Help Topic: Payments

Q. Payments Are Revenues!

Within the software, payments are sometimes referred to as revenues.  If you see the term revenues used, these are payments made by your clients.

Q. What Is Pay Assist?

Pay assist allows you to accept 1-time payments from your clients.  When your client provides their credit card, you can use pay assist to perform the transaction.

Pay assist requires you have a Stripe account.  Stripe is free to use and very easy to set up.  If you need help with Stripe, please contact support.

Q. What Is The Different Between Add Payment And Add Payments

When you track payments from your clients, you can do it using two methods:

  1. Add Payment: allows you to record one payment from a client
  2. Add Payments: allows you to record multiple payments from multiple clients

The two methods are the same.  You can even use the Add Payments option to add 1 payment.  You can use which ever method you like the most.

Q. How Do I Review The Payment History Of A Client?

This is how you can review the service history of a specific client:

  • click on the service payment icon (2nd icon listed) within the options column for the client
  • this is the payment history table

Q. How Do I Register A Stripe Account?

To register a stripe account go to the following URL:

Setting Up A Stripe Account

  • Do not worry about the developer part
  • When you have created the account, you can get your Stripe keys by clicking on the API link from the main menu

Q. Where Do I Get My Stripe Keys?

If you want to use Stripe to accept online payments from your clients, here is a guide for finding your Stripe Keys.


When you login to Stripe, click on the API hyperlink within the main menu.  This will take you to a page where the keys can be copied and pasted.

Make sure to get the following:

  • Test Public Key
  • Test Secret Key
  • Live Public Key
  • Live Secret Key

After you have configured your Stripe keys, make sure to send a test transaction to ensure it is working.

How To Use Stripe

Q. How Do I Setup Payment Processing Through Stripe?

To set up payment processing, you need to do the following first:

  1. register a stripe account
  2. get your stripe test and live keys

If you do not know how to do the above, please search the help section by selecting payments.

Now that you have a stripe account and your stripe keys you are ready to configure payment processing, do the following:

  • click on your name at the top right hand corner of the page
  • click on ACCOUNT
  • click on Online Payments
  • copy and paste your test and live public and private keys
  • make sure to place the correct key in the appropriate field!
  • choose your currency
  • click Submit

Now that you have added your stripe keys, you can make a test call to stripe to ensure everything is working.

To the right of the page you will have the opportunity to send a test transaction.  Click on the Send Test button.

If everything is working, you will get a green success message.  If you do not get a success message, please notify right away and we will investigate.

Q. How Does Stripe Work With The Program?

When you have a Stripe account, you can use it to accept online payments from your clients.

Clients can:

  • login to their accounts and make a payment
  • when they login, they will see a payment processing section on their dashboard that reveals their current balance.  All they need to do is enter their credit card information and make a payment.  They are never redirected off site.  They will be able to review and download a receipt right away

You can:

  • initiate payments on their behalf by using "Pay Assist."  You can find pay assist by going to ACCOUNTING > PAYMENTS and selecting the "Pay Assist" button
  • when you initiate a payment using pay assist, the online payment transaction is sent, and the program will record the payment automatically for you
  • you can review the receipt / pdf and print it or email it to the client if you wish

Q. What Online Payment Options Do You Provide?

We provide online payment processing through:

  • Stripe
  • PayPal

Each of these payment gateways have their strength's and weaknesses.

With Stripe, you and your clients never leave the software when making payments.  Furthermore, we have a 1-click payment processing option for administrators.  If Stripe operates in your country we highly recommend it.

On the other hand, PayPal has a greater, global presence.

With PayPal, your clients are directed to PayPal to make payments to their account.  We do use Instant Payment Notifications (IPN's) to update your data when a payment is made.  If the administrator wants to initiate payments, you will have to have Virtual Terminal through PayPal.  This is a feature that is available through the PayPal website.

Q. What Is Allow Client Initiated Payments For Stripe?

If you allow your clients to log into the software, and you use Stripe as your payment gateway, selecting "Allow CllientInitiated Payments," allows your clients to make payments on their account.  This is used for making payments to the account, or making payments to pending invoices.

If you do not select this option, the software will not allow payments to be made by clients.

