Wednesday, July 27, 2005

PayPal for MLK Association

One of my upcoming projects for the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Association of Santa Clara Valley is to enable the organization to accept electronic orders for memberships and tickets online. After taking a look at PayPal's website, it seems like it will be fairly simple and economically feasible to set up online payments using PayPal.

One word of advice I have heard and read several times is that a bank account dedicated to PayPal transactions should be set up. The main checking account for the organization should not be linked to the PayPal account. My understanding is that PayPal can reverse a payment without warning. This would be damaging if the reversal came from a checking account and caused checks to bounce.

Offering tickets on line could be a huge help to the organization, especially for Freedom Train tickets. In the past, tickets have been sold in advance by board members, but the distribution reach of these board members was limited. So most of the 2,500 Freedom Train riders would purchase their tickets at the station on that day. To meet this demand in a timely fashion, numerous volunteers were required to sell tickets. Finding volunteers to take on this task has at times been difficult.

With online payment capability and a good marketing plan, my plan is to get a majority of riders to purchase their tickets online in advance instead of on the day of the train ride.

I look forward to working on this project.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Check out (link to Amazon) for a book on PayPal hacks. I have the book on my wishlist for the next time I order.

I just did the same sort of thing for a local organization using PayPal's Buy Now icon. Not too bad if you're not trying to calculate shipping which is limited in that option.

As for accounts... any email address can be tied to only 1 account so you'll have to create an email address not used by anyone else. I'm not sure about the concern over reversing charges as it's not something I've seen. I've had some refund requests when folks accidental double ordered, but those come as requests to you and you initiate them by refunding the charge.

If you need help, just ask.
David (Levine)