There’s recently been an influx of e-commerce stores incorporating cryptocurrencies for online purchases, and there’s a handful of reasons why it makes sense.
Cryptocurrency is no longer a myth, scam, or whatever critics call it. Recently, those belonging to the e-commerce business realize that the likes of Bitcoin and Ethereum are becoming mainstream. Tesla’s Elon Musk invested $1.5 billion in Bitcoin while British auction house Christie’s auctioned off a collage and netted $69 million. The artwork made by American digital artist Beeple was sold as an NFT or non-fungible token under the Ethereum, Flow, and Tezos blockchains.
Expect a long time before cryptocurrency gets the same treatment with PayPal and VISA cards, but there’s an emerging trend here. The fact that viable online shopping with cryptocurrency will ultimately become a regular payment option for shoppers.
Experts think that the promise of low costs in making online transactions is the main reason why e-commerce sites are gradually accepting cryptocurrency as an option. High transaction fees are to be blamed for this shift in policy. For example, most credit card companies and payment apps charge at least 3% and up to 6% in every transaction. Online shoppers carry the burden of paying the fees since many e-commerce sites build the fees into their products’ prices. On the other hand, cryptocurrency transactions put pressure on the mainstream payment options because they usually offer no fees or as minimal as 1%.
Online shopping with cryptocurrency affords a sensible alternative to bank-related transactions. One in five people doesn’t trust or use banks to safeguard their money. The banking system is riddled with different issues, i.e., lack of access, problems with trustworthiness, and systemic racism.
Factoring these issues, most people find enthusiasm when they’re presented with other payment choices. This is especially true when shopping for products over the web. While cash remains an option, cryptocurrency carries some intrigue that people are beginning to use it. The truth is that consumers are likely to trust a social media personality who promotes Bitcoin rather than a traditional banking system.
Online transactions always carry the risk of fraud. There are countless cases of shoppers getting scammed or ripped off by seemingly honest and legitimate online stores. Ecommerce sites seek an end to fraudulent transactions by embracing cryptocurrency as a mode of payment.
Not everyone realizes that e-commerce companies are also affected by scams, primarily in the form of fraudulent returns and chargebacks. Both scenarios hurt the website’s bottom line and may even force it to shut down. The blockchain technology responsible for cryptocurrency is built and designed to eliminate the possibility of making fraudulent charges. Nonetheless, it remains to be seen if it’ll work in the long run.
For the moment, the sample size is too small to come up with a forecast on the role of cryptocurrency in online shopping. There must be more e-commerce sites willing to embrace it to figure out if it can become a feasible option.