be Custom Invoice. Using the Quickbooks Billing Method will be a different set of instructions.

For now, set "Include invoice as PDF email attachment" to No. I will make a separate post for modifying custom PDF invoices.

Press Save, then go to the People module.

Add a new test People record (use your own email for testing), and press save. Then go to the People Module > Category tab, and edit the category of the Person you just added.

Towards the bottom, you need to set the Product Catalog selection to "Products". This is "Products" by default, but may vary, depending on what you named your product directory when turning on the Commerce module.

Press save, then go to the Commerce Module > Products tab.

Add a new Item and call it "Down Payment", then press Add Item at the bottom.

Now, go to the Commerce Module > Orders Tab.

Create an Order by pressing the Green "Add a new Order" button.

On this page, you can select a Customer that exists in the People module. Each new client will have to be entered into the People module first. People can also be allowed to sign up directly on the website (through a web form).

Select the test People record you created, to enter the Order Items screen. Press the Green Add an Item button to see the items available to add to the order. You'll see "Down Payment". These items are set from the Products tab at the top of the screen (inside of the Commerce Module).

Select "Down Payment", and then you can edit the price for it. You can also add a description if necessary, and then press the Green Add to Order button at the bottom.

You can add more items this way, but when you're done, press the Green Submit Button to continue to the payment screen.

In the middle, you'll see a Payment Type section. Here you can currently select Credit Card, or Send Bill Later (configured in Green > Toolbar > edit Commerce).

If the person who is adding the order has access to the customer's credit card and want's to process a payment at the time the order is placed, they should select "Credit Card" from the payment type drop down. If they want to send an invoice to the client, to have them pay later, select "Send Bill Later".

Finally you can select
()Save the order, process payment and create an invoice.
()Save the order, process payment and create an invoice but do not send an invoice email.
()Save the order for later. Don't invoice.

I suggest that you include a link for customers to pay their invoice directly in the invoice email by using the following URL: href="index.php?src=membership&srctype=dispatch&module=billing&section=payment"

This link goes to the billing part of your website's MyAccount section, with a login screen. Clients will have to know their username and password in order to pay their bill online with a credit card.

You will also have to allow the membership category access to this section, so go to the My Account Module> edit your Membership category.

Here is where you set what People are allowed to see when they log into their account on the website. Allow Full Access to the Billing and People Modules and press save.

Let's access the MyAccount section as if you were a customer.

Use the quick link wizard (hover over the website button toward the top right and click on the chain link icon that pops up). Select People for the module, press next, then select My Account. Pressing Next again will allow you to press Go in order to go to MyAccount on the live website.
However, because you are logged into the administrative interface of Freedom, you should copy the link from the browser and enter the link into a different browser to act as a test. ( index.php?src=membership&srctype=myaccount )

Use the test member user id and password you created in the beginning to log in.

The very first time each People logs in, they will have to verify their contact information. After that, they can edit their Personal/Billing Information as well as other account details.

Either by clicking the link from the invoice, or going directly to the MyAccount section from the website, People will be able to view their Statements and make payments via credit card.

If the website owner would like to view all of their client's statements, they can log into the Brown Interface and go to the Billing Module > Collections Tab.

Viewing a statement from this tab, the web administrator can manually adjust the clients balance with refunds or payments if needed.

The Collections tab of the Billing module gives a quick snapshot of all clients who owe the website owner money.