Payment Gateway: PayPal Standard

PayPal Standard (PayPal Payments Standard) is an off-site payment method and is available to event organizers in many countries. A PayPal premier or business account is needed to accept payments.

Need a PayPal account? Call 1-855-456-1338 or click here to sign up for a merchant account.

PayPal Standard has been replaced by PayPal Express (PayPal Express Checkout).

Switch from PayPal Standard to PayPal Express

1) Login to your account.

2) Look for the person icon in the top left area of your screen and click on it. Then click on Profile and Settings.
3) Look at the left area of the screen under My Profile and click on My selling tools. Then click on the Update link for API Access.
4) Click on the second option for Classic (NVP/SOAP).

If you have used PayPal Express for other projects, then you’ll have existing credentials that you can click to view and then copy into Event Smart and save changes. If this is a new account, then you can request the credentials. Continue with the steps below.
5) Click Request API Credentials.
6) Click Request API signature.
7) Click Agree and Submit.
8) Login to your Event Smart dashboard and go to Event Smart –> Payment Methods –> PayPal Express. Click the button to enable the payment method. You can then copy and paste the API username, password, and signature into the payment methods page and save changes.
9) You’ll now want to verify that your PayPal Express payment method is ready to go. You can do this by starting a registration for an event and selecting PayPal Express during registration checkout and continuing to the page to page.
If you are able to reach the page, then your credentials from your account are correct. If you see an error, then please double-check your credentials and update them and try again.
10) Now that you have confirmed that PayPal Express is working, you can deactivate PayPal Standard through the payment methods page (Event Smart –> Payment Methods) by clicking on the button to deactivate the payment method.

Locate your credentials for PayPal Standard

PayPal Standard uses an email address for payment processing and a premier or business account with PayPal is required. This is the email address that you log in to with.

Pro Tip 1! Will PayPal Standard be the only payment method enabled or the only one you offer? Click here to learn how to make it selected by default during the registration checkout.

Setup PayPal Standard on your Event Smart website

PayPal Standard will use the country and currency settings that is setup for your Event Smart website through the General Settings page.
Login to your Event Smart dashboard and then go to General Settings --> Your Organization and update the information there and save changes.
The settings page for PayPal Standard can be found in your Event Smart dashboard --> Payment Methods --> PayPal Standard.
Now click the button to activate this payment method.
Here is an overview of settings on the page.
  • Name: This is the name of the payment method.
  • Description: This description is shown during registration checkout.
  • Admin-Only Name: This is a name of the payment method that will only be shown in the Event Smart dashboard.
  • Admin-Only Description: This description is used only in the Event Smart dashboard.
  • Use PayPal Sandbox?: Enables debugging for this payment method. It should be off (set to no) on a live/production site.
  • Open by Default? – This sets this payment method to be pre-selected on the registration checkout page.
    To give your audience more payment options, you can activate multiple payment methods at the same time. However, if you are offering just one payment option, then we recommend that you set that one payment method to be selected by default during registration checkout. That will simplify the check out process for your attendees.
  • PayPal Email: This is the email address that for your account.
  • Image URL: This image is used on the page and appears in the top left area of the screen. This is helpful for branding your payment page.
  • PayPal Calculate Taxes: Select if payment requests should be sent through server or the newer Akamai servers.
  • PayPal Calculate Shipping: If enabled, then taxes will be calculated through your settings on which will override any tax settings in Event Smart.
  • Shipping Address Options: Specify the option for how addresses should be handled: Do not prompt for an address, Prompt for an address but do not require it, Prompt for an address and require it.
  • Button Image URL: Change the default button on the payment page.
  • Usable From: Select where this payment method should be available for use. This payment method cannot process payments through the Event Smart dashboard.
  • Order: The value (number) can be used to sort or arrange this payment option. A lower value means that it should appear first during registration checkout.
  • Update Settings: Click this button after making any changes to your payment method.
  • Deactivate Payment Method: Click this button to deactivate this payment method.

Add your credentials (e.g. PayPal Email) to the settings page and then save changes. Some additional changes are required through your account. Be sure to complete those steps below.

Part 1 - Enable the PayPal IPN (Instant Payment Notifications)

1) Login to your account on
2) Look for the person icon in the top right corner and click on it
3) Then click on Profile and Settings
4) On the next page, look for the My Selling Tools in the left menu and click on it
5) Then click the Update link for Instant Payment Notifications
6) On the next page add the URL for your Event Smart transactions page. Here is an example:
Note that you should change the word yourwebsite above to your actual subdomain for your own Event Smart website.
7) Make sure Receive IPN messages is enabled and click Save.
8) Set the PayPal button language encoding, see the next section.

Part 2 - PayPal button language encoding

1) Look for the person icon in the top right corner and click on it
2) Then click on Profile and Settings
3) On the next page, look for the My Selling Tools in the left menu and click on it
4) Scroll to the end of the page and look for the More Selling Tools section. Then click on PayPal button language encoding
5) Click More Options
6) Set the language encoding to UTF-8 and be sure to save changes.

Part 3 - Enable PayPal Auto Return

1) Look for the person icon in the top right corner and click on it
2) Then click on Profile and Settings
3) On the next page, look for the My Selling Tools in the left menu and click on it
4) Then click the Update link for Website Preferences
5) Auto Return needs to be enabled. If it is already enabled (i.e. set to On), then no additional changes are necessary as your Event Smart site will send the return URL automatically during the payment process.
6) If Auto Return is not enabled, then select On and in the Return URL field, enter the URL for your Event Smart thank you page (e.g. and scroll down to the end of the page and click on Save to save changes.
Note: If you have an existing URL in the Return URL, then one of your other online projects is using it for PayPal payments and it should not be changed. The important part is that the Auto Return option be turned On. Once it is on, then Event Smart will send the unique return URL automatically during a payment for a registration.
You'll now be ready to accept payments for your events through on your Event Smart website.


I configured PayPal Standard and payments are not being processed. Can you help?
Double-check your credentials and ensure that there is no extra spacing before or after the credentials in the payment methods page of Event Smart. You can check your PayPal IPN logs by logging into your account and going to: PayPal account --> Profile --> My Selling Tools --> Instant payment notifications. You can check the history of a transaction and payments by viewing the transaction record:
How can I setup a recurring payment or subscription through PayPal Standard?
Recurring or subscription payments are not currently supported in the AIM payment gateway.
When I refund a payment, does it also refund through PayPal Standard?
Refunds in Event Smart are currently a two step process. First, apply the refund through the transaction details screen in your Event Smart website (Event Smart dashboard --> Transactions and click on a specific transaction and browse to the payments area). Then login to your PayPal Standard account and process the refund.

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