Authors and Selling Online

Authors Selling Online

PayPal: Basic Facts

Here’s a great article for adding a simple PayPal Donate button to your site (this article covers WordPress .org and .com options). Whether to have a personal or business account with PayPal? As far as I can see the drawbacks to a personal account are that the email address associated with your account will be visible in your code (visible for spammers) and your payment buttons won’t be protected from fraudulent changes. The business account allows you to do more customizations, track inventory, customize  your buyers’ checkout experience, and view a profit and loss report. You can, however, use dropdown selections in both types of account: for example, if you offer a hardback or a paperback version of your book, or a printed book or an e-book. Also, if you don’t like the design of the PayPal standard button, you can design one to suit your needs and upload it to your site in WordPress (you’ll just need to paste the location of that image on your WordPress site into your PayPal block of code).

Don’t forget, you can also add a payment button to your emails (along with a photo of your book of course), and to your Facebook page (under your profile > about me section, or add as a status update and share with others).

Note: The PayPal dropdown selections, for various options (such as the type of book: hardback/paperback) will not work in email, Facebook, or on

Payment Plugins/Shopping Carts

Here’s 10 plugins for handling payments on your site (and this article covers some e-commerce shopping cart options too).

This evening we installed the Easy Digital Downloads plugin (free) and tried it out in an example on our site. This plugin added a shopping cart and was fairly intuitive. The only downside is that it only works for digital downloads and not for physical products. If you’re looking for a plugin to handle physical products, take a look at the WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart plugin.

More resources

More on author/writer themes, marketing, design, book covers, and writing for the web:



Event: New Website and Videos

We had every seat filled tonight at the computer desks so that’s good – thanks to those who came out.

A big thank you to Mark McLaughlin of Best Color Video who did a fabulous job of talking about Videos and their use in WordPress. I did want to share with you this link to 15 Gorgeous Full-Width Video WordPress Themes by WPMU Dev.

Also, thanks for the feedback on this new website. I’ve made a few minor changes already and the rest will come over time. The idea is to continually improve it and I’m enlisting the help of others in the group to work on various parts in order that we achieve this sooner than later. Here’s a list of some items that we discussed as items to add/change:

  • SEO still needs to be completed
  • Add a favicon
  • Add pointer to the Clubhouse door using Photoshop (it’s very difficult to find)
  • Make reference on the home page to the Meetup group and the relationship between the two
  • On the home page where it references ‘who uses WordPress’ have a link to our own members projects
  • Add links to other tech groups/clubs in Victoria (including other Meetup groups)
  • Add a proper email address such as info@ or set up a group of emails (so that answering queries isn’t onerous to one person as the site grows)
  • Add a forum to handle questions and answers (this is a longer-term project right now)

Did I miss anything? Let us know.

The evening went so quickly so I do apologize that we ran out of time for everyone’s individual questions and/or queries about their own sites. Due to this I feel the next meeting in March should be a hands-on workshop where we’re all working on our own projects and helping each other. This may be an ideal opportunity for those of us working on this website to tick a few items off the list too.