Failed Backer Payments - Troubleshooting Guide

When a backer’s payment fails, there can be a few different reasons that their card isn’t being processed successfully.

When you are looking at the backer's survey details, you can review the decline details for the failed payment in your Stripe account. Login to your Stripe account here.

Here are 3 common scenarios for failed payments below:

1. Standard Decline Code

From the backer's admin order page in the ‘Balance’ section, click 'View transaction on Stripe'. This will take you to your Stripe account, and the failed transaction.

If no transaction is listed in Stripe, review scenario 2. 

If no card is attached to their survey, review scenario 3.


You should see all the attempted transactions for the backer. Click into the failed transaction to find the decline code. 

Click here to earn more about decline codes on Stripe.

For this example, the reason for the decline is listed as Do Not Honor.

Do Not Honor is when the bank is blocking the charge. The backer will need to call their bank to approve the charge. 

For other decline code messages, click Learn More about Decline Codes. The appropriate next step for each decline code will be listed for you.

2. Failed Stripe Token Issue

If you  click the ‘View Transaction on Stripe’ link and no linked transactions may appear, this is a Stripe token issue. 

If no card/payment information is attached to their survey, skip to scenario 3.

Tip: Try searching the backer’s full name and/or email address too. Sometimes Stripe only searches first names from surveys.

This is a very rare glitch with BackerKit and Stripe, where the transaction token is failing in BackerKit and the transaction request is not sent to their bank. 

We suggest the following message for the backer to help troubleshoot their payment issue:

Dear Backer,

Which web browser are you using? (Chrome/Safari/IE/Mozilla) What device are you using? (mobile/tablet/PC)

  • Would you be able to switch devices and browsers?
  • Clear your cache and cookies in your browser?
  • Or try turning off your auto-fill for payments within your browser?
  • Or use an incognito window to re-enter payment?

If you are able to try a different card, please try that first.

Please re-attempt to enter your payment info into your survey here.

3. Stripe Email Issue

Occasionally, backers are unable to save their credit card info to the survey. The survey will not accept any payment details and backers may receive error messages when they try to add their payment details. They also may receive a confirmation email, but only we can see that their payment information isn’t saved to their survey.

When you review their survey, you will see they still have a balance and no payment information is listed.

We use the Troubleshooting tips listed in Scenario 2 for this issue as well. 

If they still can't save the credit card to the survey, we ask if we can temporarily change the email address on the survey -- to something like 

This is our support message:

Sorry for any payment trouble! While reviewing your survey, I think this might be stemming from the email address your pledge is under. Our payments processor is seeing your email address as a duplicate profile and might be blocking your ability to attach your payment to your survey. (this rarely happens, sorry!)

I'd like to test something out — I've updated your pledge's email to '’ to see if the payment form works better under a different email.

Please re-attempt to enter your payment info into your survey here. If that works, we'll just change your email back and you'll be all set.

When a backer cannot pay through the Stripe portal in BackerKit

Sometimes a backer cannot pay through Stripe for legitimate reasons (their bank will not allow foreign transactions, they run into the Stripe Email issue listed above in #3). If you are able to collect payment outside of BackerKit, with an understanding of the risks, you can apply the payment directly to their survey to move their order into fulfillment. 

Once payment has been accepted and verified by you, from the backer's admin order page - in the Pledge Level section, apply the payment in the 'Complimentary Credit' field. Click Save:

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