homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member

Home / Forums Index / WebmasterWorld / Ecommerce
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: buckworks

Ecommerce Forum

Shadow Payments
Please someone clear this up for me

10+ Year Member

Msg#: 3938686 posted 9:44 am on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

I have my online payment provider blaming the banks...

The banks blaming the online payment system

customers blaming me

If someone leaves the payment process after they have initiated the sale, but not completed all of the process

Whose fault is it that the money has been taken from their bank... worse when they go back and try again and have it taken twice

Thanks in advance for any help



10+ Year Member

Msg#: 3938686 posted 9:57 am on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

About four times a year I get people who fail to see the massive text in the middle of the page shouting "YOUR TRANSACTION IS PROCESSING, DO NOT REFRESH OR REPEAT THE SUBMIT" who then mash the refresh or submit button multiple times. This then causes the same kind of problem you have.

I have been told by the banks and by my CC transaction supplier that in these cases the bank places the money in a holding area in case the buyer wants to proceed. I do not get to see the money and nor does my CC transaction supplier. The banks will usually hold onto the money for a few days and then put the money back in the buyers account.

If they mashed the button several times those several transactions will be in this holding area and there is nothing I nor my card supplier can do to get the money back into the buyers account.

In every case I get blamed even though the bank will verify (eventually) that they still have the money.


10+ Year Member

Msg#: 3938686 posted 11:59 am on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks SimonUK

its good to know that i am not going insane and others out there are suffering the same issue

problem always is that customers never believe you!


WebmasterWorld Senior Member rocknbil us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Msg#: 3938686 posted 2:00 pm on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

If someone leaves the payment process after they have initiated the sale, but not completed all of the process

I would question your overall purchase process. Here is what I mean.

Many web sites are set up in this manner:

- Initiate process
- taken to payment page, which is off the web site, a third party location. A good example is payPal.
- When payment is complete, the user must click the back to merchant link to inform the web site that the payment is complete, and update any database entries, provide downloads, etc.

If your set up is like this, it's really on the site owner. What should happen here is a) either a silent post which performs the transaction in the background, never leaving the site, or b) an automated method of finishing the transaction so you do not rely on the customer to finish the transaction.

A good example of "b" is payPal's Instant Payment Notification. You set up a "listener" script on your site. It's job is to listen for messages from payPal, and update a web site's transactions. Once the transaction is complete payPal sends a token to your script to complete the transaction. Most processing gateways have a similar method in place to manage this if you use their "payment page."

Eliminate any possible place where you rely on the user to do, or in simonuk's example, NOT do, a particular action that can cause you grief. In his case you should have some method in place to prevent those duplicate submissions.


WebmasterWorld Senior Member piatkow us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member

Msg#: 3938686 posted 3:47 pm on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

Bad design can make these problems more common than they should be, but as I understand it the process, in the UK at least, should always a two step one with the transaction checked and the hold created then the account debited on completion. There is always scope for the user to do something that will leave the hold on the transaction in place.


WebmasterWorld Administrator jatar_k us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Msg#: 3938686 posted 4:13 pm on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

>> Whose fault is it

from the customer's standpoint it's yours :)

no way to tell for sure but the provider is probably the one to deal with first.

rocknbil all the important points. The thing I have always found odd is that few, or no, shopping carts start pending sales. You initiate a partial row/transaction in your database then once payment is confirmed you could fill in the missing data. This makes it a lot easier to test completed transactions. It also helps with some mess ups that users do, like stopping part way through.

at any rate, the trick is who you get the money back from, don't worry about blame, just who should initiate the transfer of one transaction back to the customer account.


Msg#: 3938686 posted 2:36 am on Jun 24, 2009 (gmt 0)

The sale is initiated when the customer enters their card data, and presses the submit button.

After this it is too late to change your mind, or find fault elsewhere if you have problems changing it (although some states give the customer 24hrs to cancel an order. In this case you would have to wait 24hrs before processing the order to be safe and do a refund if asked for a cancellation within this 24hr window).

This seems pretty simple to me. Perhaps you are uncomfortable telling the customer how this works when they don't understand being the real issue?

Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  

Home / Forums Index / WebmasterWorld / Ecommerce
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved