How to Create a Simple Shopping Cart With PayPal

PayPal buttons make it easy for your customers to buy your products

PayPal is an easy way to pay for online purchases, used and trusted worldwide by merchants and customers alike. If you have a small business and want to add a PayPal shopping cart and payment functionality to your website, here's a simple way to do it using PayPal payment buttons.

Sites like Blogger, Facebook, and WordPress have specific instructions for adding PayPal shopping carts and payment options. Check with your website's host to see if there's a special process you should follow.

PayPal checkout payment button

About PayPal Shopping Carts and Payment Buttons

There are several ways to create a PayPal shopping cart, depending on your business's needs. PayPal partners such as Ecwid and Foxycart add basic shopping cart functionality to your website, while commercial solutions like BigCommerce, ZenCart, and VirtueMart offer customer service, analytics, and much more.

But if you're just starting out and want a simple way to accept PayPal payments on your website, PayPal makes it easy. You'll need to open a PayPal Business account, create a PayPal Payment button or buttons, and then add your button code to your web page,

Step 1: Open a PayPal Business Account

  1. If you don't have a PayPal account, navigate to paypal.com/business and select Sign Up. (Skip to step 5.)

    Go to paypal.com/business and select Sign Up.
  2. If you already have a PayPal personal account, log in, and select Settings (gear) from the top right.

    Log in, and select Settings
  3. Under Account Options, select Upgrade to Business Account.

    Under Account Options, select Upgrade to Business Account.
  4. To keep your personal account and create a business account (recommended), select Use a new email with your business account, and then select Next.

    select Use a new email with your business account
  5. Enter your email address and select Continue.

    Enter your email address and select Continue.
  6. Enter a password and select Continue.

    Enter a password and select Continue.
  7. Enter your business information.

    Enter your business information.
  8. Check the box to agree to the Terms and Conditions, and then select Agree and Create Account.

    Check the box to agree to the Terms and Conditions, and then select Agree and Create Account.
  9. Enter your Business type, and then fill in the requested information (this will vary according to what type of entity you've selected). Select Continue.

    Enter your Business type, and then fill in the requested information
  10. Fill in the Tell us more about you information, and then select Submit.

    Fill in the Tell us more about you information, and then select Submit.
  11. You'll be taken to your new business account Dashboard.

    Your new business account Dashboard.

Step 2: Create PayPal Payment Buttons

PayPal has several payment button options. First, you'll select the best type of button for your needs. For example, if you're selling only one item, choose a Buy Now button. If you want more of a shopping cart feel, opt for the Add to Cart button so customers can add more items.

Read through all PayPal's payment button descriptions to help you figure out what would work best for your needs.

  1. Navigate to PayPal's Payment Button page.

    PayPal's Payment Button page.
  2. Choose the type of button you want to add. In this example, we'll choose Add to Cart.

    Choose Add to Cart Payment Button
  3. Enter an item name and price.

    Enter an item name and price.
  4. Under Customize button, select Add drop-down menu with price/option if you have different prices for different options, such as for size. Enter your various options and their prices.

    Select Add drop-down menu with price/option
  5. Select Add drop-down menu to display various options for your product.

    Select Add drop-down menu to display various options for your product.
  6. Select Add text field if your product needs more information, such as personalization. Select Done if you enter information.

    Select Add text field if your product needs more information, such as personalization.
  7. Select Customize text or appearance if you want to use your own button image or change the language settings.

    Select Customize text or appearance

    Use various combinations of these options to best serve your needs, or don't check any for a simple payment button.

  8. For our example, we'll select Add drop-down menu with price/option, call our menu Sizes, and add Small, Medium, and Large options with varying prices, and then select Done.

    Add drop-down menu with price/option and size options and prices added
  9. Enter your Shipping charge, Tax rate, and the email address on your PayPal account.

    Enter shipping charge, Tax rate, and the email address on your PayPal account.
  10. Select the down arrow next to Step 2 and select the checkbox next to Save button at PayPal. This will allow you to edit your button later and easily create similar buttons.

    elect the checkbox next to Save button at PayPal.

    Select the Track Inventory items if you want to keep track of stock.

  11. Select the down arrow for Step 3, and select Yes to allow buyers to send you a message, and Yes to receive your customer's shipping address.

    Select Yes to allow buyers to send you a message, and Yes to receive your customer's shipping address.

    There are additional advanced customization fields, but we'll leave those blank in this example.

  12. When you're done, select Create Button. You're ready to add your button code to your web page.

    Select Create Button to get the source code for your PayPal payment button

Step 3: Add Your PayPal Payment Button to Your Website

After you customize and create a PayPal payment button, you'll paste the code into your website or email it to your web developer.

  1. On your website, navigate to the page where you want your button.

    Go to your web page where you want the PayPal payment button
  2. Find and select an option such as Code Editor or View or Edit HTML.

    Find and select an option such as Code Editor or View or Edit HTML.
  3. Navigate to where you want your button to appear and then paste your code.

    Navigate to where you want your button to appear and then paste your code.
  4. Make sure you're happy with the button's placement.

    View your button's placement
  5. Save and publish your web page. Your PayPal payment button is ready for action.

    Make sure to test your payment button. Go back to PayPal to edit your button and make more payment buttons.