engageSPARK is a pre-paid platform: you can only spend the money in your account balance. Whenever your balance runs low, you have to log in and add more money—or you could use our auto-recharge feature.
Enabling auto-recharge means that you don’t have to monitor your account balance anymore. Instead, we do that for you and automatically charge your credit card to make sure your messages go out as planned.
In this article we explain why you should enable auto-recharge, and how you can configure it.
When do I need auto-recharge?
We generally recommend enabling auto-recharge to ensure your campaigns run smoothly. Here are three examples when auto-recharge really saves the day:
- You regularly use SMS APIs to send messages but you don’t want to manually add funds every few days.
- You sometimes need to send urgent messages so you want to make sure there are no disruptions due to missing funds.
- You are launching a major campaign and want to ensure you’re not running out of funds along the way. (Note that major campaigns need extra consideration. See below for more info.)
Where can I enable auto-recharge?
To use auto-recharge, you must first add a credit card. Head over to the billing page to add one. You find the billing page by clicking on your account balance in the top right corner, or simply click on this link.
Where to find the billing page
Once you have a credit card in your account, you find the auto-recharge settings right next to it.
How do I configure auto-recharge?
Once you’re on the billing page, click the “Enable it now” link to start configuring auto-recharge. The following popup window opens:
Here are the steps to enable auto-recharge for your credit card:
- Check the box next to “Auto Recharge”.
- “Recharge at least”: tell us how much we should charge your credit card. We might charge more to reach your minimum balance. (See the next item.)
- At “When balance falls below” tell us how much money you always want to have in your account balance. When your balance falls below this amount, we’ll charge your credit card. Both those amounts are in US Dollars.
- Click Save.
Auto-recharge will now make sure your messages go out smoothly.
An example for auto-recharge
Not sure how this will work? No problem, let’s look at an example.
Let’s say you regularly send SMS with weather news and don’t want to worry about your account balance. So, you do the smart thing and enable auto-recharging. You set an amount of $20 and want to maintain a balance of $100.
While sending SMS about an upcoming typhoon, your account balance falls to $99.50. At this point, auto-recharging will notice your balance dropped below $100. It will then charge $20 to your credit card, leaving you with an account balance of $119.50.
Later, you are charged the monthly fee for your Starter subscription plan and your account balance drops to $75. Auto-recharging notices that $20 will not be enough to reach your minimum account balance of $100, and charges your credit card accordingly. (Auto-recharging never lifts your account balance above $120—the minimum balance of $100 plus the amount of $20.)
How do I turn auto-recharging off?
You can turn auto-recharging off at any time. To do so, go to the billing page.
If auto-recharging is enabled, click on the “Update” button.
The configuration modal opens. Simply un-check the box and Save. (You can leave the other values—minimum amount and the balance to maintain—as is.)
Note that Auto-recharging is now disabled on the billing page:
Do I have to enable auto-recharging?
No. You can add a credit card and top up your account balance manually as before.
However, we strongly recommend enabling auto-recharging because we’ve seen more than one customer run out of funds at very inopportune moments. Auto-recharging is the easiest way to prevent those headaches from ever happening.
How does auto-recharging work when launching major campaigns?
Please consider setting your minimum balance higher than normal when launching campaigns to hundreds or thousands of people.
When launching SMS, WhatsApp or Voice call campaigns to many contacts we will try to get your messages out as quickly as possible. This means your account balance may drop very quickly. To avoid issues with slow credit card transactions, it may be necessary to adjust your auto-recharging settings.
For example, if you expect to launch a major Voice IVR campaign to thousands of people then auto-recharging with a threshold of $20 may not be adequate. Please reach out to Customer Support if you need help in configuring auto-recharge.
In cases where auto-recharge does not kick in fast enough for the campaign that you launched or that there was a problem charging your credit card on file, and your account balance drops to negative, your transactions (SMS, WhatsApp, Voice calls, and Airtime top-ups) will fail. However, there’s nothing to worry. Our system automatically retries these failed transactions due to insufficient funds. The engageSPARK system will keep retrying until the transactions are out (when we’ve successfully recharge’s your account or you manually processed your payment) within 24 hours.
I cannot use credit cards. Are there other payment methods available for auto-recharging?
No. At this point, only credit cards are supported.