In early 2009, the first Bitcoin was created. Since then, Bitcoin has radically increased in value, growing nearly eight-fold this year alone. Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are poised to make a foundational impact on a number of different sectors in our economy. Although the returns of these emerging markets are enticing, if alarmingly volatile, the long-term potential of the technology lies in the opportunity to decentralize our modern financial system. Blockchain will allow us to eradicate the need for conventional intermediary parties and give power back to the consumers.
Digital assets, when implemented at scale, could fundamentally change the way our fiscal system works. Bitcoin, the most popular and trusted digital asset, promises to accelerate this monumental shift.
As a result, there is a massive prize waiting for business owners who are able to get ahead of the curve and tap into an entirely new customer segment by accepting Bitcoin payments. As with any nascent movement, it can be scary leading the charge. However, the rewards are too great to consider holding back.
Here are 5 reasons why you should let your customers pay in Bitcoin:
- Inherent security.
By accepting Bitcoin payments, companies can verify that all of their transactions are being processed in the right place by the right people. All of the data from each transaction is cryptographically encrypted, such that only users with the correct access control can see the important information.
A key tenet of Bitcoin, which is built on top of a blockchain, is extreme security and decentralization. The most secure Bitcoin exchanges verify each stakeholder’s information, in order to avoid the threat of hacking and fraud. Furthermore, using a Bitcoin-based processing system can allow companies to stop relying on “go-between” banks to handle their payments. This not only speeds up processing times; it also greatly reduces the cost per transaction.
Staying organized is a critical component of running a successful business. For a company managing a number of different retail locations, it can be difficult to keep track of inventory and payments. This imposes a major security burden on management. Typical managerial systems rely on a mix of different tools and services, often including Excel as well as pen and paper.
Digital blockchain systems, as implemented via Bitcoin, are entirely trackable and wholly verified. Business owners can remove the risk of trust and authentication by leveraging Bitcoin’s public ledger of transactions. The ledger automatically logs a number of key details about each transaction, including involved parties, timestamp, and quantity exchanged. This is all done without human intervention, ensuring that all of the data is clean and has not been manipulated.
- Accessibility for customers.
One of the most attractive things about Bitcoin, versus traditional fiat currencies, is that it is accessible across borders. In other words, Bitcoin payments are not restricted by geographic location. This is extremely beneficial to companies that have or wish to have more international clients.
With a Bitcoin system implemented, companies can easily avoid paying the exorbitant fees billed by existing payment processors for international billing. As a result, international clients will easily be able to access domestic products. This not only diversifies a company’s customer segment, as they can take more different types of customers, but also captures the low-hanging fruit of people interested in doing business with them.
- The first-movers’ advantage.
Though it can be hard to recognize, given just how much excitement and buzz there is in the cryptocurrency space, we are still in the early days of the Bitcoin movement. The blockchain community has much to figure out before we see wide-scale adoption by a majority of companies. Therefore, businesses big and small can gain a first-movers’ advantage by being one of the pioneering companies to begin accepting Bitcoin payments.
The plant-the-flag strategy, in this case, not only establishes positive brand identity, as customers begin to associate Bitcoin with the company, but also brand equity, as early adopters of digital assets are likely to be invested in the companies they interact with. This competitive advantage will not be around forever, as more brands begin to offer this payment option to their customers. There is gold waiting for the companies willing to invest the time and resources in providing for this new market first!
Above all else, the job of a business is to provide value to their customers. However, there are often many little points of friction that occlude this goal. Making the payment process easier is a small but impactful change that businesses can make to smooth out their funnel and make the customer interaction seamless.
Expanding to accept Bitcoin, as well as other types of alternative assets, will always be a net positive, as it allows a brand to provide a better experience for customers. Because of the growth of the sector, it is now becoming easier to begin accepting Bitcoin without even having to write any code.