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4 ways to automate post-purchase marketing with PayPal and Mailchimp

By Krystina Martinez · November 8, 2021
The logos for PayPal and Mailchimp.

Online businesses need to manage purchases and communicate with customers. Connect PayPal and Mailchimp—two of the largest players in that space—and let the apps get work done for you.

PayPal is now responsible for more than half of online transactions and is a trusted payment processor for millions of small businesses. And businesses use Mailchimp to send hundreds of billions of emails each year, keeping them in touch with their customers.

If you're using PayPal to process sales and Mailchimp for email marketing, we'd like to show you how you can connect them with Zapier, and influence customers toward purchase with less manual work. 

You'll need a Zapier account to use the workflows in this piece. If you don't have an account yet, it's free to get started.

Here are four ways you can use automation with Zapier to save time with PayPal and Mailchimp. 

  1. Add new customers to your mailing list

  2. Follow up with refunds

  3. Organize your customers for future email campaigns

  4. Filter by transaction type

Before you begin 

Before you start creating a Zap—what we call our automated workflows—with PayPal and Mailchimp, you'll need to check each app to ensure that you have the right permissions. 

SNIPPET: PayPal is a premium app, which requires a paid Zapier plan to use in a Zap. Learn more about premium apps. 

1. Add new customers to your mailing list

When a new customer makes a purchase, you want to keep them around by adding them to your email newsletter. You can alert new customers about new products and sales, enticing them to come back for more. 

While many shoppers ignore pop-up windows promoting a newsletter, if you're collecting opt-ins at purchase, you can use a Zap to automatically add people to your Mailchimp list from successful PayPal purchases. You'll want to add a filter step to make sure only people who have opted in get added to your marketing lists. Click on the Zap below to get started. 

Add new PayPal customers to Mailchimp

Add new PayPal customers to Mailchimp
  • PayPal logo
  • Mailchimp logo
PayPal + Mailchimp

A note: If you have double opt-in enabled in your Mailchimp account, new subscribers won't show up in your subscriber list until they've confirmed their subscription status. 

You can also insert a search step in a Zap to check for existing subscriptions before adding a customer to a specific Mailchimp list. 

2. Follow up with refunds

We've all been there: you're excited about a purchase, but it doesn't work out how you thought it would. It's a disappointing experience as a consumer and for the seller—but it's also an opportunity for your business to build goodwill. 

For example, when a refund processes in PayPal, you could send a Mailchimp email targeted at customers who have requested a refund. 

Instead of manually adding users to this list, here's what you can do: First, create a tag in Mailchimp. This could be something like "PayPal refund." Then, set up an automation within Mailchimp to send a single email. Assign the follow-up email to your refund tag.  

You'll need to do this instead of using the Send Campaign action in a Zap, which will send an email to your entire audience. 

Then, set up the Zap below:

Once you turn the Zap on, it will ensure Mailchimp will send a one-off email to customers after their refunds are processed.

3. Organize your customers for future email campaigns

Mailchimp tags are a great way to organize your subscriber list and build segments for future marketing campaigns. You may not be a mind reader, but you can make an educated guess about what your customers will be interested in based on their purchases. 

Let's say you run a consulting business, and you offer three categories of products for sale: webinars, eBooks, and custom workshops. You tag your customers in Mailchimp according to the product types they purchase. You know customers who buy your eBooks are the DIY-types who will take your advice and run with it. With your customers tagged correctly in Mailchimp, you can build a segment for a future marketing campaign where you plan to send out relevant tips while promoting a new eBook. 

You can start tagging customers quickly with the Zap below. 

Once you turn it on, Zapier will automatically add a customer to a Mailchimp tag when they've purchased a specific product in PayPal. 

Want to take care of all your Mailchimp tagging in one Zap? Try using a Path, available on our paid plans, to create branching logic.

4. Filter by transaction type

If you want to trigger Zaps from specific PayPal transactions, you can use a filter—available on our paid plans— with PayPal's All Merchant Transactions trigger. 

While All Merchant Transactions triggers a Zap regardless of status, a filter can ensure your Zap only runs under certain conditions. 

PayPal categorizes transactions into different types. For example, if you offer a subscription product through PayPal, it will note the transaction type.

If you want to create a Zap that triggers off of subscription payments, for example, you can filter by transaction type.  When setting up a filter in Zapier, select the field you want to filter. Click on the dropdown, search for and select Txn Type (that's transaction type).

Selecting PayPal data in the Zap editor. A value labeled "Txn Type" is selected.

Then, set up your filter condition and type in the transaction type you want to filter. Check out this chart for a list of PayPal's transaction types

Automate your post-purchase marketing

Whether you're trying to build your email marketing list, sending automated follow-ups for refunds, or planning future marketing campaigns for your customers, Zapier can help you automate the moving pieces between PayPal and Mailchimp.

Explore other ways you can connect Paypal and Mailchimp, or create a Zap from scratch

New to Zapier? It's a tool that helps anyone connect apps and automate workflows—without any complicated code. Sign up for free.

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