Non Profit Donation Plugins for WordPress can give your non profit organization the ability to use PayPal to accept donations from your members, sponsors, donors, fans or supporters via credit card, debit card, American Express or their own PayPal account. So, now its time to look at free open source solutions that help non profit organizations add donation management tools to WordPress Powered Content Management System (website or blog or combo).
Donation Plugin article UPDATE – I originally published this article in 2010. Since then I have learned that donation plugins come and go faster than most plugins. If you utilize a donation plugin, please monitor it carefully. It seems as if these are more likely to be supported for extended periods of time. Maybe it’s bad luck on my part, but it seems like these need to be replaced more often than the average plugin. I have added three new plugins as of this re-posting/re-publishing.
The list below has shrunk and GROWN often over the years!
14 Non Profit Donation Plugins for WordPress
We recommend the first few non profit plugins at the top of the list. These fund raising plugins are currently the best supported donation plugins and will work with current versions of WP. We list them all to be comprehensive and spot future opportunities as older plugins are updated with great new donation functionality. Update – As time goes on this list and its order is changing. A couple good plugins have dropped way down the list due to problems or lack of support. We’ve also added a 15th donation plugin, however it is not free and is not exclusively used for donations. It is not expensive and has many other capabilities. It is also one of the standard plugins that we recommend for 90% of the jobs we do on all sites.
- GiveWP – New for 2017 – Free and always free plugin. Add ons cost money. (Reliability sometimes comes at a price and that can be far less expensive than messing around with plugins that cannot afford to keep running, hence requiring more research, replacement and work!) yearly license range from $147 – $347 covering 1-5 sites respectively.
- Our Progress – Display a thermometer to measure non profit fund raising results. (Does not manage the actual submission of donations, just helps you display and track results somewhat manually). Not one of the most sophisticated non profit fund raising tools in terms of functionality, but your team or client will likely be sold with the thermometer graphics! See FAQ section for shortcodes! – Update 2016 – This is a simple donation goal tracking plugin and seems to still work but hasn’t been updated in over a year.
- Simple PayPal Donate – With this one, you still have to get a donate button from PayPal after logging into your non profit account. This then serves that button up nicer. It makes special formatting easier, and delivers xhtml compliant / valid code. In some ways its a bit tedious as you still have to go into PayPal itself, but at the same time giving you customization options on your own site is very useful and valid code maybe even more useful especially for sites that are concerned with section 508 compliance, web standards and more!
- Seamless Donations – This plugin allows you to receive donations, track donors and send customized thank you messages with Seamless Donations for WordPress. – This does seem like a great plugin, however, if your site is running on Godaddy Managed WordPress hosting, the cache system on Godaddy and this plugin do not play nice, especially if you attempt to run a donation form on a home page of a website. There are some work arounds for other pages (requires adding ?nocache=1 to the end of the donation URL ), but they are not the cleanest and problems could still arise. Update 2016 – This plugin is now on version 4.0 and is getting regular development and updates. That’s amazing for a donation plugin! 🙂
- Custom Post Donations – “This WordPress plugin will allow you to create unique customized PayPal donation widgets to insert into your WordPress posts or pages and accept donations. WP Plugin for creating custom PayPal donation widgets. PayPal for WordPress. WordPress ecommerce.”
- Donations Made Easy – Smart Donations – “The all in one donation plugin, create different kind of donations, set goals, monitor your results, donation forms, thank you emails”
- PayPal Donations – Adds donation shortcode and sidebar Widget to WordPress. The options menu lets you setup your PayPal ID and a few other optional settings. You can choose which donation button you want to use or if you want to use your own button.
- Multi Currency PayPal Donations – Average solution in general that handles multiple PayPal accounts in different currencies exceptionally well – PayPal charges high fees for cross border transactions. If you are one of the fortunate few that have paypal accounts in multiple currencies then this plugin is for you. It allows you to route different currencies to specific paypal accounts. Even if you don’t have multiple accounts this is still a great non profit plugin for accepting donations.
- WP-Webmoney – Receive donations and accept payments from people using WebMoney system. WebMoney is the most popular payment system in Europe. You can show donors list and total donations amount in your blog sidebar and pages.
- Donate Plus – place the shortcode on a WordPress page and accept donations. The form includes the option to be recognized on your website after the donation is received. The Recognition wall can be placed on any WordPress page using the shortcode. You can display your running donation total.
- GTPayment Donations – Plugin established more to help people using GTPayment processing services not PayPal – insertion of GTPayment donate buttons with a shortcode or through a sidebar Widget
- WP Paypal Donation Plugin
- WordPress PayPal Donation Plugin – WordPress plugin to recieve donation in multiple currencies in one click. Can be used in the sidebar, posts and pages. WordPress PayPal Donations Plugin uses IPN to ensure the values are correct and you can also chose to display your total donations to date.
