Understanding Stripe Webhooks
Webhooks are a vital part of using Stripe and can be a powerful tool in your arsenal when developing almost any kind of payment-related system, platform, or app. Despite having a relative niche purpose in some situations, they can be an important detail to remember for very specific situations.
What are Webhooks?
A webhook is simply an HTTP request that is sent to a URL when an event occurs. For example, every time your site receives a new purchase, a webhook is sent to a special webhook endpoint that will trigger a particular event.
This makes them a fairly powerful addition to anything you are developing. The main reason for this is that they can, in some cases, allow for communication between two different apps – something that can be incredibly difficult to do on many devices.
This allows webhooks to do things like trigger app notifications, send messages between apps, or just generally provide a range of functional features that make them worth using.
What are Webhooks For?
Webhooks on Stripe are useful for a lot of scenarios. For example, they can send webhook requests to your site every time someone makes a purchase, pays a subscription, makes a donation, or changes their preferences. Your webhook endpoint handles these requests and updates your database, then your site can render the customer’s data or redirect them to a new view.
Within Stripe, webhooks can be used for almost any purpose. For example, it may allow Stripe to tell another app when you have received some money or notify you about payment disputes. These things can be important to know about, and there are often additional actions or events that need to be triggered alongside the warnings.
Your webhook endpoint can optionally be integrated with your own databases and analytics tools, and it can send data to any URL you specify. For example, you could track a particular customer or purchase on your site.
If you are using Stripe, then it is entirely possible to end up overlooking webhooks for most of your time with the platform. However, they are incredibly important and neglecting them entirely usually just leads to additional struggles as you try to find workarounds to do the same things that they can already do.
It is not too hard to create webhooks if you already understand how Stripe works in terms of coding and development. However, it is also really important to make sure that you are testing Stripe webhooks every time you make a change or adjust part of the code.
Webhooks can be important, and they often have to trigger to present specific information or alerts to users. If they are not triggering correctly, or are not sending messages to the right place, then it can become a serious detriment to the user. For example, they may not be warned of urgent payment disputes.
Setting up webhooks correctly can be extremely important, and testing them is the best way to ensure that nothing has gone wrong with how you have integrated them into your code. Just be sure to test them every single time you make a change.