12 WordPress PayPal Plugins That Make Accepting Payments Easy

Posted on October 27, 2014 by in Tips & Tricks | 31 comments

12 WordPress PayPal Plugins That Make Accepting Payments Easy

There are a ton of reasons why you’d want to be capable of accepting payments through your website. Maybe you run an online store and need to process orders? Maybe you want to accept donations for a worthy cause. Or maybe you want to sell digital products like plugins, themes, or ebooks? Regardless, equipping your site with this capacity can make converting customers easier.

Since PayPal is one of the most popular payment gateways, giving potential customers the ability to pay using it is a surefire way to improve your odds of getting more sales. And you can add this ability to your WordPress site with ease thanks to plugins.

Yes, there are several plugins out there that provide comprehensive e-commerce solutions. However, these aren’t necessarily the best option, especially if you only plan on selling a couple of products, you’re a small-time operation, or you want to maintain a very simple site structure. In these cases, a hyper-focused PayPal plugin would be best.

Here are 12 plugins that are easy-to-use and provide straightforward PayPal integration for your site.

WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart



It’s all in the name, really, WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart offers a straightforward way to add an “Add to Cart” button your site for specific products you want to sell. Once this lightweight plugin is installed, you can include this button on any post or page you want. That way, you don’t have to go through a third-party provider. Just install the button, sync it with your PayPal account and you’re pretty much good to go.

You can create a different button for different products and integrate them easily with shortcodes. Display your shopping cart in the sidebar of your site so users can see how many items are currently in their cart. This added functionality lets customers change item quantity and add or remove items on the fly.

This plugin allows you to sell pretty much any tangible product, service, or media file you want directly from your site. It sends customers a confirmation notice providing the download link for media sales and even integrates with PayPal sandbox for quick testing.

On the backend, you can view an orders menu that displays all the orders you’ve received thus far and you can change up what appears in the emails your customers receive following a purchase. Set up discount coupons with an expiration date, add SKU numbers to product shortcodes, customize the add to cart button image, track coupons, and more.

You can even use WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart with NextGen Photo Gallery for added product shots. Not bad for a free plugin, I’ve got to say.

WP Easy PayPal Payment Accept



Another option for accepting PayPal payments on your site is to use WP Easy PayPal Payment Accept. This makes it super simple to accept payments for products, services, or donations on your site in your posts and pages and even in your sidebar.

Once this plugin is installed, you can quickly create Buy Now buttons and embed them using a shortcode. Set up different buttons for each of your products or services. You also have the option of choosing from different currencies, letting users pick how much they want to pay you, setting language preferences, a cancel URL, and more.

Additionally, this plugin lets you open the payment window in a new tab, collect tax, create a payment widget, and choose between text or image-based buttons.

Ready! Ecommerce Shopping Cart



If running an e-commerce store is a part of your livelihood, then you’re more than likely going to need a dedicated plugin to streamline operations. Ready! Ecommerce Shopping Cart may very well be that plugin.

This plugin comes with a free e-commerce theme and numerous payment gateways. Of course it has PayPal and PayPal Pro, but it also works with Google Wallet, 2Checkout, SagePay, Authorize.net, Skrill, eProcessing Network, checks and money orders, POD, and more.

This plugin also opens your site up to a world of shipping opportunities including USPS, UPS, and FedEx extensions as well as flat rate shipping. Ready! also gives you plenty of flexibility to work with in terms of customization. Change up the product options, create product variations, configure tax options, create widgets, and more. It also comes with sale, gifts, and coupons for added functionality.

Sell Digital Downloads



If your focus is on selling digital products like ebooks, MP3s, PDFs, or videos then Sell Digital Downloads might be a good option for you. This plugin is extremely lightweight and is designed for use with PayPal.

It works like this: upload the files you want to offer for sale via the standard media uploader. Then you can create a new product associated with each of these files. When you sell a download, the customer will receive an email automatically confirming the order and once payment is processed through PayPal, he’ll receive the download in his inbox.

You can create as many products as you want and can even set up custom orders. Managing products is simple and conducted through the main WordPress dashboard. Each product is handled just like a post or page thanks to the custom post type this plugin configures. Plus you can add thumbnails to your downloads, create a product display box, and more.

Paid Memberships Pro



If you want to offer subscriptions or memberships to some aspect of your website, you can do so using Paid Memberships Pro. This plugin lets you partition off posts, pages, categories, downloads, videos, and even support features so access is restricted to the general public. Then, only those who go through the payment gateway gain access.

Speaking of, this plugin works with PayPal, Stripe, Braintree Payments, and Authorize.net, so don’t let anyone tell you don’t have any options! It works with any theme and can be configured to support an unlimited number of membership levels. For instance, you can set up free, paid, or recurring subscriptions that renew annually, monthly, weekly, or even daily. You can offer trial periods, too.

The admin side of things is particularly easy to set up thanks to an intuitive interface. Determine membership access by post, page, or category; export members via CSV file; set up your payment gateway, view and download membership reports, establish member discounts; and more.

