September 13, 2021 at 7:09 pm #83654
It seems that our eStore auto-renew for PayPal links have stopped working. These are links that we use to provide our members the option to set up an auto-renew subscription for their eMember account.
For these links we use the following format: ?wp_eStore_subscribe=(eStore product ID)
For example: https://domain.com/?wp_eStore_subscribe=1
We’ve never had an issue with this until recently, but now all of a sudden they aren’t working and the following message appears in PayPal when those links are used: “Things don’t appear to be working at the moment. Please try again later.”
So, consequently, our members are presently not able to signup for an auto-renew subscription.
Could you please help us to resolve this issue?
Thank you!September 13, 2021 at 7:45 pm #83655
Do you have the debug logs enabled? Are there any messages in the logs?
These are for NEW subscriptions?
Can you provide a live URL link to a page that has the “problem link?”
If you use a PayPal subscription button, does the same error occur?September 13, 2021 at 8:30 pm #83656
Thank you for your reply –
Yes, we have eStore debug logs enabled. And yes there is data in the logs, but I’m not sure what to look for.
These are for people who already have a membership account, but who do not already have an auto-renew subscription. So yes, they are creating a “new” subscription in that sense. But the same error seems to occur whether trying whilst logged-in to an account or not.
Here is a URL where you can click the button to see the issue: [mindfulnessinschools.org/test]
I’ve just tried by creating a PayPal subscription button from within eMember, and with that kind of button the same issue does not occur.
Thank youSeptember 14, 2021 at 5:21 pm #83664adminKeymaster
This is going to be a setup related issue. PayPal is not accepting one of the values you have set in that subscription button or in the PayPal gateway setup value. For example: sometimes the admin has entered an incorrect currency code value which triggers this error. I have also seen this happen when incorrect PayPal account email address has been entered in the settings.
There is a list of possible things to check for this in the following article. Please check the following page and check all those items one by one to see if any of them applies to your case:September 16, 2021 at 12:29 am #83668
Thank you –
I’ve now gone through the checklist in the referenced article, but none of the possible reasons listed there seem to apply. We have also double checked the ‘Encrypted Website Payments’ setting in PayPal, but that was already set to ‘Off’.
I have also verified that the PayPal account email address is correct.
What is interesting about this issue is that it is only occurring for those links/buttons we are using for the auto-renew subscription purchase (using the ?wp_eStore_subscribe=(eStore product ID) format). The issue does not occur at all for the links/buttons which are for a one-time subscription purchase. And both of those types of products (auto-renew subscription and one-time purchase) are using the same PayPal merchant email address in the eStore settings.
Also I don’t believe that any other settings have changed from when it was working properly to when the issue appeared.
Should I try re-installing and updating eStore to its most recent version?
Also to answer the other question that was sent previously – yes, the users are required to be logged-in with their member account before they can use these links.
ThanksSeptember 16, 2021 at 3:20 pm #83671
Should I try re-installing and updating eStore to its most recent version?
Ok so I updated our eStore and eMember plugins to the most recent versions, but that did not resolve the issue.
I then tested everything on a separate website on a separate server, and the same issue appeared there. So that confirmed that the issue is not related to a conflict that is specific to the original site.
I then tested with different PayPal credentials, and the same issue still occurred. So that confirmed that the issue is not related to any settings within the associated PayPal account.
After more testing and trial and error, I was able to pinpoint the issue:
The issue seems to be related to the ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’ setting within the product, if ‘Days’ are used for the unit of the recurring billing cycle duration, and if it is a recurring subscription / auto-renew, not a one-time purchase.
After testing over and over, it seems that if ‘Days’ are used for the unit of the ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’, and if it is set to more than 90 ‘Days’, then the error appears on the PayPal end. If the ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’ is set to less than 90 ‘Days’, then the error does not appear and the purchase is allowed to go through properly.
But if ‘Year’ is used for the unit and if the the ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’ is set to ‘1 Year’, then there is no issue/error. It is only if too many ‘Days’ are used for the cycle (again, at least presently, it seems that ’90’ is the cutoff for that).
The problem for our end is that we have been using (and still wish to use) 372 Days as our ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’ duration (we would use 53 weeks, but since ‘Weeks’ is not an option under the ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’ settings, we use ‘Days’ instead). So, unless you have a solution for this issue, it seems we will have no choice now but to change the cycle to ‘1 Year’ instead, and thus not be able to provide that extra week of membership to our members.
Also, I should clarify that my previous note about the subscription button from within eMember not having the same issue was incorrect. If a PayPal subscription button is created from within eMember, using the same duration and figures as described above (i.e more than 90 ‘Days’), then the same issue/error does in fact occur.
However, as mentioned previously, the issue does NOT occur if it is a one-time purchase (?wp_eStore_buy_now=). Only when it is a recurring / auto-renew subscription (?wp_eStore_subscribe=).
So therein lies the issue. If it is a PayPal recurring subscription (auto-renew), and if ‘Days’ are used as the unit for the ‘Recurring Billing Cycle’, and if it is set to too many days (it seems that the cutoff point is 90), then the issue/error appears. And so, because of this, it doesn’t seem possible presently to use ‘Days’ as the unit, for a recurring subscription with a longer term as such.
So all of this would seem to indicate that there is a problem with how PayPal is calculating the recurring / auto-renew billing cycle, or how eStore / eMember is sending its data to PayPal for that calculation. And it seems that something may have changed about this in the recent past, because this issue did not exist up until recently.September 17, 2021 at 2:11 pm #83673
THAT is interesting… We’ll be doing some research on PayPal recurring payment limitations. Great work, BTW with discovering this.September 19, 2021 at 7:17 pm #83675adminKeymaster
Thank you. Looks like paypal recently has made some changes for this. You have to use months or years when the value is greater than 90 days. So for example, you can use a value of 6 months, 1 year etc. We will add a check for this in the eStore’s product creation interface.September 20, 2021 at 9:48 pm #83684
Got it, thank you for the follow up and confirmation on this. We will just stick to ‘1 year’ for the duration in that case. Thanks again for all of your help and support.
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