DevTeam.Space Product Development Blog

Explore our in-depth product development tutorials and new technology announcements published by our software development experts

All articles

Implementing A Blockchain Cryptocurrency Payment System Into Your Enterprise Product

implement blockchain payments

Only a few years ago, cryptocurrencies and blockchain took the world by storm. Naturally, businesses rushed in to take advantage of the blockchain technology. As a result, lots of different avenues emerged by which businesses can transform their operations using blockchain, e.g., cryptocurrency payments.

I have already covered how integrating cryptocurrency transactions can benefit businesses in our guide “How to integrate a blockchain technology into your project”.

Are you trying to offer newer payment methods to your customers for your enterprise product?

If so then you have arrived at the right place! In this guide, I will explain how to go about implementing a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system into your enterprise product. Read on!

Contents

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies: A brief introduction
The key use cases of blockchain and cryptocurrencies
Why cryptocurrency payments are becoming popular
Building own cryptocurrency vs using an established one for payment
How do you implement a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise?
Planning to launch a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise?

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies: A brief introduction

Let’s touch upon a few basics first. Blockchain is a technology with transformative potential and cryptocurrencies are well-known applications of it.

The following key characteristics set blockchain apart from other cutting-edge technologies:

  • Decentralization: Blockchain networks are decentralized, and many computers maintain it on a shared basis. These are “Peer-to-Peer” (P2P) networks, and we call these computers “nodes”.
  • Distributed ledger: A ledger containing all transactions is maintained by all nodes, therefore, we also call blockchain the “Distributed Ledger Technology” (DLT).
  • Openness and transparency: Public blockchain networks like Bitcoin are open to all, whereas the private blockchain networks allow only trusted parties. Either way, the ledger is visible to a significant number of participating computers.
  • Security: Digital signatures, encryption, cryptographic hash functions, and consensus algorithms protect data against tampering.
  • Smart contracts: Later generations of blockchain networks like Ethereum and NEO have introduced smart contracts, i.e., open-source pieces of code that execute autonomously. These are tamper-proof and transfer cryptographic assets based on pre-defined conditions.

Read more about blockchain in “How to build your own blockchain using Node.js”.

Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) use blockchain as their underlying technology, and these are digital currencies. You can read more about them in “What is cryptocurrency? [Everything you need to know!]”.

The following are a few defining characteristics of cryptocurrencies:

  • They operate outside the control of central banks and governments.
  • Named, pseudonymous or anonymous people maintain these cryptocurrency networks.
  • In addition to being decentralized, these networks use various consensus algorithms like “Proof of Work” (POW) or “Proof of Stake” (PoS). Read more about these algorithms in “Proof of work vs proof of stake comparison”. These make these networks resilient and secure.

The key use cases of blockchain and cryptocurrencies

A cryptocurrency is an application of blockchain. While both have different use cases, there are some overlaps. Let’s review a few key blockchain use cases, e.g.:

  • Supply chain management: Blockchain can improve transparency and traceability in supply chain management.
  • Digital identity: The security of blockchain makes digital identity management easier.
  • Fundraising using “Security Token Offerings” (STOs): STOs are crypto-token offerings that comply with securities regulations, and they make fundraising easier thanks to the efficiency offered by blockchain.
  • Healthcare: The transparency offered by blockchain can fight the menace of counterfeit medicines.
  • Energy market: Blockchain enables decentralized energy trading, and this can lower the cost of renewable energy.

Read about more blockchain use cases in “Top 10 promising blockchain use cases”.

A few popular use cases of cryptocurrencies are as follows:

  • Cryptocurrencies have emerged as a payment method as more and more businesses are accepting popular cryptocurrencies as payments.
  • “Decentralized Finance” (DeFi), a new trend in the world of finance uses cryptocurrencies. This has helped people to collateralize loans in fiat currencies against cryptocurrencies.
  • As games like “Cryptokitties” show, crypto tokens enable people to collect and trade digital collectibles like never before.

Find out about more use cases of cryptocurrencies in “Five of the most important use cases for cryptocurrency”.

Why cryptocurrency payments are becoming popular

bitcoin

While cryptocurrencies have emerged only a decade back, they are increasingly becoming important as mediums of payment. The reasons for this are as follows:

  • Cryptocurrency payments lower the cost of transactions, moreover, the payment transactions are quick.
  • You can store cryptocurrencies in digital wallets and carry them with you everywhere.
  • If you can keep them secure, then your coins are firmly under your control.
  • Cryptocurrencies are bringing financial services to people that don’t have access to banking services.
  • With their security features, cryptocurrencies guard against tampering and fraud.
  • Crypto users can transact anonymously, which helps them to maintain privacy.
  • Given the transparent nature of blockchain, every cryptocurrency transaction is always traceable.
  • Cryptocurrencies and their underlying blockchain networks use mathematical algorithms to prove the genuineness of transactions, therefore, users don’t need to explicitly trust a 3rd

Read “10 benefits of paying with cryptocurrencies” for more insights.

Building own cryptocurrency vs using an established one for payment

When implementing a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system for your enterprise product, you could be wondering whether to build your own cryptocurrency. While that’s certainly an option, you have another option too, and that involves using an established cryptocurrency.

