Cryptocurrencies have taken the world by storm since Satoshi Nakamoto (presumably) invented Bitcoin in January 2009. Nowadays, we can find over 22,000 cryptocurrencies (according to CoinMarketCap), and BTC has gone from cents to over $70K in twelve years.
However, widespread adoption is still underway as the general population gets more acquainted with blockchain technology with each passing day. Many businesses (including SMM panels) have been implementing cryptocurrency payment alternatives in recent years amidst a rising trend in acceptance rates.
Nevertheless, one of the biggest stumbling blocks to crypto as a viable payment method still remains to be addressed - namely, its volatility!
Thankfully, a lot of ground has been covered. Thanks to the emergence of stablecoins, SMM panels and other similar strains of business now have a workaround by which they may preserve the sale price of their products and services when receiving crypto.
What Are Stablecoins?
Stablecoins, as their name mildly suggests, are cryptocurrencies that are pegged to the market value of less volatile references, such as a fiat currency (e.g., the US dollar, the Euro, the Pound, etc.) or hard assets like gold. Stablecoin issuers oftentimes keep an amount of that currency, commodity, or financial instrument in their reserves in the hopes of maintaining that peg. A typical example is USDT (Tether), which is bound to the value of the US dollar by a ratio of close to 1:1 and is backed by the "Tether Treasury" (though some may dispute that last part).
Stablecoins allow businesses to keep a crypto coffer without having to move swiftly to convert their volatile crypto assets into fiat. This is a substantial relief for ventures that want to dabble into this new financial technology and provide crypto payment corridors for their customers without worrying about abrupt price fluctuations.
How Does a Crypto Payment Gateway Benefit an SMM Panel?
Regular payment services tend to be very inflexible towards SMM panels and their customers, offering only a limited list of choices.
On top of that, as an SMM panel manager, you are prone to encounter prospective buyers worldwide who are either unbanked, have no access to compatible payment methods, or are trying to steer clear of traditional banks or institutions for a myriad of reasons. When you add crypto payment gateways, you are broadening your reach, catering to all of these categories.
As more and more individuals turn to crypto these days - in many instances because of the lack of banking alternatives suited to them - you'll ensure that they feel comfortable paying with a method readily available to them (virtually anyone with internet access can create crypto wallets.) Needless to say, your SMM panel will be more profitable by including more ways of getting paid.
That said, the legacy banking institutions and credit card/debit card methods are likely not going away anytime soon. For this reason, you may want to run both crypto and fiat gateways in parallel or use an all-encompassing solution that accepts cryptocurrencies alongside conventional instruments.
Examples of Crypto Payment Methods for SMM Panels
The best SMM panel has a payment gateway that's easy to use and doesn't hit customers with overly technical terminology. These are, to our recollection, some of the most illustrative examples of crypto payment services available for SMM panels:
For some time, Coinbase has been a favorite for entry-level crypto inquirers. There, customers can buy cryptos in the same manner as any other product or service without being overwhelmed by a laundry list of hard-to-understand options.
In 2018, Coinbase introduced "Coinbase Commerce," and it remains one of the most popular payment methods utilized by SMM panels nowadays, with a wide array of accepted cryptocurrencies to choose from, including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), USD Coin (USDC), and DAI. The only notable absence from the list is USDT, which has never been supported by the platform.
Coinbase Commerce is not exactly a cheap option, though. While the service doesn't levy any surcharges or fees for payments, you will stumble upon a steep paywall when changing your crypto into fiat, and the withdrawal fees are extraordinarily high.
Mycelium Gear is a relatively cheap SMM panel-friendly pick. It predates Coinbase Commerce by roughly three years and is far more decentralized, not requiring parties to complete any KYC (Know-Your-Client) or AML (Anti-Money Laundering) screening procedures in order to start using it.
Nevertheless, beginners will have a tougher time getting around this platform. Furthermore, MG doesn't offer a wallet feature, meaning you must rely on an external wallet to receive or withdraw coins. You can, however, use a standalone hardware Mycelium wallet.
CoinPayments is the oldest on this list, having started in 2013. It gives you access to an immense variety of cryptos and a highly secure vault to store your coins.
Alas, the service charges a flat 0.5% fee on all transactions, which means that, in the long run, you may end up paying more than with the other alternatives described above.
Benefits of Cryptocurrencies Over Fiat
When accepting cryptocurrencies, you're not only benefitting crypto-loving customers but also your own business. The crypto world presents immense financial opportunities and grants a plethora of advantages over the traditional system.
For starters, a significant number of cryptocurrencies (including Bitcoin, of course) are not controlled by any centralized organization. They are essentially dependent upon their users, who are ultimately responsible for the network's security.
Some projects do operate in a centralized manner - such as Ethereum, Tether, or the infamous Terra Luna - so it's advised to research them beforehand. All of this is not to demerit the added value that blockchains like Ethereum bring to the ecosystem, but they betray, in a way, Bitcoin's most attractive appeal - to wit: Its "permissionless" nature.
Crypto transactions are also secure, as they pass through a decentralized web made up of nodes corresponding to all the connected devices. These transactions are irreversible, with no possible way for anyone to hamper them.
Lastly, transaction fees are usually lower than with any standard payment method. Some blockchains demand excessive "gas fees," especially the Ethereum network (ERC-20). Others, like Binance (BEP-20) or Tron (TRC-20), charge a minuscule amount of the total transaction by contrast (even large amounts!)