- WordPress Paypal Donation Plugin from TipsandTricks-hq.com – This Plugin looks promising but I haven’t been able to find it in WordPress.org itself. Lots of great plugins are outside of the WP website repository, but I haven’t been able to verify this one for functionality nor safety yet. Summary – WordPress Paypal Donation Plugin can be used to receive donation in one click. Donation can be received in multiple currencies. The plugin can be used in the sidebar, posts and pages.
- Simple Donate with Donation Limits for Political Campaigns – a visitor suggested I add this non profit donation plugin to the list and after checking it out I agreed. This donation plugin for non profits and political campaigns is excellent, when you need to set a cap on the total that a person can donate. Sure, I bet a lot of us even had a donation max problem, but for those that do (and don’t want to get in trouble with the law, and who does?) this donation plugin may be essential!
- SponsorMe – More for the indidvidual or crusader rather than for a non profit or organization – show people what your target is, how much you have saved and how much is outstanding. And if they decide to contribute, SponsorMe will collect details of their pledge and allow them to make a PayPal payment straight into your account. Update 3-1-2012 It has been a while since this donation plugin was last updated. It offers some components that are difficult to find in a single donation plugin solution but probably needs a serious update for both WordPress and PayPal. I reached out to @OwenC the developer an old blogger/developer friend of mine and he might tackle it sometime soon. Maybe a donation to the plugin development cause might even help!
- WP-DONATORS – Update – This donation plugin is also no longer available in the WordPress repository. At one point this open source plugin (as all wordpress plugins are) included some trojan script, possibly not the fault of the plugin creator whose own site was reportedly hacked. However, it is no longer present. It may or may not come back with a clean update. In the meantime if you have an old version, we recommend you deactivate and delete it and check your server, update your passwords etc.
Monetize your blog! A lot of features to monetize your blog! Support: Sponsors Box,Text Link ADs,My Target, etc.
- Donation Can – UPDATE as of 3-1-2012 this donation plugin is no longer available in the WordPress plugin repository. Some users were reporting that it did not work with wp 3.3. It was a popular plugin and we hope that it will make a return.
Very versatile and effective plugin, one of our favorites for non profits although the documentation is buried in the readme.txt file – “set goals (in dollars) and collect donations to meet them. Donations are collected through PayPal and can be tracked inside your WordPress admin area separately for each goal” If the functionality doesn’t grab you, do checkout the next solution with a thermometer.
- Gravity Forms combined with their PayPal Addon – In this list of free donation plugins some of the best plugins have fallen, and some have been hijacked over the last couple years. As such we wanted to add a very very reliable option. Gravity Forms is a form generating plugin for WordPress. It requires a paid license to use with WordPress but that brings with it a significant amount of support and add-ons. One of the add ons for this plugin is the PayPal add on which turns this form generating plugin into a donation or e-commerce plugin if you choose. It can even be connected with services like MailChimp or SalesForce through additional add-ons and plugins. We’ve even covered it in other articles as a WordPress survey or poll plugin option. If you have $39 and need something very reliable(downloaded by over 300k users last we looked), this might be a good fit.
- Need PCI Compliance with your Donation Plugin? Checkout Heartland Payment Service’s and their Donation plugin (available on github).
Sometimes Just Using the PayPal Plugin Widget Code for your Non Profit is better!
Non profit plugins are awesome when you find the right fit for your website. However, sometimes a low tech alternative can be more powerful. Keeping it simple might even be more stable. So after you create a PayPal account, login, and use the widget code that PayPal offers up.
Admittedly, you may not get all the functionality you want, or you may not be able to style and format things as easily, especially if you are less technical with code.
However, the major advantage is that you do not have to worry that a developer might get bored or lose funding and stop supporting the plugin that your non profit relies on for grass roots online fund raising revenue. Plus, if you are working on a high traffic site, you might be able to speed up load times and reduce CPU resources by not using a WordPress plugin and just using the PayPal widget code.
If you know of any other great donation plugins that we’ve missed, let us know. drop us a comment or leave some feedback on our quick help form.
If this article has been helpful for you, do us and your friends a favor and share it on twitter or Facebook or wherever great people need help raising money for great causes!
Have you Covered the Basics for PayPal Donations yet?
A PayPal account is necessary & frankly essential even if you also use a merchant account, but that just gives you the means to process the transaction. If you haven’t set up your non profit for PayPal yet, go back and get that started to begin your fund raising efforts online. The process is not difficult but does take several days as they perform the due diligence required to insure your group is legitimate.
After incorporating a tax exempt nonprofit corporation, and setting up your non profit on PayPal such non profits can accept donations through their website or through Facebook, the next step is to find the right non profit donation plugin.