Setting Up PayPal Standard Payments in WooCommerce

PayPal is a world-renown payment processor operating worldwide for many types of online payments. You don’t need to put much effort into integrating PayPal and WooCommerce because you have PayPal Standard payment method as a built-in payment method that comes along with free WooCommerce plugin. There is also a free PayPal Checkout extension available for WooCommerce.  In this article, we will see how to setup the PayPal Standard and PayPal Checkout for your WooCommerce Store.

PayPal Standard Payments

To use this payment method you don’t need to install any additional plugins because WooCommerce by default comes with a PayPal Standard payment method. This method redirects customers to PayPal to enter their payment information when they’re checking out.

To setup, the PayPal payment gateway first you need to have a PayPal Business account. If you don’t have a business account create one first. If you already have a PayPal Personal account you can convert it into a Business account.

Setting Up WooCommerce PayPal Standard Payments

This setup has to be done in 2 parts; the 1st part is done from your WooCommerce store and the 2nd part is done from your PayPal dashboard.

First, log in to the Admin dashboard of your WooCommerce store and then follow the steps below:

  1. In your dashboard go to WooCommerce → Settings → Payments
  2. On this screen, you can see all the Payment Options available in your WooCommerce Store
  3. You can see the PayPal payment method along with some other methods such as Direct bank transfer, Check payments, and Cash on delivery. Here click the Toggle of PayPal method to Enable it, as you see in the image
  4. Then click the ‘Setup’ and you will be taken to PayPal Standard settings screen
  5. In this Settings page, if the “Enable PayPal Standard” is not checked, do click the Checkbox
  6. Give the email of your PayPal business account in the ‘PayPal Email’ field and give an appropriate Title and Description in the respective fields
  7. Under the ‘Advanced Options’ section, you could see many other options such as Debug Log, PayPal Sandbox, and more. We will cover these options later in this article but before that, we will work on connecting your WooCommerce and PayPal with API credentials

Setting Up PayPal API Credentials in WooCommerce

To find your PayPal API Credentials log in to PayPal Business account

  1. After logging in to your account, go to Tools, in the drop-down you can find All Tools option and click it
  2. In the All Tools page, click Integrate PayPal –> API Credentials
  3. In this page, you can find all your API Credentials, under the Custom Checkout Experience section to the NVP/SOAP API integration (Classic) and click Manage API Credentials under it
  4. After this step, you might be asked to verify your identity as the real account owner.
  5. Once verified, if you do not have an API Signature you have to click Request API signature → Agree →  Submit
  6. If you already have an API Signature you will have a page like in the image below
  7. Here you can find your API Username, API Password, and API Signature
  8. Now go to your WooCommerce PayPal Standard settings page and under the API Credentials section, copy and paste the API Username, API Password, and API Signature
  9. Now your site is ready to receive payments using PayPal. We will cover the additional options below.

Note: An SSL Certificate is not necessary to setup PayPal payments since the payments will be processed on PayPal’s servers. But you should have an SSL certificate in order to display your site’s URL as HTTPS because customers expect it and may not buy anything from your site if you don’t have it. Many hosting providers give free SSL Certificate, see if your Web Host gives free SSL and you can change to a hosting that gives one.

Setup PayPal IPN for your WooCommerce Store

PayPal IPN (Instant Payment Notifications) is a message service that automatically notifies your WooCommerce store when a transaction is done, whether it is successful or unsuccessful.

Note: To fully integrate PayPal with your WooCommerce store you need to either enable IPN or generate a PayPal Identity token. The identity token will be explained later in the article, but we recommend that you go with PayPal IPN.

How to Activate PayPal IPN for WooCommerce

To activate the Instant Payment Notifications for your store,

Login to your Paypal Business account,

  1. Click the Settings (Gear) Icon, in the top right and go to the Account Settings page
  2. Then go to the ‘Notifications’ tab and find the Instant Payment Notifications option and click ‘Update’
  3. In this page click the Choose IPN Settings button
  4. You will be taken to a page as in the image below.  Here in the Notification URL field give your WoCommerce stop address domain or subdomain in which the WooCommerce plugin is installed
  5. Choose the ‘Receive IPN Messages (Enabled)’ option in the IPN Messages option below and save the changes.
  6. Then go to the WooCommerce PayPal Standard settings page in your store and Tick the checkbox that says ‘IPN Email Notifications’ to enable the PayPal IPN notifications.

Other Important settings in the WooCommerce PayPal Standard payment method

I will explain the use of each one of the options in the Advanced Options section:

PayPal identity token

If you’re not using IPN Notifications, this option is necessary to verify the PayPal transaction to your WooCommerce store.

How to Get PayPal Identity Token for WooCommerce Store

To get your Identity token login to your PayPal business account and,

  1. Go to Settings → Website Payments. Click Update beside the “Products & Services”.
  2. In this page, Select On for “Auto return for website payments.” and  enter the URL of your WooCommerce store
  3. Then select On for ‘Payment data transfer.’ and your identity token will be displayed in the “Payment data transfer” section.
  4. Copy and Past this Identity Token in your WooCommerce store

PayPal Sandbox 

It allows you to test your PayPal payments by creating Sandbox payments. To get create PayPal Sandbox you need to create a developer account in PayPal and you could get Sandbox API Credentials that you need to enter in your WooCommerce PayPal settings. But remember to disable the Sandbox option your site is live.

Debug log

If you enable the Debug log, it will keep track of all the web events such as IPN Requests.

Receiver email

If you have another administrative email other than your PayPal email, you can enter it here and receive all the notification emails from PayPal.

Invoice Prefix

This field is very important if you’re using the same PayPal account for multiple (more than one) stores. If you enter a prefix, it will be added to your PayPal invoice.

Shipping details

PayPal Seller protection by which it validates the Shipping address of a customer and it can reject the payment if the customer does not give a valid address. If you enable this option you will enable the Seller protection.

Address override

By enabling this option you can prevent the address information from being changed after the verification by PayPal.

Payment Action

It has 2 options, Capture will immediately charge the customer and Authorize will allow you to manually capture the payment within 3-days.

Page Style

Its an optional feature that allows you to change the Checkout page style from your PayPal account

Image URL

Its another optional feature that lets you display your store’s Logo in the checkout page. Give the Logo URL from your WooCommerce store (not from any other site).

Finishing Touch

After you’re finished with setting up all the options click the ‘Save Changes’ button. Now you’re WooCommerce Store is ready to accept payments from PayPal. If you want to control what funding methods your customers are allowed such as Credit cards and Debit cards, PayPal Credit, and many other options and customize how the checkout page looks, everything has to be done from your PayPal Dashboard.

If you want to allow customers to directly checkout from your WooCommerce store without having to redirect to another PayPal site, you could do so using the

WooCommerce PayPal Checkout free plugin that overlays an In-Context Checkout Form that is hosted from PayPal’s secure servers and provides a secure way for your customers to enter their account information.

We will see how to use WooCommerce PayPal Checkout, Express Checkout, Payment by Braintree, and other exciting payment methods in the coming weeks.

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