Blockonomics Review: A WooCommerce Payment Gateway With No Third-Party
The most popular WooCommerce Bitcoin payment gateways have the worst characteristics of traditional fiat gateways. They:
- Require your visitors to go to a third-party site to complete the transfer, rather than staying on your store
- Don’t let you use your own wallets – you have to get paid by the payment gateway
Isn’t that…kind of what you’re trying to escape by accepting cryptocurrency at your WooCommerce store in the first place?
Blockonomics offers a different way that should make cryptocurrency fans happy. With Blockonomics:
- Payments get sent straight to your wallet – no middleman.
- The entire checkout process happens on your website – no need to send your visitors away from your site.
Interested? Keep reading my Blockonomics review to see how it works and learn whether it stands up to the hype.
In all of our past posts about Bitcoin, I’ve always started things off with a little joke about the current price of Bitcoin. I’m going to skip that this time out of respect for your crypto holdings. May they RIP, and keep HODL’ing.
Blockonomics Review: How The Plugin Works
Ok, so Blockonomics lets you accept Bitcoin payments on WooCommerce without acting as a direct middleman. That is, people stay on your site and the money goes straight to your wallet.
So…how is it still able to automatically mark WooCommerce orders as complete?
- Users have a timer that limits when they can send the payment (anywhere from 10-30 minutes)
- Via the API, Blockonomics watches the blockchain to look for that specific transaction
- Once a payment gets confirmed twice in the blockchain, Blockonomics automatically marks the order as paid.
- If there’s no payment within the time window (plus a buffer), Blockonomics automatically marks the order as canceled.
Other than that, everything else about the process is pretty much normal! Users will still use the normal WooCommerce cart and checkout – they’ll just get a new Bitcoin payment method to choose from.
And beyond Bitcoin, you can also accept Altcoin payments using ShapeShift (if desired).
All in all, it’s pretty simple and easy to get up and running. Let me show you how it works…
Hands-on With Blockonomics: Setting Up The WooCommerce Gateway
I have Blockonomics set up on my test WooCommerce store – let’s take things more hands-on.
Setting Up Blockonomics
Once you install and activate the plugin, it will prompt you to configure some basic settings. Basically, you just need to connect to the Blockonomics API:
To do that, you head to the Blockonomics merchant page where you can sign up for a free account.
You’ll need to confirm your email. And once you do that, you’ll need to enter your Bitcoin wallet xpub address:
And once you do that, Blockonomics will give you the API key that you need. You’ll need to add that API key to your WordPress dashboard in the Blockonomics API Key box:
Once you do that, you can test your setup. Hopefully, you see a success message:
Beyond configuring the connection, you can also choose:
- Whether or not to accept Altcoin payments with Shapeshift
- How long of a timer to give shoppers on the payment page (this is how long they have to send the payment to your address)
And that’s it for configuring the basic settings! If you’d prefer to see that process in video format, you can also check out the developer’s video tutorial:
Configuring WooCommerce Gateway Settings
You can also access a few more settings by going to WooCommerce → Settings → Payments:
There’s not much to do here. But if you click that Manage button, you can control the name of the payment method during the checkout process:
How Blockonomics Works For Shoppers
Ok, now I’m going to switch things up and show you how your shoppers will actually experience your new Bitcoin payment gateway on WooCommerce.
They’ll add products to their carts like normal. Only now, when they go to checkout, they’ll see a new Bitcoin payment option:
Once they go to check out with the Bitcoin method, they’ll be able to:
- See the conversion for the order total from fiat to cryptocurrency
- Scan a QR code to send the payment
- Send directly to your wallet address
- Pay with Altcoins using ShapeShift (if you enable this feature)
They’ll also have that timer ticking away at the top, which again, you can customize the length of:
If a shopper doesn’t send a payment in time, they’ll see a payment expired notice with instructions to go back and try again:
Otherwise, they just need to wait for their payment to get confirmed in the blockchain. Speaking of…
How Blockonomics Works For You
While you’re waiting for a shopper to send the Bitcoin to your wallet, the order will show as Pending Payment in your WooCommerce dashboard:
The order will stay as Pending Payment until:
- The payment gets two confirmations in the blockchain (in which case it will be confirmed)
- The timer expires (in which case it will show as canceled). Note, there’s actually a little buffer beyond the timer that the customer sees, which I assume is to allow time for the transaction to be confirmed in the blockchain if the user sends near the end of the timer.
So everything is still done automatically even though there’s no third-party. You never need to manually intervene to change an order’s status.
How Much Does Blockonomics Cost?
Blockonomics is free for your first 10 transactions. After that, you’ll pay a flat 1% transaction fee for everything. Because none of your money ever touches Blockonomics’ wallet, you’ll actually need to pre-pay this transaction fee after your 10 free transactions are done. You can get this money back if you don’t use it, though, so it’s not like you’ll throw away money if you pay for more than you use.
Additionally, if you accidentally go over your pre-pay credits, Blockonomics won’t immediately start blocking API access – you get a 2-week grace period where your account can have a negative balance before API access shuts off.
Final Thoughts On Blockonomics
Setting up Blockonomics is about as simple as it gets. The whole process took just a few minutes. And once you’re done, you’ll be accepting cryptocurrency payments in no time.
Being able to skip third-parties is great because you can:
- Keep everything entirely on your site.
- Get money straight into your wallet.
Having to pre-pay isn’t ideal to be honest, but Blockonomics does a good job compensating by letting you withdraw money and giving you a grace period if you accidentally underpay.
There are some other services that offer flat fees rather than transaction fees. But that’s not a guarantee that they’re cheaper – you’ll need to do the math on your transaction volume to see whether you come out ahead.
All in all, Blockonomics worked great on my site, so give it a look if you’re looking for a way to accept Bitcoin on WooCommerce without a middleman.