The holiday season is upon us, a time for good will, cheer, and commerce. The end-of-the-year is an excellent time for small businesses to reflect on how they can make transactions easier and faster. Retailers in the past twenty years have seen a wave of innovation from online shopping to consumer analytics. I would argue that the 2016 holiday shopping season is a good time for businesses to check out another game-changing technology- bitcoin.
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a digital currency. It is like a dollar, but without the Federal Reserve. Bitcoins are decentralized and don’t belong to a bank or a nation-state. Transactions are verified by peer-to-peer networks on the internet. If you are looking for a more technical definition, check out bitcon’s faq.
What Problem does Bitcoin Solve?
Bitcoin solves many issues for small business owners. Some of the more pressing problems include cash flow, and reduction in transaction fees.
Having enough cash on hand is a tricky problem. If you are using a service like PayPal it can take up to 7 days to obtain your funds. Some services will charge extra to gain quicker access to your money. Services like Bitcoin Pay allow merchants to receive their money the next business day. If it is a bitcoin-to-bitcoin transaction, you can receive your money in minutes.
Fees can be a thorn on the side of small enterprises. Tons of customers are unaware of the steep fees businesses shoulder when they pay via credit or debit card. Credit cards alone can charge 2-3% of transaction fees. Bitcoin POS charges far less, many bitcoin services charge less than 1% per transaction. This is a boon for business owners because it allows companies to keep more their hard-earned profits.
How to Get Started?
Are you convinced and want to also accept bitcoin? There are many ways to go about getting a bitcoin wallet, but I think the best way is to start with services like bitcoinpay and coinbase. If you are interested in other bitcoin wallets, here is a list you can choose from.