payouts

Large Batch Payouts

Large Batch Payouts enables you to send payouts to an unlimited amount of recipients at once. To use Large Batch Payouts, create a payouts input file and place it in folder on a secure FTP server.

Note: Large Batch Payouts doesn't currently support payouts to Venmo.

How it works

How large batch payouts work

  1. You create a payouts input file and share it in a folder tied to your account on PayPal's secure DropZone server.

  2. Payouts validates the input file. If the file passes the validation, Payouts sends you an ACK (acknowledgment) report and begins processing the file. If the file fails the validation, Payouts sends you a NACK (negative acknowledgment) report that explains the errors. You can correct any problems and resubmit the input file.

  3. Large files are processed in parts of up to 500,000 individual records. After each part of the input file is processed, payouts provides a Part File report. When the entire file is processed, you receive an Out File report. The reports are available in your DropZone account.

    Note: After 30 days, you receive a Final report that contains the status for each individual record.

  4. Recipients are notified of the payout.

Prerequisites

Before you begin, complete the prerequisites.

1. Set up a DropZone account

You can choose to first test your integration in the PayPal sandbox and send mock payouts or go straight to production and send live payouts. Follow the steps to set up a sandbox environment or production environment.

Sandbox environment

Use the PayPal sandbox to:

  • Simulate file transfer to a designated folder on PayPal’s DropZone server via SFTP.
  • Validate the file name, file format, checksum and file integrity.
  • Test Out File reports and reconciliations.

To set up your sandbox environment:

  1. Contact your account manager or PayPal customer support and provide this information:

    • PayPal account ID
    • Your public ssh key
    • Your public outgoing IP address. PayPal uses your IP address to white list your account in the sandbox.

    PayPal creates your SFTP account and provides your sandbox user name.

  2. To access your sandbox SFTP account, use the SFTP tool of your choice and include this information:

    • Sandbox endpoint/URL: dropzone.es-ext.paypalcorp.com
    • Destination host port: 22
    • Sandbox user name
    • Public ssh key

Next, set up your production environment to send live payouts or create an input file.

Production environment

Transactions performed in the production environment are live. Money is debited from your PayPal balance and credited to each recipient’s PayPal account. If the recipient doesn't have an active PayPal account and doesn't claim the money within 30 days from the payout date, then the money is returned to your account.

To set up your production environment:

  1. Contact your account manager or PayPal customer support and provide this information to create your SFTP account:

    • PayPal account ID
    • Production ssh public key

    Note: You must create a new set of ssh keys for your production environment.

    PayPal creates your SFTP account and provides your production user name.

  2. To access your production SFTP account, use the SFTP tool of your choice and include this information:

    • Production endpoint/URL for the SFTP login: dropzone.paypal.com
    • Destination host port: 22
    • Production user name
    • Publish ssh key

Next, create an input file and place it in your Incoming folder.

2. Create an input file

Create a comma separated value (.csv) input file that includes a Summary line and information for each individual payout item. You can use a spreadsheet, text editor, or database application to create the input file.

When your file is complete, it looks similar to this example:

PAYOUT_SUMMARY,17.9,USD,5,"Hey, You got a Payout",Payout for
PAYOUT,test-1@paypal.com,4.82,USD,REF_ID_1,NOTE_1
PAYOUT,test-2@paypal.com,4.93,USD,REF_ID_2,NOTE_2
PAYOUT,test-3@paypal.com,2.77,USD,REF_ID_3,NOTE_3
PAYOUT,test-4@paypal.com,3.51,USD,REF_ID_4,NOTE_4
PAYOUT,test-5paypal.com,1.87,USD,REF_ID_5,NOTE_5

2.a. Add the Summary line

The first line of the input file must contain a SUMMARY as shown in this example:

PAYOUT_SUMMARY,TOTAL_PAYOUT_AMOUNT,CURRENCY_CODE,TOTAL_NO_OF_PAYMENTS,EMAIL_SUBJECT,EMAIL_MESSAGE

Use this information to complete each field of the Summary:

Field Description
PAYOUT_SUMMARY
  • Static, case-sensitive value.
  • Must be upper case.
TOTAL_PAYOUT_AMOUNT
  • Cumulative value of individual items’ payout amount.
  • Must be in decimal format.
  • In the example above the value is 17.9.
CURRENCY_CODE
  • Currency for the payout, such as USD, EUR, and so on. Only one currency type is supported per input file.
TOTAL_NO_OF_PAYMENTS
  • Number of payout items in the file.
  • In the example above, the item count is 5.
EMAIL_SUBJECT
  • The subject of the email that recipients receive as a payout notification.
  • For txt input files:
    • If an email subject contains a comma or other special character, enclose the subject in double quotes.
    • If an email subject contains a double quote, enclose the double quote with an additional set of double quotes and enclose the subject in double quotes. Example double quote subject: "Our way of saying ""thanks"""
  • Max character length: 256
EMAIL_MESSAGE
  • A common note in the email notification sent to all recipients for all payout items.
  • For txt input files:
    • If a note contains a comma or other special character, enclose the note in double quotes.
    • If a note contains a double quote, enclose the double quote with an additional set of double quotes and enclose the entire note with double quotes. Example double quote note: "Our way of saying ""thanks"""
  • Max character length: 1000

