Should you be accepting Bitcoin as a payment option for your business? The answer used it be, “well that depends on whether or not you believe in the technology”.
15 Great Reasons Why Your Toronto Business Needs to Accept Bitcoin Payments as an Option for Customers
Now the answer sounds more like “you’re not accepting Bitcoin yet?!”. Whether you are a consulting firm on Bay Street, or you are serving Chinese cuisine on Spadina, the revolutionary transaction verification system is spreading like a wildfire and your business should keep an extinguisher in its model.
What used to be a cult movement, for nerds and computer geeks, is now taking over conversation between the largest banking institutions and governments in the world. This is not a passing fad or fly by night operation.
Bitcoin, and it’s underlying technology, blockchain, is changing the way we do business on a fundamental level. We can now make exchanges with each other without middlemen, without banks. Bitcoin is a currency for people, maintained by people, across borders, and across the planet.
So with all of the excitement, how are Bitcoin payments made exactly?
Bitcoin payments are made to Bitcoin wallets, from Bitcoin wallets. Every single wallet has its own unique digital signature:
And these digital signatures are used track the movement of Bitcoin betweens every single wallet they touch.
You can quite literally track the life cycle of a Bitcoin back to the moment it was mined on the blockchain.
Forensic accountants LOVE Bitcoin for that. Everything can be traced back to a source.
But we need to remember, Bitcoin is a virtual currency, meaning that we cannot hold, see, or touch them, just account for them as data on the blockchain.
You observe this accounting in your Bitcoin wallet and Bitcoin balances that increase and decrease in value as bitcoin is traded and transactions are processed on the blockchain.
Like your bank account, Bitcoin transactions are recorded and linked to the unique account holder. But unlike your bank, the transaction is not just recorded a centralized data point controlled by the bank. It is recorded, and broadcast, to the Bitcoin blockchain ’nodes’ across the planet, so that everyone can see each transaction no matter where they are on the planet. There are no opportunities to duplicate or delete transactions. Making them all immutably verifiable, and without need of 3rd party validation, aka the bank itself.
If you are still confused, don’t worry! Although beautifully simple in its principle, the actual blockchain technology coding and development is quite complex, and it should be. The revolution of this technology is quite literally changing the world we know.
But now that we have a little bit of a better idea on how Bitcoin transactions work, let’s look at reasons why accepting them as payment, can do wonders for your business. Especially if you live in Toronto.
The 15 Reasons to Accept Bitcoin
1. Bitcoin can used for both business transactions, and an investment.
Bitcoin serves as both a mode of exchange between you and your customer, as well as an asset that you can hodl while it enjoys the rollercoaster of cryptocurrency markets. If you can hold onto the BTC that your customers use as payments, odds are you will profit doubly from your products and services. Take this homeowner in Mississauga for example, he chose to accept Bitcoin for his condo as opposed to cash. Giving rise to the question, is Bitcoin a better bet than real estate? Only time will tell. But expect more transactions between real estate and Bitcoins as we trudge into the future.
2. Bitcoin offers faster payments and transactions.
When we use our credit cards, or other payment platforms like PayPal, we have to wait to send and receive our money. The reason why Bitcoin is such a revolutionary means of payment is because once you make a transaction, the entire process will be complete and verified by the blockchain in a matter of moments, sometimes seconds. No more waiting for multiple parties to clear and settle our funds through centralized entities like banks. The broadcasted Bitcoin ledger knows exactly how much we’ve spent.
3. Extremely competitive transaction fees – save money by using Bitcoin.
Most online business requires that we use Paypal, or traditional credit and debit cards to conduct purchases for products and services. These transactions usually end up costing us between 2% and 5% to the intermediary facilitating the transaction. Whether that be the credit card company or PayPal, the fees can be heavy and add up over time. When we use Bitcoins, the sender (customer) receives the charge for the transaction, and the fee is regularly less than 1%. As well there is no additional fee if the volume of the transactions is higher, the rate is applied the same whether it is an inexpensive item, like dinner at your favourite restaurant, or a brand new yacht.
4. You will attract brand new business by accepting Bitcoin.
In the Bitcoin world, mass-adoption is the pinnacle of success for cryptocurrencies and blockchain. A large part of this success will come from thousands of merchants accepting Bitcoin as part of their payment options. Once you have signalled to the cryptocurrency ecosystem that you accept Bitcoin, you can not only expect new customers to find interest in your product/service as they have an extremely easy way to pay for it, but you may also find some of your other customers come out of the woodworks for repeat orders now that they know you accept their BTC!
5. You will receive free marketing online as one of the sacred merchants around the globe who accepts BTC.
Back to the Bitcoin world. Merchant adoption is SO important, and because of this, there are many sites and web pages devoted to letting the world know which businesses are accepting Bitcoin. The moment that you do decide to raise your blockchain flag, expect to be noticed by blogs, databases, and directories that are doing their best to showcase the most cutting edge brands on the planet. Early adoption means something in the cryptocurrency ecosystem.
6. Making Bitcoin a payment option for your business is an easy adoption.
One of the biggest entry barriers for businesses to accept Bitcoin is often misguided idea that you require a strong technical background to use cryptocurrencies. That couldn’t be further from the truth! Bitcoin is very easy to use, frighteningly easy. Thats partly the reason why many governments will warn of it’s extreme volatility and risk of loss due to inexperienced trading. But ultimately, this price action we all love to hate, and hate to love, is the result of millions of people trying to get their hands on, and understand, this revolutionary currency. As time passes and more people easily adopt the currency, the price will stabilize, while continuing its upward trend, and new form of stable, immutable payment will be born.
