POP QUIZ: What do Donald Trump and the Doge meme have in common?
ANSWER: They both have cryptocurrencies named after them!
Looks like a made-up currency, doesn't it?
In a way, it is. As you might have recognized, these are cryptocurrencies. They are called Trumpcoin and Dogecoin, respectively.
But you might be more familiar with BITCOIN. It's the first established cryptocurrency in the world.
And it's not just your tech-savvy friends that are all hyped up about Bitcoin. Average consumers are now increasingly using Bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies) as a payment option.
Here's a fact you need to know... In 2025, the global market is forecast to reach $17 trillion.
You might love it or hate it. But here's the thing... you can't ignore it.
Like most ecommerce brand owners, all the hype around cryptocurrency got you all curious, too. Can you incorporate it on your own ecommerce site? If so, how do you successfully do it?
After you read this blog post, you'll have a clearer understanding of the benefits of cryptocurrency. And how to install it on your Shopify store.
Are you ready?
Let's start with...
What Is Cryptocurrency?
In a nutshell, cryptocurrency is a digital currency. This is also not issued by banks, financial institutions, or any government. That means you can anonymously spend it. It also means you can transfer it from one person to another over the internet.
There are different digital currencies you can consider. According to Time, here are some of the most popular cryptocurrencies as of late 2021:
- Bitcoin — This is the first digital currency. It's also the most known, as well as valued at a high price.
- Ethereum — Its market cap is secondary to Bitcoin, but more efficient when it comes to energy.
- XRP — It's used for international transfers. It also claims to be faster and more efficient for payments.
- Tether — One of the largest stablecoin. This means its value is tied to the U.S. dollar, so its value holds steadily, unlike the other digital currencies.
- Cardano — It claims to be a more scalable and secure digital currency.
Unlike traditional currencies, you don't have to cram your cash in your wallet. You can store your virtual currency into a digital wallet. That includes putting it into a secure hard drive or software.
You might wonder how you can purchase something from the internet with cryptocurrency. All you have to do is to transfer it from your wallet to the seller.
For the sake of coherence, I will use Bitcoin as the main cryptocurrency example for this blog.
Are you still with me? It's overwhelming, I know. But believe me, it's all worth it when you learn...
Should Ecommerce Brand Owners Use Bitcoin?
Here's the million-dollar question... Is bitcoin a possible currency for ecommerce?
Or any other cryptocurrency payments, for that matter.
The short answer? Yes.
What about your ecommerce platform? Does Shopify accept bitcoin? The answer is yes.
Listen, the fact that big ecommerce platforms such as Shopify accept cryptocurrency payments is a good sign. It means that this kind of payment method is a possible alternative to other traditional forms of payment.
Plus, the ecommerce industry is built on the foundation of it being digital. It would be foolish not to consider a digital currency!
Here are some of the advantages you can reap when you accept cryptocurrency payments...
What Are The Benefits Of Cryptocurrency Payments?
Lower Transaction Fees
I'm sure you're familiar with the transaction fees that credit card companies and financial institutions have. It usually varies from 3-5%. And that's on each financial transaction!
Crypto payments bring good news.
You see, crypto transactions are just between the buyer and the seller. There's no need to pay for a middleman. And even if there are fees, it's usually as low as 1%.
But keep this in mind... converting Bitcoin payments to national fiat currencies such as USD or CAD can include fees.
Another benefit you'll have when you accept bitcoin cash is...
Greater Customer Reach
Who doesn't like it when they reach a broader market?
It's pretty simple... Some credit cards or other payments are not allowed on some territories. But with Bitcoin transactions, you open up a whole new payment option for customers' online purchases.
Yes, the number of consumers using BTC is growing every day at a speedy rate. But more importantly, Bitcoin payments are globally available.
Why so? Because as you learned above, it's not under the control of any country or government. Making international financial transactions is all up to the ecommerce merchant and Bitcoin users.
Accepting Bitcoin as a payment method will also make you be thankful for...
Payment systems such as credit card transactions and bank transfers can be reversed. It also takes some time to process.
But that's not the case with cryptocurrency transactions. Accepting cryptocurrency means money is instantly exchanged. That includes it being irreversible...
This means reduced chargebacks for your ecommerce store!
And because it's impossible to cancel a transaction, your online store will have...
Contrary to common belief, cryptocurrencies are highly secured. This is because of cryptocurrencies using blockchain technology.
Blockchain technology is composed of blocks. These blocks are groups of information about transactions. The blocks then create a linear chain that is transparent to everyone. So, all of the information in the blockchain cannot be edited. Nor deleted.
What does that mean for online merchants?
This technology powers cryptocurrency to be resistant to fraudulent activities. It makes it difficult to counterfeit Bitcoin cash.
And more importantly, accepting Bitcoin will also...
Create Better Customer Experience
We've already established that accepting cryptocurrency allows your customers to do flexible payments.
