When you have validated the conversions of an advertiser, partners are entitled to be paid commission. Partners do not have to invoice the advertiser to receive this commission. Instead, the system will create so called self-billed invoices or payout entries which define how much commission partners are entitled to receive. This process follows article 224 in the explanatory notes of the Invoicing Directive 2010/45/EU adopted by the European Union. According to this article, invoices may be drawn up by the customer in respect of the services supplied to him, by a taxable person, of goods or services, where there is a prior agreement between the two parties and provided that a procedure exists for the acceptance of each invoice by the taxable person supplying the goods or services. In the context of this system, the customer is the entity, i.e. the legal body responsible for the payout of the partners. The taxable person is either the partner or the partner’s company, the service supplied is generating conversions. The prior agreement is the terms and conditions partners accept when they register for the network and the terms and conditions they accept when applying for an advertiser program.
Before you start
Please be aware that, in order to pay your partners, you need to go through the following three steps:
Make sure you are logged in to your admin UI, click on ‘finance’ in the main navigation menu and proceed to click on ‘partner billing’.
How do I create payout entries?
Before you actually create the payout entries, you need to create previews. The previews allows you to check whether all the data in the payout entries is in order. It also allows you to define for what partners, months or advertisers you want to start the payout. To create previews, click on the button ‘create new payouts’ in the top right corner of the page. If you do so, the following page will appear:
As you can see, this page contains a filter panel which allows you to define the conditions of the preview you want to create. Please note that there is also a button for advanced filter options (includes partner property, advertiser property as well as options on ad impressions, clicks or conversions). When you click on the ‘preview’ button, the system checks whether there are confirmed conversions attributed to partners which are not included in an existing payout entry yet, according to the conditions you set. You can define the following conditions:
In the first filter you are asked to select the entity you want to create payouts for.
If you define a period , the system will only look for payable commissions in the selected period. The default selection is unlimited. You have, however, other options like this month, this year or you may as well set a custom time frame.
The filter ‘perspective‘ defines whether you are looking for payable commissions that were either confirmed in the selected period or tracked in the selected period.
In the advanced options the following filter are available:
There are partner specific filters like billing country, currency, partner labels as well as the option to search for specific partners.
Under ‘advertiser‘ you can define to create a preview for payable commissions of a specific advertiser. You can also filter for a specific advertiser invoice by entering the reference number. This invoice reference filter can be useful to pay pending payouts related to a specific invoice which could not be paid out directly (e.g. due to a payout limit restriction).
If you pay your partners for generating views and clicks, you might want to use the ‘options‘ section to create a preview of payout entries for views or clicks only.
When you are done setting the options in the filter panel, all you need to do is click the button ‘preview’ in the bottom right corner of the panel. If you were expecting a payout entry to appear in your preview but it didn’t show up, please use the checklist in the article on troubleshooting with payout entries
Creating the payout entries
Reviewing the previews
After clicking on preview you will be presented with an overview of the different payout entry types that were found for your filter settings. As you can see in the following picture, there are 5 possible types which correspond with the payability of the payouts:
Please note that the display and distribution in the bar is depending on the types of payout entries that were found for your filter settings. Not all 5 types that are in the legend below the bar have to be present for your case.
The different types together with their impact on payability will now be explained one by one. In general it is important to note that not all payout entries need to have the status ‘Successful’. The different types, however, allow you to get an overview of your different payout entries and show the reasons for payability or non-payability.
Reviewing successfully created payout entries
Let’s have a closer look at the preview of the first type of payout entries. If you have successfully created payout entries that were found for you filter settings they will be displayed here. The number behind ‘Success’ in the bar represents the number of payout entries with this status. These payout entries are listed below and will look like this:
The previews you see listed already contain all the basic characteristics of the payout entry you can create: from left to right, you will find the ID of the partner for which the payout entry will be created, the partner’s name, the current credit of the partner, the payout amount (which is defined by your filter settings), the remaining credit after the payout of the shown payout amount, the payable amount, tax imposed on the amount of commission (usually VAT) and the gross amount you will pay out. For a period filter setting of ‘unlimited’, the current credit and payout amount should always be identical (resulting in a remaining credit of 0). If you have set a different period (e.g. last month) a difference in current credit and payout amount most likely indicates older conversions that are not included in the current settings. Please note that the difference between ‘current credit’ and ‘payable amount’ is only relevant when the currency in which the commission was generated differs from the currency in which you will pay the payout entry. In this case you will find a bubble next to the payable amount which, by clicking on it, give you additional information on the conversion rate:
To see what a specific payout entry will look like, use the option to download the payout entry as PDF at the right end of every row. You can also export the previews in XLS format via the download section at the bottom right. Please note that the XLS exports of the payout entries here are grouped by currency.
Reviewing payout entries below payout limit
By clicking on ‘Payout limit’ in the overview bar you get a list of all partner payout entries with a payout amount below the payout limit. In this view, an additional column is added in which you can find the payout limit, highlighted in yellow.
