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Leveraging PayPal as a Payment Method in Sonar

Mitchell Paul-Soumis Updated by Mitchell Paul-Soumis

Read Time: 4 mins

When implementing payment processors in Sonar, they typically fall under two broad categories - either a Bank Account processor or a Credit Card processor. While these methods rely on traditional payment processors for making manual and automatic payments, you can also connect your Sonar instance with PayPal. Using PayPal will allow your customers to make one-time payments towards their invoices online using their PayPal account.

Once you enable PayPal payment processing, it will automatically be presented as an option when users attempt to pay their invoice online through the Customer Portal.

Configuring the PayPal Integration

Setting up the PayPal integration in Sonar takes place in two locations — the first is within the settings of your Sonar instance, and the second is within the settings of your Customer Portal.

PayPal Integration in the Sonar Instance Settings

  1. Click on SettingsBillingPaypal CredentialsCreate Paypal Credential:
  2. Fill in the fields to complete the integration:
    1. The Enabled checkbox allows you to set whether this particular PayPal credential is enabled for payments
    2. The Client ID is obtained within your PayPal Developer's console
      For more information on obtaining your Client ID or Client Secret, refer to this PayPal documentation.
    3. The Client Secret is obtained within your PayPal Developer's console
      For more information on obtaining your Client ID or Client Secret, refer to this PayPal documentation.

PayPal Integration in your Customer Portal

The next step to enabling PayPal as a payment method is enabling the parameter within your customer portal settings page. Once your customer portal is installed and connected to your instance, head to the settings page and scroll down until you see the “PayPal Integration” setting:

You can access your Customer Portal settings page by going to [portal url]/settings (ex:
  1. The “Enable PayPal” toggle needs to be enabled both in your Sonar instance and in the Customer Portal to allow your customers to make payments with their PayPal account.
  2. The API Client ID is obtained from within your PayPal Developer's Console.
  3. The API Client Secret is obtained from within your PayPal Developer's Console.
  4. The PayPal Currency dropdown allows you to select from a list of currencies that your customers will use to pay their invoices — regardless of their actual local currency.

Once the integration is enabled on both the Sonar instance and the Customer Portal, customers can proceed to make one-time payments through their portal login.

Making Payments with PayPal

Once the PayPal integration has been configured, a new option will be present when the customer goes to make a payment on an invoice or amount due:

  1. From the “Payment Method” dropdown, the customer can select “Pay with PayPal”.
  2. Once selected, they'll be prompted to enter a payment amount.
  3. Clicking on the “Submit Payment” button will prompt the customer to log in with PayPal, select their preferred payment method (from those added to their PayPal account), and confirm the payment.

Once the payment is completed, the transaction will appear on the customer's account with the relevant date, time, and unique PayPal Transaction ID.

Manually Rectifying PayPal Payments

If you accept payments directly through PayPal rather than only through the Customer Portal, for example, you may want to manually add those payments into your Sonar instance. To do that, access the customer account by:

  1. Open the Account's Management page
  2. From the Account Management view, click on the Billing tab, followed by the Transactions pill:
  3. To record the PayPal payment, first, click on the “Cash/Check/Wire Payment” button:
  4. From the “Type” dropdown, ensure PayPal is selected — this will cause a “Transaction ID” field to appear, which allows you to record PayPal's 17 character alphanumeric transaction record into Sonar for reporting and balance purposes:
  5. Once the transaction is submitted, you'll be able to review the transaction details, which will list the PayPal Transaction ID you entered, and the Payment ID in Sonar.

Refunding Customer Payments with PayPal

Handling Refunds and Reversals for transactions made through PayPal must occur outside of Sonar, as no native support is offered. This will be done through your PayPal Dashboard. Once Refunded or Reversed in PayPal, ensure the transaction is also reversed in Sonar.

Considerations when Using PayPal as a Payment Method

When implementing PayPal as an available payment method in Sonar, there are several considerations when comparing its usage to traditional bank account or credit card processors. The list below contains some key limitations of PayPal in Sonar:

  1. When PayPal is configured in Sonar, you're unable to charge customers directly using it as a payment method through your instance interface. PayPal integration in Sonar only allows you to manually reconcile and track payments within the instance.
  2. Implementing PayPal in Sonar does allow you to receive payments and perform refunds through the integration, the integration only allows one-time transactions. Subscriptions and recurring payments are not supported by Sonar's PayPal integration.
  3. When manually reconciling payments in Sonar, there's no way for the integration to verify or validate PayPal Transaction IDs to confirm whether the entered ID is accurate.
  4. To fully utilize the PayPal integration, the Client ID and Client Secret need to be entered on both the Customer Portal, and within the Sonar instance.

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