Transitioning to PayPal Checkout

Wild Apricot has completely redesigned our payments subsystem to give you greater security, stability, and flexibility. At the same time, PayPal is introducing the new PayPal Checkout gateway, which automatically supports the latest and most advanced security regulations like Strong Customer Authentication (SCA).

To take advantage of these enhancements, Wild Apricot will be transitioning clients using PayPal payment systems to the new gateway. Clients using PayPal need to switch their Wild Apricot payment system to PayPal Checkout by February 1, 2021. Accounts that haven’t made the switch by that date can still do so but will be automatically switched to accepting manual payments in the meantime. 

You will receive an email from Wild Apricot letting you know once support for the new PayPal Checkout gateway is in place.

When you switch to PayPal Checkout in Wild Apricot, you'll be asked to connect to your existing PayPal account. You do not need to create a new PayPal account or make any changes to your existing PayPal account.

PayPal users also need to stop any existing recurring payments from your PayPal site. Members can set up recurring payments again with their next renewal.

What do you need to do?

The table below summarizes the action you need to take after receiving the notice from Wild Apricot indicating that support for the new PayPal gateway is in place.

If you're using:
You need to:
PayPal Express Checkout or PayPal Payments Standard
  1. Stop any recurring payments on PayPal. See Canceling recurring payments (below). You'll have to set up any recurring payments again. See Migrating recurring payments (below).
  2. Click the Connect to PayPal button within your payment settings screen.
    You will be asked to log into your PayPal account. Once you're logged in, you'll be returned to Wild Apricot.
  3. To save the changes to your payment settings, click the Save button.
PayPal Payments Pro or PayPal Payflow ProClick the Connect to PayPal button within your payment settings screen.
You will be asked to log into a PayPal business account. If you don't have one, you'll need to create one. Once you're logged in, you'll be returned to Wild Apricot. To save the changes to your payment settings, click the Save button. You'll have to set up any recurring payments again. See Migrating recurring payments (below).

Accounts that haven't switched to a supported payment system by the deadline will be automatically switched to accepting manual payments only.

Canceling recurring payments

To stop recurring payments, you need to cancel the corresponding recurring payment profiles on PayPal. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Log into your PayPal account.
  2. Hover over your account profile or click the Settings icon then select the Account settings option.
  3. Search for the "Automatic payments" then click Update beside the Automatic payments option.
  4. From your recurring payments dashboard, filter the list to display only Active profiles.
  5. Click the check box for each recurring profiles you want to to cancel. To select all profiles, click the check box beside Customer.
  6. Click the Cancel action to cancel all selected recurring profiles.
  7. When prompted to confirm your request to cancel all selected profiles, click Yes.

Migrating recurring payments

Depending on your current payment system, some action might be required to migrate your existing recurring payments.

So that you can accept recurring payments with PayPal Checkout, make sure that Merchant Initiated Billing (aka Reference transactions) is enabled for your PayPal account. If you are a US or Canadian resident, you can either wait up to 2 weeks for this to occur automatically or you can contact PayPal yourself and request the change. Residents of other countries need to contact PayPal directly about this.

PayPal Payments Pro and Payflow Pro

When you switch from PayPal Payflow Pro or PayPal Payments Pro to any other payment system within your Wild Apricot account, any recurring payments will be automatically stopped. 

So that your members can easily set up their recurring payments again, check the following options on the Renewal policy tab for your recurring levels:

Before their next renewal date, recurring members will receive a renewal email with a link to renew their membership. As part of the renewal process, they will be prompted to enter their credit card details again to create new recurring profiles.

To ensure that your recurring members are aware of the action they need to take, we suggest sending them an email about the changes well before their next renewal date. The text of your email might look something like this:

"We are switching to the more secure PayPal Checkout gateway. This means you'll have to set up your recurring payment details again.  Here are the steps:

  1. Go to your member profile
  2. Click the Renew button and follow the instructions to enter your payment details

Thanks so much for being a valuable member of [Your Organization Name]"

An email template with this text will appear within the Themed templates section.

PayPal Express Checkout and Payments Standard

Because of the differences between PayPal's legacy platforms and their new PayPal Checkout gateway, you will need to stop any recurring payments on PayPal Express Checkout or PayPal Payments Standard before switching to PayPal Checkout.

If you do not stop recurring payments on PayPal, they will be continue to be charged without being recorded in Wild Apricot.

So that your members can easily set up their recurring payments again, check the following options on the Renewal policy tab for your recurring levels:

Before their next renewal date, recurring members will receive a renewal email with a link to renew their membership. As part of the renewal process, they will be prompted to enter their credit card details again to create new recurring profiles.

To ensure that your recurring members are aware of the action they need to take, we suggest sending them an email about the changes well before their next renewal date. The text of your email might look something like this:

"We are switching to the more secure PayPal Checkout gateway. This means you'll have to set up your recurring payment details again.  Here are the steps:

  1. Go to your member profile
  2. Click the Renew button and follow the instructions to enter your payment details

Thanks so much for being a valuable member of [Your Organization Name]"

An email template with this text will appear within the Themed templates section.

Reference transactions

So that you can set up recurring payments with the new PayPal Checkout gateway, make sure that Merchant Initiated Billing (aka Reference transactions) is enabled for your PayPal account. Reference transactions are transactions, like recurring payments, that are authorized once but occur multiple times.

If you are a US or Canadian resident, you can either wait up to 2 weeks for this to occur automatically or you can contact PayPal yourself and request the change. Residents of other countries need to contact PayPal directly about this. You may receive an email notification from PayPal about this option being enabled.

Advantages of PayPal Checkout

Wild Apricot's new payment subsystem, together with the new PayPal gateway, offers many advantages including:

  • Improved security, including automatic support for the latest security protocols
  • Greater stability
  • Greater flexibility, allowing us to deliver enhanced payment features more quickly and for all payment systems
  • Manage recurring payments your from Wild Apricot account instead of your PayPal account

Paying using PayPal Checkout

With PayPal Checkout as your payment system, your members and other contacts will be redirected to a PayPal site when they choose to pay online. They will have the option of paying by credit card or using PayPal. 

The customized checkout screens (aka white label checkout) supported by PayPal Payflow Pro and PayPal Payments Pro are not available with the new PayPal Checkout platform on Wild Apricot.

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