By comparing the payout amount (which is defined by your filter settings) with the payout limit shown in yellow, you can evaluate how far away a partner is from reaching the limit. Independent of this difference you are nevertheless able to create payout entries for these partners, if desired.
Reviewing payout entries for blocked partners
By clicking on ‘Blocked’ in the overview bar you get a list of all partner payout entries for which the payout is blocked. The type ‘Blocked’ results from a setting made in the partner settings. Here, you would normally find e.g. organic channels that you want to track in the platform for overview reasons but should of course not be paid out. As these payout entries cannot be created the PDF symbol as well as the ‘Create’ button is greyed out as shown in the following picture:
By clicking on the UID you are directly directed to the partner settings of this specific partner in case you would like to review the partner settings.
Reviewing payout entries for invalid partners
By clicking on ‘Invalid’ in the overview bar you get a list of all partner payout entries for which the billing data is incomplete and therefore payouts cannot be created. Next to the partner name you can see a note with ‘Wrong billing data’.
By clicking on the UID you are directly directed to the partner settings of this specific partner in case you would like to review the partner settings and add missing billing data.
Reviewing payout entries for deactivated partners
By clicking on ‘Deactivated’ in the overview bar you get a list of all partner payout entries of partners that are deactivated. Independent of the status ‘Deactivated’, you are able to create payout entries for the partners:
From preview to payout entry
When you find the data in the preview of the payout entry is correct and you want to proceed to create the payout entry, all you need to do is select the tick box on the left and click on the button ‘create’ in the right lower corner of the panel. The CSV and PDF files for the payout entries will then join the generation queue. You are then presented with the following page where you are able to directly create new payouts or go back to the payout entries overview:
In the payout entries overview, you will see the following icons until the files have been generated and stored:
The generation process normally only takes a few seconds.
Editing the details or confirming the status will cause the PDF document to be generated again (with the updated details).
Of course, you can create more than one payout entry at a time. To create all the payout entries in the preview, just use the tick box ‘select all’ in the left lower corner of the panel. To discard the preview, click on cancel. Please note that after creating a payout entry, you still have the chance to withdraw it. Your partners will not see the their payout entries until you have validated them, which is described below.
Validating payout entries
After you have confirmed the preview, you will be taken back to the main partner billing page. When you have created payout entries, the page will look more or less like this:
As you can see, the page consists of two different panels. The first panel is a filter panel, which allows you to search for specific payout entries and to define the the display mode. The second panel is a table containing all the payout entries you or other users have created. Please note that in the default setting of the filter panel, you will only see the payout entries created during the last ten days.
Working with the filter panel
The filter panel allows you to search for payout entries using the following options:
If you want to find payout entries created earlier than ten days, you can use the options under ‘timeframe‘. The ‘dynamic timeframe’ allows you to select the last week, the current week, last month, etc. You can also use the custom timeframe for a more extensive search.
Payout entries can also be filtered by user, entity, advertiser, partner label, partner, type, currency and billing run. Please note the following:
The advertiser filter can be used as a search function or as a list. If you filter for an advertiser, you will only see payout entries containing confirmed commission related to this specific advertiser.
Under type, you can choose between ‘payout entries’ and ‘requests for payouts’. In most cases, you will manage your partner billing with regular payout entries. Request for payouts have to be created from an external function which is not implemented on most of the platforms.
The billing run represents the collection of all the payout entries you’ve created on a specific moment. By selecting a specific billing run, you will narrow down the payout entries to the ones you’ve created on the moments you choose.
Under ‘options’, you can filter payout entries by status (draft, pending, paid, rejected or reversed). You can also use the search box for a comprehensive text search.
Under ‘options’, you will also find an option to change the display mode. It looks more or less like this:
This menu allows you to define the display mode of the payout entries. As you can see, there are three different modes:
If you select ‘billing’, the payout entries will be displayed by settlement, i.e. the moment on which they were created. Usually, you will create your payout entries at a specific moment, for example the first working day of a new month. Via the billing display mode, all the payout entries you create on this moment will be displayed in one package.
If you select ‘listed’, the individual payout entries will be displayed.
The mode called ‘grouped’ allows you to group your payout entries according to specific characteristics. You can define these characteristics in a menu which appears immediately after you have selected the mode. You can group the payout entries by type, by the month in which they were created, by entity, by status and by tax case.
Please note the default mode in which the payout entries are displayed is the ‘listed’ mode, because this currently is the only display mode in which you can confirm the payout entries.
As with the other filter panels in the admin UI, you can save filter settings using the ‘save filter’ button in the lower left corner of the filter panel. To select previously saved filters, use the ‘saved filters’ menu at the top of the filter panel. If you are done selecting your filter options, all you need to do is hit the ‘search’ button in the lower left corner of the panel.
Let’s have a look at an individual payout entry in more detail:
From left to right, you will find the following data in the payout entry: the date on which the payout entry was created, the entry (if already available), the entity, the partner who will receive the commission (with his address below) and, finally, in the top right corner, the gross amount in the first row. The icons and the status section are discussed in more detail below.
