Want to create a donation form in WordPress? The best way to do it is with Formidable Forms and we’ll show you how in this step-by-step guide.
Approximate read time: 8 minutes
Achieving your fundraising goals is hard enough.
You don’t need to also figure out how to get a donation form on your WordPress site. But, you don’t have to. With a donation form plugin for WordPress, you can have a beautiful form on your website in minutes.
And that plugin is Formidable Forms. So in today’s post, we’ll show you how to create a donation form in WordPress in a few simple steps.
Let’s get started.
What is a donation form?
A WordPress donation form helps you raise money by collecting donations from people worldwide.
And with a donation plugin on your WordPress website, you can easily connect it with a payment service to handle the donations.
For our example, we’ll use our form builder plugin, Formidable Forms. With its simple drag-and-drop builder, compatibility with all WordPress themes, and pre-built templates, you can save yourself tons of time and have a beautiful form on your website quickly.
So, here’s how to do it.
How do I set up a donation form on my WordPress website?
So, what do you need to get started? Well, Formidable Forms, of course!
For our example today, we’ll use PayPal to accept payments. However, you can use other top payment servicers and the process will be the same. For example, Formidable also has integrations with Stripe, Authorize.net, and WooCommerce Products.
Feel free to try out the free version of our plugin. And, if you like it, just know you can upgrade at any time to get the full features.
All of the payment integrations are included in Formidable’s Business Plan or higher. You don't have to worry if you’re unsure about paying for a form builder.
We have a 14-day money back guarantee, no questions asked. But, we think you’ll like what you get (keep reading to see what we mean).
So, once you install and activate Formidable Forms, we’ll get started.
There are four easy steps:
Let’s get started.
Step 1: Enable your PayPal add-on
Inside your WordPress admin, go to Formidable → Add-ons, find the PayPal add-on, and click Install.
Once it’s activated, go to Formidable → Global Settings, and click PayPal.
You can insert your PayPal email and update any other necessary settings here. Make sure the PayPal Environment is set to Live.
Click Update Options when you’re finished and it’s time to head to step two!
Step 2: Create your donation form
You have two options when creating your donation form: use one of our pre-built donation templates or start with a blank form.
For our example, we’ll start with a Blank Form so you can see how to use Formidable. But, our donation template can speed up the process.
So, in your WordPress admin, go to Formidable → Forms → Add New. In the next menu, select Blank Form. Give your form a name then click Create. This will automatically take you to our simple drag-and-drop form builder.
Here, you can easily choose any field you want and drag it into the form builder.
Since we’re making a donation form, we’ll include a dropdown menu for donation amounts, checkboxes for a single or recurring donation, and a text and email field for people’s first and last names and email addresses.
You can add whatever other fields you want, but this will get you started.
Once you’re finished customizing your form, click Update to save your changes.
Step 3: Customize your donation form settings
To set up your donation form settings, go to Settings → Actions & Notifications → Paypal.
Here you can change multiple settings:
- Label: Give your form an easy reference name (only you see this).
- Item Name: Only appears on the PayPal page and receipt. You can type in a product name or choose a field from your form.
- PayPal Email: The email you use for PayPal.
- Amount: Choose an amount for the online payment. You can select a field from your form or choose ‘Set Amount’ to type in your own amount.
- Payment Type: Choose one-time payment, donation, or subscription. We’ll choose donation, but you can set up recurring donations with a subscription type.
- Currency: Choose the currency you’ll accept donations in.
- Return URL: The URL you want to send visitors to after their payment is processed.
- Cancel URL: Where to send the visitor if they cancel the transaction.
Most of these settings will depend on your website. However, for Amount, choose the dropdown field you set. This will make sure whatever value the visitor chooses gets entered.
Once you finish adjusting these settings, click Update to save your settings.
Now, it’s time to put your form on your post/page!
Step 4: Display your form
Alright, the hard work is done! Now, it’s time to get your form up and running so you can kickstart your fundraising platform.
To do this, head to the post/page where you want to display your form.
Add a new WordPress block, and search for the Formidable WordPress block and add it. Next, choose your donation form from the dropdown menu.
Click Update to save your changes, and you’re set! Your donation form is now live to start accepting PayPal donations.
Step 5: Start accepting credit cards for donations (optional)
PayPal is the most-used payment processing service in the world.
But that doesn’t mean everyone uses it. That means you’re missing out on nonprofit donations by not catering to everyone!
So, let’s add a credit card field so we can accept all donations.
Add credit card fields
First, head back to your form by going to Formidable → Forms and select your donation form. On the left-hand side, grab another dropdown menu and add it to your form above the Donation Amount.
Type “How would you like to make a donation?”, then in the Field Options, add a selection for Paypal and one for Credit Card.
Next, drag a Credit Card form field into your form below the Donation Amount. You’ll also see another field appear in the form. You don’t have to change this, it’s only for the payment gateway settings.
