Sales and Payments

How subscription grace periods and billing retry work

Apple Podcasts helps you keep subscribers through grace and billing retry periods

After acquiring new customers for your subscription service, you can minimize subscriber loss, known as churn, by keeping listeners engaged as active subscribers. However, irregular billing events can occur throughout the lifecycle of a subscription that can impact your customer’s subscription status.

Involuntary churn occurs when users do not intend to leave your service, but their subscription fails to renew, usually due to billing issues like an invalid payment method. 

Billing-related issues trigger a subscription to automatically enter a billing retry state where Apple Podcasts attempts to collect payment for up to 60 days. This billing retry lowers the rate of involuntary churn and prevents the need to reacquire subscribers.

Grace period

Apple Podcasts offers a 28-day grace period. The grace period begins at the time of a billing error and cannot be altered. During this time, listeners are still able to access subscription benefits. If the user is recovered within the first 28 days, the existing billing date is maintained.

If the user is recovered within this grace period, neither the subscriber’s days of paid service, nor your revenue for subscriptions will be interrupted. 

Retry only

After the 28-day grace period expires, subscribers lose access to benefits. If the user is recovered during the remainder of the 60-day billing retry period, they’ll renew on the recovery date, starting a new billing cycle. Payment for the provided full service during the grace period would not be collected.

Reactivating a subscription

If the subscriber renews their subscription after 60 days, the new billing date is established on the date they resubscribe and subsequent renewal dates are based on this new billing date.