Should I start using bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies? Maybe..
“When I first heard about Bitcoin, I thought it was impossible. How can you have a purely digital currency? Can’t I just copy your hard drive and have your bitcoins?
I didn’t understand how that could be done, and then I looked into it and it was brilliant.”
— Jeff Garzik, Co-Founder of Bloq Inc
Bitcoin is the internet of money. It’s the next big thing. It’s also a young technology with usability issues – It can be complicated.
You may accept PayPal at your business. Look at Bitcoin as another payment method for your customers, suppliers, and employees.
It also is cheaper, faster, and can be used without needing permission from banks or credit card processors.
Think about this: You can accept bitcoin as a payment option for your business without understanding how it works!
Here are two things you probably don’t understand at a deep level that you use everyday in your business:
1. The current banking system – The fractional reserve banking system takes hours to learn (just like Bitcoin), but you can use a bank accounts.What about when you take a credit card payment? To accept a credit card, it’s a 10-12 step process involving a payment processor, card processor, payment gateway, IIN register, and 3 different banks.
2. The internet – You don’t know exactly how the internet works. It involves transmission of data via packets, a number of protocols interacting together, servers etc. But you don’t need to know it – the internet is a essential tool for humanity.
In conclusion, just because you don’t know how bitcoin works, doesn’t mean you can’t accept it*.
We want to teach you how to use the payment network that is taking the world by storm.
Educate and decide for yourself. We will answer two questions below:
Why should I accept Bitcoin?
Why should I not accept Bitcoin (for now)?
Why should I accept Bitcoin as a payment option?
- An additional payment method for your customers. When possible, it is always a plus to additional choices for your customers. A tenet of service.
- Businesses who are denied bank accounts: Medical marijuana, adult entertainment, money transfer businesses. It may be difficult to find a banking solution. With cryptocurrency, you can be your own bank!
- Businesses who have trouble with banking and payment operations. See above.
- Businesses who have customers with restricted/unfavorable banking access. Not everyone has a bank account. And even if they have a bank account, they may not have a credit card.
- International customers. They may not have a bank account, their card may be rejected by their bank. Their card may be rejected by your company’s payment processor. They also may have high fees to make international purchases.
- Businesses that sell high priced items that generate high transaction fees – houses, cars, etc. Cost savings here can be substantial.
- Businesses with middlemen and other factors that cause higher transaction costs. If you work with a supply chain, payments sometimes have to pass through middlemen, usually banks. Cutting them out can save time and money.
- Businesses that suffer from chargebacks. Many online and physical retaliers suffer with chargebacks. Whether they have to reimburse the payments or not, it affects the transaction fees they pay.
- Businesses that are avant-garde; Do you value being an early adopter? Taking the lead on integrating new technologies into your business can be exciting and help you stand out from the competition.
- Marketing – free publicity. Submit your company website to online directories of stores that accept bitcoin and get featured in cryptocurrency and other news publications. Some businesses have been featured in local and national news, even the New York Times.
Why should I not Accept bitcoin (for now)?
- It’s like the internet in 1994. It is a bit hard to use. The user experience is still in beta. Many people have trouble figuring out how to send and receive payments.
- Customer education. You will have to be able to educate customers on how to pay with bitcoin.
- Recurring payments. If your business has subscription models, cryptocurrency is not the best option (for now)
- Regulatory and tax issues. Adds a layer of complexity to your taxes.
- Volatility? Cryptocurrencies fluctuate much more than the main fiat currencies like the U.S. Dollar or Euro. This can be mitigated using stablecoins, but there is a learning curve here. For some business owners, you have the ability to avoid volatility and save money versus traditional credit card processors.
- Storage Storing cryptocurrency takes a bit of education. If you don’t use an exchange like Coinbase, the onus is on you to safely store your cryptocurrency. There is no bank to call.
Still have questions?
This is a primer, a basic introduction and not a comprehensive guide. We hope to have piqued your interest.
If you are a business owner with more questions, feel free to reach out to us.