You may install the PayPal IPN WordPress plugin using the WordPress Plugin installer (automatic) or by manually downloading and uploading the plugin files.

Automatic Installation
  1. Log in to your WordPress dashboard, navigate to the Plugins page, and click the Add New button.
  2. Search for “PayPal IPN”.
  3. Click the Install Now link under the PayPal IPN for WordPress plugin in the list of results.
  4. Click the “Activate Plugin” link after the plugin has been installed.
Manual Installation
  1. Download the plugin from the WordPress plugin directory.
  2. Unzip the files and upload the folder into your plugins folder (/wp-content/plugins/) overwriting previous versions if they exist.
  3. Navigate to your WordPress Plugins page and activate the PayPal IPN for WordPress plugin.

Automatic or manual updates through the WordPress plugins updater should work great for you. As always, though, we recommend backing up your site prior to making any updates just to be sure nothing goes wrong.


To setup your WordPress PayPal IPN listener you will need to copy your IPN URL from the plugin’s general settings tab into your PayPal account profile’s IPN settings panel.

Plugin Settings
  1. From within your WordPress admin panel, navigate to Settings -> PayPal IPN.
  2. Highlight the PayPal IPN Primary URL and copy it to your clipboard (ie. Ctrl+C / Cmd+C)
  3. If you wish to enable logging for troubleshooting purposes, check the box and click Save.

WordPress PayPal IPN General Settings

PayPal IPN for WordPress General Settings

PayPal Settings
  1. Login to your PayPal account.
  2. Click the Profile link on the My Account tab.
  3. Click Instant Payment Notification Preferences in the Selling Preferences section.
  4. Click Choose IPN Settings.
  5. Enter your IPN URL that you copied from the plugin settings.
  6. Click Receieve IPN messages (Enabled) to activate your IPN listener.
  7. Click Save to save your changes.

PayPal IPN Profile Setup

PayPal Instant Payment Notification Configuration Screen

For more details about configuring IPN in a PayPal account, see PayPal’s IPN setup guide.

Now What?

With the PayPal IPN WordPress plugin installed and configured you’re ready to extend the plugin and automate tasks based on the types of IPNs you receive or the status of a payment you’ve received.  For example, you may want to:

  • Generate branded email notifications for employees and/or customers.
  • Post messages on social networks.
  • Remove an item from eBay that has sold on your website (or vice-verse).

The possibilities are endless!

Need to Run Multiple IPN URLs?

Forward PayPal’s IPN data to any number of additional URLs you need so that all your systems / services can be updated by IPN as expected.

Need Additional Help?

Schedule a live meeting with Drew Angell, PayPal Certified Developer, and get all of your questions or concerns answered.

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