Customer Hierarchies & WhoPays

Customer Hierarchies allow parent / child relationships to be created between customers, allowing for more accurate mapping of your customer relationships.

WhoPays allows payment responsibilities to be reassigned up-the-chain so that the payer may be a separate entity from the customer.

Essentially, these features allow customers to be grouped together for organizational purposes, and / or for parent or other customers above in the hierarchy to be responsible for paying for subscriptions of their child customers. This becomes useful in scenarios like reseller models, multi-national organizations, or even simple cases where Grandma wants to pay for her Grandchildren’s subscriptions.

A customer with a parent who is responsible for paying their subscription.

Enablement & Settings

Customer Hierarchies and WhoPays are only available on sites using the new Relationship Invoicing feature. On a site with relationship invoicing enabled, Customer Hierarchies and WhoPays are enabled from the settings menu.

The features are separate, but connected, as follows:

  • Customer Hierarchies can be enabled without WhoPays. This is useful if you just want to define the relationships between your customer base (i.e. parent / child relationships) but are not interested in having anyone but the customer pay for themselves.
  • WhoPays requires that Customer Hierarchies also be enabled. This is because payment responsibility may only be assigned to another customer in the same hierarchy (i.e. an ancestor may be the payer, but another unrelated customer may not be the payer)

When enabling WhoPays, a “Default Payer & Consolidation” may be selected. This default is used for any subscriptions created for a customer that has a parent. This default will apply unless another responsible payer is chosen at the time of subscription creation.

  • Customer (separate invoices): The subscription will not be grouped and will be invoiced individually. This creates a normal, standalone subscription.
  • Customer (consolidated invoices): The subscription will be grouped with other subscriptions for this same customer. This results in consolidated invoices for all subscriptions created with this setting enabled.
  • Parent: The subscription will be grouped with it’s parent’s default subscription group and paid by the parent.
  • Eldest Ancestor: The subscription will be grouped with the eldest ancestor in the hierarchy.

Customer Hierarchies

Customer Hierarchies allow customers to be grouped into parent / child relationships, which can be used purely for organization or for setting payment responsibilities via WhoPays. Customer Hierarchies don’t necessarily require WhoPays, but it does open up the option to select the responsible payer when needed.

To create a hierarchy for existing customers, navigate to the customer that will be setup as the child in the relationship and select the option to “Choose Parent” from the Customer Hierarchy card. It is also possible to create a new customer and assign a parent directly from the new subscription form - learn more about that in the WhoPays section below.

From the following screen, choose a customer record to be the parent, preview the new relationship, and confirm. This will set the parent on the customer and will now also display any older relatives in the hierarchy (grandparents, great grandparents, etc).

It’s possible to also create new child customers for an existing customer by selecting the option to “Add Child” at the bottom of the section. This will display a new customer form and will set the current customer as the parent.


A parent customer record may have unlimited child customer records.

However, a hierarchy is limited to a depth of 10 customer records.

At this time, a Public Signup Page cannot be used to create subscriptions with hierarchies, groups, or WhoPays. The options are available within the app and via API.

Add Subscriber to Hierarchy

This workflow will explain how to add an parent-child relationship structure to a subscription.
View the customer you'd like to add to the hierarchy
Select “Choose Parent”
Select the parent & “Preview Selected”
Confirm the addition of the parent to the hierarchy
Result: Child customer has been added to a hierarchy

Create Subscription Group

This workflow will walk you through how to create a subscription group that will be the basis of consolidating other invoices.
Select “Create New Subscription”
Select “Create Customer”>
Fill in all required information
Select “Consolidated Invoices” to ensure the subscription is created in a group
Complete subscription details & select "Create Subscription"
Result: Subscription group created
## Add Existing Subscription to a Group
This workflow assumes you have followed the instructions on how to create a subscription group. We also assume that you have two subscriptions that share the same customer ID or is a parent in a hierarchy with child subscriptions.
Select “a group” to view the group
Select "Manage Group" to add new subscriptions
View / add / remove members
Confirm details of group addition
View new/all members of the group
View subscription group and members in subscription list
## Add New Subscription to Existing Group
This workflow assumes you have an existing group. How to create a new customer is omitted for brevity, but covered above. How to edit / manage subscription groups is omitted for brevity. Additionally, it assumes you have an understanding of how parent-child relationships work in Chargify.
Edit new customer and add a parent to the hierarchy
Select the parent for the new customer
Confirm relationship
Create new subscription with existing customer
In the above image, we're creating a new subscription in Chargify. We're using the existing "New Group Member" customer. This customer has a parent that will be used in the next steps.
Select WhoPays as the parent
In the above image, we're changing the default choice (red X) for WhoPays to the top-level parent for the customer. This step is imperative in associating the new subscription's WhoPays to the right level.
Confirmation of subscription in a group with WhoPays assigned
## Assign WhoPays to a subscription
This workflow assigns WhoPays to a new subscription It assumes you have existing customers and hierarchies To begin, create a new subscription Select an existing customer that is in a hierarchy with an assigned parent or, create a new customer and select a parent on-the-fly
Select existing customer
Select the top-level parent as WhoPays