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Extend Invoice Expiration Time: Merchant How-To

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As a merchant using CoinGate payment processing services, you can improve your customer experience and conversions at the checkout by using our extended API functionality to prolong invoice expiration time.

Note that this feature is only available when payouts are set to Bitcoin (BTC)!

We have two features that make the payment experience a bit more convenient for customers – invoice time extension and accepting underpayments. We strongly recommend using them to prevent possible issues.

Accepting slight underpayments ensures that your received payments will come through smoothly in case the customer sends the transaction from a service that deducts a fee from the sent amount (such as an exchange). However, this particular blog post covers the feature allowing you to prolong the time window during which customers can complete the payment.

Why extending the invoice expiration time is a good idea

Paying with Bitcoin for the first time might be a daunting task for the regular customer. The customer has to, first of all, set up a wallet, buy some bitcoins, and then send a precise amount to the invoice address.

Extending your invoice expiration time allows more time for customers to complete the payment. The feature is useful because, to make payments, many Bitcoin newcomers use third-party services that delay transactions. Such services include, but are not limited to, exchanges and web wallets. 

Please note that the feature is not available for merchants that receive Bitcoin EUR/USD payouts.

Example issue:

A customer checks out on your store with Bitcoin and lands on our invoice page. The total payment amount equals 0.1 BTC.

The customer copy-pastes the amount and payment address to a Bitcoin exchange.

The exchange, in fact, does not process and send the bitcoins immediately, but rather completes the withdrawal after 30 minutes.

As a consequence, the 0.1 BTC transaction reaches the invoice after the 20 minute time window has passed and the invoice has expired, meaning that the order does not get processed automatically.

The customer contacts the merchant and CoinGate about payment status, we locate the transaction and proceed from there.

How to extend the invoice expiration time

Bitcoin is still a rather new thing in the payments industry. As such, quite a few technical barriers exist that make Bitcoin seem complicated to use for newcomers. Therefore, we have developed that allows you to extend invoice expiration time, making the payment experience less stressful for customers.

Our experience shows that increasing invoice expiration time ensures that there are very few payment issues that need to be dealt with manually (both for the merchant, and for us, the payment processor). 

The steps to access this feature are as follows:

  1. Login to your CoinGate account dashboard;
  2. Locate the Merchant Tool(s) you are currently using: API, Payment Button or POS app;
  3. On your right-hand side, open up the menu and click Edit;
  4. From there, locate Invoice Time and select your preferred invoice expiration time window. You may have to click on “Show Advanced Settings” to see the feature. 

How to extend invoice expiration time for merchants

We recommend setting the parameter to 2 hours. From our experience, is more than enough time for a customer to complete the transaction, even if sent from an exchange. However, depending on your needs, it is possible to set the timer anywhere between 20 minutes and 24 hours.

Extend invoice expiration time of your CoinGate payment method

CoinGate recommends setting your invoice expiration time to 2 hours.

We sincerely hope that you will find this feature useful. Please let us know if you have any questions at support@coingate.com.

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