The new era of digital payments is moving forward and a decentralized system of payment is increasingly becoming popular. People’s trust in online shopping is at an all-time high. We now prefer to pay for things online and have them delivered to save time and avoid the hassle of stepping into a store physically.
However, the crypto boom (while still sketchy for a lot of people) is gaining more momentum, garnering people’s trust for the future of online transactions – cryptocurrency payments. And some major retail stores are leading the way already.
Balenciaga Now Accepts Bitcoin
Balenciaga joined the crypto space in June 2022, making it one of the latest luxury brands to accept cryptocurrency as a means of payment. Balenciaga’s CEO, Cedric Charbit, announced that starting June, certain Balenciaga stores across the US will begin accepting Bitcoin (BTC) as well as Ether (ETH) transactions.
For a start, the world-renowned fashion brand’s establishments located on Madison Avenue in New York and Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills will be accepting cryptocurrency payments. Balenciaga’s creative director, Demna Gvasalia, posted on Instagram that her brand will also accept cryptocurrency transactions on its website.
Also, the French luxury fashion label announced the launch of its “Cristobal Balenciaga: To the Moon” NFT art collection available on the Crypto.com NFT market. The NFT art collection is in memory of Cristobal Balenciaga, who was the founder of the brand and began the business in 1919 before it was later purchased by French luxury giant Kering.
Last year December, Balenciaga also unveiled a metaverse business division. The Paris fashion house isn’t the sole luxury brand accepting crypto-based payments. In the past, Gucci, TAG Heuer, Off White, and numerous others have also announced that they will start accepting cryptocurrency payments. Experts believe that the widespread adoption of crypto by high-end brands could trigger the effect of a domino effect, which could lead to crypto adoption in other industries as well.
Hublot Now Accepts Bitcoin
The Swiss-based luxury watchmaker, Hublot, has begun accepting bitcoin as a payment method starting with a limited-edition launch of their Big Bang Unico collection of 200 pieces, according to the company’s announcement last month.
The release will begin with this limited edition collection, and the inclusion of bitcoin on the platform will remain for users in the United States eBoutique. The company collaborated with BitPay to bring the features to the limited release, however, their collaboration will not end.
To purchase any of the timepieces in this collection, buyers will pay approximately $21,800, which is less than the current price of 1 BTC. This Big Bang collection is Hublot’s most popular design, and the Unico limited-release is made of titanium.
That said, Hublot is not the only luxury brand to be a part of Bitcoin’s blockchain. Clothing retailers Farfetch, Gucci, as well as Balenciaga have all announced limited trials or full acceptance of bitcoin payments. Similar to that, the luxury jewelry store SFLMaven and Continental Diamond also announced that they will start accepting bitcoin as payment.
In the same vein, Hublot isn’t the sole luxury watchmaker based in Switzerland to start accepting bitcoin. On the 19th of May, Tag Heuer announced that it was also going to begin accepting bitcoin as a currency on the online marketplace it operates.
BitPay and other crypto facilities providers continue to enable companies such as the brands mentioned above to gain an entirely new clientele by using bitcoin. The support provided to these companies lets them partake in the bitcoin ecosystem without needing technical expertise.
Breitling Now Accepts Bitcoin
Luxury watch brand, @Breitling now accepts crypto!
“Welcome to #BitPay, we are excited to partner with you to bring new payment options to your customers”. @BitPay June 28, 2022.
Breitling has allied with BitPay, one of the biggest companies that offer cryptocurrency-based payment services that allow customers to purchase their straps and wristwatches using cryptocurrency, the company on the 28th of June.
As per the luxury brand’s website, BitPay allows payments to be made using Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC), DogeCoin (DOGE), Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC) as well as five stablecoins that include Binance USD (BUSD) Dai (DAI), Gemini Dollar (GUSD) USDP, as well as USD Coin (USDC).
That means, customers will be able to utilize their cryptocurrencies to purchase all of Breiting’s watches listed on their website, ranging from $3,300 to $53,560 for the top-end Breitling Premier B21 Chronograph Tourbillion Bentley.
