Chargebee vs Recurly (Oct 2020): Which Comes Out on Top?

Which Will You Choose?

Chargebee vs Recurly: Which is better for your business? If you're looking for an answer to this question, you're in the right place.

You don't need us to tell you that different businesses need different accounting software types, and it's essential to make the right decision.

That's why we're comparing these two industry giants. We're digging into who these companies are, their core features, pros, cons, and integrations. Then hopefully, by the end, you should have a better idea of which (if either) of these platforms meets your needs.

That's enough preamble, let's dive into the meat and potatoes…

Who's Chargebee?

chargebee homepage - chargebee vs recurly

In short, Chargebee.com is software that empowers entrepreneurs to grow their revenue by providing automated recurring billing, subscription management, and analytics tools. Chargebee integrates seamlessly with your tech stack to optimize your financial operations and grow your eCommerce and/or service subscription-based business.

For more info on who Chargebee is, check out our review.

Chargebee vs Recurly: Chargebee's Core Features

chargebee features - chargebee vs recurly

Chargebee's most notable features include:

  • Recurring billing platform
  • Invoicing tools
  • Dunning management
  • An impressive selective of native integrations
  • Customizable themes for hosted pages
  • Trial management
  • EU VAT support
  • Customizable webhooks
  • An online payment gateway
  • You can accept multiple customer payment methods
  • Email management tools
  • You can create and manage promotional coupons
  • You can make tax profiles and reports
  • You can set custom user roles for your team members
  • You get access to an API library
  • You get access to subscription analytics
  • You can develop configurable price plans and add ons

Chargebee vs Recurly: Chargebee's Integrations

chargebee integrations - chargebee vs recurly

Chargebee offers plenty of native integrations, some of the more popular names include:

  • Shopify
  • Braintree
  • Stripe
  • PayPal
  • ShipStation
  • Refersion
  • Google Analytics
  • Squarespace
  • MailChimp
  • Authorize.Net
  • Zapier
  • Amazon Payments
  • Worldpay

…Just to name a few.

Chargebee vs Recurly: Chargebee's Pros and Cons

Let's start with the benefits of using Chargebee:

The Pros 👍

  • In terms of ease-of-use, it's an incredibly user-friendly, cloud-based payment system with an intuitive user interface.
  • There's lots of room for customization, making it one of the more flexible solutions on the market.
  • It's a fabulous option for smaller businesses and startups that want to start selling subscription-based products and services and automate their billing process.
  • It's easy to stay on top of KPI's like your total user base and revenue. You can check these with just a glance via Chargebee's dashboard.
  • You can use Chargebee to run promotions, provide discounts, and change the price of your subscription packages.
  • Chargebee's automation features are very impressive; you can set payment collection, invoice generation, and discount management to run on autopilot.
  • Chargebee partners with several payment gateways
  • Your's and your customer's information are kept secure inside Chargebee's data centers. Your Chargebee account is also protected against man in the middle attacks and distributed denial of service attacks.

The Cons 👎

  • There isn't a mobile-optimized version of Chargebee's user interface.
  • If you offer monthly and yearly versions of the same subscription plan, there's no way to let subscribers choose. You have to implement custom code to make this happen.
  • One customer complained that configuring additional custom fields for customer checkout forms isn't easy. They say the process could be made much more straightforward.
  • Another user grumbled that Chargebee's dashboard isn't customizable.

Chargebee vs Recurly: Chargebee's Pricing Model

Chargebee has three pricing packages for you to choose from: Rise, Scale, and Enterprise, which we go into more detail about below:

The Rise Plan

This will set you back $249 (billed annually). It's best for businesses getting started with automation – especially those who expect their company to snowball.

The rise plan includes $600,000 a year revenue, 0.6% of overage revenue, and unlocks the following features:

  • You can register ten users.
  • You get access to unlimited payment gateways
  • You can manage multiple tax regions.
  • You get access to SaaS metrics.
  • You can seamlessly integrate with Xero, QuickBooks, Salesforce, and Avalara.

The Scale Plan

According to Chargebee, the Scale plan is its most popular package. Priced at $549 (billed annually), this package includes $900,000 a year in revenue and 0.9% of overage revenue.
This program is designed explicitly for companies looking to improve revenue workflow – most notably, through automation, deeper integrations, and in-depth subscription analytics.

You get everything in the Rise plan, plus:

  • You can register 25 users.
  • You get access to advance invoices.
  • You can create custom user roles for your team.
  • You can accept multiple payment methods.
  • You benefit from priority phone support.
  • You can seamlessly integrate with NetSuite and Intacct.

The Enterprise Plan

As its name suggests, the Enterprise plan is best suited to larger-scale organizations with exceptionally sophisticated revenue operations and trickier compliance requirements. If that sounds like you, you'll have to contact Chargebee directly to receive a custom quote.

Although the Enterprise plan is tailored to meet the specific needs of each company, we know it unlocks more advanced workflows and removes all limits on the number of users you can register. You'll also enjoy the best possible setup, migration, and customer support.

Who's Recurly?

recurly homepage - chargebee vs recurly

Recurly is an incredibly versatile subscription billing management platform. Launched back in 2010, Recurly now boasts a decade of experience handling subscription billing for thousands of companies worldwide (in 42 different countries to be exact).

