Bitcoin vs. Altcoin: Which Is Best for Merchants?

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Bitcoin vs. Altcoin: Which Is Best for Merchants?

If you follow financial news, stock markets, or technological advances, you can’t help but hear about cryptocurrencies. It is ubiquitous, with millions of individuals using it for transfers, remittances, and even speculation. You may use them to make purchases at merchants and shops that accept them. But which ones should you take if you’re a small company trying to stay up with how your consumers want to pay? What’s more, how do you accept them?

Learn about the distinctions between cryptocurrencies and how to accept them as payment. Learn about recent advances in payment methods that may help alleviate your concerns.

Key Takeaways

  • It is no longer necessary for a merchant to comprehend bitcoin in order to accept it as payment.
  • Hundreds of stores and companies accept cryptocurrencies as payment.
  • Accepting Bitcoin and altcoins is made considerably safer by intermediaries such as exchanges and crypto payment gateways.

Bitcoin vs. Altcoin: An Overview

Because bitcoin has grown popular and people want to use it to make purchases, retailers must accept it. However, it takes time to understand how cryptocurrency transactions operate, what a wallet is, and how to convert any cryptocurrency into the money a merchant desires. As a consequence, many people are hesitant to embrace cryptocurrencies because they are complicated, and rumors about frauds and unscrupulous actors are spreading. Furthermore, many merchants are unfamiliar with cryptocurrencies and its many varieties.


Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency to launch in 2009. All other currencies and tokens are referred to as alternative coins or altcoins since Bitcoin is the “original” crypto. Some in the cryptocurrency community consider Ethereum to be one of the original currencies, referring to all coins other than Bitcoin and Ethereum as altcoins.


Many cryptocurrencies were never intended to be used as payment systems. Ethereum, for example, was designed to be a platform that allows anybody to develop blockchain-related businesses and services. Ether (ETH), its native coin, is used to pay transaction fees to network members. ETH, like Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies, may be purchased on exchanges.

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Both Can Be Accepted

Whatever they are named or what they are supposed to achieve, cryptocurrencies have value and can be used as a method of trade because that is how people wish to use them. As a result, the most important problem for a merchant is how to accept cryptocurrencies, how to collect payment for items or services offered to clients, and how to avoid being taken advantage of.

Bitcoin and Altcoin Payment Services

One of the major ideas behind the development of cryptocurrencies was the elimination of third parties from financial transactions and payment systems in order to cut costs and increase speed. The issue with cryptocurrencies is that it is still relatively new, and many businesses will want to transfer whatever crypto they get into fiat cash.

Because there is such a large demand for bitcoin, yet it isn’t as widely known as fiat cash, numerous businesses have stepped in to help with transactions. Third-party engagement is undesirable for those attempting to decentralize funds. However, third parties must be engaged until cryptocurrencies are completely developed. Until then, there are several ways to take Bitcoin or altcoins as payment.

Payment Gateway Providers

Cryptocurrencies payment gateway providers enable you to accept cryptocurrency and receive payments in the currency of your choice. These service providers, like credit card gateway providers, handle the transactions for you. Some have been around almost as long as Bitcoin. BitPay, for example, was formed in 2011 and offers crypto services to a worldwide audience. BitPay allows you to access marketplaces in 229 countries and territories while charging cheaper rates than conventional payment gateway providers.

  Crypto Collapse

BitPay and other service providers often lock in the exchange rate for the cryptocurrency you accept at the time of the transaction. This protects you against slippage, which is a price decline that occurs after a transaction is completed but before it is confirmed by the network. This guarantees that you get the money you are entitled to from the sale.

Flexa, NOWPayments, PayCEC, Stripe, Block (formerly Square), and Shopify are some additional bitcoin payment gateway providers.

Exchange Services

One of the most recent bitcoin breakthroughs is the ability for users to connect their cryptocurrency wallets to a debit card. These crypto debit cards interact via conventional credit card networks such as Visa or Mastercard, making the procedure simpler for businesses and users. To make things simpler, some have joined with currency eCommerce suppliers.

Coinbase Commerce, for example, has created a means to link with eCommerce systems like Shopify and WooCommerce, allowing you to begin taking Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, DAI, Dogecoin, Bitcoin Cash, and USD Coin.

With a Coinbase Commerce account, you may have incoming bitcoin payments immediately converted to US dollars. After you have accumulated.001 BTC in your exchange account, the procedure converts payments. .001 BTC might be worth between $25 and $35 depending on the current BTC price.

It’s ideal to utilize a crypto payment gateway that connects with the services you currently use. You won’t have to do anything else to accept cryptocurrencies. is a cryptocurrency exchange that also offers connectivity with current eCommerce platforms. WooCommerce, Opencart, Ecwid, Loveit, nopCommerce, and PrestaShop are all supported by accepts payments in US dollars and manages refunds for you.

What It Means for Merchants

Because of the services offered by middlemen, hundreds of companies accept cryptocurrencies as payment. Bath & Body Works, Bass Pro Shops, Chili’s, Chuck E. Cheese’s, and many more retailers accept cryptocurrencies.

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Accepting cryptocurrency payments is safer when you use an intermediate to handle your Bitcoin or altcoin transactions. It also simplifies things since you don’t have to pick which to accept; you simply have to choose which payment processor to utilize. The remainder is handled by the processor, who deposits the currency you choose into your account.

All of this implies that retailers may take both Bitcoin and altcoin as payment without worrying about which is better. Your consumers may pay as they want, and you can accept money however you want.

Is Bitcoin Safer Than Altcoins?

Bitcoin and altcoins are as secure as credit and debit cards as long as you utilize a reliable cryptocurrency payment gateway to accept cryptocurrency payments. It is possible to encounter problems if you accept payments from a customer’s wallet to yours.

What Is a Crypto Merchant?

A crypto merchant account is a payment gateway provider account that enables you to accept Bitcoin and altcoins at your company.

What Stores Can I Pay With Crypto?

Microsoft, Paypal, Starbucks, and many more businesses accept cryptocurrencies. The number of merchants, shops, and enterprises that accept cryptocurrency is increasing.

Investing in cryptocurrencies and other Initial Coin Offerings (“ICOs”) is very dangerous and speculative, and this article is not a suggestion by Investopedia or the author to do so. Because every person’s circumstance is different, a knowledgeable specialist should always be contacted before making any financial choices. Investopedia makes no guarantees or warranties about the accuracy or timeliness of the information provided on this site.

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