How Blockchain Can Help Your Small Business Now and in the Future

This article title caught my attention the other day; Garbage Is Using Blockchain. Another article listed managed blockchain as a popular trend for this year. With Bitcoin soaring, it’s no surprise the underlying technology is in the news. 

At its simplest, blockchain is a database that stores data in blocks. These blocks get chained together. Nice, but how can blockchain help your business? 

Accepting payments for goods and services via a digital or e-wallet reduces transaction costs. There’s no need to deal with cash, coins or figure out which credit cards you should accept. A tap from your customer’s mobile device or laptop sends payment your way.

Customers love the convenience and security. Digital wallets built on blockchain make payments even more secure. Customers can even pay using cryptocurrency. 

Gift cards and loyalty programs successfully boost business for large companies. But fraud problems and the costs of program setup are a high bar for a small business. Blockchain changes that. 

Well-known digital gift card company, Gyft, and others see blockchain as a solution for fraud problems and lower costs for small businesses. One or more companies expect to release a blockchain-based solution soon.

Ready for a new cloud? Storj Labs created a decentralized cloud platform, Tardigrade, that operates similar to a blockchain. Business data gets encrypted, uploaded, and distributed in several pieces across a global network. 

Storj Labs uses the excess capacity of host systems worldwide and compensates the hosts for the unused space. This distributed model, like a blockchain, makes hacking difficult, if not impossible. That’s the biggest promise of blockchain, an end to endless hacking and fraud. 

Author: Kris Keppeler, a writer who finds technology fascinating and loves humor. She writes for Crossing Genres on Medium.com and Does This Happen to You? on Channillo. Award-winning podcast producer who enjoys telling stories. Follow her @KrisKKAria on Twitter or on LinkedIn.

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