Getting Started with E-Commerce


E-Commerce is an important feature that provides Admins the capability to sell their training content to both internal and external Learners. E-Commerce provides a wide degree of flexibility in the various payment types (and currencies) it can be configured to accept credit cards, Checks, Purchase Orders, Wire Transfers, etc. 

If your LMS is not currently configured for E-Commerce, please contact your Client Success Manager or Support. 


Use Cases

Here are some examples of how clients use E-Commerce in their LMS. 

Deep Links 

  • Buy now button from the client website that links to a course within Absorb to buy it.
  • Or can use an Enrollment Key to get a free course, if they pay for it directly on the client's website. 
  • Buy now and it takes them to the Shopping Cart, where they can sign-up and then purchase a course.
    Note: Deep links should match the Enrollment Rules on the course. For instance, if the course is only available to a certain dept, the deep link must include the Dept GUID.


  • Course pricing can be set at the individual Course level and can be made fully adaptable to different Learner audiences by tying pricing to Absorb's Availability Rules and Departments. Please note: pricing set within a Curriculum will override any course-level pricing.

  • Similar to variable pricing is the ability to offer different sets of Course inventories to various audiences once again through the use of Departments

  • Multi-seat purchases of an individual Course, Course Bundle, or Curriculum can be made by a single Learner on behalf of other LMS students through the creation of an Enrollment Key, which the purchaser can then distribute to those select Learners in order to more easily coordinate the specific training they might require

  •  E-Commerce access can be limited to registered customers only requiring that a Learner either be an existing customer in Absorb or be required to create an account as a new Learner in the LMS before they can buy. For added security and certainty, new customers can be required to verify their email addresses before they can make a purchase. Please note: In order to have a course able for public purchase prior to signing in, both public purchase and self-enrollment, with no enrollment rules, must be enabled in the course settings.

  • Through the use of Coupons various marketing and promotional scenarios can be implemented by offering deals on the LMS inventory

  • Coupons can be further used to automatically assigned new customers to a particular Department which itself can be configured to control what LMS inventory options and prices new Learners have access to

  • Courses can be created with a fixed or open-ended completion time to provide customers flexibility in their training. Similarly, Instructor-Led Courses can be configured to require that a Learner commit to a session at the time of purchase or allow them to make that choice later on

  • Absorb's Transaction tool captures a considerable amount of customer purchase data that Admins can use to run customized reports for the purpose of monitoring and optimizing their LMS sales

Payment Gateway

If your organization accepts Credit Cards as a form of payment, you will first choose a payment gateway, an online service that processes credit card payments for E-Commerce sites and brick and mortar stores.  Please review the list of Payment Gateways below to ensure your existing partner is supported by Absorb or to find a new Payment Gateway. 

Please note that those marked with an asterisk (*) are our client's most popular choices.



  • Amazon FPS
  • MasterCard Internet Banking Service
  • Amazon Pay
  • Mollie
  • ANZ eGate
  • Moneris *
  • Apple Pay (Authorized Net) *
  • NETbilling
  • net (AIM)
  • NMI (Network Merchants Inc.)
  • Bambora (Formerly Beanstream) *
  • Ogone (supports iDeal)
  • Barclaycard
  • Paperless
  • BitPay
  • PayConex
  • Bluefin
  • PayGate
  • BluePay
  • PayJunction
  • BlueSnap
  • PayLeap
  • Braintree Payments *
  • PayLine
  • Cardstream
  • Payline Data
  • CardX
  • Payment Express
  • Chase Paymentech Orbital (Salem / Stratus)
  • Payment Express (PXWS)
  • Chase Paymentech Orbital (Tampa / Tandem)
  • PaymentSense
  • Cielo Payments (Merchant e-Solutions)
  • PayPal Express Checkout
  • Coinbase
  • PayPal MicroPayments
  • ComGate
  • PayPal Payflow Pro *
  • CommWeb
  • PayPal Payments Pro *
  • Converge (Elavon)
  • PayPal Plus
  • Cybersource *
  • PayPal (Overview)
  • Cybersource Hosted
  • PayPoint Gateway Freedom
  • Cybersource Magnetic Stripe Swiper
  • PayPoint Gateway Freedom + IMA
  • CyberSource Secure Acceptance Web/Mobile
  • PayTrace
  • DataCash
  • PayU
  • DIBS
  • PayVector
  • DigitalRiver
  • PesaPal
  • Durango
  • Plug 'n Pay
  • Dwolla
  • PSiGate
  • Echo
  • Purchase Orders (offline)
  • Emerio Payments
  • Quantum Gateway (CDG Commerce)
  • Emerio Payments
  • Realex
  • eMPPay
  • Sage Pay (Direct)
  • EMS Pay
  • Sage Payment Solutions
  • ePayments
  • Samurai
  • eProcessingNetwork
  • SecureTrading
  • eWAY Merchant Hosted Payments
  • Skrill
  • Fat Zebra
  • Plug'n Pay Smartscreen
  • First Data Global Gateway
  • Stripe *
  • Payeezy / FirstData Global Gateway e4
  • Total Apps
  • Fosdick
  • TransAction Central by TransFirst
  • goEmerchant
  • Transfirst Transaction Express
  • Helcim
  • TrustCommerce
  • iDeal
  • USA ePay
  • Inspire Commerce
  • Vanco
  • Litle
  • Vantiv
  • Cynergydata Lucy
  • Converge (Elavon)
  • MercadoPago
  • Westpac PayWay
  • YuuPay
  • Merchant Warehouse



