I’ve heard rumblings that eBay is considering accepting Bitcoin, but as far as I know (from recent Christmas shopping on Amazon) there aren’t a lot of online marketplaces that accept Bitcoin.
This has been quite frustrating since I’ve been buying small amounts of Bitcoin over the past few months but can’t do anything with it.
So one evening I decided to build my own store for fun.
Why use Bitcoin as a currency?
I’m not a Bitcoin investor by any means. Instead, I like to utilize it to enhance my purchasing power.
Take for example, groceries.
My family spends on average $70 on groceries a week.
As of this year, Bitcoin’s compounded weekly growth rate has been a staggering 5.232%.
Negating any fees (which is becoming harder to do), if I buy $50 of Bitcoin I only have to wait 8 weeks before it’s “mature” enough to afford $70 worth of groceries.
So if I start putting in $50 into Bitcoin every week, I’ll be able to afford weekly groceries in 2 months. Kinda cool.
If there is a Bitcoin bubble and it crashes, like some experts say, I’ll only be out a few hundred dollars instead of my entire life savings. I can live with that.
Like I said earlier, few marketplaces accept Bitcoin as a currency which makes it tough to utilize it’s purchasing power.
How I built the site
Since I build a lot of eCommerce and membership sites for brick and mortar businesses, I already had a solid eCommerce template to work from.
The hard part was figuring out how to accept Bitcoin.
I had to do a lot of research to see if there were any solutions out there that integrated a Bitcoin gateway with Woocommerce (my go-to eCommerce solution).
As it turns out, there was!
The best gateway I found was GoUrl’s Crypto-currency payment gateway. It was free to set up and their plugins integrated nicely with Woocommerce.
Next, I needed to figure out a way to use the Bitcoin to pay vendors to ship the products. This was actually kind of easy. Since I use BitPay as my wallet to accept Bitcoin, I signed up for their prepaid Visa debit card which allows me to convert Bitcoin into dollars for free (however signing up for the card was a bit pricy).
I then use this card to pay my vendors.
I then take the margin I make on purchases and convert half into USD and keep the other half in Bitcoin as an investment. Not a bad gig for a couple hours one Wednesday evening.
Does the store work?
After a few tests everything seems to be working well and secure.
It’s still a work in progress, however, there are real products you can purchase as long as you have a Bitcoin wallet and Bitcoin to spend.
I started this little side project as a fun experiment so we’ll see if I keep it up. But for now, I have a few items on the store and will continue to add more each day.
If you have any suggestions for items you’d actually buy with Bitcoin let me know in the comments and I’ll see if I can find some vendors.
(Originally published on Medium)
Thanks for reading! My name is Declan and I founded Brick & Click Co to help small business owners build eCommerce and membership sites. I’m opening up 2 coaching slots in to help you build your entire membership and/or eCommerce site and help you make your first 10 sales. Email me here if you are interested in learning more.