Configuring a Subscription button for recurring payment and adding it to a post or page is very easy using the WP eStore plugin.
Please note that this documentation is for creating a PayPal subscription button only
Subscription payments for other payment gateways are handled via the payment gateway bundle addon. Refer to the documentation of that addon if you are creating a subscription button for a different gateway.
Creating A PayPal Subscription Button
Follow the steps below to create a subscription product/button in eStore plugin:
Step 1: Click on the “Add/Edit Products” menu in your WP eStore admin area to create a new product.
Step 2: Fill in the product details as you see fit. You can enter a descriptive price in the “Price” field of a subscription product. Example values:
- 29 USD Per Month
- 47 USD for 3 Installments
- 7 Days Trial Then 19 USD Per Month
Step 3: Go to the “Subscription/Recurring Payment Specific Settings” section of this product and enter the subscription details correctly. Save the product when you are done.
Step 4: Type the following shortcode to display a subscription button for this product on a WordPress post or page.
Replace ‘PRODUCT-ID’ with the actual id of the product (example: 15)
Example Subscription Button
The following Subscription button charges the customer $29.95 USD for the first 7 days Then $49.95 USD for each month, for 6 installments.
You can also display the subscription button using one of the fancy displays like the following:
Feel free to hit the subscription button to see how it works.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I customize the button image? – Yes, simply specify your custom button image URL in the “Button Image URL” field when configuring the product.
- Can I display a subscription button using one of the fancy displays? – Yes, please check the shortcodes documentation to find a suitable shortcode.
- Can the subscription be added to the shopping cart? – No, please see the “Notes” section at the bottom of this page for detailed explanation.
Example Values for a Subscription Button
Here are some examples showing you what values to use to create a subscription button
Example 1: To create a subscription button that charges $27.00 USD for each month until canceled use the following values:
Trial Billing Amount -> (leave empty)
Trial Billing Period -> (leave empty)
Recurring Billing Amount -> 27.00
Recurring Billing Cycle -> 1 Month
Recurring Billing Count -> (leave empty)
Example 2: To create a subscription button that charges $29.95 USD for the first 7 days Then $49.95 USD for each month, for 6 installments use the following values:
Trial Billing Amount -> 29.95
Trial Billing Period -> 7 days
Recurring Billing Amount -> 49.95
Recurring Billing Cycle -> 1 Month
Recurring Billing Count -> 6
How to Test A Subscription Payment
- Please read this post before you test a subscription payment button.
Please note that the subscription payment cannot be added to the shopping cart. Why? because PayPal handles subscription payments through a different API than the normal one (Subscription payments are usually complex). How do you process two of the following payments together when you checkout using the shopping cart?
- Charge the customer $29.95 USD for the first 7 days Then $49.95 USD for each month
- Charge the customer $49.95 USD for the first 14 days Then $19.95 USD for each month, for 6 installments.
Also, PayPal will not process multiple subscriptions through the cart checkout API so if a customer added 5 subscriptions to the cart and then tried to checkout it will get stuck.
Note: We provide technical support for our premium plugins via our customer only support forum
I just wanted to say to Ivy and BobinOz that Amin told me, you can indeed do recurring subscriptions for users without a PayPal account.
But you need to use a PayPal merchant account.
I am about to try it out.
I feel such tips would be useful for those who are running electronic commerce. The steps and help given in the article are great for any novice who want to know how to use PayPal for getting payments.
Hi, PayPal handles recurring subscription payments a little different then “Add to Cart / Buy Now buttons”. The customer would need to have a PayPal account even if they are paying with a credit card.
If I set up a Paypal subscription does the user need to have a Paypal account to pay?
As you know, if it’s a Buy Now button, users have an option to pay through Paypal or, if they don’t have a Paypal account, use their credit card. is it the same for subscription or will they be asked to join Paypal to proceed?
Hi Steve, You will need to use the “Fancy Subscription” shortcode for this.
You can find a list of all the shortcodes, Php functions, and email tags here:
I’ve been trying to put some products on my site.
When I came to my subscription I got the subscribe button OK but when I try the “fancy product” code it sayd Add to cart not subscribe. How can I get a subscribe button in the fancy products part. I’d like to show an image you see.
Just click on products and you’ll see.
