E-commerce is more popular than ever thanks to the pandemic forcing many individuals to stay home. Out of necessity as much as convenience, consumers have had to turn to online marketplaces for many of their shopping needs.
As the popularity of cryptocurrency grows, it is becoming more and more beneficial for online merchants to accept it as a form of payment. But how do you start accepting crypto payments for your store? Bitcoin and altcoin payment gateways are the answer, as they take a lot of the work out of the business’ hands and provide the ready-to-use infrastructure that merchants can implement in their online marketplace.
They are not all created equal though, and so we have compiled a list of the best bitcoin payment gateways for specific needs.
Our Favorite Crypto Payments Overall: NowPayments.io
NowPayments accepts far more cryptocurrencies than just Bitcoin, but of the most used Bitcoin payment gateways, it is the only one with fee discounts for volume. With NowPayments fees start at just 0.5% per transaction but having 50 BTC equivalent in transaction volume in a month reduces that to 0.45%, with a further reduction to 0.4% when you reach 100 BTC equivalent.
NowPayments accepts hundreds of other altcoins as well, giving users many different options when paying through a merchant that uses NowPayments and helping push the transaction volume up and reduce fees. Some of the other cryptocurrencies that are supported by NowPayments are Cardano, Solana, VeChain, Avalanche, Shiba Inu, and many more.
Our Favorite Crypto Payments for Beginners: BitPay
One of the oldest bitcoin payment gateways, BitPay was founded back in 2011. Though it started as purely a Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash payment gateway, BitPay has expanded, now supporting multiple coins and tokens including BTC, DOGE, ETH, XRP, SHIB, USDC, and more. BitPay charges a flat 1% fee with no hidden costs for merchants to use its blockchain payment gateway.
BitPay is ideal for beginner merchants due to its longevity, ready-to-use tools, and merchant support. While other payment gateways on this list have slightly lower fees and accept more crypto assets, BitPay has a proven track record and has the information in place to help merchants set up crypto payments for their site with relative ease. In addition, BitPay supports a huge selection of fiat payments for payouts.
Out Favorite Payments for Altcoins: Crypto.com Pay
Jumping into the mainstream with ads starring Matt Damon and LeBron James, along with sports partnership deals across the industry, Crypto.com’s Pay service is our favorite payment gateway for altcoins. This isn’t because it accepts the most altcoins, as it only supports a little over 30 (NowPayments supports a few hundred), but rather because there are no transaction fees or setup costs as long as you use the Crypto.com App.
This allows merchants to accept a variety of altcoin payments without having to worry about transaction fees. In addition, customers with a CRO stake earn 10% cashback when shopping and paying with Crypto.com Pay, meaning they’ll likely prefer to pay using Crypto.com Pay for reward benefits. Merchants can attract altcoin shoppers by having Crypto.com as their payment gateway.
Our Favorite Payments for Americans: Coinbase Pay
based in San Francisco and complying with US regulatory laws, Coinbase Pay is our favorite payment gateway for American merchants. With a flat 1% fee and integration with Shopify, Coinbase Pay allows merchants to accept 7 different cryptocurrencies for payments on their sites. Payouts are in cash or USDC.
Coinbase Pay also makes it easy by providing turnkey APIs for merchants to use, allowing them to set up and start using Coinbase Pay within minutes. The assets that Coinbase Pay supports are BTC, LTC, ETH, BCH, DOGE, USDC, and DAI. However, if you use the Coinbase Managed option (they hold your keys), you can only accept BTC, ETH, and USDC.
Our Favorite Payments for Europeans: Binance Pay
Unavailable in the UK, US, or Singapore, Binance Pay is our favorite choice for European customers. Binance Pay for merchants has “the lowest transaction fees” but Binance does not indicate anywhere what those fees are. Regardless, Binance Pay allows merchants to easily implement APIs, and checkout pages and provides other services such as an SDK to allow you to develop your own checkout experience using Binance Pay.
Binance Pay allows you to accept over 50 cryptocurrencies and stablecoins, with no fees on the user end. Merchants can choose which cryptocurrency they want to be paid in. When withdrawing payments from Binance there will be network fees to pay.
Our Favorite Payments for Low Fees: CoinPayments
CoinPayments could have been included as a few of our favorites, as they boast an impressive number of supported coins, have low fees for Bitcoin, and is available to merchants in almost all major countries including the US. CoinPayments boasts a flat 0.5% fee for all transactions and charges nothing else but network fees. The first $15,000 in payments per month has no fees at all, then the 0.5% starts. Withdrawing your payments is solely a network fee and is quite low.
CoinPayments allows you to accept hundreds of crypto coins and tokens. Merchants have access to APIs, checkout pages, point of sale tools, and much more. They also offer a mobile app that allows you to track your sales on the go.
Why Crypto Payments?
At the end of the day, crypto payments are simply another way for people to pay you, which is generally not a bad thing.
The advantages of crypto payments are some collection of the following:
Cheap (Many cryptocurrency transactions only cost pennies)
Fast (Cryptocurrencies are getting faster and faster with many settling in a matter of seconds)
Better store of value (Fiat currencies are experiencing record-breaking inflation)
Of course, there are also some disadvantages. Some of the older cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin and Ethereum) have relatively high transaction fees and can be slow. Fortunately, layer-2s or sidechains have been assisting with those issues and platforms like the Lightning Network make BTC transactions relatively painless.
The other major disadvantage of cryptocurrency is that it’s extremely volatile and a payment of $100 in BTC might only be worth $75 by the end of the day. Of course, it might also be worth $125 so if you’re willing to hold in long-term it likely works out.