Nothing has shaken up the world of business quite like Bitcoin. Yet there’s still an air of intrigue surrounding this strange currency. While some predict it will overtake hard cash on a global scale, others see it as merely a fad, soon to collapse and lose prominence altogether. Regardless of which camp you fall into, the trend is simply too big to ignore.

At present it’s difficult to use bitcoin on a commercial level; however, that doesn’t mean that it’s redundant. With more and more people using the Internet to conduct everyday transactions, diversifying has become paramount to survival in this globalised world. But aside from the long-term potential benefits, here are a few other reasons why you should incorporate bitcoin into your business model now.

Reduced Payment Processing Costs

Payment processing is a major issue for global businesses. Until bitcoin, there was no way around them. Companies will charge between one and two percent simply to process credit and debit cards, and that’s not to mention extortionate currency transfer rates. As a universal currency with no central government or bank to abide by, bitcoin eliminates these fees, allowing you to make considerable savings on processing and exchange rates.

Eliminates The Risk Of Chargebacks

Chargebacks can be a huge problem. When you’ve performed a service or processed a transaction, and then money suddenly disappears from your account, the customer has likely requested a chargeback. Proving that you’ve completed the task can be a nightmare, often more hassle than it’s worth; therefore, many businesses choose not to dispute them. It’s estimated that this costs businesses over one percent of their net revenue per year. With Bitcoin, however, the merchant is in control.

International Payments Are Easier

The average cross border payment costs around eight percent of the total fee. In addition, the time it takes to reach another account can take days. With bitcoin cross boarder transaction fees don’t exist and payments can be processed within seconds. This can be particularly beneficial to small scale businesses and freelancers that conduct regular payments overseas for small amounts.

It’s A Growing Industry

Over 260,000 brick and mortar retail stores in the United States now accept bitcoin; and many major online retailers are soon to follow suit, including Airbnb and Uber. There’s no denying that the business is growing at an exceptional rate. And as it grows it’s becoming more valuable. People were quick to shun bitcoin after the seizure of the Silk Road in 2013, stating that it would never exceed the $250 per bitcoin mark. It now stands at over $4,000 per bitcoin – you do the maths!

Other cryptocurrencies are also starting to make a dent on the global financial sector, including Etherium and Bitcoin Cash. Many people are now choosing ICO investing to acquire initial cash offerings before they take off. And many of these alt-coins are succeeding.

Granted, bitcoin wasn’t particularly viable in the past. However, its growing support across the world has served as a major catalyst for change. Of course, as with any currency it will have its volatile moments, but if you can look past its shortcomings and think about the long-term potential gains, perhaps it’ll give you something to think about.