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API Ideas: Integrating FreshBooks with a 3rd Party Payment Gateway

by vinegar on June 28/2007

You’re running a business online, and you need to automate your billing. Processing credit card transactions is a good first step, but after you’ve collected your money, what’s next? How do you manage your accounts receivable? Where do customers go to review their transaction history, when e-mails are so easily spam-filtered or accidentally deleted?

Enter FreshBooks

With our new API, it’s now possible to record arbitrary payments against invoices. This means you can collect credit card details from your clients, initiate a transaction with a 3rd party payment gateway (Google Checkout,, etc.), and then record the successful payment in your FreshBooks account. This combines the flexibility of dealing directly with your payment gateway while leveraging FreshBooks’ proven, easy-to-use platform for managing you and your clients’ money.

Why bother?

Instead of spending expensive developer hours building your own billing solution, you can leverage FreshBooks proven services for:

  • Sending your clients professional-looking receipts via snail mail
  • Let your clients review their payment history and print receipts
  • Monitor your progress; generate detailed revenue reports
  • Timesheet, estimate and invoice functionality for consulting services

You could build this stuff yourself, but it’s a lot of work that you don’t need to do. Concentrate on building your business, and let FreshBooks handle the billing side of things.

How do I get started?

This post is more of a general overview, but I’ll be following up with a technical walkthrough using an example gateway. Please stay tuned.