The new plug-in, identified by DailyHodl, allows WooCommerce Web Stores to accept the main cryptocurrencies directly in a Coinbase wallet controlled by the user. WooCommerce webstores are managed by WordPress, which claims that 28% of Internet stores use it for their businesses, but it will probably be closer to 40%.
The plugin is part of what Coinbase calls an "open financial system" – a peer-to-peer payment network for cryptocurrencies. Users interact only with each other: buyers send funds directly from their personal portfolio to the seller, without leaving any additional margin.
"When customers send money from their cryptocurrency portfolio they are sent directly to a cryptocurrency address controlled by the merchant and processed on the chain by the respective blockchain," reads the statement. "This means that traders must never pay transaction fees to accept payments and always have complete control over their funds."
Stores can now accept payments via encryption by adding a small button to their WordPress page. For now, only Bitcoin and Litecoin can be accepted. Coinbase says that Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash will arrive soon – a time yet to be specified.
Coinbase Commerce has already been integrated with another Shopify web platform, when adopted Bitcoin in 2014. The WooCommerce plug-in is a step forward in its quest to normalize cryptocurrency payments: the its user base is about six times that of Shopify.
Market research shared by Barn2 Media controls it as 42% of the entire e-commerce market, presumably due to its open source nature and already supporting hundreds of payment methods .
More recently, Coinbase has been desperately trying to do anything to expand its global presence. Recently collaborated with with the WeGift digital gift card provider to facilitate in-store purchases with digital money.
It also made things easier for the British: it now supports withdrawals and deposits using Sterling making it much cheaper and faster to buy cryptocurrencies.
The trajectory of its expansion certainly seems right – the question really is whether Coinbase could attack the landing. Web stores that accept cryptocurrencies are not new. At this point, whatever remains of the traditional struggle for adoption, those who try to impose themselves will have to tiptoe with Coinbase.
Published 3 August 2018 – 10:43 UTC