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Being highly un-technical, I'm not really sure how this all works...
We are currently developing products that require:
1) Delivery of one-time download URLs
2) Delivery of usernames and passwords for area access on a website
And all this needs to happen in conjunction with our online payment system (WorldPay).
It is scaring me. ;)
Well, I coded my degree dissertation in Fast Basic ;)
Seriously though, no, but since this post I've had a look and there seems to be a couple of off-the-shelf packages available at fairly reasonable rates.
Does anyone have experience of these types of software, and which might be the best?
On the other hand. If you've worked with any programming language then you should at least have a concept of logic constructs like if then else and are aware there are functions to help you achieve some of the basic tasks. I'd suggest you consider learning PHP. It's a scripting language and very easy to learn the basics of.
Like I said before I hand build these so I'm not familiar with the scripts you've indicated.
I suggest you bring this to the attention of the Perl, PHP, and Python scripting board. A lot of folks visit there and may be able to offer you additional insight and/or ideas.
Sorry I couldn't be more help.
BTW - reference this thread so folks can get a historical perspective of what you're after.
what happens if you provide one-time download URLs and the download doesn't complete? the answer is that you could be spending a lot of time sending the product to the customers, arguing with customers, responding to chargebacks and so on.
providing intangible sales also leaves you wide open to fraud as customers do not need to give you genuine postal addresses. that means they could use any valid credit card number and by the time you get the order through, they will have downloaded the product. you will then very probably be charged back.
why not send goods in tangible form instead? printing documents or burning CDs doesn't take much effort, is fairly cheap, makes your product look more professional, and helps prevent fraud. the only way a customer could get the product would be through the post - no fraudster in his right mind would use his real postal address as this would mean they could be traced. where a real address is required for delivery, fraudsters often don't bother.
sure, this isn't a rule, but it certainly helps.
Thanks for those helpful comments. I see that the one-time download thing definitely has drawbacks now, so I'm thinking of just providing them with a password to an area where they can download their product.
The sale price is very low (under $5), and the product unlikely to be attractive to fraudsters. I'm just betting we can get a good amount of impulse buys at that level.
We already provide very similar products in tangible form, but I think with this one it's immediacy the customer is after.
if immediacy is vital and downloads are a must havee, have a free limited (trial) version of whatever available for download prior to purchase, and the full product can be sent by post. there is very little that the vast majority of people cannot wait a day or two for.