CRM Software for Economic Development Organizations
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How do I set up eCenter Direct event payment to a PayPal merchant account?

If you post an event to eCenter Direct that has a fee associated with it, eCenter can be configured to handle online payment from event registrants. If your program has any of the following merchant accounts:

Then we recommend configuring Neoserra to receive online payments via one of these accounts. We do recognize that not all programs use one of these merchant services for their online payments and so we do allow you to integrate eCenter with other types of payment systems, although this does require additional programming work on your end.

In this FAQ we will discuss the PayPal configuration requirements.

Note: The only PayPal system we integrate with is their "Instant Payment Notification" (IPN) mechanism, which is part of their Website Payments Standard ("standard" as in "reference specification", not "standard" as in level of quality.) Under this system, we send the eCenter user (e.g., the person signing up for a training event) to the PayPal site to make their payment, and then receive notification back from PayPal when the payment has been made. PayFlow is very different -- it's purely a credit-card authorization/processing system. Although it has the "PayPal" name, it does not use the PayPal web site in any way -- it's only a backend server that processes transactions.

In this FAQ, we'll discuss the following topics:

Setting Up a PayPal Account for Use with eCenter Direct

The steps for setting up one or more PayPal accounts for use with eCenter Direct are outlined next:

  1. If you haven't already, create the PayPal account. PayPal offers a number of different services and you should decide the best PayPal service for your operations, keeping in mind that you will need to create a business account, not a personal account.
  2. Once a PayPal account is in place, enter administrator-mode and click on Administration|Configuration.

    To avoid errors or even fraud, it is important for Neoserra administrators to carefully manage the conference payee information entered into Neoserra.

  3. Open the "eCenter Settings" area and, select the "General" section. Under the "Training Payees" heading, click the Add button.
  4. Enter a description for the PayPal account. This is especially important if you will be configuring multiple PayPal accounts for multiple regions.
  5. At the "Add Payee" screen, select "PayPal" from the Type field and enter the e-mail address associated with the PayPal account, as shown in the next graphic:
  6. Click the Save button to complete the addition of the PayPal account.
  7. Repeat steps 3-6 to add as many PayPal accounts as necessary.

As discussed in the Enabling Online Payment for an Event section of this FAQ, every PayPal payee account entered into Neoserra is available for selection from the conference record.

Enabling Online Payment for an Event

When you create an event in Neoserra and want to accept online payment for that event, you will need to indicate a payee. To do this, select the appropriate payment account from the Online Payment field found on the eCenter tab of a conference record, as shown in the next graphic:

Note: In addition to adding the payment system account, a training event record must have the following attributes in order for attendees to pay online: (1) it must have a status of "Open" and (2) its fee must be exposed on eCenter. If the event is full and you allow a waitlist, waitlisted users will not be presented with the online payment option.

Once the event has been configured properly, it will be published on eCenter Direct. Clients can click the "Sign up" button on eCenter Direct to sign-up for the event:

If the event has a fee associated with it, then the client will be initially registered with a status of "Payment Due" as indicated at the top of their registration page:

Similarly, in Neoserra, their status will also show as "Payment Due":

People who have registered, regardless of whether they have paid or not, will count towards the maximum number of attendees for the event. However, the person's registration won't be complete until payment has been made. The registrant will initially receive the 'Signup Notification (Payment Required)' email message. Once they submit their payment, they will receive a second registration confirmation email using the 'Signup Confirmation (Existing User)' template:

While these templates can be customized, it is recommended that these templated are not disabled. Once the registrant pays, either online, by sending a check or providing cash their "Paid" status in the attendee list should be updated to reflect the amount they paid and the method of payment. As soon as this information is updated, it will not only trigger the email message referenced above, the registrant's status on eCenter Direct will also automatically change to "Registered:"

Want more? Browse our extensive list of Neoserra FAQs.