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How Do I Add a Paypal Donate Button to a Website?

Posted on 2012-04-03
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Last Modified: 2016-03-24
I'm helping a friend make a few modifications to a simple website that someone else created for her using Apple's iWeb software.

I saved a copy of each of the site's pages to my computer and I can view the HTML code using Sea Monkey. I don't have any experience with web design or HTML. How can I add a Paypal "Donate" button to the site that would link the visitor over to Paypal to process the donation?
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Question by:anuneznyc
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by:atsvirginia
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by:anuneznyc
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Thanks for the link. One other thing I need help with. We need to allow visitors to the site to be able to make automated recurring contributions (in addition to the option to make a one-time donation). Apparently the only way to do this in Paypal is by using the "Subscribe" button. However, in this context, having a "Subscribe" button on a charity website is not really accurate and could be confusing for some visitors, since they're not really subscribing to anything. It would be much clearer if the button were labeled "Make Recurring Gift" or "Recurring Donation". How can the button be modified, or maybe replaced with a more clearly labeled button, while still keeping the associated link that will bring the visitor to the Paypal site?
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Put two buttons on the page next to each other, one being a "Donate" button, and the other being a "Subscribe" button.  You can customise the appearance of the area on the page that contains you PayPal buttons quite considerably using the "Create Button" wizard on the PayPal webpage.

One thing you can do yourself is to include some small explanatory text above, below, or to the side of the buttons, and this could be used to inform the reader that the Donate button is a one-time donation, and that the Subscribe button is a regular monthly subscription.

In the process of creating your PayPal button on their site, instead of using the default paypal buttons you can pick your own.  You could, for example, set up a monthly subscription option where the person can choose  $1, $2, $5, $10, or $20 per month from a drop-down menu. if you wanted to.  There are a lot of options.

If you still feel that the "Subscribe" button text is misleading, even with a small note near it to explain it is a "recurring donation", then the "Create Button" on the PayPal site has the option to use your own button image.  I am pretty sure that you cannot actually customise their button text in the same way as you can do with standard "Windows" forms, but maybe things have changed recently with PayPal.

All you do is type in the full web address to where the image is stored.  You would obviously have to prepare the image in advance, upload it to your own webspace in a suitable folder, and then take a note of the URL to type into the Paypal setup.  It's pretty easy to create buttons in most fairly well featured image editors and some web page editing software, but you really need to bear in mind that most people know what the "yellow pessary" shaped Paypal button looks like and may have a mistrust of a "custom" one.  This person disagrees though:
http://www.johnhaydon.com/2010/12/donation-button-scary/

To get a feel for how PayPal's "Create Button" works, and what options are available, you really need to go through the motions of designing one and saving it to your profile (in this case your friend's Paypal profile).  It's easy enough to manage your buttons and you can delete your experimental ones any time you want.  The buttons aren't posted anywhere until you take the "embed code" that is generated using the button wizard and physically add it to the code of the web page where you wish it to appear, so you can mess around and check how it renders and works before "going live" with it.

I hope this helps a bit, but any problems just ask.
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by:anuneznyc
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BillDL, Thanks for the excellent explanation. That is extremely helpful. I will try out your suggestions this evening and will post any follow-up questions I may have. Thanks!
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by:Insignificant Volunteer
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Thank you anuneznyc
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