GoCoin has released a new feature that will allow its merchants to request payment from customers via email and text message.
Called its ‘Click-to-Bill’ feature, the bitcoin, litecoin and dogecoin payment processor framed the release as one that will enable merchants to offer bitcoin shoppers added convenience while providing existing customers with a compelling reason to switch payment options.
The result, according to CEO Steve Beauregard, is a forward-thinking addition to the GoCoin platform that will target major telecoms such as T-Mobile and Verizon, and better cater to its existing cell service client, RingPlus.
Beauregard told CoinDesk:
“Any of those guys could use this feature. If somebody’s balance is getting low and they know that you’ve paid in the past with bitcoin, they can send an SMS message directly to your phone.”
Merchant customers would then receive a message via email or SMS, click the attached link to open their digital currency wallet and load their accounts with funds paid in bitcion.
Beauregard added: “[Customers would] never go through a computer or a bank, and there doesn’t have to be a Visa charge.”
QR code alternative
GoCoin illustrated how its SMS billing will work in an accompanying YouTube video that shows how consumers can refill their accounts with the ‘Click to Bill’ tool.
The company boasts that the entire process of adding funds to the account with bitcoin can be completed in roughly 40 seconds, a time it believes is significantly faster than any alternative.
As such, Beauregard believes the feature represents not only a novel expansion of GoCoin’s services, but also a sign that the company is moving past traditional tools it believes have held back bitcoin’s utility.
“We’re moving past sort of the QR code, old way of paying bitcoin invoices and modernizing the interface so it’s more like a one-click [experience].”
Targeting mainstream consumers
Beauregard described RingPlus as the ‘perfect candidate’ for the service, but noted the feature hadn’t been previously made available to any customers.
GoCoin partnered with the Los Angeles-based low-cost cell phone provider in July, suggesting at the time that it had developed a unique SMS billing service for the company.
Still, the CEO framed GoCoin’s latest feature as one that finds his company seeking to more broadly meet the needs of consumers as part of its larger goal of serving its merchant clients.
“One of the things that we’ve identified is we’ve got to move past consumers that are holding bitcoin and finding places where they want to use it to transact easily, and this is something that encourages people to buy bitcoin for the purposes of transacting.”
Cell phone image via Shutterstock