Now, here’s the fun part. In the Field Options, click Add Conditional Logic.
Next, set up your conditional logic settings to display “Show this field if any of the follow match: How would you like to make a donation? equals Credit Card”.
Now, your credit card field will only show if your website visitor chooses it. Pretty awesome, right?
But, we’re not done yet.
Since we’re accepting credit cards, we need some more information. So, let’s add an address field since we need that for credit card payments. And, since we don’t need this for PayPal, we’ll add conditional logic where it only shows if the visitor chooses Credit Card.
And we’re set for the form. Just click Update to save your changes.
Now, let’s add in an action so we can receive the payment.
Add credit card action
So, just like we had to set up an action for PayPal, we’ll do the same for credit cards.
Head to Settings → Actions & Notifications and choose Collect a Payment.
Just like PayPal, we’ll adjust a few settings:
- Action Name: Give for action a reference name.
- Amount: Select your Amount field from your form.
- Payment type: One-time or recurring.
- Currency: Choose the currency you’ll accept donations in.
- Email: Choose the Email field from your form.
- Address: Choose the Address field from your form.
- First Name: Choose the First Name field from your form.
- Last Name: Choose the Last Name field from your form.
Once you have those set, we want to ensure the credit card payment only processes when selected.
So, click Add Conditional Logic and set it to “Do this action if any of the following match: How would you like to make a donation? is equal to Credit Card”
To ensure there are no mix-ups, we’ll do the same with the PayPal action.
So, click on the PayPal tab, and click Add Conditional Logic. Set it to “Do this action if any of the following match: How would you like to make a donation? is equal to PayPal”.
And now you’re set to accept both PayPal and credit card payments! It’s time to supercharge your charity.
Get more charitable donations with Formidable Forms
As we mentioned, Formidable Forms isn’t specifically a WordPress donation plugin.
It’s a powerful form builder that builds amazing donation forms. But, that’s not all it does. It can benefit your nonprofit or charity in other ways, too.
Provide PDF receipts to donators
People love to have receipts.
Whether for budgeting, tax purposes, or just as a reminder, people want to have documentation of their donations.
So, make it easy for them with Formidable’s Form to PDF feature. As soon as the form is submitted, send the entries to a PDF that you can email, download, or display to your donator.
It’s just one less thing for you to do.
Many secure payment integrations
In this guide, we showed you how to integrate with PayPal.
But that’s not the only payment integration you can use. If you’re using Stripe, Authorize.net, or WooCommerce Products, you can use those integrations, too.
So, not only do you get beautiful form design, you also get the power of all the popular payment services.
Create a donation counter with Formidable Views
Don’t you love seeing those counters on websites that shows a running total of how much has been raised?
So do we!
And with our Formidable Views feature, you can create a counter using the total amount you’ve raised! We built Views to be able to take any entered form data, and display it the way you imagined. We’ve been amazed by the things people have built with Views.
And we’re excited to see what you can build, too.
Are you ready to create your donation form in WordPress?
No matter if you want to make a WordPress form or PayPal donation button, there’s a way for you to do it.
And that way is with a donation form plugin. There are plenty of options — WPForms, Donorbox, and more.
But none offer the flexibility of Formidable Forms.
So, if you’ve wondered, “How do I accept donations on my WordPress site?” This guide was for you. It showed you how to easily create your form today using Formidable Forms.
If you’d prefer to use Stripe, you may enjoy our post on creating a Stripe donation form.
Last, if you’re not following us on social media, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube for more donation form tips!
Read more articles about donation forms
Not using Formidable Forms yet? Our WordPress form maker has it all! Nonprofits and businesses alike love this easy-to-use yet advanced plugin. Try it out risk-free with our 14-day, money-back guarantee.
Digital Crash Course says
Is there a way to ask the donor if they want to cover the cost of the processing fee? Usually around 2.9% + $.30 per transaction. Many charity sites have that.
Nathanael Jones says
If you choose the "Donation" option, there are no processing fees.
Technically its against PayPal's terms and conditions to add a processing fee, so its definitely not something I would recommend - although I do see loads of websites that do this.
Thanks for the awesome information. I also found this article to be helpful for adding a donation form to a WordPress website: https://www.thrinacia.com/blog/post/how-to-add-a-simple-donation-form-to-your-website
Do you use the number field if you want the user to type in the amount of the donation?
Nathanael Jones says
Yes, the number field is the best option for this. 🙂
John Langlois says
The article implied that the form would integrate with DonorBox. Instead it seems to replace it entirely. How would you suggest we collect the DonorBox contact information and then hand-off the form to DonorBox for processing?
Sorry for the confusion here. Our post was trying to say that there are many options in addition to Formidable Forms for collecting donations. Donorbox is given as an example of one such alternative.
We didn't intend to imply that Formidable forms integrates with donorbox. There currently isn't a built in way to pass the information from Formidable to Donorbox, but it may be possible with a plugin like uncanny automator or zapier.