It's explicitly designed to help you manage the entire subscriber lifecycle from beginning to end. Recurly famously works alongside global household subscription businesses, including Sling TV, BarkBox, Asana, LinkedIn, FabFitFun, Cinemark, and Fubo.tv. Impressive, right?

Chargebee vs Recurly: Recurly's Core Features

recurly features - chargebee vs recurly

Below we've listed some of Recurly‘s most notable features:

  • Revenue optimization tools to help you manage at-risk customers and improve your customer churn rate.
  • Billing and payment tools like setting your own payment terms, sending personalized bills, and customizing your prices
  • You can automate, consolidate, and adjust your billing as you please.
  • You get access to high-quality reporting and analytics tools.

Chargebee vs Recurly: Recurly's Integrations

recurly integrations - chargebee vs recurly

Recurly offers a decent array of native integrations. Below we've listed some of their most popular ones:

  • Amity
  • Attribution
  • Avalara
  • Baremetrics
  • Bedrock Data
  • Brightback
  • Chargeback
  • ChargeDesk
  • ChartMogul
  • DataHero
  • Drip
  • Fivetran
  • Grow
  • Kount
  • Leapfin
  • Mailchimp
  • Natero
  • NetSuite
  • Ninja Forms
  • PieSync
  • Pirate Ship
  • Post Affiliate Pro
  • Referral SaaSquatch
  • Salesforce
  • Slemma
  • Snowflake
  • Stitch
  • QuickBooks Online
  • Tray.io
  • Zendesk

Chargebee vs Recurly: Recurly's Pros and Cons

Again, let's start with the advantages:

The Pros 👍

  • Recurly provides insightful and detailed subscriber records. For instance, when customer billing information is updated, renewal info, outstanding debts, etc.
  • Recurly's user interface is incredibly intuitive.
  • Recurly's support team is reportedly very fast to respond with helpful solutions.
  • Recurly's dunning process detects when a customer transaction fails. Then, automatically it re-tries to process the payment. You have full control over the dinning process. In fact, you can even notify customers that their payment fails. This often prompts them to update their payment details and/or move some money around.
  • Recurly connects with Visa, Master Card, AMEX, and Discover to identify new card details for cards registered with your business. When the card is about to expire, this new card info is automatically updated onto your system.

The Cons 👎

  • Some of the user reviews said they'd like to use Recurly to generate a single payment invoice detailing the customer's overdue payments. But, unfortunately, this isn't a functionality Recurly's offering at the moment.
  • One customer complains that Recurly's revenue stats don't come through in real-time. Instead, they're a few hours (or in some cases, a day) behind.
  • Recurly's coupon functionality is a bit of a challenge to set up, use, and manage.

Chargebee vs Recurly: Recurly's Pricing

recurly pricing - chargebee vs recurly

Like Chargebee, Recurly also offers three pricing plans to choose from: Core, Professional, and Elite (as highlighted in the screenshot below).

The Core Package

This program will set you back $149 a month, plus 0.9% of your revenue.

For which you can:

  • Register five users
  • Process customer transactions via one payment gateway.
  • Create, launch, and manage hosted payment pages.
  • Use automated customer communication and invoicing tools.
  • Access credit card payment support
  • Run out-of-the-box reports
  • Use Recurly's coupon and discounting tools
  • Access 24/7 online chat-based support

The Professional Package

The Pro plan is best for those scaling their business and generating up to $10M in annual subscription billing.

Regarding pricing, you'll have to contact Recurly's sales team for a customized quote.

You get everything in the Core package, plus you can:

  • Register up to 20 users
  • Process customer transactions using two payment gateways.
  • Create five custom fields
  • Access Recurly JS
  • Integrate with popular business software
  • Create manual invoices and calendar billing
  • Benefit from automatic credit card updates.
  • Access Recurly's revenue optimization engine and smart dunning
  • Access both 24/7 phone and online chat support

The Elite Package

This package is aimed at merchants generating over $10M in annual subscription billing. Similar to the Pro package, you'll need to contact Recurly's sales team for a quote.

You'll get everything in the previous two programs, plus you can:

  • Register more than 20 users.
  • Use any number of Recurly's 20+ supported payment gateways.
  • Create more than five custom fields.
  • Benefit from billions of API calls a month.
  • Access unlimited webhooks, automated gateway failover, and dynamic gateway routing
  • Access pricing and billing models for near-on every imaginable scenario
  • Benefit from multilingual customer communication features, multi-currency, and local payment methods.
  • Integrate with popular CRM, accounting, support, tax, and fraud management tools.
  • You're assigned a dedicated customer success manager.

Chargebee vs Recurly: Which Billing Solution Will You Choose?

Having read this Chargebee vs Recurly comparison, which of these billing software will you opt for?  Or, are you considering one of their competitors like Chargify or Zuora? Whichever way you go, let us know in the comments box below; we'd love to hear how you get on!

Rosie Greaves

Rosie Greaves is a professional content strategist who specializes in all things digital marketing, B2B, and lifestyle. In addition to e-commerce platforms, you can find her published on Reader's Digest, G2, and Judicious Inc. Check out her website Blog with Rosie for more information.