How do I make a PayPal Donation Button?

PayPal Donations is a very nice way to let people donate a small amount of your site, usually as a thank you for providing quality information, tips or advice.


You can use this to collect donations from a PayPal Donation button on your website, or even using it as a link in your email. PayPal won’t automatically place the button code on your website, but it’s very easy to copy and paste the code into your blog or website’s code.

To add PayPal Donations to your website, follow these steps:

The webpage you use to design the buttons has three sections. You only need to use the first one: the others are optional.

1. Choose the button type and enter the payment details

2. Save your button (an optional step)

3. Customize the advanced features (also optional)

Let’s get started.

1. Log in to PayPal or setup a new account.

2. Click the Profile tab.

The Profile Summary page opens.

3. Under Selling Preferences, click the My Saved Buttons link.

The My Saved Buttons page opens.

4. Click Create New Button.

The Create Payment Button page opens. This is where you will create the
actual button.

How to Choose the button type and enter payment details

Let’s get started and choose the button type we want to use.

1. In the Accept payments for dropdown menu, select Donations.

2. In Organization name/service, enter the name of your organization

3. In Donation ID (optional), enter a unique number if you want to track the donation.

The next step is to customize the button. In other words, do you want a
simple image with only the word ’Donation’ or do you want to add credit cards to it?

You can also upload your own image, which can be useful if you want to blend
it into your site’s color scheme.

4. Click the blue triangle next to Customize appearance.

5. Click the PayPal button box.

You now have two options:

  • Customize the PayPal button or
  • Upload your own.

6. If you want to customize the PayPal button:

6.1 Click Use smaller button – if you want a Donate button without any
branding or credit card logos.

6.2 Click Display credit card logos – if you want display credit card logos
such as Visa and MasterCard.

6.3 Select the Country and language for button.

FYI: I recommend United States – US – English.

When you change the settings, a preview of your image appears in the Buyer’s
View pane.

7 If you want use your own image.

7.1 Click Use your own button image.

7.2 Enter the URL of where your image is located on the web. At the moment, you can’t upload an image to PayPal directly.

Note: PayPal will not show your image onscreen when you use this option. But, when you create the code later on, it works fine. You can always go back and change it, by the way.

Next you’re going to select the currency.

8. Choose a Currency from one of these:


Again, most of you will select USD (US Dollars but you can choose what you

Tip: If you choose a currency other than USD you run the risk of people not
making a donation. People don’t want to get tricked into paying with a currency they don’t understand. If you make them go check the currency rate, they might have second thoughts on paying.

Keep it simple. Use the USD option.

Next up is the contribution amount.

9. In Contribution amount, select one of the options:

9.1. Click Donors enter their own contribution amount.

Let people choose to donate 1 dollar of 1 million. It’s their choice. Never under-estimate how generous people can be if you provide really
useful content (like this!)

9.2. Click Donors contribute a fixed amount.

I’d avoid this. It’s a bit ham-fisted and forces people to pay when you think
they should, under-mining the principle of making a donation. To me, this looks more like a pseudo-payment. I’d suggest you avoid it. But, hey, it’s your site. Don’t let me stop you.

10. Next, enter the email address where the donations are sent to. Usually you’re PayPal account email address.

Step 2 and 3 are optional, so you can ignore these for now. Take a peek if
you want or you can skip ahead and create the button.

The final step is to get the code for the button.

11. Click Create Button at the end of the screen.

This opens the Button Code page.

12. Click Select Code to select the HTML code.

13 Copy the code (CTRL+C for Windows and CMD+C for Mac)

14. Paste the code into your blog or webpage (Ctrl + V)

We’re not finished yet!

15. PayPal also gives you the option to add the button to emails. Fantastic
if you’re selling things via email or are big into good ol’ web marketing.

Just copy and paste the link into your email. Send a few tests to yourself to
check that it works. Also try the link in Yahoo, Gmail and Hotmail to check that everything works fine with these.

Now you’re finished!

Other things you can do on this page

  • Click Create Similar button if you want to use the button you just
    create as a template for your next button. Nice time-saver as you can use the same configuration settings.
  • Click Create a new button to create a new button from scratch.
  • Click Create Similar button if you want to create another button, withall the same/similar configuration settings as this button

I hope you enjoyed this article and that is made the whole process of
creating PayPal buttons a little easier.

Next week, I’ll show you how to use more advanced features in PayPal, like
setting up a Thank You page or sending customers to a download page

To setup a new PayPal account, please go here.