Our PayPal integration supports one time payment options only. If you are looking for subscription or payment plan options, we recommend Thinkific Payments. If you prefer to use PayPal for recurring payments, this is possible by bypassing our integration and using Zapier with our Grow plan and higher.
In this article
Setting up subscriptions or recurring payments via PayPal is bypassing our built in payment integration options and requires the following:
Before getting started, make sure to read this article on getting started with Zapier.
Zapier Set Up
- Log into your Zapier account and create a new Zap
- Choose Paypal as your Trigger App
- Select the Paypal Trigger for Successful Sale
- Copy-and-paste the IPN URL provided in Zapier into your PayPal IPN Settings. To do that, in a different tab open PayPal and navigate to Profile > Profile and Settings > My Selling Tools > Instant Payment Notifications (IPN). Paste the URL given to you by Zapier into the Notification URL and save.
This is assuming you're not using the direct PayPal integration. If you plan to do both you will need to follow Zapier's instructions on how to use multiple IPN's with PayPal.
- Test a payment through PayPal and verify it in Zapier
- Open the menu for your Zap and click the + icon to Add a Filter or an Action
- Choose Formatter as an Action app
- Select Utilities as your Formatter by Zapier Action
- Select Lookup Table under Transform
- Under Lookup Key select Item Names for the PayPal Successful Sale
- In the Lookup Table, in the left-hand column type in your PayPal Item Name as specified in PayPal
Your Item Name in PayPal must match the course name exactly as it is in Thinkific (case-sensitive) for this step to work. Zapier is looking up the Item Name in Paypal within this Lookup Table to then create a Custom Value that will specify which course to enrol a student on in Thinkific.
- In the right-hand column type in the product ID number. To find the product ID, open your course landing page in an incognito window and right-click the buy button. Select Copy Link Address Paste and then paste the link into your computer's notepad for safe-keeping. The last string of numbers in the URL is your product ID.
- Continue to fill in the Lookup Table for all courses you're selling through PayPal
- Optional You can also set a Fallback Value. This will be returned if your search yields no results.
For more information on using the Lookup Table refer to Zapier's documentation on Formatter functions.
- Add another Action to your Zap from the left-hand Zap menu
- Select Thinkific as your Action App
- Select Enroll User as your Action
- Connect your Thinkific account
- Under Products, use the dropdown to scroll down to Formatter and select Step 2: Item Name
Note: After you save your Zap this will change into "Output" like so:
- Use the dropdown to select First Name, Last Name and Payer Email from the Paypal Sale Values
- You also have the option to fill in Expiry Date, Company and Password
- Continue and test out your Zap
- After testing your Zap and receiving a Test Successful message, open your Thinkific admin. You should see that the test student was successful created and enrolled in Thinkific with the correct details.[back to top]
Once your Zap is successful, you'll want to insert a link to your Paypal checkout on your course or bundle landing page so users can purchase your product. Find out more about this here: Accept Payments Via Paypal Without Using Our Built in Integration