CM Business Directory (CMBD) + Community + Payments - Use Case - Charging Users For Suggesting Businesses in Directory
Use Case - Charging Users For Suggesting Businesses in Directory
The CM Business Directory allows you to create a listing of businesses. By combining the Payments and Community add-on, you can charge users for creating and managing said pages.
Use Case Front-End
Shopping Cart Page
Quick Read: How It Works
- Users must be logged-in to pay for creating a business profile.
- Easy Digital Downloads and WooCommerce provide the platform needed to collect payments for listings.
- Once a non-logged in user submits a new business, their email is saved and a password is sent once the listing is approved.
- This process does not create a WP user associated with the listing. However, it still allows user to update their business listing information without having any access to the WP dashboard or having any other privileges related to WP users.
Use Case Assumptions
In this example use case guide, we'll cover how to charge users for suggesting and claiming businesses in your Business Directory.
We consider that you have already bought the addon, but not installed it.
Learn The Basics
This documentation follows:
- Setting up payments
- Selecting Payment Plugin (WooCommerce / EDD)
- Requiring users to pay for adding businesses
- Requiring users to pay for claiming listings
- Requiring users to pay for renewing listings
- Notifying users
- User View - Suggesting and Paying
- Admin View - Tracking payments
Installing The Addon
The process is the same for all CM plugins and addons.
- Download the plugin from your customer dashboard
- Log in to WordPress and navigate to the WordPress Admin → Plugins settings
- Click on Add New
- Activate it and add the license
Installing Payment Plugin (EDD or WooCommerce)
EDD or WooCommerce? No Difference For The Plugin
As far as Answers Payment is concerned, there is almost no difference between using either EDD or WooCommerce.
Both are free and provide free and paid add-ons. The only difference is that you can offer automatic renewals by using WooCommerce and its paid WooCommerce Subscriptions add-on
Head to Admin Dashboard → Plugins → Installed Plugins and click Add New.
Configure Payment Plugins
Don't forget to configure the payment plugin! This way you can connect it to payment providers such as PayPal or credit card companies.
Be sure that your payment plugin has the correct Checkout and Cart pages set up. They are used by the plugin.
Setting up a Directory
First, set up the directory if you haven't done so. Since this article focuses on the payment use case, it mostly list the relevant documentation for this first step.
Learn The Basics
Navigate to Admin Dashboard → CM Business Directory → Settings. Then click on the General tab.
Adding First Business
- Go to Admin Panel/CM Business Directory and click Business and Add New or simply click the Add Business button.
- Fill in all fields, add Tags, Categories and Custom Taxonomy Terms. Optionally you can also add Video and Additional Links and Fields.
- When finished, click on the Publish button to save the Business.
Learn more: CM Business Directory (CMBD) - Add Business
- Install and activate the plugin.
- Go to Admin Panel/Plugins/CM Business Directory and click Settings to set plugin options
Shortcodes list to know what you can change to adjust the plugin to your needs.
- General - Set general options for plugin.
- Business Page - Settings for Business Page. More about Custom Taxonomy, Additional Links/Fields, Star Rating.
- Directory Index Page - General settings for Directory Index page and also Filters
- Directory Appearance - Settings for three different views: Directory, Tiles and List view.
- Custom CSS - Option to apply your own custom CSS styles.
- Labels - Customize plugin labels to your needs.
Letting Users Suggest Businesses
Now, allow users to suggest businesses. We'll also skim through this part to focus on payments.
Learn The Basics
Navigate to the Admin Dashboard → CM Business Directory → Settings → Community Business tab.
Under moderation settings, choose the roles who can add businesses.
Setting Up Payments
Now that the directory is set up and users can suggest businesses, it's time to configure payments.
1) Selecting Payment Plugin (WooCommerce / EDD)
Let's start by telling the plugin which payment platform we are using (EDD or WooCommerce). Navigate to CM Business Directory Pro → Settings → Payments tab → Payment System Selection section.
Only one system can be enabled at a time. In the example below, it's WooCommerce.
TIP: You Need a Payment Plugin
If you don't have EDD or WooCommerce installed, you will get the notice that payment features cannot work without one of these payment plugins.
2) Requiring Users to Pay for Adding Businesses
Now onto the most important settings of the use case.
Head to the Add New Business Payments section and check "Require payments for adding new businesses". We'll talk about the two other options in a moment.
Then, create a new WooCommerce/EDD product or assign the purchase with an existing product.
TIP: This Defines How Much Users Will Pay to Submit Businesses
Technically speaking, users will buy a WooCommerce/EDD product that will grant them access.
