Paypal and subscriptions


#1

Does anyone have any experience with subscriptions and PayPal?

I’m currently weighing up the options of what payment system to use for
an upcoming project which is subscription based and am not sure if
PayPal is capable of doing what I want and if I need to setup a merchant
account instead.

Basically it’s the same kind of payment structure as BaseCamp. 3 or 4
accounts which are subscription based.

The only problems I can see so far is that:

  • is there the ability to charge a different amount each month?

IE if I run a promotion, or affiliate service then the user may not have
to pay as much, or at all, in a certain month.

  • users have to go through the PayPal site to setup the subscription

Ideally everything should be handled on the site and post to PayPal in
the background. IE it should be seamless, but I don’t think this is
possible with PayPal

Any advice anyone has would be great.

Thanks in advance.


#2

On 2/10/06, Richard L. removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:

The only problems I can see so far is that:
possible with PayPal

Any advice anyone has would be great.

Thanks in advance.

I’ve been burned by Paypal subscriptions many times. You can’t easily
change the monthly amount, you’re stuck with pre-set increments that
you defined in advance, and worst of all:
If any part of the payment stream changes, even switching the backup
funding source from Visa to Mastercard, the subscription is cancelled
without any notification.
Oh, and Paypal doesn’t promise that it won’t disclose your customer
list.

I can only imagine how painful it would be for something the size of
Basecamp.
Entango is great, but it’s only for nonprofit use:
http://www.entango.com/

Something that works like that but for commercial projects instead,
would be vastly superior to Paypal.


#3

Does anyone have any experience with subscriptions and PayPal?

It’s roll your own, but I’d look into www.trustcommerce.com - they do
subscriptions in their own environment, and it’s designed for backend
automation. I’ve been using their ‘vault’ product for two years with
zero problems. There is an open-source Ruby API available.