The Rising Importance of Cryptocurrency for Businesses
In spite of the incredibly volatile conditions, the cryptocurrency market continues to grow at an exponential rate. That is to say, while the prices are significantly lower than the all-time high a few months ago, Bitcoin and Altcoins are still light years ahead of their very humble origins.
At the same time, this price is beside the point, and the mere presence of cryptocurrency should be enough. After all, the emergence of Bitcoin and Altcoins is nothing less than revolutionary and an event which is set to transform the financial industry and the traditional process of making transactions.
And this is often where the questions begin, for most people are entirely unfamiliar when it comes to Altcoins and unaware that there are hundreds of alternatives to the better known Bitcoin. Sure, the general public is sometimes enlightened as to the presence of the latter, but the truth is, when cryptocurrency threatens instability to the old way of doing things, there is every reason for the media, banks, and governments of the world to keep this information to a minimum.
With this in mind, it is necessary to understand the basics of cryptocurrency in order to realize the reasons as to why so many businesses are now keen to accept them.
The Basics of Cryptocurrency
In case you might be asking yourself, Bitcoin is a form of digital currency, often referred to as “the gold standard” and not much different to a digital form of bookkeeping. At the same time, this is often where the value of cryptocurrency is disregarded in the real world as many argue that Bitcoin is little more than a worthless number.
On the contrary, this is also why education is important and why cryptocurrency is starting to gain traction in the mainstream.
In short, when Bitcoin is explained properly to most people, it becomes apparent that traditional money (Fiat) is nothing more than paper. Yes, we know that this paper has value but at what point do we know how much value this constitutes? It can seem quite complicated at first, but there is only one answer – the value of money is decided by how often people use it.
With the above in mind, we can understand the logic of this emerging market and how the value of Bitcoin is rising in tandem with the increased number of people purchasing the coins.
Bitcoin and the Blockchain
When Bitcoin first appeared back in 2009, there was little interest in what appeared as quite a complicated manual. However, we now look back to this as a moment that would change the world and a whitepaper which outlined the plans for the first cryptocurrency to be distributed on a decentralized system called the blockchain.
While Bitcoin was intended as a currency for peer to peer transactions, it was the decentralized nature which was genuinely different about this system. After all, when it came to transactions, the blockchain required no middle man, no permission, and no delay. Furthermore, the system was intended to be cheap, self-regulated and transparent which would see many individuals and small institutions intrigued to know more about the new system. As word about Bitcoin increased, more and more people began to purchase the coin, and in time, the value would continue to rise until it reached a high of $20,000 per coin in December 2017.
The Rise of Altcoins
At the same time, while the initial blueprint was an astounding piece of technology, there were many issues with Bitcoin. For example, the fees were not as low as expected and the speed of transactions left a lot to be desired. In time, Bitcoin holders began referencing Bitcoin as “the Gold Standard” which was partly an acceptance that the coin was not the most suitable for everyday transactions.
For the above reason, Altcoins were introduced to cryptocurrency exchanges with many of them touted as “the new Bitcoin.” Dash and Litecoin were amongst the first, and these alternative payment coins were created using the same system as the blockchain but with specific changes to make them more efficient.
When you check CoinMarketCap or one of the many cryptocurrency exchanges, you will now notice many hundreds of coins on the index. Interestingly, many of the teams behind these coins have already established highly successful tech companies while others are fast emerging as the most talented in their field. Either way, some of these are payment coins like those mentioned above and others have specific a specific use case – a story for another day.
Moral of the story; there are now many coins which can be used to make transactions and with a market cap of more than $400 Billion, there are inevitably a lot of people holding these coins.
Bitcoin and Altcoins for Businesses
As you can see, there are many benefits to cryptocurrency, and aside from the cheap and instantaneous transactions, millions of people have them. With this in mind, there is simply no good reason for businesses not to be getting involved, and with easy integration, this is also a seamless process. In fact, there are now many payment processors which have been created solely for the purpose of facilitating cryptocurrency transactions while there are also debit cards proposed which are intended to convert this digital currency directly into local fiat currency.
Indeed, thousands of businesses around the world are accepting cryptocurrency and adopting these coins as a preferred method of payment, from KFC and Amazon to Overstock and even the San Jose Earthquakes football team. You can find much more on SpendMyAltcoin, the largest marketplace for cryptocurrency and in time, there is every reason to believe that this method of payment will be commonly accepted by every business.
At a time when crypto markets are experiencing a particularly turbulent time, there are many businesses who feel reluctant to accept Bitcoin or Altcoin as payment. However, when the uncertainty subsides, regulations are established, and lines are drawn in the sand, we should see this exciting method of payment flourish along with the very businesses which choose to accept them.