Do you accept Bitcoins as a payment method? Why? Why not? (Plus other questions)

Discussion in 'Operating a Hosting Business' started by MannDude, Jan 18, 2014.

  1. MannDude

    MannDude Just a dude vpsBoard Founder Moderator

    Mar 8, 2013
    Curious who here accepts payments via Bitcoins for web hosting clients and how that's going for you.

    I think there might be a little reluctance from some to do business with someone paying via Bitcoin initially, and was wondering how the clients who pay with it are in terms of their quality. (Good clients, bad clients, a mix up just like those paying with PayPal, etc). I only ask that because someone paying with BTC may be more likely to also register with false, but fraud check passable details and abuse the service as some do with PayPal as well. Curious if there is an increase, decrease, or no noticeable difference in the two when compared to clients paying with more traditional methods.

    Also, how does balancing your books differ if you have any noteworthy amount of Bitcoins? Do you disregard those, or whats your method of claiming them (assuming you're a real business who has to pay taxes and stuff)?

    How do you deal with refunds? I suspect that if someone issued you $12USD worth of Bitcoins 44 days ago, and you have a 45 day money back guarantee that you'd issue $12USD back in form of Bitcoins and not the "original amount" of bitcoins, correct?

    If I think of anything else, I'll ask :)

    Recently got a Bitcoin wallet and some mBTC stocked. I am a customer of a provider or two that accepts BTC as payment so was curious to learn more about accepting it from a providers point of view.
  2. dcdan

    dcdan New Member Verified Provider

    Aug 18, 2013
    Bitcoins should by definition attract abusers. We haven't tried it, but I am personally like 99% sure.

    And yes, another thing is volatility.
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  3. Aldryic C'boas

    Aldryic C'boas The Pony

    Apr 18, 2013
    We've kicked around the idea of allowing bitcoin... and in the future may do so for trusted clients.  But to be brutally honest - the people that advocate the loudest for bitcoin are a good portion of why I'm against offering it.  Mainly by association of knowing the things these (s)kids have done.

    Judgement by association, sure.  But until I see people I consider reliable/responsible start advocating it?  Not interested.
  4. javaj

    javaj New Member

    Oct 28, 2013
    I can see why some would want to allow it, more signups etc., but yeah I agree with Aldryic and dcdan that I think the vast majority of new signups would be abusers just due to the anonymity. Its still too much of a "clandestine" currency kind of like e-gold and liberty reserve used to be.

    I see lots of poeple who advocate for it but I think its going to go exactly the same as the other e-currencies of the past, sure there is no central office where some government agency can raid it and shut it down so it may stick around indefinitely. But I don't see it ever gaining much legitimacy outside of just general users trading or the "Silk Roads" out there, I mean I really can't see anyone like Amazon accepting it anytime soon. I could be totally wrong, but been around to long to just see the same old story... contrary to some people's popular belief, it isn't really anything new, other than the technology.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2014
  5. dcdan

    dcdan New Member Verified Provider

    Aug 18, 2013
    We've had a few tickets asking about bitcoins from established customers. I have also seen a few tickets from potential customers who obviously try to hide. The ratio is actually not too bad, I'd say 60-70% of inquiries at least look "legit". But it also means the other 30-40% are possible abusers B)
  6. dcdan

    dcdan New Member Verified Provider

    Aug 18, 2013
    On the other hand, it is easier to establish a scam op with bitcoins, since there is no chargeback, no bank account, nothing.
  7. perennate

    perennate New Member Verified Provider

    May 15, 2013
    Really all the abusers, especially spammers, use Paypal. With Bitcoin they can't chargeback. Never had a problem with anyone who paid in Bitcoin.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2014
  8. ndelaespada

    ndelaespada Member Verified Provider

    Aug 29, 2013
    So true, enough to consider using it!
  9. maounique

    maounique Active Member

    May 29, 2013
    We considered it before going through the roof.

    We are powering a couple of exchanges on the other part of the business and Salvatore knows a guy which was mining them for years with speacial rigs and has millions in them at current value. It does not look so shady from this point of view however, Italian Law requires at least some paypal account or bank account to track, they were not happy when they found pepe garibaldi, abe lincoln and george washington in the begining when checking was not so strict among our customers, but were happy enough with their paypal.
  10. willie

    willie Active Member

    May 24, 2013
    I'm for it.  I notice it's mostly what I think of as low-drama hosts offering it, though maybe that's because the ones with higher-drama clients know to stay away.  I guess bitcoin-using clients might split into those who don't want to deal with the bullshit of paypal, and those with enough bullshit of their own that paypal won't deal with THEM.