3) Requiring Users to Pay for Claiming businesses
You can also charge users for claiming businesses. Turn on the option in the Claim Business Payments section.
And then set the product, like in the other payment settings.
Users can claim existing business listings by going to the listing page and clicking show by Claim this business.
They only need to add their name and valid email address to receive an email notification with instructions on how to pay for the listing.
The rest of the process is the same as Suggesting a Business:
- User gets an e-mail.
- Gets another e-mail with an activation link.
4) Requiring Users to Pay for Renewing Businesses
Automatic Reminder vs Automatic Renewal
There's an important distinction. This add-on does not provide automatic renewals. When the subscription expires, it is not automatically renewed.
Instead, the user receives a configurable email notification.
If this feature is enabled, users must pay in order for their listing to remain visible to the public in the directory. This is also controlled by a (separate) product in EDD / WooCommerce to allow the payment.
Mark existing items as paid
Check box and save or click the button to set all current items as paid. The payments will be required only after renewal time passes.
This will only work if the Require payments for renewing businesses? was not checked earlier!.
One huge difference are the time renewal and notification settings.
You can choose after how many days the listing will expire, requiring the user to make a new payment. Also, you can enable a notification to remind the user about the upcoming expiration.
After making the payment, the user receives a link to re-activate the listing or a unique activation code to paste on the business activation page.
5) Notifying Users
In each of the options above (payment for adding, renewing and claiming), there are also options to customize the email sent to businesses. They follow the same pattern, with some changes:
- "Payment required" e-mail subject - Topic of the e-mail being sent after the user adds the business and it passes the moderation.
- "Payment required" e-mail content - Content of the e-mail being sent after the user adds the business and it passes the moderation. You can use the following placeholders:
- "Payment confirmation" e-mail subject - Topic of the e-mail being sent after the user purchases the product required to add a new business.
- "Payment confirmation" e-mail content - Content of the e-mail being sent after the user purchases the product required to add a new business. You can use the following placeholders:
TIP: Limited Free Listings
In the Limited Free Listing section, you can enable exactly that - and then choose which fields will be available in these limited profiles.
User View - Suggesting and Paying
With Payments, the user submission process is the same as in Community.
How To Edit Form
We explain in details how to configure the submission form in the documentation CM Business Directory Community (CMBDC) - Editing Form (Showing/Hiding Fields, Marking as Mandatory, Translating)
But now, when users complete the business submission form, they will see a different message than usual. The message will mention payment.
What Happens On Submission?
You can control what will happen from the settings, section Add New Business Payments.
- Payment before moderation - If enabled, users will be able to pay even before the admin moderates the submission.
- Instant payment - If enabled, the user will be redirected to checkout immediately after filling the form. Requires Payment before moderation to be enabled.
Checkout Page Example
TIP: Translate Interface
The add-on has over some labels that can be translated. These can be found in Settings → Payments Labels.
It's an opportunity to change the interface to your site's language and/or style
Admin View - Tracking Payments
The add-on offers a simple way to track every payment made.
Business tokens are fully automated, virtual items created by the Add-On to keep track of all of the actions requiring payments.
Accessing Token Dashboard
Navigate to the Admin Dashboard → CM Business Directory → Business Tokens.
This screen will show a table with all recorded payments, along with their attached information.
- Token before clicking on activation link from e-mail.
- Token after clicking on activation link from e-mail.
Editing a Token
Clicking on the code directs you to the token edit page, where you can change its status manually. Also here values like Purchase ID, email and types can be changed.
TIP: Activating and Deactivating, Changing Permissions
You can also activate or deactivate each token or edit its token type. Meaning the user will gain or lose permission to:
- Adding - Add business
- Claiming - Claim business
- Pay_per_view - Access business
Extra - Pay-Per-View: Charging Users For Accessing Profile
When Pay-per-view is enabled, users will be asked to buy a plan when trying to access a business profile. Select the plan and click Buy Selected Plan.
To enable this feature, head to the Payments tab → Pay-per-view section.
First, click on "Turn on the Pay-per-view".
- Easy Digital Downloads / WooCommerce Product Association - Select an existing EDD / WooCommerce Product which will be required to use the "Pay-per-view" functionality. Or choose the name and price and click "Create New EDD / WooCommerce Product" to automatically create and assign a new Product.
- Pass items - Number of possible items to be displayed after purchasing a single "pass".
- Pass days - Number of days the purchased "pass" is valid after it's activated.
Remember you can add multiple plans!
Unpaid Business Announcement
This optional field lets you add HTML to be shown in business pages with pending payment.
Learn more: CM Business Directory (CMBD) - Advertisement
With all steps completed, your directory will require payments before user submissions are online.
Use Case Front-End
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