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Offer Your Newsletter to Paypal Checkout Customers

Previously, I shared with you some tips on possible email vendors and ways to gain subscribers. I mentioned that you can ask paypal checkout customers if they would like to subscribe to your newsletter. This is how to set it up.

Should You Do This?

In general I would say, “Of course!” But after reading some etsy posts, I have decided to stop doing this. This is because the new etsy checkout system prevents this information from showing in your details section of your paypal transaction. (See below for information on how to retrieve the information.) Because of this, your customer is always asked whether she would like to receive your newsletter. However, you will not know whether she wants to subscribe.

Say you do set this up. You asked the customer (via paypal) if she would like to subscribe to your newsletter. She says yes but you don’t know it because she purchased via etsy. So then, you later send an email and also include another invitation to your newsletter. She may simply ignore the question because she is thinking, “Duh, I already said yes! Why do you keep asking me?”

I sell on several venues but I’ve decided that that the etsy problem is hampering the results of my paypal subscription option so I’ve deactivated this feature.

If you sell on artfire or zibbet, then I highly suggest adding this option to your paypal checkout.

Setting It Up

Go to paypal and log in.

In paypal, click on “Profile”.


Then, if you are in the new profile setup, click on “My Selling Tools”

Then, once you click that, you will find “Custom Payment Pages“. Click on “Update”.

Click on “Options”.

Then, at the bottom you will see “Offer Promotional Emails”. Check mark that.


Finding Your Subscribers

This is the more time consuming part. To find your subscribers, you must click on every payment detail.

Then, while in the details screen, you scroll to the very bottom. If you see “Subscribed (email address)” then you’ve got a winner.

If you don’t see any of this at the bottom, that means the customer did not check mark the subscription box.

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Running a Newsletter – choosing an email vendor and finding subscribers

I started my TS newsletter just over a year ago so I thought I’d share some business tips on how to choose a email marketing vendor and ways to invite members to your newsletter.

Newsletter Vendors

There are many choices of vendors to run your newsletter. In deciding on one, you need to access your own strengths and weaknesses. For example, can you write and understand HTML? If not, you should make sure that your vendor provides easy to use formats.

Over at the SF Etsy team, members were discussing what they use and why. Some top suggestions were:

I personally use dadamail. Unlike the other email newsletter vendors, dadamail uses your own web space. I highly suggest it to tech savvy entrepreneurs as you need to be able to install it and set it up. You also need your own website.

Many web hosting companies provide a one click install for dadamail, which makes it much easier. I use hostmonster (and have used godaddy) and was able to install it with their simple scripts – simple enough to do.

The best thing about dadamail is that you can keep an archive of your old newsletters. You can see mine here. Although not as easy, you can also move your dadamail to another server or website.

Another great incentive with dadamail is that it is free. It is an open source mailing list manager and provides closed-loop opt-in subscription-based mailing list. After running my newsletter on dada mail for over a year, I decided to support the dadamail project and purchase the pro dada mail forever (Its not required but I love to support projects that have supported me.).

The more difficult thing to do is send out nice looking HTML coded newsletters. This requires a little more patience than is required for other newsletter vendors. For instance, I haven’t spent the time to customize my newsletter archive.

How to Collect Subscribers

To figure out who would actually subscribe to your newsletter, first think about your audience. If you are an independent artisan store owner, then I would suspect your audience to be one that enjoys crafty, unique items and articles relating to the process of making those items.

To that end, I suggest posting a newsletter subscription panel on your website (see here on the left side?).

Also, when sending out shipping confirmation emails to customers, don’t forget to invite them to subscribe to your newsletter.

Lastly, if you customer pays by paypal or google checkout, you can set up your account to ask your customer if she would like to subscribe to your newsletter. I will write a tutorial on this shortly.

Remember to NEVER add any email address without the permission of the email addressee and always provide an unsubscribe link for subscribers that decide they no longer would like to receive your newsletter.

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Free Small Biz Seminar in Oakland

When: Friday, December 3, 2010
Time: 10:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Registration & Light Refreshments at 10:00 am
Location: City of Oakland
City Hall Council Chambers
One Frank H. Ogawa Plaza
Oakland, CA 94612

Free Alameda County Small Business Tax, Enterprise Zone & Regional Business Opportunities Seminar

Learn about tax compliance issues, small business financing programs and state and local enterprise zone tax incentives.

This is a free event. Travel via public transportation is encouraged. Pay parking lots available adjacent to City Hall. Arrive early for the best parking.

For additional details, please see the attached flyer or call the State Controller’s Office at
(213) 833-6010
(213) 833-6010

RSVP required by phone or e-mail by 12/2/2010.

For more information or to RSVP, please call (213)833-6010 or RSVP to the State Controller’s Office:

RSVP via Phone: (866) 305-9991
RSVP via Fax: (213) 833-6011

RSVP via E-mail:


JOHN CHIANG, California State Controller
SANDRE R. SWANSON, California State Assembly
RONALD V. DELLUMS, Mayor, City of Oakland

In collaboration with the
City of Oakland Business Assistance Center
Alameda County Small Business Development Center
Northern California Small Business Financial Development Corporation
Black Economic Council
Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Alameda County
East Bay Economic Development Alliance
The Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Inc.
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
Oakland African-American Chamber of Commerce
Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce
Alameda County Bar Association Business Section