Cryptocurrencies had a great year in 2021. In this period, we have seen the market go from being classified as a billion-dollar economy into a trillion-dollar economy. Aside from that, cryptocurrencies are gaining visibility in the mainstream world with, for example, El Salvador's adoption of Bitcoin as the official digital currency. As a result, investors are looking for the "new Bitcoin" on the market, hoping to find a great alternative in so-called altcoins. Unfortunately, many traders value an altcoin exclusively…
Who said Bitcoin is bad for payments? The 6th edition of Visa’s Global Back to Business study found that nearly a quarter of small businesses plan to accept crypto transactions in 2022 – including Bitcoin.
Rapid Crypto Adoption Incoming?
According to the study, 82% of small and micro businesses (SMB’s) will accept some form of digital payment option this year. Meanwhile, 73% see getting new forms of payment as essential for growing their businesses.
“Of those surveyed, 24% said they plan to accept digital currencies such as the cryptocurrency Bitcoin,” reads the report.
Bitcoin has often been criticized for being too slow and expensive to manage small, retail-level transactions, even compared to other cryptos. However, innovations such as the lightning network have taken its scalability to another order of magnitude. Visa has also helped on that front by introducing Bitcoin tap-and-pay spending cards.
The survey also showed that most consumers expect to shift to being completely cashless within ten years. However, 18% of respondents were already cashless.
This leaves room for integrating innovative new crypto payment options – including stablecoins and CBDCs. In addition, the US government has recently begun discussions about proper CBDC implementation and how without invading citizens’ privacy.
Crypto payments may be a necessity in some areas. For example, bitcoin wallet Strike recently expanded operations to Argentina, where Visa’s dollar network has been banned. Using Tether – a dollar-backed stablecoin – Strike works around the dollar restrictions while providing the economic benefits of a digital dollar’s transferability and stability.
Who Accepts Crypto Right Now?
Cryptocurrencies are still in early-stage adoption as transactional money, but such use is only growing in popularity. For example, last year, Australian baseball team Perth Heat moved onto a full Bitcoin standard, including taking payment for merch in Bitcoin.
Bitcoin has also become an increasingly popular means for paying employees their wages. For example, numerous athletes from the NBA and NFL are taking Bitcoin salaries to preserve their wealth over time.
Tesla has had a more curious history with cryptocurrency payments. While once accepting car payments in Bitcoin, the company stopped in May following due to environmental concerns around Bitcoin mining.