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Features at a glance:
• More than 70 payment processors built in (Manual Transfer handling, Paypal (& Pro!), Google Checkout, 2Checkout, Authorize.net (& AIM, ARB, CIM!), iDeal, CCBill, Worldpay, Moneybookers...)
• Extensive Registration & Subscription workflow handling
• MicroIntegration API to attach PHP code to payment plans
• Already features more than 80 MicroIntegrations, including: emails, htaccess, mysql queries, assignment of Docman or VirtueMart groups and many more
• Multiple payment plan options (Paid, Free, Lifetime, Trials...)
• Integrated Registration and Subscription process with JomSocial and CommunityBuilder (amongst others)
• Professional features: Tax handling, Shopping carts, Discount Coupons, Plan Groups
Please check out our Tour - It will give you a much better insight into what AEC can do for you!
My best advice to you: "get it" you wrong regret it! I feel that this is such a good product and has a fantastic support...
I was shopping around and took be more than 2 weeks to finally take this one, but mate, Im really happy with it.
The installation is simple, no tricks needed, or surprises presented at all.
The learning curve is there, but there is good documentation, and the support is fabulous should you need it. Fast and accurate, and that's also something I don't mind paying for, after all, I'm using this software to ... make money. Conveniently.
Once you have walked through a few processes (and successfully linked to them) it makes sense. It allows for almost any payment need to be fulfilled, and includes almost any payment module you can imagine.
This is one of the best component buys I've come across to date. I'm going to by it again, there is never a shortage of sites that can benefit from this software.
AEC is not only a superb component but the support via their ticket system is the best all queries are answered quickly
Thanks Jake and the crew
The support is amazing even free but paid support means you can get one on one help and custom support.
They will go the extra mile with you and the technical end of the software functions wonderfully.
With MI that are versatile it makes AEC compatible with almost any Joomla component.
This software makes me as a developer and designer start to think of Joomla as a professional CMS starting to enter the big league for Ecommercce and web site development.
AEC is the one and only paid subscription add-on, that truly gives you an unlimited number of options with regard to what type of offering you'd like to present to your members. Until I finally decided to start using AEC, I was a slave to whatever subscription add-on I was using, like, some add-ons will only allow me to have one level subscription, one offering, that's it, so that's all I was able to offer. Others forced me to use work-around type of hacks, which meant manually hacking core Joomla files, which of course means when you upgrade, everything blows up in you face, that's no way to run a business. With AEC I've never had to use any hack of any kind with Joomla 1.5. If using an older Joomla version, it is possible that a hack may need to implemented, but AEC does it for you with a simple click of the mouse, when you need to upgrade your Joomla installation, simply click to undo the hack, then reapply when the upgrade is completed, no hunting for files, searching through code, just click.
Here's an example of typical deployment for me with AEC... User joins as basic member for free, for 30 days, with access to a limited amount of member content, then at the end of 30 days, upon log-in, present the user with two offers, one lower price option for short term (trial) with full access, automatic recurring billing at full monthly price at the end of the trial period... or, choose full monthly price now, automatically billed monthly... or, pay for a year up front and receive a percentage discount... from there, you can even offer multi-level options, starter package, allow upgrade to middle level package, then up to full package, can be made so that middle package is only presented if the user was previously subscribed to the starter package first, only show full package if previously subscribed to middle level... and so on, can be as simple or as diverse as you like.
But... if you have a very simple subscription you'd like to offer, simple as can be, nothing fancy, it'll do that too. Not sure why anybody would want to do this, but you can even offer multi-level subscriptions, that are all free, there's no end to what you can do, personally I've never seen anything like AEC, I could go on for days about how many different ways subscriptions could be configured, I've yet to find something it can't do.
There's also what can only be described as an amazing number of payment processors, there's like over 40 now, always more in the works, no other add-on even comes close to that. If I see yet another "PayPal Only" subscription add-on my head is going to explode. AEC is extremely flexible when it comes to how payment options are presented, like... you can present the user at sign-up with 3 different credit card processors, and a pay by phone option, or if you need, a fully integrated purchase and fulfillment of major event tickets( concerts, theater... and son on), or you can just accept subscription orders, and process payments offline if you like.