2.b. Add individual item records

Beginning with the second line of the input file, add a record for each individual payout item using this required format:

PAYOUT,RECIPIENT_EMAIL,PAYOUT_AMOUNT,CURRENCY_CODE,UNIQUE_REF_ID, ITEM_LEVEL_NOTE

Use this information to complete each field for an individual item record:

Fields Description
PAYOUT
  • Static, case-sensitive value.
  • Must be upper case.
RECIPIENT_EMAIL
  • The recipient identifier.
  • Use the recipient's email address or their encrypted PayPal account number.
PAYOUT_AMOUNT
  • Value of individual payout item.
  • Only use decimal format. Localized currency formats are not supported.
  • Must not be empty or a zero amount.
CURRENCY_CODE
  • Currency in which the payouts are sent.
  • Use a single currency per input file. Multiple currencies are not supported in a single input file.
  • In the example above the currency code is USD.
UNIQUE_REF_ID
  • Unique identifier for a payout item.
  • Must also be unique within the input file.
  • Must be alphanumeric [0-9, a-z, A-Z]. Only use the underscore (_) and hyphen (-) as special characters.
  • Maximum character length: 30
ITEM_LEVEL_NOTE
  • Customized note that can be sent in email notification for every payout item.
  • Use any special character or alphanumeric character.
  • For txt input files:
    • If a note contains a comma or other special character, enclose the note in double quotes.
    • If the note contains a double quote, enclose the double quote with an additional set of double quotes and enclose the entire note with double quotes. Example double quote note: "Our way of saying ""thanks"""
  • Maximum character length: 1000

2.c. Save the input file

Use this naming convention to save the file:

pp_payouts_<epoch_time>_<reference_name> format

Where pp_payouts is static and lower-case. Variable fields in the file name include:

Field Description
epoch_time Use an epoch timestamp. Timestamps in the past are acceptable. Future timestamps must be within seven days from the time that you place the file on the DropZone server.
reference_name Must be alphanumeric [0-9, a-z, A-Z]. Only use the underscore (_) and hyphen (-) as special characters. Other special characters are not allowed. Maximum character length: 63
format Accepted formats: .csv, .csv.gz

3. Upload the input file

You can upload and test your input file in your sandbox environment or upload your input file to your production environment and make live payouts. Once you upload the file, payouts validates the file.

File validation

Payouts performs the following validations on your input file:

  • File name validation — Fails if the input file does not use the correct file naming convention.
  • Summary and line item validation — Fails if any of these conditions exist:
    • Currency field is empty or missing.
    • Currency uses a localized format.
    • Total number of payments field is empty or missing.
    • Contains an invalid currency code.
    • Character length surpasses the maximum values.
    • Invalid payout Summary format.
  • File integrity validation — Fails if the payout Summary doesn't match the payout item record details.
  • Duplicate file validation — Fails if the input file name isn't unique. The file can't match a previous input file name.
  • Currency mismatch — Fails if the input file contains more than one currency.

When the validation is complete, you receive an acknowledgment report.

Acknowledgment reports

After payouts validates your input file, you receive one of these acknowledgment reports:

  • ACK report — Validation passed.
  • NACK report — Validation failed.

ACK report

If your input file passes validation, payouts places an ACK report in your Outgoing folder. The ACK report name matches the input file name, as shown in this example:

Input file name ACK report name
pp_payouts_6627887729_testfile.csv pp_payouts_6627887729_testfile_ack.csv

The file is formatted as follows:

DATE_TIME_STAMP_IN_UTC,ORIGINAL_FILE_NAME,ACCEPTED_FOR_PROCESSING

Where the date is the time of acknowledgment, as shown in this example:

2018-02-26T05:48:53Z,pp_payouts_6627887729_testfile,ACCEPTED_FOR_PROCESSING

When you receive an ACK report, payouts begins processing the input file. You can then view reports to see the payout status.

NACK report

If your input file fails validation, payouts places a NACK report in your Outgoing folder. The NACK report name matches the input file name:

Input file name NACK report name
pp_payouts_6627887729_testfile.csv pp_payouts_6627887729_testfile_nack.csv

The file contains the errors found and is formatted as follows:

Summary line: PAYOUT_SUMMARY,CURRENCY_CODE,ERROR_ENUM,ERROR_DESCRIPTION

Individual item records: PAYOUT,LINE_NO,REF_ID,ERROR_ENUM,ERROR_DESCRIPTION

This example shows a NACK file with errors:

PAYOUT_SUMMARY,ASD,CURRENCY_INVALID,Currency is not valid
PAYOUT_SUMMARY,USD,SUMMARY_AND_PAYOUT_MATCH_CONFLICT,Summary and Payout details must match
PAYOUT,4,fourth-ref-id,PAYOUT_AMOUNT_INVALID_FORMAT,Invalid Payout amount format

For more information on errors, see File validation errors.

