Paypal is one of the wonders of the web. Never has it been easier for individuals or small business to receive payments though the web & to be able to accept payment though debit or credit cards without having to own a merchant account. You can have a paypal account setup within minutes & accept payment straight away.
One of the most widely used examples of how paypal is used to sell goods, is with Information Products such as ebooks, special reports or software.
If your using paypal to offer information products, you can simply setup your site to accept payments & deliver the product automatically. Get it right and you could be earning money in your sleep!
The most basic setup is by using Paypals return page tag in the following format.
(Change all  to when entering the html code)
[input type="hidden" name="return" value="http://www.yourname.com/thanks.php"].
Insert this into your paypal code & when a successfull payment is made your visitor is simply diverted to the page you specify. Most of the time it will be a "Thanks For Your Order Page", but additionally you can include the products on this page for your visitor to download straight away.
Although this is the easiest ways to setup autodelivery of your products, by using paypals return page tag visitors have the opportunity to download your product without paying. Don't get me wrong, this method works & I see it used daily, even on established websites but experienced web users know that by viewing the source page of your order page, they can view where your page is located free. By simply copying & pasting the address into their browser
To make it more secure an IPN script can be used which is what we use at eBusiness eBooks. First of all the following tags will need to be installed within the paypal button code.
[input type="hidden" name="return" value="http://www.yourname.com/thanks.php"]
[input type="hidden" name="notify_url" value="http://yourname.com/order.php"]
Notice how we use both the return & the notify_url tag. In the case where you have a script to verify the payment, the return page will be used as a Thank You page, & will also inform the visitor to check their email account. The script in the example we use here simply emails the download loaction to the users email address. I've created a basic script which you can use for delivering intangable goods though your websites here.
Just a few words of advice when using an IPN script such as above in conjunction with paypals return tag. First all all both the return page & the script must be on the same server for them to function correctly & the return page should be a .PHP page & not a .HTM or.HTML page. If you use a html page as the return page the script will not run & your product simply will be delivered. There's no need to change any of the code in the thank you page, simply just rename it to a page with a .php extension.
Now if your not comfortable playing around with paypal buttons or IPN scripts there are a number of services that can take care of everthing for you. One of these is Payloadz which offers delivery of intangable goods. The advantage of these similar services is that they also work on eBay which is where a lot of informational products are sold.
Whichever option you choose, once it's setup you'll comfortably have your business on autopilot without the need to check your email on an hourly basis & sending out several emails containing the download locations.
Mark Kenny sells Information Products though http://www.eBusinesseBooks.com & creates turnkey websites though http://www.Trading-Web-Solutions.com.