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PayPal Instant Payment Notifications (IPN)

Instant Payment Notification (IPN) is PayPal's message service that sends your HotDoodle site a notification when a transaction is affected. (See PayPal's description.)  It is needed only if your website needs to know when transactions occur.   The Payment Button Block in HotDoodle sites can track PayPal payment transactions and use this to either show a block of text or can add the payer to a permission group, and this group might then send an email to the payee. The site must be on a Dynamic Hosting plan.

When HotDoodle generates a Payment Form it gives PayPal a return link to use. This is shown only when the payment is successful, and when it is click it contains enough information for HotDoodle to get the transaction details.   However, for it to work the link must be followed by the user and if they instead navigate away or closes the window the return link might never be clicked.  IPN, when enabled, would have communicated the information to the HotDoodle site independently of the user navigation.

The transaction details can also change such as when an echeck clears or a transaction comes off of fraud review. These changes happen after the user has left and can only be captured through IPN.

Subscription payments truly need IPN because successive payments happen without user navigation – there just is not a user available to click a return link. Subscriptions also have more possible events such as a missed or retried payment or a cancellation.

Not a SOR

Important! Your HotDoodle site is not a financial system of record and will not follow all of the possible things that can happen to a transaction.  HotDoodle keeps some information as a courtesy but there is no assurance that this information is timely, complete, or accurate. For accurate information, refer to the statements of your financial system.

PayPal Generated Buttons

PayPal has a button generator and the code created by this generator can be used on your website, but the button PayPal generates are not linked to your website and your site will not be aware of any transactions.  The buttons can be made to integrate with your site, however, by following the instructions in the advanced tab of the Payment Button block.

Getting into PayPal Selling Tools

Getting into PayPal's Selling Tools preferences is a pre-step to most HotDoodle related adjustments.

1. Login to

2. Click on the "My Account" tab.

3. Click on the Profile Tab.



4. Click on the "My selling tools" link.


Enabling PayPal Instant Payment Notifications

To enable IPN, first get into PayPal's selling tools.
Then click on the "Update" link to the right of  "Instant Payment Notifications"


The "Instant Payment Notification (IPN)" screen opens.


Click "Edit Settings"


You will need to enter a Notification URL: 

Click "Save" at the bottom

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