Correct any issues and submit a new file with a unique name to your Incoming folder. Payouts repeats the validation and sends a new ACK or NACK report to your Outgoing folder.

When you receive an ACK report, payouts begins processing the input file. You can then view status reports.

4. View reports

Payouts generates reports at three different file processing stages. This table describes the reports and shows the example report name for an input file named PP_PAYOUTS_1517395059_ABC123.csv:

Report Description Example report name
Part File report Generated after a part of an input file is processed. In the case of multiple part files, the payout items are mutually exclusive across each part file. The Part file report contains the start and end row number in the file name. For example if a part file name contains 1_350, items 1 through 350 were processed. PP_PAYOUTS_1517395059_ABC123_1_350.csv
Out / Interim report Generated after all parts of an input file are processed. PP_PAYOUTS_1517395059_ABC123_OUT.csv
Final report Generated 31 days after the Interim report. Includes the final status of unclaimed transactions. PP_PAYOUTS_1517395059_ABC123_FINAL.csv

Report format

The Part, Out/Interim, and Final reports all use the same format:

REF_ID,PAYOUT_ITEM_ID,TRANSACTION_ID,RECIPIENT_NAME,RECIPIENT,CURRENCY_CODE,PAYOUT_AMOUNT,FEE,TOTAL,TRANSACTION_STATUS,ERROR_ENUM,ERROR_MESSAGE,TIME_PROCESSED,TIME_CLAIMED[Applicable for Unilateral Case]

Sample report

REF_ID_1,SX3QT8QVBVE4L,35P324312A142790D,,test-1@paypal.com,USD,4.82,0.25,5.07,UNCLAIMED,RECEIVER_UNREGISTERED,Receiver is unregistered,2018-01-16T10:33:22Z
REF_ID_2,HP3B9BRJYMKRU,1H080416VK328525U,,bjonny-us4@paypal.com,USD,4.93,0.25,5.18,SUCCESS,,,2018-01-16T10:33:20Z
REF_ID_3,BUPR735Z5CJBJ,7FB53422KY616915S,,test-3@paypal.com,USD,2.77,0.25,3.02,UNCLAIMED,RECEIVER_UNREGISTERED,Receiver is unregistered,2018-01-16T10:33:19Z
REF_ID_6,AU49JFTXWUQ8Q,7RG81691FV520321P,,test-1@paypal.com,USD,0.86,0.25,1.11,UNCLAIMED,RECEIVER_UNREGISTERED,Receiver is unregistered,2018-01-16T10:33:20Z
REF_ID_7,C5USHNEDMCXWL,,,bjonny-us9@paypal.com,USD,1.71,0,1.71,FAILED,ACCOUNT_RESTRICTED,User is restricted,2018-01-16T10:33:16Z

Transaction status and error messages

For information on Payouts API error messages, see Payouts Error Messages.

File validation errors

These errors may occur when payouts validates your input file. Once you've fixed the errors, retry the payout:

Error Description
SUMMARY_AND_PAYOUT_MATCH_CONFLICT The payout amount in the summary line doesn’t match the total item value.
DUPLICATE_REF_ID Reference IDs must be unique within an input file.
INVALID_REF_ID_FORMAT The reference ID must be alphanumeric. The maximum character limit is 63.
PAYOUT_AMOUNT_INVALID_FORMAT The payout amount must use a decimal. Other special characters aren't allowed.
PAYOUT_AMOUNT_NON_POSITIVE The payout amount must be greater than zero.
SUMMARY_LINES_NON_INTEGER The total number of payments field in the summary line must be an integer.
SUMMARY_LINES_NON_POSITIVE The total number of payments field in summary line must be greater than zero.
SUMMARY_AMOUNT_INVALID_FORMAT The summary amount must a decimal. Other special characters aren't allowed.
SUMMARY_AMOUNT_NON_POSITIVE The total payout amount in the summary line must be greater than zero.
INVALID_CURRENCY The currency code is invalid.
INVALID_FIRST_COLUMN The first column entry in the summary must be PAYOUT_SUMMARY. For an item record, this must be PAYOUT.
MANDATORY_COLUMN_MISSING The file is missing mandatory columns.
EMAIL_SUBJECT_EXCEEDED_MAX_SIZE The email subject exceeded the maximum character limit. The limit is 255.
EMAIL_MESSAGE_EXCEEDED_MAX_SIZE The email message exceeded the maximum character limit. The limit is 1000.
MULTI_CURRENCY_NOT_SUPPORTED The payout input file has more than one currency.
INVALID_FILE_NAME The format of the file name is invalid.
SCHEDULED_TIME_ERROR The payout can be scheduled a maximum of seven days in advance.
FILE_SIZE_ERROR The payout input file is empty.
GZ_FILE_CORRUPT_ERROR The payout input file is corrupt or has a checksum issue.

Next

Add payouts features.