E-checks are coming…e-checks are coming!

Many US customers have requested that guests have the ability to pay for their rentals using electronic checks.  We’ve spent the last week coding e-check support with our gateway partners.  It is now on our demo server and we hope to launch with support for authorize.net and the quantum gateway by late next week.  PayLeap will follow soon after.

An electronic check, or e-Check, is an electronic version of a paper check, used to process a payment online. Any guest with a checking account can pay by e-Check through Lodgix. To make a payment for a vacation rental by e-Check, guests simply provide Lodgix with their checking account and routing numbers. Lodgix then debits the funds directly from the guests checking account.

Processing fees for e-checks 

In general, the cost to process an e-check is substantially less than that of paper check processing or credit card transactions; e-checks require less manpower to process and eliminate incidental costs such as deposit and transaction fees that accompany paper checks. With e-checks, you can save up to 60% in processing fees over a credit card transaction.

By | 2013-09-13T17:53:16+00:00 September 13th, 2013|New Features|0 Comments

Digital Signatures Module – An Overview

Lodgix has partnered with RightSignature.com to offer a completely integrated online, legally enforceable, document signing solution. Our integration is completely transparent. There are a couple of areas when a guest is signing a document where “powered by RightSignature.com” is displayed, but other than that, your guests will never see RightSignature or be required to login to RightSignature to sign documents. The entire signing process has been completely integrated within Lodgix.com.

What are the key features, functions and benefits of the Digital Signatures Module?

  1. Legally Binding Electronic Signatures
  2. Unlimited document signing. No limits on how many documents can be signed.
  3. Option for guests to sign document during the booking process and / or request a signature manually.
  4. Optional email alerts for notifications when a guest has both viewed and signed the document / rental agreement.
  5. Once signed, a PDF copy of the signed document is automatically stored with the invoice and emailed to the guest
  6. Dashboard widgets contain icons for all invoices showing whether a rental agreement signature is present, pending or unsigned.
  7. Guest control panel shows whether rental agreement has been signed, pending or needs signature.
  8. Integrated signatures. Documents are signed within the browser. No downloads or plugins required.
  9. With this module, properties can now have unique rental agreements per property.

Legally Binding Electronic Signatures

Configuration Options

Dashboard Widgets Contain Agreement Signature Status Icons

Archived Copies of Signed Documents Stored with Invoices

Guest Control Panel Document Status Updates

Documents are Signed Within the Browser

Unique Rental Agreements per Property

By | 2013-08-23T18:41:55+00:00 August 23rd, 2013|New Features|1 Comment

Requesting a Digital Signature Manually

If the guest does not sign the rental agreement online (or if you have disabled that feature), the only other option is to request the signature manually.

Manual Signature Request Icon

Wherever that icon appears within Lodgix, you must click on it to send a manual digital signature request. You cannot create an email response template and include the merge tag [DS_SIGN_LINK] and send the email through the normal correspondence or communication channels. The link will not be populated in the email and your guests will be confused. YOU MUST SEND SIGNATURE REQUESTS VIA THE ICONS.

Dashboard Widgets

All Dashboard reservation widgets contain icons for invoices that have completed, needed or pending digital signatures.

Guest Control Panel > Details Tab

Guest Control Panel > Documents Tab

Window for Requesting Digital Signatures

When you request a digital signature, a window will open that looks like above. If there isn’t a button with the text “send for digital signature” you aren’t sending a working link to sign electronically.

Email Template for Requesting Digital Signatures

Lodgix comes preloaded with four customizable templates that are used when emailing guests. You cannot create your own template, you can ONLY edit the templates we provide.

Edit the “Request Digital Signature Email” template if you wish to modify the text sent to the guest when requesting a digital signature.

If you create your own template and assign it to a type = Digital Signatures,and even replicate the merge tags within the system template, and then attempt to email the guest through the normal correspondence and communication windows within Lodgix, it will NOT work!

By | 2013-08-23T18:43:08+00:00 August 21st, 2013|New Features|1 Comment

WordPress Rentals Search Widget Updated with Amenities Filter!

Within WordPress, under Appearance > Widgets, you will find the Rentals Search widget. This is a simple, but powerful tool for vacation rental managers and owners with larger number of properties who want to make it easier for their website guests to search their inventory.

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One of the coolest features of this widget is that it filters in real-time to display the number of properties that match your search criteria. Too many systems force the guest to choose a series of search criteria and then click a “search” button, only to return a message, “I am sorry no results matched your search criteria, please try again!”. How frustrating is that!!!

With Lodgix we return the results on the fly.  Thus if zero results are returned you’ll know immediately which criteria caused the results to equal zero and allow you to make an adjustment.

Note: The Location field can be setup under the area manager within Lodgix.

Amenities Filter – New Feature 5/15/2013

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The rental search widget within the Lodgix.com WordPress plugin can now filter by amenities! To enable the amenities filter:

  1. Within WordPress go to Appearance > Widgets
  2. Find the Rentals Search widget and there will be a check box for “Amenities”
  3. Check the box and click the Save button.
  4. Go to Settings > Lodgix settings within WordPress and at the bottom of the page, click on the button Save and Regenerate the pages (this will force the widget to pull the chosen amenity filters from Lodgix).

How do I select which amenities the guests can select to filter their search results?

Lodgix will pull the same amenities you have setup for the internal calendar tape. Read through the support article on how to configure the calendar tape filter options and you’ll be all set!

Notes from Development

The rentals search widget uses AJAX and a REST API. Any designer with minimum jQuery knowledge can query the API and receive the same results with a URL like:

/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php?action=p_lodgix_custom_search&area=ALL_AREAS&bedrooms=1&id=&arrival=2013-02-22&nights=1

This will return 1 Property Found, etc. With that knowledge designer can use any code to query the API and redirect to the search page.

By | 2013-05-16T15:32:28+00:00 May 16th, 2013|New Features|0 Comments

Dashboard and Reporting Enhancements

A subscriber brought it to our attention that when a guest orders a service add-on that there really wasn’t a great, automated way of staying up-to-date on what each guest has ordered. To fix that we implemented a series of enhancements today:

arrivals-dashboard

1) There is a new services icon which will appear in each of the arrival widgets. Moving your mouse over the service will display the service(s) ordered. This is a nice check for whomever is checking guests in, but it doesn’t really solve how to alert the housekeeper that a service has been ordered. To that extend the arrivals and housekeeping report will now have a Services column which will itemize each service that has been added to the invoice for that property.

2) While working in the dashboard we re-implemented the color coding to show invoice status on the arrival and departure widgets. We also implemented the equivalent of a “show all” icon (look for the seeing eye) in the upper right, which when clicked will show all arrivals or departures.

By | 2013-03-27T13:59:43+00:00 March 27th, 2013|New Features|0 Comments