Originally intended to timestamp digital documents for the sake of protecting them from tampering, Blockchain has come a long way since 2009 when it was put to a first time proper use. It was adapted by Satoshi Nakamoto to create the digital currency that we now know as Bitcoin.
Basically, about encryption that’s tamper-proof, Blockchain features blocks that contain information and many blocks together form a chain. They are a distributed ledger of data that stays open to everyone but can be hardly altered. The scope of Blockchain is tremendous and it is expected to rule the digital sphere in the near future.
So, how will the WordPress platform benefit from the use of Blockchain or its other possibilities? Before we explore that, let us give you a brief about what Blockchain technology actually is.
The Blockchain technology is a decentralized suite of distributed ledger technologies that are capable of recording and tracking data that carries value. Originally used to power Bitcoins, the Blockchain technology is definitely capable of handling medical records, tax records, legal contracts etc.
“The blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.” – Don & Alex Tapscott, authors Blockchain Revolution (2016)
So, what is it that Blockchain unique when compared to other processes that help track data? Well, Blockchain stores data chronologically in batches known as Blocks. The data stored in these blocks cannot be altered, thanks to Proof of Work and ‘Hash’ calculated for each of these blocks. Also, this public database records a change made to a block as a ‘new block’ instead of a re-write, informing everyone on the network. Blockchain fosters trusted peer-to-peer interaction with our data so that we can rely on it for authenticity.
The Scope of Blockchain in WordPress
The CMS does offer Blockchain themes apart from the usual blogging WordPress themes, and with Blockchain dominating the face of the world, it is very obvious that the former will be affected. So, how can Blockchain and WordPress come together to make the Content Management System more secure and versatile? However, there’s some time before the below-mentioned, probable benefits can truly be materialized for the WordPress CMS.
Blockchain fosters trust in the records kept with it and hence, the relevance of middlemen is eliminated. If you are looking to accept Bitcoin payments through your WordPress website, it can help you cut off gateway charges and save quite a money on transactions since the fees related with Bitcoin payments are comparatively lower than existing gateways. However, make sure that you read the terms and conditions in its complete undertone before making a move.
Speed of transactions
Cryptocurrency is directly from the sender to the receiver – no middlemen. This makes it easy for you to swiftly receive the payment without having to put up with the waiting time for banks or gateways to process your payment.
If you happen to run an eCommerce store on WordPress, you are probably aware of the certain restrictions that come in when it is about receiving payments from certain geographical locations. However, Bitcoins are mostly accepted by major countries; helping you carry out your business with a wide array of customers.
Making more money
As per WordPress statistics, the platform powers over 30 percent of websites existing over the Internet today and a lot of new people are coming up to make a website for their own purpose using WordPress. Thanks to Blockchain, the Bitcoin market was exploding some time back and people were drowning in high profits owing to the fluctuations in the value of this cryptocurrency. If you can monitor the highs and lows well and combine the two, you can make huge profits off the Blockchain technology through your WordPress website.
Identity management and Verification
This is the most important implementation that can be brought to WordPress by Blockchain. The encrypted identity management and verification can possibly help users for your business protect their passwords and decide the way to access their applications and the way forward for sharing them.
Digital transformation for your business
It’s 2018 and the digital competition is killing brands and their websites. Only by truly transforming, will they be able to survive and thrive? With the incorporation of Blockchain security and usability into their WordPress websites, businesses can stay ahead of the competition and remain relevant.
Smart Contracts for your business
Incorporating Smart Contracts is one such usage of Blockchain into your WordPress website business. They make sure that the parties involved in the contract can place their trust in the deal and the data and carry out the business, seamlessly.
Protecting the parties involved, these Smart Contracts are the future of deal-making. They will also help parties protect their content. Still, in an early stage of development, these Smart Contracts might be the possible most recent Blockchain implementation on the face of WordPress community.
The overall security
Blockchain can really help the WordPress community harden the overall security of the Content Management System. A report mentions that WordPress continues to be the leading infected website CMS (83% of all websites cleaned in 2017). The report was curated by the analysis of over 34,000+ infected websites. This blows the trumpet on the need for robust encryption practices for the platform where Blockchain can really help.
A blockchain technology available to the WordPress developers, Cloud Storage is probably the most relatable one as for now. Through this one, WordPress users can easily make a shift from the reliability over the usual web hosts for server space. Their data will be better encrypted and secured through this one.
Offering decentralized cloud object storage that is affordable, easy to use, private, and secure, solutions like Storj and Filecoin can save the day by truly offering a decentralized storage network.
Plugins for accepting Cryptocurrency on your WordPress website
If you are convinced with the security and extensibility of the cryptocurrency trend, you might as well try it out on your own WordPress website by using the plugins mentioned below.
GoUrl Bitcoin Payment Gateway
GoUrl is a secure Payment Gateway for WordPress that will help you accept cryptocurrency payment i.e. Bitcoins on your website. The plugin lets you receive payment without the requirement of any ID or Bank Account. You can seamlessly accept Global payments anonymously, securely and with no Chargebacks and almost zero Risk.
The payment you accept will be sent straight to your bitcoin/altcoin wallets and converted to USD/EUR/etc later. The plugin lets you receive payment in Bitcoin, BitcoinCash, Litecoin, Dash, Dogecoin, Speedcoin, Reddcoin, Potcoin, Feathercoin, Vertcoin, Peercoin, UniversalCurrency, MonetaryUnit payments online on your WordPress website.
Easy Digital Downloads: BitPay Gateway
World’s largest Bitcoin business solutions, BitPay offers a WordPress plugin to help you accept Bitcoins through your WordPress website as well. This payment gateway extension allows you to accept payments via Bitcoins and your BitPay account for items should through Easy Digital Downloads.
Fairly simple to install and setup, all you need to do is upload plugin files to your plugins folder, or install using WordPress built-in Add New Plugin installer. Then you will be required to activate the plugin and create an account on BitPay. Once done, you will have to create a new API Key ID. Now, navigate to Dashboard>Downloads > Settings > Payment Gateways, choose BitPay and fill in your API Key ID and Notification email.
However, BitPay requires that your site have an SSL certificate if you want to accept payments through the gateway.
Mollie Payments for WooCommerce
If you are running a WooCommerce store, you can quickly integrate all major payment methods in WooCommerce. Mollie makes payments better for WooCommerce by prepping your WooCommerce webshop to receive money via all major gateways, including Bitcoins.
A tad bit different from the plugins mentioned above, the WP Blockchain plugin is about a gateway to help you stamp pretty much everything into the blockchain, directly from your WordPress website. The plugin helps you protect your authorship over content where you can stamp in the Bitcoin blockchain (BTC), stamp users, posts, pages and custom post types and even automatically append stamps on the frontend.
BitMate Author Donations
The BitMate Author Donations plugin helps authors on WordPress sites to accept cryptocurrency donations. With this plugin, authors can simply add a cryptocurrency donation box below all their posts and manually control them via the built-in shortcode [bitmate-author-donate] and/or widgets for sidebars and visual page builders.
Blockchain has just begun to touch the surface for the future development of the WordPress platform, in terms of its security and usability. There is a lot of work-in-progress to make things happen. But, at the end of the day, it feels great that the WordPress platform will eventually be able to exercise the potential of the Blockchain technology and grow to be more secure and useful.