Paid Memberships Pro also integrates with plenty of other tools like Post Affiliate Pro and MailChimp, too.

PayPal for WooCommerce



If you run your site on WooCommerce—or you’re thinking about it, at least—PayPal For WooCommerce is a good plugin option to have tucked into your back pocket. It works with PayPal Express, PayPal Website Payments, and PayPal Payments Pro 2.0.

It’s designed to work seamlessly with PayPal so you don’t have to worry about the details—they’re all taken care of for you. Once installed, you’ll no longer have to click between PayPal and WooCommerce interfaces to manage orders and keep everything organized. Instead, you can manage everything from your WordPress backend, which will include all transactions made and your WooCommerce order information.

PayPal for WooCommerce is designed to handle potential errors with ease and it includes localization, so checkout buttons automatically translate into your default language.

WordPress Simple Ecommerce Shopping Cart Plugin



If you need to sell a variety of product types and don’t want to commit to a bulky e-commerce solution WordPress Simple Ecommerce Shopping Cart Plugin might work out well for you. It can be configured to sell products, services, and downloads all from within the confines of your site.

Digital downloads are handled securely thanks to the use of encrypted download links sent via email following purchase. Tangible products are easy to sell, too, with plenty of options select from like color and size. As for services, you can offer service levels with different pricing options to satisfy all of your customers’ needs.

Other features include custom fields, tax shipping, discounts, coupon codes, multiple currency support, robust options for your checkout page, and customizable emails.

PayPal Responder



Keeping an air of professionalism is really important for running a business. So, doing everything in your power to appear like a pro is important. That’s why the PayPal Responder plugin is so useful. Once a payment is processed via PayPal, an email responder is sent to the customer. This can contain whatever content you want and a link pointing to whatever destination you want. The idea is to limit the number of pages you have to click through after deciding to make a purchase before the transaction is completed.

A Pro version of this plugin is also available that offers a few additional features like the ability to attach files to the email responders and an unlimited number of responder templates for managing multiple products.




Another great shopping cart plugin is eShop. This plugin is loaded with features that make running an online store smooth sailing. For instance, you can use custom post types to create new products, add options to each product, and offer downloadable items.

You can also give customers the option of signing up for your site, multiple shipping choices, and you can set up email templates for post-purchase autoresponders. Other features include stock control, order handling in the dashboard, custom out of stock messages, discount options, sales tax options, multisite compatibility, and simple statistics for keeping tabs on your sales data.

PayPal Payment Shortcode



Need to give your site visitors the ability to pay for your products or services but don’t want to go through the trouble of setting up a full online store? The PayPal Payment Shortcode plugin can be of assistance.

Once installed, you just need to configure the short code for your specific product or service. Then you can include it anywhere on your site, including in the sidebar, to accept payment via PayPal. It only takes a few seconds to set up and you’re off and running.

PayPal Donations



Sometimes, you’re not selling anything at all but still would like to accept payment in some form. Since PayPal is such a popular payment gateway, the PayPal Donations plugin is a solid choice. It works by adding a short code and sidebar widget that you can configure for accepting donations on your site.

Just input your PayPal ID and select from a few settings like button style, currency, localization, payment page style, and return page style. Then just drop the short code or the widget onto your site and you can start accepting donations for a worthy cause.

Donations Made Easy – Smart Donations



Because you should never be limited to just one option, Donations Made Easy is another great plugin that lets you accept PayPal payments for donations on your WordPress site. With it, you can set up the specifics for accepting donations across a wide spectrum of purposes.

The plugin supports five different donations styles including Classic, a traditional PayPal or WePay button that takes a visitor to a payment gateway page; text box, which offers a button and a text box for inputting the donation amount; three-button, which lets visitors select from three pre-defined donation amounts; slider, that a user can scroll through to select the donation amount; and forms, which is a Pro feature that lets you gather additional information from your site visitors.

Set up email auto responders and a donation goal meter, accept multiple currencies, and more.

Wrapping Up

There are many reasons why being able to accept payments through your website is necessary. And being able to accept PayPal payments opens you up to even more opportunities for making sales and meeting fundraising goals. Hopefully these 12 plugins give you plenty of options to choose from when selecting the right approach for your site.

Now I’m curious: do you/have you use(d) any of the plugins described here? What was your experience like? If you use a different solution, I’d love to hear about it as well!

Article thumbnail image by BimXD / shutterstock.com

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  1. A complete PayPal tutorial Brenda
    Plugins with ratings from 3.6 to 5 and covering both selling and taking donations… thanks for putting this one together.

  2. Awesome post, I use Paid Membership Pro and really like how simple and easy it is. Woo-Commerce integration of PayPal is also nice and both plugins offer sand box testing which is a plus.

  3. I’ve used WordPress Simple PayPal for over a year. I’m a very weak programmer, but this was a breeze. It has been nearly flawless. It may be the best free plug-in I’ve used. This is a great choice for someone who wants something basic, but dependable.

