Partner Onboarding

As a partner, PayPal must vet and approve you before you can use the PayPal Commerce Platform in your live environment. This version of the PayPal Commerce Platform also requires completion of account setup by your account manager before you can test in sandbox. Testing in sandbox prior to account set up results in the HTTP status code of 401 Unauthorized.

You begin the vetting process with registering your platform with PayPal. Once approved, additional permissions are attached to your account to allow access to the Partner APIs.

Registration steps

  1. Get a PayPal business account.
  2. Configure your account.
  3. Create a PayPal app.
  4. Get an access token.

1. Get a PayPal business account

Partners must have a PayPal business account to use the Partner APIs.

Partners with an existing PayPal business accounts used with other PayPal products must create new business accounts solely for use with the PayPal Commerce Platform. Your new account must have a zero (0) balance to onboard.

Sign up for a PayPal business account at and link a bank account to your new business account.

2. Create and configure your account

Use your business account log-on credentials to log into PayPal Developer Dashboard. Here, you create a sandbox (test server) account.

  1. Log in to the Developer site at On the Dashboard tab, navigate to Sandbox > Accounts.

  2. Click Create Account and configure the following fields:

    Country Select the country of the merchant or buyer test account.
    Account type Select the Business radio button.
    Email address

    The email address doesn't need to be a real email address; the sandbox doesn't send any email outside of the sandbox environment. Email to sandbox accounts, generated as a result of your test API requests, are listed on both the Notifications tab on the Developer site, as well as on the sandbox test site.

    Use the assigned email value to reference this test account in your test API calls, and to log in to the sandbox site when you want to review the details associated with the account.

    Password The password must be 8-20 alphanumeric characters in length. Use the password to log in to the sandbox test site as the test account.
    First and Last names The optional name fields accept only alphabetical characters.
    PayPal balance The balance needs to be zero (0) for onboarding to the PayPal Commerce Platform.
    Bank Verified Account You should create Verified sandbox accounts so you can fully test your application.
    Select Payment Card Test payments made with different payment cards by selecting either Discover or PayPal.
    (US Personal accounts only.)
    Credit card type Optionally, you can select a single credit card type for each test account. The sandbox associates a mock credit card number with the account.
    Notes Add details specific to this test account.
  3. Click Create Account.

3. Create a PayPal app

You need to create a PayPal app to get your credentials set to pass to your account manager.

In creating this app, you are given a set of sandbox and live (production server) credentials called client ID and secret. These are used by your account manager to add the new partner permissions to your business account.

Important: If you already have a PayPal application, you must create a new one as the client ID associated with the application directs money movement across PayPal solutions and products. Using an existing client ID breaks existing payment agreements set up in other PayPal products.

  1. Click My Apps & Credentials.
  2. In the REST API apps section, click Create App.
  3. Enter your REST application's name at App Name.
  4. Select the sandbox business account that you added in the sandbox as your developer account
  5. Click Create App.

Send the sandbox client ID shown on the resulting page and the email used on your PayPal business account to your PayPal account manager to begin the vetting process.

You will receive confirmation from PayPal when your account has been registered for use with the Partners API, and you can then get an access token.

4. Get an access token

After your account has been registered, you'll need to get an access token to use in the Partner API. Log into the PayPal Developer Dashboard to get your client ID and secret credentials.

Tip: See Get Started for more on REST API and to understand how PayPal uses OAuth 2.0.

To get an access token, pass your OAuth 2.0 credentials through either:


Onboard your sellers.