You can also offer coupon codes, that can for example, provide the user with 1st month free, then automatically start recurring billing after the 1st month, doesn't have to be a month, can be 1 day free, whatever you want. you can make a coupon only available to a specific member, or group of members.
Another great feature, is that it logs everything it does. This may sound weird, but it even logs the fact that it did nothing, like, user created account, chose a plan, but never completed the transaction, or if it tried the transaction, but the customer was denied by the processor for whatever reason. Even if there's no work to be done with no user accounts created that day, you still see that AEC woke up, looked to see if there was anything to do, just to ensure nothing was overlooked or got hung up. That gives me piece of mind that things are still up and running. If there did happen to be an error, you can set it to email with the error details.
If you download AEC, and feel like it looks too complicated for you, it's likely not AEC that's hard to grasp, because it's all very logical and intuitive in my opinion. What you need to do when creating multi-level plans, is take the time to sit down and map things out on paper as to what you want to offer, what membership levels with be available, which credit card processors you'd like to use, whether there will be trial memberships, recurring or one time fee, terms, wording, billing... get that all mapped out before you begin, then go to the AEC forums, and do a bit of homework, ask some questions (you'll likely get great answers) because otherwise you may confuse yourself by losing your place mid-way through, or you might a mistake because you tried to wing-it. Proper planning takes a very small amount of effort, this is key to the success of any business. If you don't take the time to do that, any confusion on your part can't be blamed on AEC, because AEC, can and will, do exactly what you configure it to do, nothing more, nothing less.
One concern I had at the onset, is that with all the amazing amount of options and flexibility AEC has to offer, I thought for sure it was going to be a bug filled nightmare, with code errors and processes bumping into each other and timing out, causing things to fail... or worse. I am EXTREMELY happy to report, that I've thrown just about everything I can at this add-on, and it hasn't skipped a beat. Look up at everything I just wrote in this review that I've been able to do with this add-on, and it hasn't skipped a beat, not one code error, not one conflict, no hiccups, not even a sneeze, that's amazing in my view.
To the AEC Team... a sincere thanks for creating AEC. You've done a very fine job, it takes a lot of skill to done what you've done in creating this add-on with such fine results. Bravo!
First of all I was offered a trial period to see if it would suit my needs. Then I was surprised by all the features and options it has. The interface is great and support was responsive and helpful with my pre-sales questions. They even gave me a fast (and reasonable) quote for having a new payment processor integrated
For users wanting a simple subscription process most of the default settings will work. For users wanting custom subscription workflows, the options are there
As the features state, there are many built in payment processors as well as "micro-integrations" which are like plugins to other Joomla extensions. Overall this component gets an "A" grade from me. The only possible downside is that it is complicated, but that's entirely necessary to do everything that it can
Thanks for the kind review! Just to clear this one thing up, though: We don't offer a "Trial" of the software (it wouldn't make that much sense with GPL software anyways...), but do offer people to get their money back in case AEC doesn't fit them.
I recently resubscribed to get the latest version for a new site and was a bit disappointed with the way support was. However, with their new support options I've been very happy. David worked directly with me to resolve the few issues I had and everything seems to be good to go now.
I've recommended AEC to many people in the past and I'm happy still to give that recommendation.
However, if you are not savvy with AEC/Joomla, I'd highly recommend taking them up on their support options.
Although this products community has fairly little support, their paid support is great. They answer questions promptly and their staff is very knowledgeable.
I currently use AEC on 5+ sites and there is no other product out there with more features and better prices.
This component has so many features and options, it’s amazing! But put that together with a user that hasn't spent enough time with the component, and there's bound to be frustration. I admit I too was at this stage for a short time a couple of months ago, however now I don't know what I'd do without it! An easy way to avoid this "stage" is to simply take some time to play around with the settings, the setting fields have descriptions. And also read the FAQ's at valanx. I'd also suggest using the video tutorials on how to install AEC, it really helps and explains the process.