  4. Great list, Brenda. I have only tried Paid Membership Pro, so will check out others.

  5. And what about easy digital downloads, woocomerce, s2member?

  6. Thank you so much for this post. I’m looking to setup a site for my sports club which will allow people to pay for their memberships using paypal. Do any of these plugins allow the buyer to specify further information to their purchase. In my case it would be things like Name, Gender, DOB, etc.

    Any help is greatly appreciated.

  7. Thanks a lot for this article Brenda.

    I may say something wrong but, i don’t understand the purpose of PayPal for WooCommerce as its already Native. After reading the plugin description on WordPress.org and checking my latest Woocommerce deployment i don’t see the main purpose of installing this, according to the fact that you are adding risks of conflicts on a Woocommerce installation (wich is very imp$rtant, if you see what i mean) .

  8. Nice one Brenda, so sad PapyPal hasn’t fully support Nigerian online merchant though they’ve given us a leg up to pay. It’s well. Cheers

  9. I use Gravity forms with the PayPal Addon.

    I like the ease of form customization

    And i like the way you can make forms with steps before payment

  10. Too bad I really dislike PayPal, or some of these would be helpful.

    • I use “WP PayPal and Stripe Online Payments By vCita” and they let you choose between PayPal and Stripe!
      The offer both a button/ form for your site, as well as some management options including invoicing options…

  11. Just wanted to say thank you for this post. I have been researching plugins like this for a client of mine and this list is exactly what I needed. Great article and perfect timing.

  12. If you are developing a custom payment feature, which requires more than just a shopping cart or add on button, and just need the basic PayPal framework adding into WordPress – I would highly recommend “PayPal Framework”. It deals with the IPN and PDT redirects and POST backs with ease. It’s a little unloved at the moment, but gives developers great access to all the PayPal POST data with response hooks, and also has a sandbox mode for testing. You have to roll your own submit URL according to PayPal’s API, but as mentioned at the start – this is more for the developers than basic users.

  13. Been using PMPro to all of my membership sites, and it’s really good. What I would like to know is, if there’s a WP plugin that can ask a user’s email before donating or downloading? Is there such?

  14. Thanks for this!
    I was just looking for additional options for using paypal on some client websites.

  15. Thank you for this post! Would anyone by any chance have a working guide on how to track conversions in Google Analytics from WooCommerce +PayPal? Thanks!

  16. Great list of plugins!

    For those who want to step away from PayPal, there’s a great Plugin for Stripe that enables quick and seamless card transactions.

  17. Hi Brenda,
    Nice list. In the process of setting up a site for a charity. Thought I would use Paid Memberships Pro. I need to set up reoccurring annual membership payments and this seemed to be my best choice.

    I do have a few problems…. I already keep a FILEMAKER database of membership information. Is there a way to sync this with online data?

    Can I ask other information on sign up to have it stored in a database?



    • I own and operate a database of 2,300 job-and-contract-seekers, and would like to begin charging a membership fee and permitting members to enter their own information into the database. Can you suggest a way to do that in WordPress?

  18. I am a beginner and would like e recommendation for a novice-friendly free or cheap theme that will permit the customer to upload their photo(s) after paying the correct price.

  19. The best blog I had ever gone through. Really a promising blog. And a promising wordpress blog Service Provider.

  20. Hi,

    Thanks for sharing such a great article about 12 WordPress PayPal Plugins That Make Accepting Payments Easy. This is very useful information for online online blog review readers. Keep it up such a nice posting like this.

    Aneesh Paranjay,

  21. Brenda,
    Thank you so much for sharing, I have a woocommerce website and I was searching for a Paypal for Woocommerce plugin

    your post helped me 🙂

    Thank again

  22. Hi Brenda, nice list!
    Can you recommend any Woocommerce plugins that do not involve Paypal? I know PAYMILL because of one friend of mine, but I’m still looking for other options. Spain is not really the best country for this topic, I guess -.-

  23. I am wondering what the simplest payment processor is that will link up to my mailchimp account? (Selling an email series, needs to be triggered)

  24. Just wanted to add another PayPal based donation plugin which might be of interest (a little shameless self-promo). Check out Give: https://wordpress.org/plugins/give We built it to be the most flexible, robust, and intuitive donation plugin for WordPress. Would love to hear some informed feedback. Thanks to the Elegant Themes team for putting out such great content for the WP Community at large.

  25. We just set up our own website using wordpress, and wanted an easy way to have payments or donations go through. I am pretty much a complete noob when it comes to wordpress, so finding out about plugins that wordpress has is a life saver. Thanks for the tips and info regarding this topic.

  26. Hi,

    Anyone who would happen to know a form system able to do « graphical dropdown » choices? For example, a form which would allow the user to pick between 5 large pictures instead of picking a choice in a dropdown list with 5 items.

    Here is an example of site with the type of form I am looking for (scroll down to see the form): https://www.cladwell.com/


  27. We want to be able to give away a digital download (podcast) for a donation in any amount for one month. The donation would trigger an email delivery of the link. Which plugin is best?

  28. I’d like to try the ‘WP Easy PayPal Payment Accept’ for my online shop. I’ve been having trouble find a good plugin to use.

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