In another step towards mainstream adoption, and real world implementation and usage, PayPal (PayPal Holdings, Inc.) has now started allowing consumers in the United States to pay with cryptocurrency when shopping online at millions of merchants around the world. This bold move significantly boosts use of digital assets in everyday commerce and is yet another feather in the hat for crypto advocates and anyone who wants more freedom in how they choose to pay for items when shopping online.
Shoppers who currently have Bitcoin ($BTC), Ethereum ($ETH), Bitcoin Cash ($BCH) or Litecoin ($LTC) in their PayPal digital wallets, will have the option to convert their holdings into fiat currency at the time of checkout when making their purchase. The service will be available at all of its close to 30 million merchants in the next few months, according to a statement from PayPal:
“This is the first time you can seamlessly use cryptocurrencies in the same way as a credit card or a debit card inside your PayPal wallet,” President and CEO Dan Schulman was quoted as saying ahead of their formal announcement.
The ability to seamlessly pay for online orders with cryptocurrency adds to the function for PayPal users to buy, sell and store crypto. This new offering – which the San Jose, California-based payments company launched in October last year – makes PayPal one of the largest mainstream online payment processing companies in the world to open its network to crypto. Add to that, PayPal's move has undoubtedly helped fuel the most recent rally in virtual coin prices and is a clear indication that corporate America wants to be at the forefront of this new digital currency revolution.
The value of Bitcoin – the preeminent digital coin – has more than doubled since the beginning of 2021, boosted by increased interest from not only larger institutional investors and financial firms, but most definitely on the retail side as well. And this week's Coinbase ($COIN) IPO on the NASDAQ stock exchange is yet another shot in the arm for cryptocurrency adoption as people view digital currency as a hedge against inflation.
PayPal's announcement comes less than a week after Tesla, Inc. ($TSLA) said it would start accepting Bitcoin payments for its electric vehicles. However, while PayPal merchants will be receiving fiat currency thanks to the automatic crypto-to-fiat conversion at the time of transaction, Tesla said it will hold the Bitcoin used as payment.
Although this emerging asset is gaining traction among mainstream investors, cryptocurrency has yet to become a widespread form of payment, due in part to its continued volatility and lack of ease of use. But PayPal hopes its new service will help change that, because by settling the transaction in fiat currency, merchants will not be on the hook for extreme volatility.
PayPal will not charge any added processing or transaction fee to checkout with crypto, and only one type of coin can be used for each purchase.
Are you an online merchant? Do you have an eCommerce website and would like to add cryptocurrency to your basket of payment options for your customers to choose from? Then contact us today and let us help you in adding cryptocurrency as a payment option to your online store.