Using the Virtual Terminal
    • 09 Jun 2023
    • 5 Minutes to read

    Using the Virtual Terminal

    Article summary

    With the Helcim Virtual Terminal you can easily accept online payments by entering your customer's credit card information or by sending a bank payment request using your computer, tablet, or mobile phone without needing any additional hardware or a physical terminal. 

    Pull up customer profiles including their stored payment information to accept payments over the phone or online. The virtual terminal can be used by businesses accepting credit card or bank payment transfers.

    Watch the video below to see the virtual terminal in action: 

    In this section:

    Accessing the virtual terminal in your account

    The virtual terminal is accessible through different sections of your account making it easy to adjust your payment workflow for your business. 

    Through payments: 

    You can pull up the virtual terminal by selecting `Payments` and `Virtual Terminal` from the side panel menu.

    payments drop down with virtual terminal selected

    Or using the `New Payment` button under `Payments` and `Transactions`. Select 'Make New Payment' to load the virtual terminal. 

    new transaction button

    Through customers: 

    If you want to use the virtual terminal to accept a payment for an existing customer you can process the payment directly from the customer’s profile in your account. Navigate to Customers and select the customer profile you want to process a payment for then choose between `New Card Transaction` and `New Bank Account Transaction`under the `Actions` menu in the top right-hand corner of the screen. 

    Through invoicing: 

    If you have a due invoice you’d like to collect payment for you can use the virtual terminal for easy payments without requiring your customers to visit you in-person. Simply pull up the invoice in your account and select `Actions` and `Process New Payment` then `Virtual Terminal`. Your transaction will automatically be tied to the invoice you selected and update its status to paid. 

    Taking a payment with the virtual terminal

    taking a payment with the virtual terminal

    To take a payment with the virtual terminal complete each payment field on the left hand side of your screen. You will need to enter all of the following to be able to charge the customer: 

    • Payment amount
    • Select payment method, either credit card or bank payment
    • Enter either the card details or bank account details 
    • Card or account holder name 
    • Customer address including postal code 

    Once this information has been entered you can process the payment by selecting `Charge Now`. If you need to adjust tax information or leave comments for the payment please do so before processing the payment. 

    Completing your payment 

    Once this information has been entered you can process the payment. If you need to adjust tax information or leave comments for the payment please do so before processing the payment. The virtual terminal will have a different button depending on the type of payment you’re completing, the most common being ‘Charge Now’ to process a credit card payment. 

    Credit Card Payments

    • Charge Now ( in Purchase mode)
    • Authorize (in Pre-Auth mode)

    ACH Payments:

    • Charge Now (taking a payment from an existing customer with a pre-authorized bank account)
    • Request Authorization ( adding a new bank account for your customer)

    More options

    Select the drop-down arrow next to more options to further customize your payment. The field options available here will be adjusted depending on whether or not a Customer or Invoice has been attached to the payment and if it’s a bank payment vs. a credit card payment.

    • Terminal: If you have multiple terminals associated with your account, you can select the desired terminal for the payment here. This option only applies to credit card payments.
    • Transaction Type: You can select whether you are completing a Purchase or a Pre-Authorization here. This option only applies to credit card payments. If you choose to complete a pre-authorization through the Virtual Terminal, please note that pre-authorized transactions are only valid for 7-days, after which time they will expire. If it has been more than 7 days from when you processed a pre-authorization the status will change to EXPIRED in your Helcim account.
    • Type: You can use the drop-down menu to select the type of document you are creating (i.e. invoice, quote, etc.)
    • Currency: You can use the drop-down menu to confirm the correct currency
    • PO Number: Depending on your business needs, you can enter a Purchase Order number for the payment here.

    Sending a receipt 

    Once your payment has been completed, you will see the option to send an email receipt. If you already have an email for your customer entered this will automatically populate. 

    Send email receipt option on VT

    Email receipt with address populated

    Attaching a customer or invoice to your payment

    Add an existing customer or invoice to your payment to avoid duplicate records and extra administrative work by selecting `Attach` and searching for the invoice or customer you need. 

    attach a customer or invoice button

    After selecting attach you can search through your existing due invoices and customer profiles to find the correct information. The virtual terminal will then populate with either the invoice or customer information. 

    customer or invoice selection

    Why AVS information is required

    Entering your customer's billing address and postal or zip code information in the Virtual Terminal, helps protect your business from potentially fraudulent transactions. 

    AVS (Address Verification Service) information is required to store payment information in the card vault or to accept a card-not-present payment. Learn more about preventing fraud during card-not-present transactions here

    The AVS information will auto-populate if you are charging  an existing customer, or you can manually enter this information for new customers. AVS applies to credit card payments only and isn’t applicable if you’re processing an ACH Bank Payment.

    Processing a partial payment with the virtual terminal 

    If you have attached an existing invoice to the transaction you will have the option to accept a partial payment for this invoice using the virtual terminal. 

    Use the toggle next to Payment Amount to enter the custom dollar amount or percentage of the invoice you would like to charge. 

    processing a partial payment

    Share product feedback with the Helcim Team

    We love feedback! You can easily share feedback with us directly through the Virtual Terminal by clicking on the speech bubble in the top right hand corner of your screen. This feedback will go directly to the Helcim Product Team. 

    share feedback button


    I’m ready to complete by payment but the Charge Now button is grayed out

    If the Charge Now button can’t be clicked, please review your transaction information and confirm all of the fields have been filled in. You can also double check the `More Options` section and confirm you have a default terminal assigned for your payments. 

    What types of payments can I accept with the virtual terminal? 

    You can use the virtual terminal to accept both credit card and bank payments. 

    What is a virtual terminal? 

    The virtual terminal is a browser based tool that allows you to accept payments without needing to purchase additional hardware. 

    How much does it cost to process a payment with a virtual terminal?

    For detailed pricing information check out our pricing page for keyed and online rates and ACH Bank Payment rates. 

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