Hi, I tried to email you about this but your email address was incorrect. Can you please send me a link to your site so I can take a look at what is happening?
All of my payment link are working except the 2 “subscribe” ones. I double checked the short code and it’s exactly the way you have it on your site [wp_eStore_subscribe:product_id:5:end] , yet when I or my customers click on it, it brings you to PayPal’s home page not to the check out. Not sure why and the other “buy now’s” all work. Can you please help my trouble shoot this. I couldn’t find anything in your FAQ or Troubleshooting section on this sort of problem. I would really appreciate a quick response since the site is live already.
Hi Mark, The amount you enter at the top is the amount that will be displayed in the Fancy displays and so on. To setup the payment you will need to enter in the subscription details in the “Subscription/Recurring Payment Specific Settings”. If you want to charge $20.00 for the first month and $10.00 for each month after you would set it up like this.
Trial period $20.00 for 30 days or 1 month
Recurring Billing Cycle 30 days or 1 month
Recurring Billing Count empty (will keep recurring until the customer cancels the payment) or if you want to specify a number of payments (e.g 6 monthly payment then the membership will cancel)
When setting up a subscription payment, do I enter the first amount to be processed in the price section at the top under product name and then enter the recur\ring amount down below under subscription/recurring?
I want to charge an amount immediately then the same amount every month.
Thank you Ivy. This plugin just created a lot of new business for me.
Hi Chrisma, Yes you can have a digital download with your subscription. This will be delivered after the first payment is made. All you need to do is specify the information in the “Digital Content Details” under the “Add/Edit” products menu.
Let me know if you need anything else.
Can a subscription deliver a digital download on the first payment to the subscriber?
I want to allow an item to be paid for over by breaking the payments up over 3 months using the subscription.
1.) They will need to go directly to Paypal and cancel their subscription. Once a subscription is cancelled Paypal will notify the eStore and the subscription will be cancelled via the plugins.
2.) The reoccurring payment will reoccur automatically for as long so you specify it to in the eStore’ s”Add/Edit” products menu. You can specify different reoccurring payments per item/subscription.
3.) You can set how many times you would like the eStore to retry the payment. If the payment fails after the specified attempts the subscription will be cancelled.
4.) No the client can not specify a start date. The membership will start as soon as the payment has cleared Paypal.
A few questions.
If a subscriber wants to cancel at some point, can they do that by logging into their account on my wordpress site or must they go direct to paypal?
Are the payments automatic or must I run a script of some kind each day?
What happens when a subscription payment fails through paypal? Am I and is my client notified? If so, how?
Can the client select a specific start date for the subscription?
Ryan, Subscription can’t be added to the shopping cart as Paypal has a slightly different interface to handle subscription payment. this is why when you land on paypal for a subscription payment looks slightly different than the standard one (which is used for normal checkouts).
Is there any way to add the subscription button into the shopping cart.
I have multiple one time products plus a subscription add on. How can I mix the two without them having to check out twice?
@Dave, Please put the image URL in the the button image URL field of the product. There are some subscription button images included in the plugin’s “images” folder.
Just testing out this plugin, I put in the subscription info, I tested it ok with the ‘Add To cart’ which works ok but when using the subscribe button/option as stated above the subscribe logo is not appearing, is there an option somewhere where I have to specify the location of the subscribe logo ?
Thanks so much for responding quickly. I’m still trying to figure out what will work (will need a membership/password protected pages plugin) but this plugin is definitely at the top of the list.
It should work with any account.
Wow, great! Do you need any special kind of Paypal account for it, like Express Checkout or Paypal Pro, or will it work with any account?
Yes, it can do automatic recurring billing (It has a recurring billing section where you can configure all these things)
And thanks for the quick reply!
Could it handle automated recurring billing? I can find other software to password protect etc.
Hi Tracey, This plugin handles the payment side of things. It doesn’t handle the content delivery part (This can be done through a membership plugin).
How would this plugin handle a situation where the payment is monthly, but content is delivered weekly with a couple of bonus content pieces?
Yeah, it works with the WishList plugin. You put the membership level code in the Reference text so when someone pays using that subscribe button the plugin knows which membership to create for this customer.
Holy this might be exactly what I was needing! Does this work with WIshlist Membership plugin? Am I putting their special code in the last field?