“Card declined”—two words that subscription businesses hate to hear. Credit card declines result in the loss of revenue and increased churn, impacting your bottom line. Some number of declines are unavoidable, and as discussed in a recent blog post, some payment events—such as the widespread issuing of new EMV cards in the United States this year—can also result in increases in both failed payments and card-not-present fraud.

Many types of credit card declines are actually avoidable and if discovered ahead of time, can be rectified before the transaction can be rejected—for example, updating card information when there is a new expiration date and/or new credit card security code (i.e. CVV or CCV code). This type of updated information is the reason behind many of the declines related to the new EMV cards.

A straightforward way to address these types of avoidable declines is via the Account Updater service provided by your payment gateway. You can also use the free, automated Account Updater service provided by Recurly to all of our merchants.

If you’re a Recurly merchant, the single most important thing you can do to decrease avoidable credit card declines is to enable Recurly’s free Account Updater service right now!

Recurly’s Account Updater service is critical to minimizing revenue losses due to avoidable failed payments. This service monitors your customers’ Mastercard® and Visa® credit cards for changes and then makes updates in Recurly’s records, ensuring the payment will go through. If the update can’t be made automatically, our Account Updater will alert you to the issue so you can address it with your customer directly.  

Account Updater will also check a card’s status a few days before a subscription is set to renew. If changes are necessary and can be made automatically, the service makes them, helping to ensure that the renewal transaction goes through smoothly.

Recurly shows you exactly how much revenue we’ve “recovered” for you on our invoice. Oftentimes, this number is larger than the amount due on the invoice, meaning Recurly actually pays for itself!

Recurly recovered revenue on invoice

Account Updater is available free of charge for every payment gateway that Recurly supports (with the exception of Opayo).

To enable Account Updater for your site, simply go to your Payment Gateways page and click  the "Enable" button under the Account Updater section shown on the right-hand side. Please note that your site must be in production mode in order to use Account Updater.

Account Updater enable button

Recurly’s Account Updater service is another way that we put smart technology to work on your behalf.