PayPal Buy Button Conundrum Outside Of The USA
If you are a one man band or a small enterprise based outside the USA selling tangible goods over the internet
using PayPal Buttons you will very soon encouter this problem.
The thing is, PayPal seems to have one set of options (Buy Now Buttons) for customers in the USA and another for everyone else.
It seems Paypal business customers' setup is completely different depending on the country that you are selling from.
PayPal sellers that reside in the United States have deeper customization for their shipping and postal rules than
sellers from other regions or countries.The justification for this is still to be explained. I have a reasonable explanation -
". Because the functionality employed in customizing the shipping and postal rules in the USA can easily be ported to other
regions and countries.
If you are a seller based in the USA you can automatically Calculate Shipping Charges Based On Shipping Location. Once you log in to
your account in PayPal you can define the amount that an individual pays for shipping (or freight) for your products, and the amount
can be re-calculated automatically with respect to other locations in the USA .You can setup rules for domestic (i.e. U.S. based sales) and you could define different shipping rates
by state or for groups of states (including ALL states). You can also set different International rates based on the buyer's country or location.
You can even get more granular with these setting if you so wish.
Here is how we came about this weird scenario. A customer we have designed a bespoke responsive website had
requested a simple e-commerce integration - where they can initially start off with one tangible product (A book) and
a pay per access online premium content. In our initial analysis PayPal was the obvious choice. It is global, simple, intuitive and no
upfront charge. However though, you do need to create a business account and that is it.
Two Paypal Buy Now Buttons
were setup, one for the book purchase and the other to provide access to the premium online content.
Post launch of the site, everything works as intended. The first week saw 10 online members accessing the premium content through a
registration form and a Paypal Pay Now Button
.There were 8 purchases of the book all based in the UK.However, a week later there was
a purchase from Belgium. We had assumed that PayPal will automatically re-calculated the postal cost since it was outside of the UK.
It never happened, thus the book postal cost of Â£2.50 within the UK had to be applied to Belgium as well - costing our client Â£5.00 extra for P&P.
We got back to Paypal customer's Profile and looked at all the options available to see if there were any shipping or postal options
for customers outside of the UK - to our surprise there was none. We called Paypal and mentioned the fact that these options were
available to Paypal Business customers in the USA but not in the UK? - still waiting for a reasonable response.
We came to the conclusion that for the time being, we had to solve the problem ourselves otherwise our client will sooner rather that later
be incurring postal charges that the business can not afford. The solution was to implement upfront (before connecting to Paypal) a script that will detect the
customer's location and display a single corresponding Paypal Buy Now Button for that destination with appropriate shipping or postal cost applied.
This was done with frontend technology jQuery
for it simplicity and broad support from the main browsers(Chrome,Firefox,Explorer,Safari and Opera)
In the customer's profile in Paypal,5 new Buy Now Buttons were created - each corresponding to these six regions -
- North America
- South America
- Europe(excluding UK)
These buttons were coded with the appropriate postal delivery cost from the UK included. Thus, the extracted paypal Code placed on the website would have the postal charges for the aforementioned regions taken care of.
On the page where a purchase is to be made, a form with a selection input
request the customer to select their destination or location before any paypal Buy Now Button
. On selecting their location triggers the JQuery
script to display the appropriate paypal Buy Now Button
for the location chosen ensuring the correct postal cost is added to the book price. Problem solved and we do not have to wait for a Paypal's solution. Design is all about thinking out of the box.
See how it works LIVE