Is there more to it than that?
Did you know that coins or tokens give you the ability to track your products? That can be from manufacturing to stocking online stores.
That's the kind of transparency your customers want from ecommerce retailers. The more transparency, the better their experiences are. And with that, you can create loyal customers out of them.
Of course, virtual currency also has its drawbacks.
Here is a couple you also need to consider...
What Are Possible Limitations Of A Digital Currency?
There are still ecommerce sellers who think that cryptocurrency is not ready to enter mainstream ecommerce.
Here are some of their reasons...
You are well aware of national currencies slightly fluctuating from time to time.
But cryptocurrencies are wildly volatile. When it goes upward, it swings massively. And when it goes down, the drop is also significant.
This can be tricky to navigate for your everyday cash flow.
But here's a piece of good news... Bitcoin is also easy to convert into your fiat currency. You have the option to quickly sell your Bitcoin instead of just storing it in your personal wallet.
Another concern you can have as an online store owner is...
It's true... cryptocurrency is not controlled by any government.
But the IRS still requires you to report transactions made with cryptocurrency. As well as your revenues and losses with your "property".
You would also need to include the fair market value of the cryptocurrency in U.S. dollars.
Does this worry you? Well, don't fret any longer. Because in the next part, I am going to discuss...
How To Safely Transact With Bitcoin Payments?
So you've decided to accept BTC as a form of payment. It's time to make sure that every transaction on your ecommerce website is secure. That goes the same for your customers' digital wallets.
Carefully go over the tips below...
- Use strong passwords. This should be an obvious one. Your password should be a mix of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, digits, and special characters. This will make it harder to crack. Make sure your phone is not hacked when doing transactions from your mobile.
- Do a multi-factor verification. Take advantage of this additional security for your exchanges and digital wallet.
- Regularly update. This goes the same for your software and systems. Always check for the newest version of your wallet and apps.
- Keep backup storage. Use an offline bitcoin wallet such as a flash drive. Update it often with all changes you make in your original copy. Make sure you apply encryption techniques to your backup.
- Don't keep huge amounts in your wallet. Don't keep it there for long periods of time. You can convert it into your local currency and transfer it to your bank account.
Now that you have a wider knowledge about cryptocurrency, let's move on to...
How To Implement Cryptocurrency Transactions On Your Shopify Store?
Are you ready to accept payments with cryptocurrency?
Then let's set you up!
With Shopify, your online store receives virtual currency in a lot of different ways. Here's how to accept Bitcoin on Shopify.
There are three ways you can accept this form of payment. You can enable one or more payment processors. Let's go over them one by one. Each payment processor takes a few minutes to set up.
- Go to Coinbase Commerce and sign up. Go through verifying your email address and fill everything up.
- On your left navigation menu, tap on the Settings page.
- Click on API Keys section. Create a new API key. You will use this to connect your online store to your account. Keep this a secret!
- Go to your Shopify store settings. Then tap on Payment providers.
- Scroll down and click Alternative payments.
- Type Coinbase Commerce in the search bar.
- Enter your email address and API key.
- Hit Save.
Your customers can now checkout using this. They can pay using Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, DAI, Dogecoin, or USD Coin.
The next method is through...
- Create a business account on BitPay.
- Once logged in, go to your dashboard and create an API Token. Do not check the Require Authentication box.
- Put in "Shopify" on the Token Label box for a token purpose.
- Just like the previous method, go to your Shopify settings > Payment providers > Alternative payment methods > Search BitPay.
- Copy and paste your API Token.
- Click Save.
The last payment processor is...
- Create a business account on CoinPayments.
- Once you're logged in, go to Account > Account Settings > Basic Settings.
- Get your merchant ID on the first setting. Save it for later.
- Then, go to Account > Account Settings > Merchant Settings.
- Create and save your IPN Secret key.
- Click Update Account.
- Go to your Shopify account. Then Settings > Payment Providers > Alternative Payments > Search CoinPayments.
- Tap Edit. Enter your Merchant ID and IPN Secret key.
- Hit Save.
Your payment processors are now set up! Your online store is now ready to accept Bitcoin and other 300+ cryptocurrencies.
Ta-da! You now have a better perspective on how cryptocurrency can affect your ecommerce business.
Are You Ready For The Future of Ecommerce?
A lot of people in the ecommerce industry are still skeptical about the mainstream adoption of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Yes, new trends in technology can be a bit scary to tackle.
But as we see it today, cryptocurrency is and will change ecommerce as we know it.
Even if you are sold on it or not, the best thing you've done today is to learn about it. Having a deeper knowledge about everything on your platform will only help you succeed.
And if you do decide to adapt... There's no better time to start than today.
Once you incorporate cryptocurrency, it may take a while for your customers to use it. But it won't slow down your online store.
Do you know what can slow you down?
If your ecommerce site is out of date, slow, and clunky.
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