i3 | November 11, 2021

Why Cryptocurrency Makes Business Sense

Scott Steinberg

Consumer technology leaders cannot afford to ignore the cryptocurrency space in the years ahead.

Online cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase’s 56 million users traded over $335 billion in virtual currency in Q1 2021. Visa reports that over $1 billion was spent on crypto-linked credit cards in the first half of this year. Noting the field’s skyrocketing potential, and nascent form, opportunities abound for businesses.

It’s helpful for businesses to accept cryptocurrency as a payment method, given its growing acceptance among global customers — especially given these payment options’ ability to increase audience spend and reach. Likewise, with use of mobile wallets now exceeding cash payments according to FIS’ 2021 Global Payments Report, and credit cards supporting peer-to-peer transactions and virtual currencies, it’s more of an imperative for companies to stay competitive.

Cryptocurrency also offers customers lower processing fees, and more opportunities to transfer money faster worldwide. Because of its ability to operate beyond borders, popular forms of crypto effectively offer shoppers (and the businesses who serve them) an easily-implemented suite of globally-recognized payment solutions.

Cryptocurrencies will command a fast-growing share of the e-global commerce market going forward. That means soon businesses must accept these solutions or risk letting competitors take the lead. What’s more, noting that availability, convenience, and value are now the strongest drivers of customers’ purchase intent, failing to add support for cryptocurrencies could be a risky gamble, especially with use of digital wallet-based transactions projected to account for more than half of all eCommerce payments worldwide by 2024.

Getting in on the Crypto Craze

Consumers like cryptocurrency because it represents a direct exchange of value between individuals, and because virtual currencies and exchange rates aren’t controlled by governments or central banks. Each transaction is also recorded on secure digital ledgering software (the blockchain) that’s encrypted, spread across multiple computers, and hard to replicate, serving as an effective deterrent to virtual fraudsters. Even if it’s just to incorporate support for cryptocurrency-based payments into your sales channel, businesses won’t be able to avoid eventually jumping on the bandwagon. Whether this trend truly holds the potential to move the needle for your business will largely come down to the following factors:

  • Is there growing interest among your company’s customer base in adopting cryptocurrency payments?
  • What compelling business cases can you make, and inherent strategic value can you recognize, by new ventures in this space?
  • From added promotional opportunities to more frictionless transactions, how can cryptocurrency solutions expand your business to reach new markets or audiences?
  • How can you incorporate these tech tools throughout marketing, advertising and sales efforts in ways that can boost the bottom line?

Mind you, cryptocurrency-based exchanges still represent just a fraction of all digital payments. But it’s also becoming clear that consumer technology leaders cannot afford to ignore the cryptocurrency space in the years ahead. Bearing this mind, it only makes sense to start experimenting now.

Remember you don’t have to overspend or overinvest in R&D — sometimes, mixing and matching preexisting solutions in new or novel ways is the most cost-effective way to innovate. But it’s also apparent that cryptocurrencies are here to stay — and you’ll need to make investments in them to invest in your company’s future.

Industry experts will discuss the evolving cryptocurrency landscape at CES 2022.

Consumers like cryptocurrency because it represents a direct exchange of value between individuals.
i3 magazine November/December 2021 cover

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