Configure and Test Your Payment Gateway

Testing your Payment Gateway is an important step in the process. To begin, you will need to enable your payment gateway directly with the Vendor of choice and then you will set up a testing environment within your LMS.  Please review the Payment Gateway Setup Guide, which provides step-by-step directions for configuring our most popular payment gateways. If your gateway isn't on the list, please reach out to our support team who can assist in getting you up and running.

Important Notes:

  • Please keep in mind, you will want to walk through the Configuring E-Commerce Settings section below to fully set up your E-Commerce Settings and configure a testing environment for Credit Card payments. 

  • Most payment gateways have a Testing mode. Our E-Commerce settings allow you to test your setup (if supported) without having to use a live credit card. The rules for testing vary widely between vendors and we strongly recommend you read up on the rules specific to your gateway.
  • Once you have performed enough tests within the Test Payment Gateway, it is recommended that you perform at least one test purchase after the Live Payment Gateway is enabled. The easiest way to do this is to set a course to $1 and add self-enrollment rules that limit the audience to just yourself. Then you can be 100% sure that everything is ready for your launch. 

If you experience any issues during testing, you will need to reach out to your payment gateway support resources. To reduce any runaround, it is important that you provide their support team with the specific terms or settings used so that they can assist you. You can find these details in the setup guide or you can contact the Absorb Support Team and they will provide you with the details you need.

Test Credit Card Numbers

The following is a list of test credit card numbers you may use to do a test transaction. These numbers should work for every gateway and pass validation on any test gateway. These numbers are for testing purposes only and cannot be used for testing in a live gateway.

Card Type Numbers
American Express 378282246310005, 371449635398431
American Express Corporate 378734493671000
Diners Club 30569309025904
Discover 6011111111111117, 6011000990139424
JCB 3530111333300000, 3566002020360505

2221000000000009, 2223000048400011, 2223016768739313, 5555555555554444,

5105105105105100, 5151515151515151


4111111111111111, 4012888888881881, 4222222222222

Configure E-Commerce Settings

E-Commerce will need to be configured on your LMS before you can configure your Courses and begin selling them to your Users. 

Note: If you are not seeing Manage E-Commerce Settings within your Portal Settings, please reach out to your Client Success Manager or the Absorb Support Team to have this feature enabled. 

Accessing eCommerce.gif

Step 1: Log into your Admin Interface and select the Portal Settings button within the Settings drop-down menu.

Step 2: Select Manage E-Commerce Settings located on the right hand side of the page.  You will then be taken to the page called Edit E-Commerce Settings where you can edit the data on each of the following tabs.

Note: You can move back and forth between the E-Commerce tabs, and any data you have entered up to that point will be maintained. However, if you leave this section of the LMS without saving your settings, then the information you have entered here will not be recorded. 


Under the Settings tab, you can configure how your E-Commerce site will function for Users. 



Users Must Be Logged In To Access Shopping Cart

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

  • If ON = Learners will be required to log into the portal using their sign-on credentials before they can see the Shopping Cart of training materials. If a buyer accesses the training material via an externally available URL, but they do not have an account, they will need to create a new User account before they can review the content and purchase it.
  • If OFF = Learners will not have to log into the portal to see your Shopping Cart of training materials.  

