tinyCoffee: A Simple, Elegant Donation Plugin for WordPress

The WordPress plugin repository hosts dozens of extensions for accepting donations and includes everything from plugins for creating donation forms to plugins that implement full-on CRM solutions for non-profits. But what if you just want to make it easy for supporters to buy you a coffee?

tinyCoffee is a new plugin that caught my eye due to its simple, elegant design. It gives visitors an opportunity to support your work by sending you a beverage of your choice. tinyCoffee features an interactive slider that automatically calculates how many beverages the donation will buy.

sample-donation-page

The plugin makes use of the FontAwesome icon font collection to render the beverage image. the tinyCoffee options panel lets you select the icon you’d like to use, so you’re not limited to just coffee or beer, or even beverages for that matter. You can select music, money, film, books or anything that fits in with your interests.

tinyCoffee also makes it easy to place your donation request anywhere within your website with the following four options:

  • Template tag (get_coffee()/the_coffee())
  • Shortcode ([tiny_coffee]/[tiny_coffee])
  • Sidebar widget
  • Hash-activated modal screen (domain.com#coffee)

So for example, if you wanted to make “Coffee” a permanent menu item that launches a modal window or link to it within your content, you would simply add the hash to your link:

http://example.com#coffee

donation-modal

I tested the modal window on mobile to make sure it was device-friendly and it launched just as smoothly as it would on desktop. I also put the plugin through the paces to see how each placement option worked and was pleasantly surprised to find that the options panel offered far more customization options than detailed in its readme.txt file. You can easily change just about everything related to its display, including:

  • Title and default text outputted by the plugin
  • Select the FontAwesome icon
  • Customize the hash
  • Change the currency template
  • Set the coffee price
  • PayPal details, currency, exchange rate
  • Customize Callback URL settings

When it comes to donation plugins, tinyCoffee has most others beat on simplicity, design and configuration options. If you work on an open source project or offer something for free on your website, the last thing you want to spend your time on is testing a bunch of donation plugins. If it isn’t convenient, you’re likely to skip it altogether. But people do like to show their support through donations and tinyCoffee offers a stylish and interactive way to enable them on your site. Download it for free from the WordPress plugin repository.

Who is Sarah Gooding


Sarah Gooding is an Editorial Ninja at Audrey Capital. When not writing about WordPress, she enjoys baking, knitting, judging beer competitions and spending time with her Italian Greyhound.

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