Getting Started

The following section will walks you through a simple use-case of creating a product and subscription for an Internet Service Provider (ISP).

For questions, drop us an e-mail help AT billforward dot NET and we can setup a chat with our one of our core developers.

ohai! If you are a developer you may want: API Introduction

Step 1: Unit of Measure

Let's start by defining the units your product is sold in, this is configured by the units-of-measure. To access the Units-Of-Measure, go to Setup -> Units.

The units of measure are used when displaying the purchased quantity in BillForward invoices. For example if you sell Broadband Internet by service speed your units of measure may be:

  • Name Megabytes
  • Displayed As Mbps

On your invoice instead of the units being just a number, for example 10 they would include the Unit of measure, for example 10 Mbp/s.


Step 2: Creating a Product

A product logically groups together a set of pricing plans. For example you may have a Pro product with various price points depending on customer or purchase time.

When creating a product you can define a number of settings, these will be the defaults applied to any new rate-plans created under that plan.

Keeping to the example let's call our product, Broadband.


Step 3: Define Rate Plan

Rate plans reflect the various price books of your product. Amongst other options the currency, billing cycle, and price are defined in the rate plan.

We start by giving the rate-plan a name, Standard Price will. Let's choose USD as the currency, and a monthly billing-cycle.

Finally let's setup the pricing. Each rate-plan can have multiple invoice-lines where the product being sold may be in various components. Using multiple pricing components can allow sophisticated pricing behavior. For example allowing high-margin items to be upgraded independently of lower-margin items.

For now let's define a single pricing component called Speed - this is displayed as the Description field on the invoice. A description field can be set but is not displayed on the invoice.

Pricing in BillForward can be flat, tiered or volume based. For now let's choose a tiered price where the first tier is for 10 to 10 units (Mbp/s) at $19 and another tier where each subsequent unit is an extra $1.

The default quantity allows you to set a value that is used by all subscriptions that have not explicitly defined their purchased units. This is useful when adding on a new pricing component where there are existing subscribers.

Finally, let's save our plan!


Step 4: Adding a Customer

An account contains details about your customers. This includes what payment methods they have and what they are subscribed too.

Go ahead and add the notorious Billiam Mc'Munney and some random e-mail.


Step 5: Payment

Generally before a customer can successfully subscribe a way for them to pay is needed, of course this is not true for offline invoicing but we will come to that later!

For simplicity let's issue some credit to the users account. Credit can be applied to an account of a particular subscription, do this by clicking the 'add credit' link.


Step 6: Subscribing

The last step is to add a subscription to the account. To do this, go to the account, click add subscription, you now need to select the product, rate-plan and finally the units purchased. If can now create your subscription!

By default subscriptions are created in the Provisioned state. This allows for scheduling the start of the subscription to a future date, or editing the units purchased before the subscription starts.

Hit start and an invoice should be generated and paid! An invoice should appear in the tab at the bottom of the page. If you click on it, you should see something similar to the invoice below!

Congratulations you have now created your first subscription in BillForward!

Example Invoice