Default Currency

Default Currency is a Required field and is displayed in the LMS during the checkout process. The Currency selected will also default and be the only option when configuring your Courses in Course Management. Only 1 Currency is accepted. 

Course Delivery Type

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

  • If ON = Learners may begin taking the training they purchased, even while their payment is pending. This may be useful if your organization accepts payment methods that take time to process like checks or purchase orders.
  • If OFF = Learners will not be able to begin the training they purchased, until the payment has processed. 

Default Department

The Default Department is used during the External Shopping Cart process. The Department name selected from this drop-down list, will automatically assign new Users to the chosen Department when creating their LMS account. If the User already exists, this setting will not affect them.

Note: If you have a Blended Billing Model, a tool tip will state whether the Department you've selected has Internal or External Billing applied. Please ensure you have selected the correct Department and the Department has the expected Billing Type.

Multi-Seat Purchases

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

  • If ON = Allows Users to purchase training on behalf of other users. Multi-Seat Purchases generate unique codes, called Enrollment Keys, that purchasers will distribute to their Learners.
  • If OFF = Users can only purchase and enroll in training themselves. 

When Multi-Seat purchases are ON, you will have the option of Multiple Key Generation

  • If ON = Generates an individual Enrollment Key for each seat purchased. This means each Enrollment Key is unique and can only be used once.
  • If OFF = The Purchaser will only receive one Enrollment Key for each Course, which can be used for as many seats purchased. I.E. a User who purchases two seats in four courses, there will be a total of four Enrollment Keys provided after checkout is complete.

For more about Multi-Seat Purchases, please visit the Multi-Seat Purchases article. 

Single Use Shopping Cart

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

  • If ON = Forces the Purchaser to re-enter their payment information if they cancel their checkout process. This is useful if buyers use shared computers. 
  • If OFF = Leaves the previously entered payment information in the checkout process. 

Terms and Conditions

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

  • If ON = The Purchaser will need to accept a set of Terms and Conditions before their payment will be processed. This message can be configured in the Messages tab, in the Require First Use Terms & Conditions field. 
  • If OFF = The Purchaser will not be required to accept Terms and Conditions before their payment will process. 

Cart Settings

The information under the Cart Settings tab is used to configure and operate your External Shopping Store.  The Cart Settings will already be pre-configured with information from your Portal Settings > Info. 

Ecomm_Cart Settings.png

Store Name

The name displayed on your External Shopping Store.


The email address for the point of contact in the event that any transaction issues arise between E-Commerce and your payment gateway.

Postal Code

This is your Postal Code is used for calculating shipping, though not applicable to an LMS purchase. Postal Code is required by E-Commerce and your payment gateway.


The country selected from this drop-down list will be used for calculating tax on the LMS purchase.

State / Province

The region selected from this drop-down list will also be used for calculating tax on the LMS purchase.


The type of currency displayed from this drop-down list will be the one that your items for sale will be sold in when they are shown on your checkout page specifically.

Note: It is highly recommended that you select the same Currency selected in the Settings tab > Default Currency. Selecting a different currency here will cause confusion, since your Courses will be configured using the Default Currency. 

Time Zone

The geographical region from this drop-down list will be used to represent your local time and date where it is displayed to your customers. For instance, when selling an Instructor Led Course (ILC) that displays the Date and Time of the Session. 


The language chosen from the drop-down list will be the one used in the written communications displayed to your customers during their purchase (Messages sent to the customer's email).

Use International Currency Symbol

When enabled, the currency type chosen on this page will be displayed as a three-letter abbreviation (i.e. USD) instead of the symbol (i.e. $).

Payment Gateways  

On the Payment Gateways tab, you will define the forms of payment your LMS will accept as well as configure the payment gateway used for processing credit card transactions.

Test Payment Gateway: Live Payment Gateway
Ecomm_Payment Gateways.png Ecomm_Live Payment Gateways.png


Payment Methods

Select the payment types from the drop-down list that your customers can use: Credit Card, PayPal, Wire Transfer, Check or Purchase Order.

Ask for Billing Address

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

Note: This setting is for Wire Transfers, Checks and Purchase Orders only. 

  • If ON = Requires the customer to provide their billing address before their purchase will be processed. 
  • If OFF = Billing Address will not be required for the payment to process.

Live Gateway

Enabling this option will allow your LMS (in conjunction with your Payment Gateway) to start processing financial transactions. Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

Note: This setting is for Credit Cards/Payment Gateways only. 

  • If ON = Your LMS is configured to take Live Credit Card transactions through your Payment Gateway.
  • If OFF = Your LMS is in testing mode and Credit Card purchases will not process through your Payment Gateway (unless testing account is set up with your vendor).

Available Payment Gateways

The payment gateway provider selected from this drop-down list corresponds with the one you selected and configured previously. 

Supported Credit Cards

Select the Credit Card types you can allow your customers to use when paying for their purchase(s)

Credentials Needed for Vendor

You will be required to enter in your Vendor's requirements. The fields that display here will be dependent on the Vendor you select. Please work with your vendors to ensure all required fields are entered and configured correctly. This is important to use the correct values, as these are how we communicate with your vendor. 

Note: You will want to contact the Vendor to authorize Absorb/FoxyCart (our ID 215861). 

  • API ID - the alphanumeric code entered here is provided by your payment gateway and is used to identify your customer's transaction as coming from your specific merchant account. 
  • Transaction Key - this alphanumeric code provided by your payment gateway provides an additional layer of security. It ensures that any transaction requests being submitted by your LMS portal actually belongs to your merchant account.

Note: The first time you add both these payment gateway codes you will be able to see them and verify that they are correct. However, once saved, they will be hidden so that no other Admin and/or Absorb employee doing work in your portal can view it.

Hosted Payment Gateways -

You will only see these settings if you have chosen Paypal as one of your Payment Methods. Please check with Paypal support if  you are unsure if you use Legacy or Reference transactions.

    • Paypal Express Checkout (Legacy)- once this is ON, you will be required to also add an email address associated with your Paypal account. 
    • Paypal Express Checkout (Reference Transactions) - once this is ON, you will be required to also add an email address associated with your Paypal account.

Tax Rates

Under the Tax Rates tab, you have the option to set up all of the applicable taxes that your government requires you to collect from your E-Commerce customers during their purchase.

Our E-Commerce has a feature that automatically calculates the applicable taxes on purchases made by your LMS customers using their credit card or PayPal.  The tax rates are determined by the shopping cart service we use and make use of a database that is updated monthly. As such the tax rates by state should be accurate at any given time.

We need to point out if taxes need to be based on your organization's location or can it be where your clientele may be?

Note: If your organization is located outside the European Union or the United States; or if you plan to accept alternate payment methods beyond credit card and/or PayPal, you will need to do some tax rate configuration and set up manual tax rates.

Ecomm_Tax Rate.png

Automatic Tax Rates

Select the tax location by clicking the plus (+) to the right of the field or by typing the location directly into the field. The list contains economic zones (Canada, the EU & USA) that E-Commerce can automatically calculate tax for when processing a customer purchase made by Credit Card or PayPal.

Manual Tax Rates

Manual tax rates can be setup at a variety of different levels, which are all capable of stacking together. This allows even city level taxes to be setup in a straightforward fashion. Manual tax rates are also based on the location of the user/learner who will receive the course.

Tax Rates for Credit Card and PayPal Transactions:

Step 1: Under Tax Rates for Credit Card and PayPal Transactions, select Add Tax Rate to view the following options:

Ecomm_Tax Rate_Manual for CC_PayPal.png

Step 2: Select the Type of tax from this drop-down list. The option selected will be the value used to calculate the tax on items sold from your LMS. The types include: Global, Country, Region, Local, European Union.

The following fields will display if you select any Type, except European Union.

  • Country - Select the Country where your organization is located from the drop-down list.
  • Province - If you choose Region or Local as your tax Type, this field will display. Select the Province or State where your organization is located from the drop-down list.
  • City - If you choose Local as your tax Type, then this field will display. Select the City where your organization is located from the drop-down list.

Step 3: Add the numerical value (whole numbers or decimals accepted) to indicate the percentage of taxation that will be charged on training sold from your LMS for individuals that match the Type selected above.

Step 4: Add the taxation label that will be displayed to your customers, next to the amount of a particular tax charged on their purchase.

Note: If you are required to charge additional taxes on a customer's LMS purchase, you can add them by selecting Add Tax Rate and repeating the process.

Tax Rates for Wire Transfers, Purchase Orders and Cheques

Step 1: Under Tax Rates for Wire Transfers, Purchase Orders and Cheques, select Add Tax Rate to view the following options:

Ecomm_Tax Rate_Manual for Checks_Wires.png

Step 2: Select the Country where your organization is located from the drop-down list.

