A Lesson in Bitcoin ATMs
Beautiful: How to Streamline the Experience
Again, I’m not here to complain; I’m here to offer a solution.
I’ll address two main points of contention here.
Yes, a pair of tweaks to the service can leave customers walking away with an ‘I’ve got a secret’ air about them as opposed to wallowing in frustration.
Aside from the need to closely monitor ATM balances, here’s what I’d like from any machine serving cryptocurrencies:
1) Let’s Iron Out the Personal Details in Advance
If an ATM is banking on walk-up traffic, those customers still need an app to interact with the machine.
Unless you’ve planned ahead or already have a crypto app with QR codes on your phone, you’ll have to download software before making a trade.
We’re not in spur-of-the-moment, impulse-buy territory here. I wasn’t out getting coffee and happened to see crypto available. Instead, I went out to get crypto and an optional coffee.
The QR code should know who you are before a transaction takes place. Integrating with a digital ID service provider such as Civic or Ontology can accelerate ATM operation times.
Before I even walk into a location housing a bitcoin ATM, I’d prefer to choose my coin and the amount of cash I plan to trade.
Mobile wallets require a mechanism that triggers simple interaction with a CoinFlip machine.
By identifying patrons and making arrangements ahead of time, the entire checkout process can distill down to only a few steps:
- Hold phone’s QR code to machine
- Insert cash
- Walk away with a heavier bag of coins or tokens
I always feel like a target at fiat ATMs, and a bitcoin ATM is no exception. I want to spend as little time as possible interacting with money-exchanging hardware.
Ever get stuck behind the person at the ATM that has to cash a check and withdraw from three separate accounts? Please, CoinFlip, don’t make me be that person by spending so long in front of your machinery.
I want to use my phone to perform anything and everything that facilitates a faster checkout process.
2) Be Upfront About Pricing
Had I known to expect such high fees, I may have skipped the trip altogether. However, a thirst for product knowledge, as well as a little curiosity, probably would’ve been enough to prompt a mission.
Not everyone likes surprises, especially when it comes to money. Bait and switch tactics fail to attract repeat customers.
Look, we know there’s a premium for buying and selling. If I walk into a local coin shop intent on buying ounces of silver, I’m fully aware that I’ll pay more than the current spot price.
The difference is I know the exact percentage I can expect to pay. Businesses selling their services at reasonable market rates needn’t worry about hiding their true pricing structures.