Coastline Comics is a dealer in high quality collectible comics. Already a successful seller on eBay, through both auctions and the Coastline Comics eBay store, a more distinctive Internet presence was desired to present not only current inventory, but information on upcoming events, featured items and news about the company. Rather than duplicate the inventory data entry, the eBay API is being used to regularly update the inventory for CoastlineComics.com. Using this approach, the inventory data is only entered once through the familiar eBay user interface.
One of the shortcomings of the eBay store interface is the inability to purchase more than one item at a time. A shopping cart on CoastlineComics.com solves this problem. Any number of store items may be purchased through the integrated PayPal shopping cart. As a transaction is completed, the PayPal Instant Payment Notification (IPN) system notifies CoastlineComics.com of the items sold, which are then automatically removed from the eBay store inventory via the eBay API.
An easy to use web interface allows new events and company news to be added to the site from any Internet browser.
- Integration with the eBay API
- PHP – Used to create the dynamically generated web interface, as well update and read the locally cached copy of inventory pulled from the eBay API. PHP is also the language used to access the eBay API.
- MySQL – Holds all the inventory data
- XML – All data transfers between CoastlineComics.com and the eBay API are in the form of XML data. In some cases, the XML data received is very large (over 7MB), and a very efficient means of parsing and processing was developed in order to lessen the impact on the server in a production environment.
- Integration with PayPal shoping cart and payment processing interface
- Integration with PayPal Instant Payment Notification (IPN) interface
- Dynamically generated HTML pages and forms