How to Handle Failed Subscription Payments in Your Coaching Business

Carl Taylor | June 26, 2018

An online membership site can be one of the most profitable ways to grow your coaching business. As a digital portal to webinars, blog posts, guides, and more, a membership site allows you to bring in some consistent passive income while you focus on live meetings and mentorship.

Unfortunately, subscription payments can sometimes fail. When a credit card expires or the automated system runs into another snag when trying to charge a customer’s card, it can create a headache for both you and your subscriber.

Failed subscription payments mean lost money for you and your business. However, if the failed payment isn’t solved efficiently, you also run the risk of ruining your relationship with your customer. If it’s not easy to regain access to your membership site after a failed payment, they may choose not to resubscribe.

There are a few different ways you can handle a failed subscription payment, depending on the software you use to run your membership site. Here are some of the best options for solving subscription payment problems:

Solving Payment Problems With Automation vs. Manually

When you only have a few members, solving payment issues manually may not seem like a big deal. If you’re able to clearly see which payments didn’t properly process, you can reach out to let your customers know there was a problem with their card.

However, when you’re working with large numbers, this process can be extremely taxing. You also run the risk of missing failed payments and not reaching out appropriately. This leaves the problem unsolved.

Automating the process can take that stress off your hands. When a payment doesn’t go through, an automated system will automatically reach out to the customer to help solve the problem. This allows you to focus on the other areas of running your coaching business.

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How to Automate Your Failed Payment Process

Automating your failed subscription payment process is easy, but how you set it up will depend on the tool you use to collect payments.

Here is how you can automate your failed payment process using some of the most popular tools out there.

1. Ontraport

Within Ontraport, you can create an automated system that allows you to continuously retry a credit card or reach out to a customer when a payment fails.

Here’s how you can do this:

  1. Select Sales > Settings > Recharge Settings.
  2. Enter how often you’d like Ontraport to try recharging the card, as well as how long you’d like the tool to keep trying.
  3. Set “Rules” to customize your failed payment process to fit your customer’s needs. Rules might include sending an email to let your customer know they need to update their payment information, sending an alert to your inbox that a payment has failed, or disabling access to the site when payment fails.

2. Infusionsoft

Like Ontraport, Infusionsoft allows you to set up an automated system right within the tool.

Here are the steps you can follow to get alerts if a payment fails:

  1. Log into Infusionsoft. Click E-Commerce > Settings > Billing Automation.
  2. In the drop-down menu, select “When an autocharge attempt is made,” then Add Trigger.
  3. Select “Fails” as your trigger criterion.
  4. Determine your actions, such as sending you a reminder to follow up with the customer after a failed transaction.

3. Stripe

Stripe is a popular payment-processing platform if you’re not using a CRM that includes a payment software. There are a few different ways you can automate your failed payment system using Stripe.

First, Stripe allows you to send an email message to your customers if a payment fails. You can do this by selecting “Also email the customer if a payment fails” in your subscription settings.

You can also use third-party tools to automate the failed payment process in Stripe. A tool like or can give you some additional options for getting in contact with your customers. connects right with your Stripe account and allows you to alert customers of failed payments through in-app notifications, SMS messages, and more. It can also alert your customers if a card is about to expire so they can enter new information before the payment fails. provides you with a full-service Stripe analytics platform. It also includes a Retain function that can help you avoid lost sales. In addition to sending emails and in-app notifications, you can also track changes and effects.

Solving Your Failed Subscription Payments With Automation Agency

Whether you’re just trying to get your coaching business off the ground or you’ve been running it for years, managing everything can be a lot to handle. If you have a membership site, you can’t afford to let failed payments go unnoticed – but you also may not have the time to set up your failed payment process on your own.

If you need help setting up your alert process and you’re using one of our supported platforms, just send us a task.

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About the author 

Carl Taylor

Carl Taylor is the Founder & CEO of Automation Agency. For the past 10 years Carl has been building businesses and marketing them online through the use of Sales Funnels, Email Marketing Automation, Landing Pages, and Wordpress Websites. Carl is also a #1 author and highly sought after speaker and consultant whose work has impacted thousands of businesses across various industries worldwide.

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