The Product Now:
I haven’t been able to find anything similar to what AEC offers, the amount of add ons/Micro integrations is huge! I've only needed to use one so far, but looking through the list shows so many possibilities that I can implement later on if I want to. Another thing I like about AEC is that it takes into consideration the actual users of your website. Not only does it allow you to provide a vast amount of paid or free plans, but it also lets you setup a trial period so your users could get an idea of whether they'd want a longer term plan on your website. Good stuff if you ask me.
The Developer, AEC Team, and Valanx.org:
The developer David, is very helpful in answering questions, I've had a lot actually and they've been answered promptly with answers that are to the point and helpful. The problem I had was with the one Mi i needed to use, and eventually I entered the problem into a support ticket. Jake, who is a member of the AEC Team, and also the person that looks into and answers the forum questions then also looked into the problem. The support was great and we have now sorted the problem, and in fact, the Mi has been rewritten to be more efficient! So from my experience, the support is more than satisfactory, and the people I have come across have been very helpful, which in my opinion is partly what makes a component great, the people behind it. As for the forums, the answers do seem to get answered in a timely manor, and some do take a little longer but I think that’s due to the lack of actual members contributing, not that they have to but that’s just why in my opinion. I'd suggest using the ticket support to get more important problems sorted, but really the FAQ are sufficient enough most of the time.
There has been quite a lot of sobi users saying that AEC does half the job for them, (it's supposed to expire listings, and republish them if needed), and then there have been other users saying it works well for them. However now sobi users shouldn't hesitate to get this component.
You can now get this component and not worry about whether it'll work for you or not, as the developer and team have now fixed the problem, and it works seamlessly with it!
AEC combined with the FAQ’s/Videos, is really not that hard to understand. I think that the huge amounts of options is a good thing, it gives you more control, and as Control is actually the main purpose of this component (Account Expiration Control), you really do get your money’s worth!
Thanks Valanx for this GREAT App and even greater Support!! 1A++++
Regards Steve Amphaijit
Anyways: I have just started out using this and have only done one payment integration. I only have a handful or so subscribers yet too, but it's a good start! AEC is doing it's job perfectly, and I'm happy to support makers of good software!
It is inevitably complex because what it does is complex but matters are well explained in videos which if followed logically will explain most standard uses.
There are a number of micro-integrations with other products and it seems very customisable.
That the products has had some stinkingly awful reviews seems to reflect more on the competence (lack of) of the people dishing the ordure than any defect in the product which is robust and - when you learn your way around - is logical and remarkably user friendly. There are tool tips for everything and the back office layout is remarkably logical and well thought out.
I have noticed that many complaints seem to be based on the fact they charge a subscription or for on-server support. I never quite "get" why people expect a product to be "given away" or for a developer not to be paid for developing it. Furthermore this component enables your website to take money so it seems entirely reasonable to me that you should pay for it.
I have posted two questions through the forums and both have been answered quickly and competently by people working with the developer at no charge.
I have only upgraded to the latest version on my staging server but there appears to be better written documentation for it and my test upgrade was painless and the data preserved.
I am a refugee from Community Builder which people always tell me is open source and hence better meets the spirit of the "Joomla Community". Well you won't get far with Community Builder without you shell out for the manual (fair enough in my opinion) and the optional CBSubs for my site was 295 euros for the product.
This product works well with JomSocial and has the added advantage that you can style up your pages to match your site relatively easily so there is no need for your site to look like you built it in the mid 90's.
The lack of full written documentation leaves a lot to be desired, but there are videos that walk you through the setup of your first plan. I would have preferred written documentation so I could go at my own speed, but you can't say there's no help.
Having an advanced setup of multiple plans with lots of Micro Integrations was easier to setup than I thought. The problem I think most people have is NOT planning out what they want before they start working with AEC. There is a lot you can do with this extension, just make sure to plan ahead and the setup process will be easier to follow.
