Why are my patrons' payments declined?

  • Updated

We continually attempt to process patrons' payments that have been declined throughout the month that the decline occurred. Please note that a patron will only ever have one declined bill. If they are declined once, we will not continue to charge them for future months.

Instead, they will be restricted from viewing patron-only content until they pay their outstanding bill. They are essentially not a patron for future months until they've successfully paid their past outstanding bill. Once the membership is paid, they will regain access to your patron-only feed.

To do our best to collect past due bills we:

  • Retry processing payments up to six times within the month they are declined.
  • Email patrons to let them know there was an issue with their billing and provide instructions on how to update their payment information.
  • Place a banner on their Patreon page prompting them to update their payment information
  • Restrict access to patron only content until outstanding bills are collected

You can also check the status of your patrons from two places: your Patron Manager and Creator Dashboard.

Your Patron Manager lets you view each patron's status and allows you to send messages to those whose payments have been declined. We automatically email patrons about updating payment information when their payments are declined but personal messages can provide a helpful and effective reminder to patrons. If you want to reduce declined payments, consider sending a personal note.

The Declines section of your Creator Dashboard summarises your patrons' overall declined payments rate. It's important to note: if you view this dashboard at the beginning of a month the current month's decline rate typically exceeds the rate from prior months. This is normal. The overall decline rate is usually high in the first few days of the month, and it falls over time as we automatically retry payments and encourage patrons to update their payment methods.

If you feel a patron is evading payment, you can also block them, which will remove their pledge to you and prevent them from messaging you, accessing your patron only content, or pledging to you again in the future.

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