7. There are many ways to accept Bitcoin as a business payment option.
Right now, the best way to accept Bitcoin payments for your business is through BitPay service. Bitpay connects you to the borderless payment network of the blockchain with Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash. You can receive payment in any amount, from anywhere in the world, from any computer or mobile device. A truly revolutionary platform that can allow any business to start accepting Bitcoin within moments. This is why adoption is so easy, it is because blockchain developers know that mass adoption is required for the blockchain to be successful. So the brightest minds in the world are using the power in the flexibility of blockchain computing technology, and directly connecting your business to the blockchain network. You will no longer need to worry about chargeback fraud or identity theft – the globally broadcasted bitcoin ledger records everything. When you use BTC or BCH, customers can pay without divulging personal information as a credit card would, and refunds are made directly through the merchant, as opposed to having to communicate with your bank. You are now in control of your transactions. Alternatively, your customer can simply send you coin straight to your wallet. The beginnings of the blockchain ecosystem were built on partnership forged like this. Send funds from wallet A to wallet B – paid in full.
8. Your business does not necessarily have to hold onto the Bitcoins once you accept them as payment.
An extension to the reason above, once you accept the payment of Bitcoin, you don’t necessarily have to hold onto it yourself. Let’s say one of your customers orders a dinner for $100CDN for their family and pays you with Bitcoin via Bitpay. You can then instantly settle the payment for USD instead of holding onto the Bitcoin that MAY go up or down in value. Now you are probably asking why USD and not CDN? Well Bitpay did at some point settle payments for Canadians, but the business handling settlements in Canada wasn’t being run properly, and so these Bitcoin payment companies are now looking for a new company to step up to the plate… Luckily, there is one Canadian exchange that is converting Bitcoin to CDN very well, and is now opening up a massive facility on King Street. if you need to convert your Bitcoin to CDN, open a Coin Square account and send your BTC there. You will be able to cash out your BTC to CDN directly to your back account with virtually no problems whatsoever.
9. By accepting Bitcoin, your business gives your customers the option, and therefore the power, to choose how they pay.
We all love and cherish our customers, they are quite literally what powers our business. So when we give that power back to them, they return that love with loyalty and longterm relationships. By being flexible enough to accept Bitcoin, your customers will see that you are continuing to evolve your model in order to adhere to not only a changing technological landscape, but the financial drivers, investment decisions, and consumer tastes that your customers will be experiencing themselves.
10. Toronto pushes the frontier of humanity – literally.
Toronto, and Canada to a greater extent, sits on the frontier of humanity for all of social tolerance, cultural diversity, and technological modernization of metropolitan areas. Bitcoin is the currency of the people, and could not feel any more at home in our futuristic and cutting edge city.
11. Bitcoin is great for your international customers.
Because we here in Toronto entertain so many international visitors, the borderless characteristics of cryptocurrencies are attractive to those looking for easy transactions overseas, by simply logging into their online wallet, and doing business with whomever accepts Bitcoin. The cryptocurrency allows your customers from U.S., China, Africa, and Europe to do business with you without having to worry about foreign exchange barriers, borders, or even barriers of distance. Simply have them send their coins from their Bitcoin wallet to yours, and you are paid.
12. Toronto has one of the fastest growing blockchain community.
It won’t just be your overseas customers who are paying you Bitcoin. Toronto has a very fast growing blockchain community and is touted as one of the more concentrated blockchain centres in the world. There are many people in the city already using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for their business, they would be more than happy to use Bitcoin to pay for your services.
13. Toronto is starting to show signs of true mass adoption.
If you payed attention to Bitcoin ATM (BTM) installations since the inception of Bitcoin, Toronto was one of the first major cites to install a Bitcoin ATM in North America. Us Canadians love convenience. So the increasing presence of easy access to purchase Bitcoin in our subway stations, restaurants, convenience stores, hotels, and tech centres is giving our population the signal that Bitcoin is putting its flag down in the sand in our beautiful city, and people from Toronto will find it very easy to fill their wallets when they need BTC to make a quick purchase with their favourite vendor.
14. It’s not just Toronto. Canadian searches for Bitcoin on Google is one of the highest in the world for it’s population.
Searches for the keyword ‘Bitcoin’ are really important to the cryptocurrency ecosystem. When Bitcoin searches are high, this indicates increased interest into the cryptocurrency, and therefore, more people around the globe are buying. So by this logic, the areas to which Bitcoin searches are the highest, are likely to the the same place where Bitcoin is being purchased and used. Canada, and subsequently, British Columbia, and Ontario, have some of the highest search frequencies in the world.
Canada ranks 7th for Bitcoin keyword searches worldwide.
Ontario and British Columbia are the leading provinces.
The last reason is my favourite and most simple.
15. Bitcoin may be one of the most valuable assets to possess in this era of digitization and scaling.
To HODL means something in crypto. If you are able to HODL your coins through the extremely volatile environment that is the birth of this new economy, you will generally do well. Bitcoin has performed over and over and over upwards of 60%, year over year, since its inception. If you can ignore the parabolic highs and lows of the marketplace, you will generally see profit on your Bitcoin investment if you can hold onto it.
But I will admit, it is one hot potato!
So if you see yourself needing something to change up the profile of your business a little bit. Perhaps perk up the branding, or appease more of your technological or millennial customer base, consider accepting Bitcoin as a payment option. Customers over the border may find it easier to do business with you as well.
Because digital currencies are here to stay – worldwide.
We used to be asking “When Lambo – when moon?!”. Now we should be asking “When mass adoption?” You may just be investing into one of the most revolutionary technologies of our time.
P.S. If you have any questions about accepting Bitcoin for your business, or about cryptocurrencies and the blockchain in general, don’t hesitate to shoot me an email.
I am always happy to help nurture the ecosystem.