Skilljar, a technology-based company, recently declared that its online education platform will accept payments for the sessions through Bitcoin. Skilljar enables firms to offer online courses and deliver them directly to their clients for training and supporting education worldwide. Skilljar claims that the platform is utilised by numerous online educators who take classes in different fields from computer programming to even lifestyle courses. Now the educators can receive payments in Bitcoin using their e-commerce platform, along with PayPal, debit cards and credit cards.
Era of Digital Currency
The organisation is now a part of other academic platforms which have accepted digital currency to simplify the payment process. According to Sandi Lin, Co-Founder and CEO of Skilljar, one of the key advantages of this amalgamation is that foreign students now have the option to pay a lower cost of education. Regarding the payment networks and financial obstacles, she said “We experience the pain of currency conversions on a daily basis in multiple ways and (Bitcoin) was an option that could help reduce that friction for a large number of our instructors.”
Lin continued that the global appeal and digital nature of Bitcoin makes it the most suitable currency for businesses with a global reach, especially online learning.
Going with Stripe
However one of the most fascinating aspects is that Skilljar chose to go with Stripe, which is a San Francisco based payment start-up programme, instead of the more renowned Bitpay or Coinbase. The company just integrated the Bitcoin beta programme of Stripe into their current payments infrastructure.
Stripe provides Skilljar with an effective a payment processing tool which enables the company to cover its extended reach of courses. The business model followed by Stripe is best suited for Skilljar, believes CEO Sandi Lin. she said, “Since we power online education courses across many different websites, our e-commerce integration is fairly complex. Using Stripe meant we could leverage our existing payments integration. We didn’t have to build any Bitcoin-specific infrastructure ourselves.”
As Skilljar offers its services to different businesses, the organisation can accept Bitcoin payment from various audiences across the globe. Lin explained “The solutions previously available were legacy systems designed for internal employees, or consumer marketplaces where instructors are mixed in with their competitors.” She continued “In contrast, Skilljar’s platform provides businesses with a seamless course experience they can control through their existing website. We offer a modern and mobile-responsive user interface, flexible access controls, integrations with hundreds of sales and marketing tools, and detailed analytics.”
It is actually a planned business decision which most genuine businesses must think about before they decide accepting Bitcoin. Although different business will have different answers, but Skilljar accepted Bitcoin for a few specific reasons. Lin said, “It was a combination of receiving requests from our instructors and learning about the Stripe beta programme…The decision to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment was simple. It was driven by instructor requests, ease of integration, and the international nature of our business.”
However the decision is not driven solely by requests. There must be some functional and professional benefits for the company which has led it to accept such advanced technology. Lin said, “We also have a highly international business in terms of both instructors and students. We’ve experienced the pain of currency conversion fees ourselves, which sparked my personal interest in learning more about Bitcoin.”
She further said that online courses on digital currency might be introduced on the Skilljar platform in future.
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