    I don't currently use bitcoin myself but have been thinking about it for a while.  I don't care much about anonymity from vps hosts (am ok with sending ID documents and your data center tech knows me IRL) but I'm always looking for ways to avoid dealing with financial octopuses like Paypal and data vacuums like the GSA (Google Security Agency).  I actually would have been fine with paying by cashiers' check, though I respect your not wanting that since the processing hassle at your end is higher. 
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2014
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  11. MannDude

    MannDude Just a dude vpsBoard Founder Moderator

    Mar 8, 2013
    I guess another thing is, how simple is it to 'cash' your BitCoins that was paid to you by your clients into a form of currency you can use to pay your bills, employees, etc? Compared to say, PayPal or 2CO where you can just send it to a bank and it'll be there in 3-5 days?
  12. KuJoe

    KuJoe Well-Known Member Verified Provider

    May 17, 2013
    I love when people pay with bitcoins. Since bitcoins are similar to paying in cash, the buyers cannot dispute/chargeback and they tend to follow the TOS much more closely (in addition to taking warnings much more seriously). As long as the bitcoins are converted to USD immediately (the price of a bitcoin can change drastically in 60 seconds) I'll keep accepting them.

    That being said, I have instituted a strict refund policy that requires the client to show government issued ID that has their full name and address displayed on it if they want a refund since there's no guarantee where the money is going and the last thing I want is somebody saying their WHMCS account was hacked and I sent the bitcoins to a hacker or even worse, some alphabet agency contacts us about money laundering or funding unsavory groups.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2014
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  13. Artie

    Artie Member

    Jun 30, 2013
    If you use BitPay they convert + deposit your payments at the end of the day.
  14. DomainBop

    DomainBop Dormant VPSB Pathogen

    Oct 11, 2013
    Fixed that so I can answer.

    Only if you ignore their volatility.   Bitcoin's current volatility is the reason my business doesn't accept them, and won't accept them until the volatility decreases to a level that is similar to that of other currencies.  My margins can absorb small exchange rate swings (i.e. the rise of the euro against the dollar since July, 1.28 to 1.36) but I can't take the risk of 25%-50%-75% sudden movements. just started accepting it, and they're the largest retailer currently accepting it.
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  15. javaj

    javaj New Member

    Oct 28, 2013
    Your right, I remembered reading & forgot all about
  16. willie

    willie Active Member

    May 24, 2013
    I think coinbase will buy bitcoins from you at the instantaneous exchange rate, so you can get the transaction through quick enough to not experience large swings with any significant likelihood.  If you do get a large swing, it's as likely to be in your favor as against you, and it has an unlimited upside while it can't drop any lower than zero.
  17. Echelon

    Echelon New Member Verified Provider

    Aug 11, 2013
    Does anybody use BitPay currently as a method of accepting bitcoin payments?
  18. joepie91

    joepie91 New Member

    Jun 19, 2013
    You could say the same about BitTorrent.

    Liberty Reserve and e-gold didn't offer any distinguishing features for "legitimate" users. Bitcoin does. That alone is enough to break down that entire comparison.

    Coinbase and BitPay make this a non-issue, through instant exchange.

    I think a few providers do, but I'm not sure which - either way, here's a list of some BTC-accepting VPS providers. Some of them probably use BitPay, I assume the others use Coinbase.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2014
  19. NetWatcher

    NetWatcher Member Verified Provider

    Oct 8, 2013
    We do accept BitCoin over 

    And so far it's great experience. 

    Like few people said, we had less issues with clients who pay over BitCoin then over PayPal. 

    And processing is easy, withdraw of funds even easier (BitPay send money directly to bank account after agreed amount in reached), fees are amazing, just 1% per transaction. 
  20. Reece-DM

    Reece-DM New Member Verified Provider

    May 16, 2013
    We were considering running a trial on Bitcoin/Litecoin not something we've got set in stone yet but we do have the odd clients that do pay us already with this.