|Wed Jan 25 2012 21:57:05|
PayPal Email Change Causes Major Headaches for Merchants
By: Ina Steiner
Some online merchants, including eBay and Etsy sellers, are upset at a change PayPal made to its "Notification of payment received" emails (more details available in EcommerceBytes Newsflash).
PayPal sends the email notices to sellers to let them know the buyer paid for their purchase, and is the sellers' cue to enter into the fulfillment stage of the transaction.
Normally the payment notification emails that come from PayPal have the buyer's email address in the "From" field. As of late Tuesday evening, PayPal began entering the generic email address "email@example.com" in the "From" instead.
Some sellers rely on the emails to organize their transactions, relying on the From field as an identifier - as one seller wrote on a discussion board, "I've built an entire fulfillment system around the transaction email, and now it's completely broken."
A merchant explained how complicated the change makes the fulfillment process. "If anyone us using gmail to access emails, just wait until you sell two or more of the exact same item, and get all the payments bundled together as a single "conversation" or "thread" within gmail. It's a hoot! I'm not one to get on a soapbox, and usually roll with Ebay/Paypal's punches, but this one definitely deserves a HUGE: CHANGE IT BACK .... NOW!!!"
Another seller wrote, "the fact that this change was made without any notification and warning so we could adjust to it is inexcusable." The seller wen on to ask, "can you not at least vary the subject line? E.g. instead of every message having the identical subject line "Notification of payment received" can it not say "Payment from John Smith received"? As a previous poster noted, for any of using Google as our email provider, if we got 40 payments in one hour then they all come into the inbox grouped as a single thread. I've got many staff working in the inbox and now no one knows who got what payments."
We're awaiting more information from a PayPal spokesperson who responded to our inquiry this evening and is looking into the issue.