Particularly important is the row of icons in the left section of the payout entry. Let us go through them from left to right:
The tick box on the left is relevant for bulk validation of payout entries.
If you click on the icon a panel will appear displaying the history of the payout entry, including the time and date on which it was created, the time and date on which is was validated and the name of the user which processed these actions.
Via the PDF icon, you can export the document as it will appear in the account of your partner after you validated the payout entry. When this document is still being generated and stored the icon will be greyed out until it is available.
The icon allows you to export key data of all conversions included in the payout entry in CSV format. When this document is still being generated and stored the icon will be greyed out until it is available.
For an overview of the conversions included in the payout entry, use the icon. The panel opening when you click on this icon includes a list of the conversions included in the payout entry, ordered by conversion target, tracking category, ad space and period.
Via the icon you can edit the payout entry. For comprehensive instructions on editing payout entries, please read this article.
If you see the icon, it means the original commission amount of the payout entry has been converted to a different currency. In the panel opening when you click on this icon, you can see the original amount, the date on which the currency was converted and the exchange rate.
Payout entry status
To validate the payout entries, you will need the status section you find in the right section of the payout entry:
The dot below the icons signalizes the current status of the payout entry. In the example above, the status is draft. You can change the status of the payout by selecting the circle below a different icon. If you do this, you will see a panel appears below the payout entry. In this panel, you can write a brief note related to the validation and click on change status to confirm your validation. Possible options are:
The icon represent a draft status. As long as its status is draft, the payout entry will not have a booking number and will not be visible for the partner in his partner UI.
The icon represents a pending status. If you change the status to pending, the payout entry will be numbered and become visible in the partner UI directly. Please note pending payout entries cannot be canceled anymore.
If the payout entries have been dispatched to your accounting service, you can use the icon, which indicates the payout entry has been paid to the partner.
The icon signalizes the payout entry has been canceled. If you cancel a payout entry, the conversions included in the payout entry are cleared and can be generated in a new payout entry.
By selecting the status marked with the icon, you reverse the payout entry. This means an already transferred payout entry will be subtracted from the next one generated for the partner. Use this option only when you are absolutely sure the payout entry has been transferred unrightfully.
Please note every change in status needs to be confirmed by clicking the ‘save’ button appearing below the status section as soon as you have made a change.
To change the status of multiple payout entries in your list in one go, use the tick box to select them. You can also use the ‘select all’ option in the left lower corner of the table. The status section in the right lower corner of the table allows you to change the status of all the payout entries you have selected. To confirm the validation, click on the button ‘apply bulk edit’ in the right lower corner of the page.
Dispatching payout entries
To dispatch your payout entries, you will probably want to display your payout entries in a different mode. Theoretically, you can also dispatch your payout entries one by one using the listed display, but that is very inconvenient. The best way to get your payout entries exported is to display them by settlement run. Alternatively, you can use the grouped display.
Exporting payout entries via the billing display mode
When you display your payout entries by settlement run, the table in the lower half of the partner billing page will look more or less like this:
As was mentioned above, the billing display mode orders the payout entries by the moment on which they were created. From left to right, you will find the table contains the following characteristics:
The moment on which the payout entries were created is mentioned under ‘billing date’.
Under ‘month’, you will find the month during which the payout entries were created.
The user who created the payout entries is indicated under ‘user’.
Under ‘number’, the number of payout entries included in the settlement is mentioned.
The ‘amount’ mentions the amount of commission included in the payout entries, excluding taxes.
The ‘gross amount’ mentions the amount of commission included in the payout entries, including taxes.
Under ‘exports’, you will find different export options, discussed in further details below.
The status of the payout entries in the settlement is indicated by the icon under ‘status’.
A list of all the payout entries included in the settlement, which will be displayed when you click on the icon.
Export options billing display mode
Under ‘exports’, you will find various options to export the settlement with your payout entries. Let’s go through them from left to right:
Via the icon, you can export the settlement in a ZIP file. This ZIP file will contain the payout entries in all possible formats, i.e. the individual payout entries in PDF, CSV, SEPA (if possible) and a journal in PDF. The zip is queued for generation when the package status is updated, until the ZIP is available the icon will be greyed out.
Via the icon, you can download the individual PDF payout entries in a ZIP file. The ZIP is queued for generation when the package status is updated, until the ZIP is available the icon will be greyed out.
Via the icon, you can download the settlement in SEPA format. Please note this option is only available for payouts within the European eurozone. For more information about the SEPA file, please read this article.
The icon allows you to download the details of all the payout entries included in the settlement in CSV format.
The icon allows you to download a financial journal of the settlement.
Exporting payout entries via the group display
Once you have ordered your payout entries by group, you will see the panel below the filter panel looks more or less like this:
From left to right, you will find an overview of the the group’s characteristics, the currency of the payout entries in the group, the number of payout entries in the group, the sum of the commission commission amount (excluding taxes) and the sum of the gross commission amount (including taxes) of the payout entries in the group. To export your payout entries in group in CSV format, click the icon on the outmost left.