Why Bitcoin is Needed in E-commerce
The rise of online shopping has been rapid with new online stores and platforms appearing on a daily basis. This has been fueled by the convenience and ease of shopping online and the growing number of customers who are comfortable doing transactions on the internet.
As the e-commerce market becomes increasingly crowded, companies are trying to find ways to differentiate themselves from their competitors. One method the companies are using is by accepting payment in Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that allows secure, quick, and free transactions. Furthermore, Bitcoin transactions are irreversible, protecting businesses from fraud.
The acceptance of Bitcoin is still comparatively low. But, it could provide numerous advantages to companies that want to take a leap. Being among the first companies to accept Bitcoin can give you an advantage in a competitive and crowded market.
A few points to keep in mind when it comes to accepting Bitcoin for your online store: Initially, you’ll need a payment processor compatible with Bitcoin transactions. Also, you and your employees need to get educated about how Bitcoin functions and how you can protect your Bitcoin.
Benefits of bitcoin for eCommerce stores
There are a few benefits for eCommerce sellers using Bitcoin as the payment method, as described in the following paragraphs:
- Irreversible transactions: A majority of the online payment services such as PayPal, credit card transactions, and other third-party companies are working on a system of irreversible transactions. That means when you make a payment to the wrong account then you are entitled to get it back without approval from the recipient. Third-party payment systems aid the recipient or the buyer in obtaining the money in the event of an issue. This is how they function. However, Bitcoin transactions will not function in the same way as this system since there is no authority to oversee it and there will be zero fraud. But, the person who made the payment can’t get their money back without the consent of the seller or the recipient.
- Minimum transaction cost: Other payment gateways cost 3 to 8% per transaction, and the fees for credit card transactions are so high that vendors will never earn enough profit to remain in the marketplace. Bitcoin, however, has the advantage to cut down on the price of transactions and also help vendors keep theihelpsofits. Because the transaction is direct and without intermediaries and the cost is small or minimal in some instances.
- Global market: The issue with using a local currency to run a business is that you can’t present your business as a global enterprise since you need to set up various payment options on your site. Furthermore, a third-party payment system will cost you a significant amount to convert international payments into your currency. Since Bitcoin is considered a worldwide currency, you can reach many of the world’s clients and grow your business.
- It is easy to integrate: The Bitcoin gateway for payment is simple to integrate into websites similar to other payment settings. If you’re working with a WordPress website, you can take advantage of the various plugins that are easy to setup. Tset upaid, what if you have an individual website built in a programming language, and you don’t want to hassle with the process? In this situation, you can get a professional to create the code and incorporate it with the Bitcoin Payment System for a small amount.
The Downsides of Bitcoin in E-commerce
The volatility of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies generally has given it a rough beginning with E-commerce. While there are many benefits when making use of Bitcoin for transactions online, however, there are numerous negative effects and drawbacks for companies that have embraced cryptocurrency.
Since Bitcoin value can fluctuate at any point in time (and even from hour to hour), it can be difficult for businesses to know the value of their products and services at every given time. In the end, it can be difficult to determine prices, and often leads to companies overcharging or undercharging their customers.
Also, if a buyer mistakenly (or intentionally) pays a bill to an incorrect address, there’s no way to claim the money returned. This can cause many problems and loss of revenue for companies that accept Bitcoin payments.
There is also the issue of chargebacks. Contrary to the traditional credit card transactions, Bitcoin transactions aren’t covered by chargeback rights. Therefore, if the customer claims that they haven’t received the items or services or what they got isn’t what was advertised, the business has no recourse. Businesses that accept Bitcoin are at a disadvantage since they are more unlikely to recover funds due to fraudulent or disputable transactions.
While there are some benefits when making use of Bitcoin in E-commerce transactions, overall, the use of Bitcoin has a number of major disadvantages. Businesses who are considering the use of cryptocurrency should be aware of the hazards prior to making a decision.