We've integrated support for Google Checkout in CiviCRM v1.7. This was primarily on the initiative and lead of Deepak, part of our awesome India developement team. This also allowed us to compare the ease of use and integration between the two transaction providers. Here are some things we found:

  • PayPal has a much richer and more well thought out SDK. They do quite a few things right from a developers perspective, primarily allowing the code to set various defaults (like the return url)
  • Have the Google Checkout folks tried to use the sandbox with the awful "sandbox" background that they use. Makes it fairly hard to read and navigate the site
  • PayPal is a lot more consistent and symmetrical with the urls and images between the sandbox and development environment. Google Checkout is not symmetrical
  • PayPal gives u a much better unified testing environment. You have multiple test accounts under one large sandbox account. With Google you have to create multiple google accounts to test

Overall, PayPal was better and easier to integrate than Google. Hopefully Google will improve and add more features including recurring transactions etc over the next few months


I like all the things you can do with an event, but is it necessary to go through so many screens both to create one AND to register for one? Even in cases where there is no fee? I think the model of one-page event creation like at Upcoming.org, Craigslist.org, Democrats.org, My.BarackObama.com, etc. -- and ONE-Button registration (!!!) is more likely to attract participants.

I dont think having several screens to "create" an event is a big issue. Our model was more of an org having a few events in a month/year rather than lots of events. I think having a simple one page event register screen for free events is something useful and would increase signup rate etc. A contribution to implement this would be great and much appreciated :) (paid events are a different matter since they involve confirmation with the payment processor etc)