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Basic Shopping Cart | Shopping Cart Link Generator

I'd like to start out by saying I'm only going to be covering the PayPal Shopping Cart in this tutorial as links can be generated for all other type of button directly through the button factory on PayPal by selecting no to encryption. When you go this route you will be provided with a "link for emails". This link has the exact same function as a button, but is simply in link format. However, since you can create these without building them from scratch I will not be discussing them. They are, however based off the same principal, and many of the same rules apply.

Standard PayPal buttons are not for everyone. Many times if someone is coding in flash, needs more control over spacing with or without tables, or simply does not prefer forms a link or URL would work better.

With PayPal you can definitely create links for payment buttons. The concept is relatively simple and I classify it as being in blocks. Every button requires certain information. After that there is additional information that you can add to the hyperlink to make it display correct information.

The base URL for the PayPal Shopping cart is: https://www.paypal.com/cart/

Now this link will not work alone, but I consider this the "frame", if you will, of the link. Everything in what I refer to a "button link" is added to the foundation.

The required information that must be added for the shopping cart to function properly is:
  • The add=1 value
  • The business=youremail@domain.com (Email Address on the PayPal account in question)
  • The Amount
  • The Item Name
Okay now that we've gone over the required stuff, I'll explain how you build the frame of your button. Everything in the button, with the exception of the first variable, is separated with an & symbol.

When using spaces in item names or item numbers separate the words with + symbols. Example: Purple+Terrycloth+Robe The customer will see this as Purple Terrycloth Robe, but for coding purposes there should be + symbols separating the words.

Please also remember that there should be NO spaces in your links

Okay so the basics have been explained, lets put together a link. To start with the basics you would use https://www.paypal.com/cart/ and then add start building it. In this example I am going to add the required variables. So after adding these two variables the link would look like: https://www.paypal.com/cart/add=1&business=youremail@

This link will add 1 Purple Terrycloth Robe for $1.00 to my shopping cart.

For additional options you can add to the link please visit my Options page.

View Cart

The view cart link is the same for all buttons within the shopping cart. The only thing you must make sure is the same is the email address. The email address in the shopping cart links must be the same as it is in the view cart link.

I have provided an example of a view cart button below. In this case you would simply need to edit the email address associated with the link from youremail@domain.com to your PayPal email.



One thing to remember is I always recommend making sure your link uses a target="paypal". This will start the shopping cart and view cart window in a new window preventing it from remaining in frames, which PayPal does not allow, and allows the customer to see the continue shopping button.
< a href="https://www.paypal.com/cart/display=1&business=youremail@domain.com" target="paypal" > Your Picture or Text here

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