Q. What Is Instant Payment Notifications For PayPal

Instant Payment Notifications or IPN's allows PayPal to contact the Bizstim software when a payment is received.

Payments that are initiated by your clients through the software will be processed by PayPal and the payment recorded by the software through an IPN.  This also occurs when a client makes a payment to an invoice.

If you use Virtual Terminal, you can use the IPN to track a payment against a pending invoice by providing our invoice number within the "Invoice" field on the Virtual Terminal form.

For instructions on how to setup your IPN please go to: SETTINGS > SETTINGS > ONLINE PAYMENTS.  We have detailed instructions for setting up your IPN and PayPal account with Bizstim.

Q. What Payment Gateway Do You Recommend

We recommend Stripe over PayPal because it currently provides a better user experience within the Bizstim software.

Q. How To Ensure Clients Pre-pay For Services?

If you want to have your clients pre-pay for services, you would collect the service cost ahead of time.  The software will track their account balance.  To help you manage this you have 2 options:

  1. set a minimum account balance to add a session to the calendar.  You can set this in the system setting by navigating to: SETTINGS > SETTINGS > SYSTEM >SESSION CONTROL and enable Pre-Payment of Services then place a Threshold Amount equal to 1 session.  For example, if your sessions are typically $30 you would place the number 30 for the threshold.  If the client does not meet this minimum threshold, you will not be able to add a new session
  2. set an inactive future date to the client's account.  This will automatically set the client to inactive status when the date is reached.  To set the inactive date go to: CLIENTS > CLIENTS LIST > EDIT PAGE > AVAILABILITY TAB and provide an inactive date.

You can also use the balances tool to review client balances manually.  You can find the balances tool at: ACCOUNTING > BALANCES.

From the balances pages you also have a tool called, Service Reports.  The Service Reports tool will allow you to monitor client expenditures by a specific service for a given date range.

Q. Where Can I Find Discount Codes?

To view your discount codes or to add a discount code go to:


Some rules that apply are:

  • "Uses" refers to the number of times a discount code can be used by a student
  • Services is optional. If services are selected the discount code can only be used when that service is chosen within the online booking tool
  • When the discount code expires it can not be applied by a student
  • A secret discount code can only be applied by the administrator and staff users
  • The "Code" or the name of the discount code must be unique. You will not be permitted to add discount codes with identical code names.
  • Administrator and staff users can apply any discount code at any time regardless of uses, expiry date or services

Q. How Do I Save A Customer Credit Card To Stripe?

Saving Stripe information on your customers occurs in a couple ways:

  1. save a new customer card to Stripe
  2. save a customer ID to Bizstim that already exists in Stripe


If you want to add a customer credit card that does not exist with stripe do the following:

  • from the main menu click on ACCOUNTING
  • from the main menu click on + Pay Assist
  • click on the credit button within the Pay Assist table under the OPTIONS column for the client
  • provide the customers credit card number, expiry date and CVC
  • the card will be saved with Bizstim and Stripe


  • from the main menu click on ACCOUNTING
  • from the main menu click on + Pay Assist
  • click on the + button within the Pay Assist table under the OPTIONS column for the client
  • provide the customer id you get from Stripe. It looks like this: cus_xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • select the credit card brand from the drop down list
  • provide the last 4 digits of the credit card
  • the card will be saved with Bizstim

That's it.

Q. What Are Payment Packages?

Payment packages are groups of services that are used to sell services in bulk.

For example, you may have 3 services in a tiered service group that are sold in a payment package. The first tiered service offers 1 session for $100, the second tiered service offers 10 sessions for $80 and the last tiered service offers 25 sessions for $60.

Our software makes it possible to reward your clients with lower cost services if they purchase those services in bulk.

After a payment is made you record the payment package so the software knows they have access to the lower cost service.  If they do not have access to the lower costs service, it will not be available for selection by your client or practitioner (tutor).

In the event a client has used all of their payment package, the software will alert the administrator via email that the low cost service no longer has available credit.  At this point the administrator can arrange an additional payment or assign an additional payment package.

If your clients are allowed to use the online booking tool and you have service groups active, these payment packages will be provided to them as an additional option during the payment process.  In this case, the payment will be processed, the payment added, and a payment package will be recorded.

