What is a micropayment?
A micropayment is an e-commerce transaction that can range from a dollar to a fraction of a cent. The concept may sound new but was actually coined in the 1960s by technology futurist Ted Nelson. Over the decades, companies like IBM and Compaq have tried to bring micropayments to market, however consumer behaviour and high transaction fees prevented it from taking off. Things are changing today though. New technology has drastically lowered the cost of processing micropayments and internet users are growing accustomed to making small transactions, especially in the music, gaming and app industries.
Micropayments are also gaining traction in the blogging world. Content creators are understanding the value of small transactions as they come up with different ways to monetize their work. If you’re a blogger, check out the following three ways micropayments can enhance your blog and how you can start reaping the benefits of micropayments today.
Micropayments mean you don’t have to rely on ads and subscription paywalls
Many bloggers turn to digital ads as a way to make money from their site, but advertising is just not as effective as it used to be. According to a study by GlobalWebIndex, 47 per cent of all internet users use an ad blocker. Survey participants said “too many ads”, “intrusive ads” and “annoying or irrelevant ads” were the top reasons for using one. By placing ads on your blog, you may be inadvertently annoying your readers or worse, driving them away. This negative attitude towards advertising and the rise of ad blockers has led to a renewed interest in micropayments.
Micropayments minimize the need for ads and subscription paywalls by allowing you to monetize your work in different ways. For example, you can ask readers to leave a tip if they enjoyed your article or charge a few cents for exclusive content. If you have a podcast, you can even replace ad reads with a small fee per episode or monetize your back catalogue.
Micropayments give you the freedom to write and distribute the content you want
Thanks to micropayments, content no longer needs to be ad-friendly. When sponsored posts and ad revenue are no longer a top priority, you’re free to focus on your audience and produce content that’s important to them. Micropayments also give you more control over content distribution and its economic value as managing your income is much easier when you’re able to charge what you want.
You may be skeptical and wonder who would pay for content in this day and age, but the answer is more positive than you think. Fan support is a powerful thing – just look at how it saved The Guardian. The independent newspaper changed its business model a few years ago by replacing ad revenue with monthly and one-off contributions from its readers. Since then, more than a million people have donated to The Guardian with 500,000 people supporting the publication on an ongoing basis. Independent media around the world are taking The Guardian’s lead. From Hong Kong’s FactWire to The Correspondent in the Netherlands, the number of reader-funded platforms is increasing and gaining in popularity.
Micropayments provide a source of passive income
Getting a steady stream of passive income can be as easy as installing a plug-in on your blog. Set up takes a few minutes and then you’re ready to accept micropayments from a global audience. While individual contributions are likely to be low, the beauty of micropayments is that small amounts add up and continue to increase as your audience grows. Micropayments also give you a way to continuously generate revenue from old content – something that’s harder to do with traditional monetization methods.
QUID: The best micropayment provider for bloggers
Start accepting micropayments on your blog using QUID. Considered the best micropayment provider for bloggers, QUID allows you to accept contributions as little as $0.01 and is at least 30% cheaper than other payment systems that process transactions under a dollar. It’s leading the pay-per-use economy and changing the way bloggers run their business.
It’s also loaded with state-of-the-art features:
Fast set-up with no coding required
It takes three minutes to get QUID set up. All you need to do is sign up for a QUID account and create a customized web button. Once you hit save, an embed code will automatically be generated which can be copied and pasted into an HTML or code block on your website. For more detailed instructions, check out these two-minute set-up guides for WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, Blogger and Ghost.
You can also install the QUID WordPress plug-in directly on your blog or use PennyWall to create a tip jar that can be shared on social media. Check out the QUID floating button too if you don’t have the time to deal with button placement for every page.
Unlike other micropayment systems, QUID lets you automatically charge readers for services they agreed to. Let’s say some of your top fans want to tip you $2 every month. They can use AutoPay to set that up so they don’t have to keep performing the same transactions.
Automatic currency exchange
QUID supports the Canadian and U.S. dollar (more currencies will be available soon). What happens if the majority of your readers are in Europe or Asia? With automatic currency localization, QUID can show the price of your products and services in the local currency. This takes the burden of currency conversion off the customer and increases the likelihood of spontaneous purchases.
QUID was developed with security and privacy in mind. The platform only collects the bare amount of information necessary and protects user data with methods like TLS-secured endpoints, iterative hashing, privilege separation, public-key cryptography and hardware security modules (HSMs).
Automatic refunds encourage spending by giving users peace of mind. Intelligent monitoring technology also prevents them from abusing the service.
Payments are sent straight to your bank account one week after your balance hits $100. Keep in mind payouts may take up to a week to process depending on your financial institution. Early payouts are possible too and can be done by contacting customer support and paying a small processing fee of approximately $1. You can keep track of your balance and payouts on QUID’s merchant dashboard.
Benefits of micropayments for bloggers
Micropayments are already helping Guy and the Blog, Frugal for Luxury, Sweet Sauce and other popular content creators monetize their work. By using QUID, they no longer have to resort to subscription paywalls or depend entirely on ad revenue and sponsored content. The micropayment provider also gives bloggers the freedom to create the content they want and a way to control the monetary value of it.
Ready to start accepting micropayments on your blog? Sign up for a free entry-level plan with QUID. The entry-level plan includes 10,000 transactions per month with no set-up fees required. There are also business, enterprise and non-profit plans available depending on your needs.
Check out these additional resources to learn more about blog monetization and micropayments: