Everyone is excited about Instant Payment Notification, or IPN. PayPal uses this message service to notify you about your PayPal transactions. Because the technical information can be overwhelming, you can learn by reading this IPN PayPal tutorial, which provides the highlights of what IPN provides and how it works for PayPal users.
PayPal Transactions Affected
Several PayPal transactions can generate an IPN. PayPal payments are the transactions that most often generate these notices. Express payments or credit card payments and authorizations are some of the most frequent creators of IPNs. However, e-check payment status updates also generate IPNs for your PayPal account. So do refunds, reversals and subscription actions. The action that generates these notification messages generally occurs on your website, but PayPal might also generate them using Website Payment Standard buttons.
Processing of IPN PayPal Messages
You generally receive an email notification regarding the event. But the IPN service provides its full height of service when it is being received by a listener or handler that can interpret the message and automate the response based on the IPN message received. This allows payment events to be handled behind the scenes without the need for human response.
Automated Responses to IPN Messages
One of the most common automated responses that result after an IPN PayPal message is the fulfillment of an order. Your listener software receives the IPN that an order has been placed and paid for, and it automatically processes the order for a download of music, an eBook or whatever form of product you are selling. It may also simply trigger the addition of a new customer to your database and trigger the sending of a welcome email to her inbox. You can see a diagram of the process in the IPN PayPal tutorial provided on its website.
PayPal expects a response back from the listening software within 30 seconds of receiving the IPN messages from PayPal to confirm that the notification was received. If it doesn’t get a confirmation in the proper format, the IPN service is set to retry. This assures that notifications are not lost in cyberspace.
Website Code and Other Options
You can download a PDF IPN PayPal Guide that provides 69 pages of detail on setting up, testing and using the IPN services with listener software to automate your processes. This includes a link to code samples on the PayPal website for use when implementing your listener software.
If all this information regarding listener software, automated responses and code samples sounds out of your league, relax. Internet IPN services can just be something that happens in the background without any special setup or coding needed. Digital selling services like PayLoadz have IPN services built into their system, so the individual seller doesn’t have to be concerned about it.
PayPal remains one of the most convenient and most popular means of processing transactions on the Internet today.