Payment packages are not additional funds added to the account.  They are merely a record so the system knows when to alert the admin and discontinue offering the lower cost service to the client.  In this way the system is helping you to manage the various service rates you offer.

Q. How To Add A Payment?

You can select the client's name, add the payment amount, apply any discounts, and determine if you would like a copy of the receipt to be sent to the client's email.

The receipt will have an attached PDF of the payment and will display your large logo and business colors.  The software fully brands documents you send to your clients.

Furthermore, there are three types of payments; they include: regular payments, credits, and debits.  Credits and debits make it easy to zero out a client's balance if they are no longer seeking your services.

Billing clients and tracking payments are made easy with our software.  The process is quick and easy.

Q. How To Update Unpaid Invoices With Pay Assist

When using pay assist you can update unpaid invoices. If the payment amount is greater than the invoice amount the invoice will be updated to "PAID" status.

If the payment is greater than the invoice amount the software will check for additional invoices and mark them as paid too if there is sufficient credit remaining from the payment.

For example, a payment of $1000.00 is made. The "Update unpaid invoices" setting was selected. There are two unpaid invoices in the amount of $500.00 each for a total of $1000.00. After the payment is sent, the software will update each invoice to "PAID" status.

Have a look at the following video if you would like to permanently select this feature:

Q. What Is Strong Customer Authentication (SCA)

Strong Customer Authentication - most often referred to as SCA - is a requirement in the Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2), passed by the European Banking Authority (EBA) back in 2018. Ultimately, the role of SCA in the PSD2 is to protect end-users when making payments.

Since SCA is just a part of a large directive, it is good to understand the two main goals of PSD2:

  • Goal 1: Open up the banking and payment industries to spur innovation.
  • This is achieved through APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) that allow the sharing data between established banks and a new breed of businesses that appeared within PSD2; the Payment Service Initiation Providers (PISPs) and Account Information Service Providers (AISPs). This part of PSD2 is commonly referred to as Open Banking. 
  • Goal 2: Better protect the end-users when using banking services and when paying. This second subset of PSD2 is called Strong Customer Authentication, which is the topic of this article. 

Bizstim uses Stripe for online payments. For more information about SCA you can read Stripe's adoption of SCA here.

To secure your online payments, Bizstim has 2 options:

  1. Force SCA: this means all of your clients must save their card using the SCA process. They may be redirected to their banks to answer additional questions. These questions are designed to ensure the cardholder is present and aware of its use.
  2. Do NOT force SCA: the software automatically attempts to charge cards based on the normal process. If the normal process fails an attempt will be made using the SCA protocol. This means you will experience fewer card declines. If your client has a card that requires SCA, they can choose to save their card using the SCA protocol.

If you own or operate a business in the European region, you will want to force SCA. If you are not in the European area you may want to deal with SCA on an individual client basis.

Q. How To Force Strong Customer Authentication (SCA)

To force strong customer authentication (CSA), make sure you are logged in as the administrator and do the following:

  1. go to SETTINGS from the main menu
  2. go to SETTINGS from the main menu, sub-menu option
  3. choose ONLINE PAYMENTS from the sub-menu bar
  4. click on the STRIPE tab
  5. scroll down the page to the last option
  7. click SUBMIT

You must select the previous option, ALLOW CLIENT INITIATED PAYMENTS, otherwise your clients will not be able to add their card information.




Q. How Do I Add A Stripe Customer ID To Pay Assist?

If you already have a Stripe account with customer credit cards saved you can re-use those accounts within Bizstim. Navigate to Pay Assist:

  • ACCOUNTING from the main menu
  • PAY ASSIST under the accounting heading

Within the OPTIONS area for the specific customer click on the clear + icon:


This will show a modal window where you can save the customer ID, the card type and the last 4 digits of the card.

Click SUBMIT when done.


Q. How Do I Issue A Stripe Refund?

To issue a Stripe refund go to the original Stripe payment from the Payments page and click on the pencil icon to edit the payment.

To edit a payment go to:

  4. Find the payment using the Search field. Search by client name
  5. Click on the pencil icon
  6. Click on the REFUND button
  7. Enter the amount to refund
  8. Click SUBMIT


That's it.