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How do I accept credit cards with Express Checkout using the Guest Checkout option?

About Guest Checkout

Buyers don't always have the option to complete their purchases without using or creating a PayPal account. This option is presented based on several risk factors, including but not limited to the buyer's PayPal purchase history, PayPal cookies stored on the buyer's computer, the buyer's location, or a credit assessment.

Enabling Guest Checkout within your PayPal account settings gives buyers the option to check out using a debit or credit card without having a PayPal account login.

Browser cookies determine Checkout view

The buyer's checkout view on PayPal depends on their web browser's cookies:
  • If a PayPal cookie has been created: When the buyer lands on a PayPal page, they'll see the PayPal Login but still have the option to select "Guest Checkout" or "Don't have a PayPal Account?"
  • If a PayPal cookie hasn't been defined: The buyer sees a default view of Guest Checkout allowing for debit or credit payment.
 

Guest Checkout requirements

Before you can enable Guest Checkout in Express Checkout, you must meet the following requirements:
  • Have a confirmed email address.
  • Verify your PayPal account.
  • Set PayPal Account Optional to On within your PayPal settings (see the next paragraph).

With an Express Checkout custom-coded solution, there is an additional step: set SOLUTIONTYPE to Sole in your initial SetExpressCheckout API call.
  • If you use a third-party shopping cart, work with them or your developer to implement this variable.
  • As long as SOLUTIONTYPE=Sole is passed in the SetExpressCheckout API, Guest Checkout will be enabled.
  • For SOLUTIONTYPE=Sole to work, you must have PayPal Account Optional set to On within the PayPal account settings.
  • Many third-party carts provide an Enable Guest Checkout option in the Administration view of their Express Checkout module.
 

Enabling the PayPal account optional setting

Here's how:

  1. Log in to your PayPal account.
  2. Select Profile > Profile and settings.
  3. Click My selling tools.
  4. Click Update next to Website preferences.
  5. Click On for PayPal Account Optional.
  6. Click Save.
 

PayPal Payments Pro

If you want to have a more consecutive checkout process when allowing users to check out with or without creating a PayPal account, consider using a PayPal Payments Pro account (known as Website Payments Pro in some countries).

With PayPal Payments Pro, you can accept credit card transactions directly on your website with no reference as to who the processor is. PayPal will be transparent to the buyer as your credit card processor.

Note: PayPal Payments Pro isn't available in all countries. See PayPal Product Availability - by Country to verify whether it's available for your account.
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