Crypto-currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum are blowing up in the business and financial worlds, and they seem to be the next step in the evolution of online shopping. While many customers seem to be calling out for more retailers to accept the digital currency, others predict nothing but doom for the modern technology. But what does this mean for your business, and is it worth accepting crypto-currency as payment?
Accepting any sort of new currency or branching out into a new market is often a stressful and uncertain venture, and for many start-ups, the risk doesn’t seem to match the reward. Fortunately, accepting crypto-currency is much simpler than you might think. Let’s look at the pros and cons of accepting this digital-age wonder and what it could mean for your business.
First, there are obvious risks to accepting crypto-currency. According to a Pricewaterhouse Coopers survey in 2015, over half of the people polled had never heard of crypto-currency, and only 5% of them were more than passingly familiar. If your customer base has never heard of crypto-currency, the likelihood that your company will see any benefit is slim. There’s also a negative connotation with some crypto-currencies, as various scandals and scams are being reported almost weekly. Add to that a limited ability to scale as the current transaction systems can be slow, and you have yourself a slew of problems to consider. However, don’t let the negatives dissuade you yet. There is still a good chance that crypto-currencies can add significant value to your business.
Crypto-currency is considered one of the most secure ways to make a transaction. Given that every transaction can be viewed by everyone, and that everything is locked behind solid cryptography, the likelihood of running into fraud is significantly lowered. Similar to cash, transactions with crypto-currencies are final, and chargebacks become a non-issue. And since all funds are verified by the network, the likelihood of any sort of duplicity making it far is slim.
Want to make the shopping experience for your customers better? Crypto-currency offers an effortless way for secure, fast transactions to happen. Unlike a bank, a large bitcoin transaction can be completed in a matter of minutes instead of days. Since the currency is unregulated, you can sell to customers across the globe using a common currency. Thanks to services like Coindesk, it’s easy for businesses to exchange Bitcoin or Etherum for your preferred currency.
Interested in accepting crypto-currency? If your product or service caters to a technology-savvy market, it’s very likely that making the option available will entice more customers and further your brand name as one that’s innovative and forward thinking. While in the early days of crypto-currency, it was a hassle to move funds back and forth, it now is surprisingly easy to integrate with your existing systems. Stripe, one of the largest internet payment platforms currently supports Bitcoin as a method of payment. Or with a specialized payment like Bitpay, you can join the likes of Microsoft, Virgin, and Valve in accepting crypto-currency on your website.
Crypto-currencies may have an uncertain future, but there is no doubt that they are worth considering as a payment method as their popularity continues to increase.