If the developers can provide written documentation and create a Google Checkout processor (becoming more and more popular) and I think this extension would be perfect!
That all being said, to get the most out of this extension you should expect to pay for support. Especially when involving complicated configurations - just common sense.
Maybe they should make it commercial so people don't get mad that they can't handle a more advanced component than they're accustomed to and give it a bad rating.
Thanks for the flowers, but I will have to correct you here - Our reviews got deleted because we DID switch to commercial.
I would further say that you don't need to expect to pay for support, but for some configurations, it won't hurt.
Let's put it this way: AEC can be complicated and if you want to prevent a headache, there is a cost for that - our support. Some of the bad reviews in here do stem from people just getting frustrated with the software and then blame us for offering support. The upcoming manual and mandatory base support for fresh AEC users will hopefully make up for most of this ;-)
Anyways - thanks!
Parts of the component are bad coded, especially the MicroIntegrations. Some of them don't work at all, some produce PHP errors and warnings. Most parts of the code don't meet professional coding-standards.
If it would be a non-commercial component a would say okay, you can give a try and check if it meets your requirements. And if not, send it back to nirvana. But in this case you pay for commercial software that doesn't do what it promises. But you realize that just after paying.
There is a lot to do that this component becomes professional, at the moment it's not. I do not recommend this component. Better spend some more money for a real professional component, there are already existing some good ones.
Your last review was reported and deleted - if I recall correctly - because it talked about the support and your own use case, which is not permitted by the ToS of the JED.
It's a shame you only hint at things being wrong, broken or badly coded and don't name names. All the MicroIntegrations have been tested to work properly and if there was such a big problem with them, we'd have a new version out a long time ago. That is not the case.
For now, I'm afraid your new review really only says "things didn't work for me and I didn't like the code". Not sure how that is supposed to help others make a decision.
You pay for gpl software. It's okay, but not to offer any support? What the hell is that? I'm really disappointet. Nothing worked - I had to fix a lot of things in the code, but after a few days a gave up. The video tutorials are a joke and no manual is available. If I pay for an extension, I suspect that things work right out of the box but no chance.
Then I tried another subscription component and it worked right out of the box. So better try another one.
Of course we offer support - that is the whole idea! AEC can be a bit complicated because of all the functionality, so for users who cannot make it work, there is always the support. We have had some bad, but mostly good responses to the videos so far and for the next version, there will also be a manual online.
If you expect the component which will handle your whole sites business to work right out of the box for precisely your business use case, then I guess you got lucky finding another component which does just that. If you have ever used another joomla component, I'm sure that you will have run across one or two others that kind of fit what you wanted to do but had to be configured correctly. AEC is one of those.
First, to the naysayers and bad reviews...this is not some simple install-and-go module with 2 or 3 settings and wham, you're done. But therein lies the real power of this component - once you learn your way around, you can do anything.
As far as the MIs being buggy, I had some trouble getting PayPal to work, but this was a "me and PayPal" issue, not the extension. I am going to suggest, or post myself, some of the PP troubleshooting that the author of this software provided me...I think it would be a big help to folks.
I have this integrated with DocMan and NOIX ACL, and it works like a charm. I have sections of the site blocked off, documents protected for subscribers, and an easy payment process. Upgrades and downgrades of subscriptions are easy using the MIs once you learn it, kicking the subscribers to different ACL or DocMan groups for access to different sections and documents.
It was not EASY, but with a little perseverance and thought, it's really an awesome solution for my purposes, and I would bet that with some help the CB integration and other problems on these reviews could be solved.
If you are a novice at this sort of thing, but really need a powerful solution for a pay web site with different types of content, I would definitely recommend getting a support plan, it will be well worth the small cost.
All I can say is that I am extremely happy with the decision I made to go with AEC, and if you are looking for a super solution and aren't scared of a bit of a learning curve, give it a shot - I think you will really like it.