Let’s briefly weigh between these two options. If you create your own cryptocurrency, then you would need to do the following:

  • You need to develop your brand new public blockchain network with its own cryptocurrency. Alternatively, you can develop a crypto token using an established public blockchain network like Ethereum.
  • Either way, it’s a full-fledged blockchain development project.
  • You will also need to launch your cryptocurrency by following the applicable regulations. This could be complex, and you will need to carefully analyze whether you are launching a utility token vs a security token. Securities regulations treat them separately, as I have explained in “Utility tokens vs. security tokens comparison guide”.
  • Subsequently, you need to work with various crypto exchanges to list your new crypto token. Only then your customers will be able to buy it and pay for your product using it.

The other option is to use an established cryptocurrency to accept payment for your enterprise product. This option doesn’t require you to develop your new cryptocurrency and launch it.

You can accept payment using popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ether. In this context, Ripple (XRP), which is another well-known cryptocurrency is worth mentioning.

The cryptocurrency Ripple is built by a company with the same name, i.e., Ripple. Its technology solution uses an efficient consensus algorithm, which makes Ripple transactions faster. Ripple also offers an increasingly popular digital payment network and protocol, and many banks are already using it.

Popularly known as RippleNet, this network offers functionalities like payment settlement, asset exchange, and remittance management. Market observers are increasingly comparing RippleNet with SWIFT, the established service for international money and security transfers.

Read more about Ripple and RippleNet in “Bitcoin vs. Ripple: What’s the difference?”. You can use this network to implement a cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise.

How do you implement a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise?

As I have just explained, you have several options to implement a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise. The outline of your project will vary depending on the option you use. Here, I will explain the high-level steps that you should take, and these are as follows:

1. Project planning

You need to do the following as part of the project planning exercise:

1a. Project scope definition

Decide your approach from the following options:

  • Building a brand new blockchain network and cryptocurrency;
  • Developing a crypto token using an established network like Ethereum;
  • Accepting Bitcoin or Ether using a crypto payment gateway;
  • Using Ripple for implementing a crypto payment system.

1b. Choose your front-end technology stack

The front-end application will enable users to pay for your product using cryptocurrencies. You need to choose the technology stack for that, e.g.:

  • js for developing a web app;
  • Java for native Android development;
  • Swift for native iOS development.

1c. Choose a blockchain network host

Depending on your development approach, you will need to choose the most appropriate blockchain network host. E.g., the Ethereum blockchain network is a good choice for developing a crypto token without having to set up a whole new blockchain network. Read our guide “Best blockchain network hosts 2020 – Ethereum – Amazon etc.” for more insights.

1d. Onboard your development team

You will need to onboard a competent development team, which should include the following roles:

  • A project manager (PM);
  • An IT architect;
  • Blockchain developers;
  • js web developers, if you’re developing a web app;
  • Native Android developers with Java skills, if you’re creating an Android app;
  • Native iOS developers with Swift skills, if you’re creating an iOS app;
  • Testers;
  • DevOps engineers.

Note that your chosen development approach will determine the blockchain development skills you need. E.g., you will need Ethereum blockchain developers if you plan to develop crypto tokens based on Ethereum, and the developers should know how to code Solidity smart contracts.

Finding competent developers can be hard. Help is at hand though, and you can read our guide “How to find a good software developer”.

2. Project execution and tracking

It’s time to execute the project to implement a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system for your enterprise product. Your project execution will vary based on the approach, therefore, let’s review the various alternatives:

Alternative A: Building a whole new blockchain network and cryptocurrency

This is the most involved approach since you are building everything from the ground up. As I have explained in “How much does it cost to build a blockchain project?”, you need to do the following:

Alternative B: Building an Ethereum “Decentralized App” (DApp) and crypto token

In this approach, you will not need to build a blockchain network from scratch since you will use the Ethereum public blockchain network. This alternative involves the following:

Alternative C: Using Bitcoin or Ethereum payment gateways

If you want to accept Bitcoin payment for your enterprise product, then you can use several popular payment gateways. Market-leading Bitcoin payment gateways offer APIs, therefore, you can easily set them up in your app. The following are a few examples of such gateways:

  • Coinbase;
  • CoinGate;
  • AlfaCoins;
  • Shopify;

Read more about them in our guide “10 best Bitcoin payment gateways for 2020”. Many of them let you accept payment in Ether too, e.g., CoinGate. Read “Accept Ethereum payments” to learn how to use CoinGate to accept Ether in your app.

Alternative D: Use Ripple

You can use the Ripple (XRP) ledger APIs to implement and blockchain cryptocurrency payment system for your enterprise product. Visit the “XRP Ledger Dev Portal” and access its extensive documentation.

The “Concepts” page on the XRP ledger developer portal can help you to learn the fundamentals of using it. Read “Get started with XRP ledger APIs” to learn how to use the XRP ledger APIs.

Planning to launch a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise?

This guide will certainly help you, however, implementing a blockchain cryptocurrency payment system in your enterprise promises to be a complex project. Consider engaging a reputed software development company for such projects, and read our guide “How to find the best software development company?” to find one!