Currently, there is a significant shift in the global outlook on cryptocurrencies. There has been a 900% increase in the crypto market since early 2020.
Social media users seem to get its gist, with posts concerning Bitcoin on the rise. BTC, ETH, LTC, DOGE, and BCH are among the top 10 currencies owned by Americans.
Cryptocurrency adoption is a hot topic within the crypto and financial sector. Questions are also circulating about what would propel retail crypto adoption. With that in mind, retailers worldwide are opening their arms to crypto payments. According to a recent survey, approximately 44% of Americans prefer crypto cash-back rewards from retailers instead of fiat currencies.
The big question is, will retailers openly accept cryptocurrencies sooner than expected? Let us have a look at some factors that might play a big hand in this topic.
Can Cryptocurrencies be A Good Cash Replacement Option?
Since Bitcoin’s inception, its benefits continue to be irrefutable. Despite the risks tied to crypto, users are benefiting from the profitable investment that it presents. It is a store of value, replacing the need for commodities such as gold and other precious metal. Stablecoins also combine the benefits of both digital currencies and the assets they back.
Crypto users have increased drastically within the past year, with Institutional investors playing a significant role. Notwithstanding, bringing this relatively new idea to full acceptance globally is still an issue.
Crypto enthusiasts hope retailers will warm up faster to digital currencies. The current mainstream payment options have a few downsides that retailers can avoid through crypto:
- Cross-border barriers as only a few fiat currencies are usable across borders.
- Slow transaction speeds through banks, sometimes taking days to complete a transfer.
- High transaction fees, especially during currency exchange.
- The security and privacy concerns when using fiat currencies are many.
Crypto solves these issues by offering faster, cheaper, secure, and more private options of exchange.
Why Retailers Might Still be Reluctant
Crypto is not without fault despite the advantages it offers. Retailers might have a few reasons not to accept crypto.
The complexity behind blockchain technology is a barrier to understanding crypto. Older people more used to traditional finance see crypto as a scam or pyramid scheme. They might also be slow to embrace new technology.
There is also the price volatility issue, which makes crypto a risky venture. Retailers are discouraged by the possibility of losing their investment in case of significant price action.
Market manipulation is also of considerable concern. This with whales holding the cards to crypto price.
Lastly, the crypto sector is yet to get clear regulations globally. Despite the presence of watchdogs, there is no clear description of what Bitcoin and other cryptos are. Tax regulations for the same are not convenient for small businesses. They could draw losses from small transactions.
Real Use-Cases Could be the Answer
Retailers stand to benefit from both crypto and blockchain technology as a whole. The positive impacts are clear, whether in supply chain management, faster payments, loyalty rewards, or marketing. Unlike a decade ago, there are more coins you can invest in if the bigger ones are not for you.
Crypto ATMs are a genius development, with nearly 26 000 ATMs globally. Besides the instant crypto-to-cash settlement they offer, you can send digital assets to other addresses worldwide. Crypto ATM businesses are still new but catching up to the trend. There are also mobile maps to help you find crypto ATMs close to you.
New digital currencies are increasingly blending with real-world issues, developing better use cases. For example, VeChain’s native coin, VET, is a good option for business. It applies in several sectors, including automobile, travel, and health.
DeFi coins are introducing lending, borrowing, staking, and more into the crypto world. Ethereum’s dApps venture more into the immediate and convenient use of cryptocurrencies and blockchain.
The rise in crypto necessity is the key to its mass adoption. Therefore, people using crypto to purchase everyday needs is a step closer in the right direction.
Major Retailers Accepting Crypto
Here are some of the areas with listed retailers accepting Bitcoin and other cryptos directly or indirectly today:
- Food Outlets: Food is necessary for the global population. It ranks among the topmost consumption areas in the market. Subway, KFC, Starbucks, Pizza Hut, Domino’s Pizza, and Burger King are among the major eateries accepting payments in crypto.
- Sports: There is great interest within the sports sector, with notable athletes venturing into NFTs. Sports clubs also venturing into crypto include Dallas Mavericks, Miami Dolphins, San Jose Earthquakes, Watford FC, Galatasaray, and Benfica.
- Tech, Electronics, and Gaming Companies: Microsoft, Dell, Twitch, NewEgg, Zynga, Gamestop, i-Pmart, Dish network, T-Mobile Poland, Virgin Mobile, Green Manet, BigFishGames, mspinc, etc.
- Travel: Norwegian Airlines, Travala, Cheapair, TravelbyBit, Bitcoin.Travel, Webjet, Yacht-base, Alternative Airlines, Virgin Galactic, Greitai, BTCTrip, Holiday Inn, etc.
- Software, Domain, VPN, Search services: Wikipedia, Namecheap, NordVPN, Unstoppable domains, Intuit, The Internet Archive, ExpressVPN, Lumfile, etc.
- Entertainment: PornHub, AMC, The Pirates Bay, Badoo, Dream Lover, MovieTickets.com, Naughty America, EZTV, etc.
- Stores and Gift Card Services: Amazon, Fancy, Shopify, Etsy, Gyft, Overstock, Bitrefill, CoinCards, Lolli, Fold App, Home Depot, etc.
- Education: European School of Management, Swiss University of Lucerne, Cambridge University, Simon Fraser University bookstore, Mexico’s Universidad de las Americas Puebla, MIT Coop Store, Cyprus University of Nicosia, etc.
- Banks and Payment Services: Goldman Sachs, The National Bank of Canada, Chime Bank, Wirex, Ally, Change, Fidor Bank, Revolut, Simple Bank, Mastercard, Visa, Bankera, etc.
- Non-Profits: Save the Children, Fight for the Future, American Red Cross, Royal National Lifeboat Institute, UNICEF, The Water Project, Wikileaks, etc.
Finally, Where Does Crypto Stand in the Future of Retail Adoption?
It is the hope of every investor that increased adoption of crypto will eventually reduce volatility. Additionally, the hope is that new technologies rising from fintech companies will further reduce blockchain barriers and costs for more immediate settlements.
It is all about the retail industry changing with the successful alterations evident within crypto.