Pay With Bitcoin
We implemented a method for customers to purchase products on Wayfair with Bitcoin (with Wayfair charged a flat 1% transaction fee). We did this by integrating Bitpay into the Wayfair checkout process.
Bitcoin is a decentralized, peer-to-peer, cryptocurrency system designed to allow online users to process transactions through digital units of exchange called Bitcoins.
- Customers now have the option of using their bitcoin to purchase homegoods through Wayfair instead of selling their bitcoin (selling or trading bitcoin can be expensive and time consuming)
- Customers have to pay seller fees, US Dollar conversion fees, and withdraw fees
- Selling bitcoin can take over a week per transaction
- Typically there are withdraw limits of $10,000, so some customers may be looking for ways to spend their bitcoin instead of selling them
- Protects against identity theft
- Our implementation shields Wayfair from the risks associated with fluctuations in bitcoin price
- Large PR play during a time when Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are a hot topic
- 1% transaction fee, as opposed to credit cards or PayPal that typically charge close to 3%
- No fraud checks need to be implemented
- Payments cannot be 'canceled' by the customer
- May help with engineering recruiting, as bitcoin is a hot topic in the tech community; it also shows that Wayfair is willing to accept new technology and trends and stay on the cutting edge
- Many people are buying and trading bitcoin, but few places accept bitcoin as payment
- The bitcoin community may reward us with orders, as we would be one of the few major retailers to accept bitcoin
- Unlimited transactions at a flat 1% rate (cheaper than credit card payment methods)
- Guaranteed Instant Conversion Rate to US Dollars
- BitPay guarantees the bitcoin-to-fiat exchange rate at the point of sale, so Wayfair is protected from bitcoin price fluctuations.
- We also have the option of leaving a percentage of each payment as bitcoin; refunds may be easier if Wayfair refunded in bitcoin
- Extensive and easy to use API with full sandbox environment
- Microsoft uses Bitpay to process bitcoin payments for digital products, including Xbox content and Windows Store purchases; knowing that one of the largest tech companies in the world chose Bitpay steered us in this direction
- Also used by Newegg, Shopify, Zynga, Virgin Galactic, and Neteller
- Bitpay has processed over $1 Billion in bitcoin payments this year alone
- Bitpay will soon accept many other crytocurrencies
What we learned
There is a lot of misinformation about transaction fees with Bitcoin. Some companies do charge fees as high as $20 per transaction, but there are trustworthy companies available that do not charge exorbitant fees. Further, some of these companies allow you to instantly convert to USD, effectively protecting Wayfair from bitcoin price fluctuations.
Some companies do not have a sandbox environment. We first tried to use Coinbase, but found after an hour that they did not have a sufficient sandbox (their API was also geared more towards trading bitcoin than using it as payment method). After discovering that Microsoft and Newegg use Bitpay, we looked into their API and found it much more suitable to our needs. Even with the hour wasted on Friday, we were able to implement an end-to-end solution in 6 hours (Nick didn't believe we could do this in under a week!).
What's next for Bitcoin payment method
- Legal and Finance would have to be brought into the conversation, understand this fully, and give the OK
- Integration with returns
- QA and testing
- Press releases
Testing and code
Download the bitpay app on your phone and set up a test wallet BitPay
Navigate to dev and use Mike Joseph's VM (Joseph, M)