Step 3: Add the numerical value (whole numbers or decimals accepted) to indicate the percentage of taxation that will be charged on training sold from your LMS.

Step 4: Add the taxation label that will be displayed to your customers, next to the amount of a particular tax charged on their purchase.

Step 5: Once you choose a country, the option to add State and Provincial Tax Rates will only be displayed if you choose a country where you are required to charge regional taxes on a customer's LMS purchase. When selecting this, you will need to add:

  • State/Province - Select the Province or State where your organization is located from the drop-down list.
  • Tax Rate - Add the numerical value (whole numbers or decimals accepted) to indicate the percentage of taxation that will be charged on training sold from your LMS.
  • Tax Label - Add the taxation label that will be displayed to your customers, next to the amount of a particular tax charged on their purchase.
  • Includes Country Tax - Select ON only if this is a tax situation where a national and regional tax are combined together in one tax charged at the territorial level.


Under the Messages tab, you can create the language that you want the customer's to view at different points in their purchasing process. Here, you can manage these features:


New Users Are Required to Validate Their Email

Click the toggle button to change the status setting.

  • If ON = New users who sign up via E-Commerce will need to validate their email before logging in. This is independent of the same toggle found under “Users” in portal settings.
  • If OFF =

Require First Use Terms & Conditions

you can add comments on any requirements or limitations that your customers must agree to before they can make their first LMS purchase as a new customer.

Welcome Notes

you can add a greeting to your customers.

Confirmation Notes

you can add a notification to your customers suggesting that they confirm their purchase choices.

Checkout Notes

you can add a notification to provide your customers with any other information that they should know prior to commencing their checkout.

Invoice Notes

you can add information that customers need to know as a result of having made their LMS purchase.

Custom Question

you can add an optional query in order to obtain direct feedback from your customers about their purchase, or any other information you may want.

Store Response In

the category chosen from this drop-down list will be the LMS location that all of your customer's answers to the Custom Question will be stored.

Note: If you opt to ask your customers Custom Questions, contact Absorb to set up the specific answer category/categories you require.


Under the More tab, you can set the shopping cart value that triggers the availability of the non-immediate/deferred payment options (Cheque, Wire Transfer, Purchase Order). For example, if "100" is entered in this field, the non immediate / deferred purchase options will only appear if the value of the items in the shopping cart are greater than or equal to $100.  


Note:  Once you have configured all the needed information on these tabs, remember to hit Save so to store all the information that you have added.



Transactions provide extended post-sales information for LMS items that have been previously sold to Learners in Absorb. With this capability Admins can examine individual purchases in greater detail, create transaction documentation and record refunds provided to customers. This makes the Transaction tool in the LMS primarily a forensic reporting instrument and as such Admins will not necessarily be changing the data offered here, so much as working with what information is already available, in order to get other business tasks accomplished.

This matters because in most commercial scenarios, an organization's LMS sales will be processed by their Payment Gateway (if they have chosen to accept credit cards) and/or their Accounting department. While both of these financial entities can provide historical purchase information, both sources will also limit an Admin to the types of data that they consider important for their own record keeping and reporting - information which may, or may not, answer the Transaction questions an Admin has. That makes it essential to have a dedicated reporting resource built-in to LMS that can be accessed quickly, without the need to seek answers elsewhere.

Possible uses for Transactions include:

  • Assisting E-Commerce customers with post-purchase needs
  • Satisfying financial reporting requirements (accounting, auditing, reconciliation, etc.)
  • Monitoring Payment Gateway activity from the LMS side
  • Improving overall E-Commerce success by analyzing sales/use patterns



Coupons allow Admins to more effectively market their learning inventory to both new and existing customers by offering discounts on select LMS items. As a fully-customizable financial incentive, Coupons can be purpose-built to meet the needs of a multitude of E-Commerce scenarios. Simply by changing the value, timing, number of uses and item applicability that a Coupon has, an Admin can target specific audiences of Learners - and more effectively drive any interest shown in a learning item towards actual Enrollment.

The effective promotional value that Coupons bring to Absorb's E-Commerce suite really can help make a difference in creating a prosperous learning program. Combined with some of the social tools of the optional Absorb Engage module, the Admin is easily equipped to devise sophisticated marketing initiatives that can directly contribute to the LMS's financial success.

Possible uses for Coupons include:

  • Boosting Enrollment numbers
  • Enhancing Learner engagement in the learning program
  • Increasing the LMS customer base with new Learners


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