The majority of people look at Bitcoin’s price to gauge its growth. The price has been sluggish and far from what people expect with all the good news circulating. That is because the current state of Bitcoin makes its price an inaccurate indicator of growth. Despite the sluggish price, here are 10 reasons why Bitcoin will continue to grow:
#1: Traffic for popular bitcoin sites
Bitcoin sites are reaching new heights in traffic. Bitcointalk.org, Coindesk.com, Blockchain.info, and coinbase.com, not to mention Cointelegraph itself, have all seen massive growth in their traffic. All of these sites have impressive rankings on Alexa.com, which are below. Alexa uses data collected from the site, and gives the site a ranking based how it compares to other sites. The lower the ranking, the higher the traffic is.
- Bitcointalk.org Global 3,005 and US 2,754
- Coindesk.com Global 3,708 and US 2,233
- Blockchain.info Global 2,162 US 3,920
- Coinbase.com Global 4,254 and US 1,693
People have for a long time complained about Bitcoin hoarders, but with the two charts below, we see a clear consistent trend upwards in number of transactions. Over the last year, the trend continues. This is mostly likely due to companies like Dell, and Dish starting to accept Bitcoin.
- Number of transactions excluding popular addresses
- Number of unique bitcoin addresses used (1 year, 7 day average)
#3: Mainstream Coverage
Bitcoin is not a stranger to the spotlight, but many mainstream sites did not touch the controversial technology not too long ago. When sites did, it was usually a very negative take on the currency. Mainstream coverage is starting to move away from that, and to a more positive view on the currency
- Forbes: “Five Objections to Using Bitcoin We Should Finally Put to Rest”
- Business “Insider: Bitcoin Is Here To Stay”
- USA Today: “How bitcoin is moving money in Africa”
- Entrepreneur: “How a Teenage Entrepreneur Built a Startup on Bitcoin Riches”
Twitter has continued to be a social media hotspot for Bitcoin. Over the last 30 days, #bitcoin has be included in over 550,000 tweets. People and companies tweeting #bitcoin included, Steve Martin, The Wall Street Journal, and Tech Crunch. Spikes in Topsy’s 30 day graph of tweets including #bitcoin shows clear spikes correlating to the times of major news, like Paypal’s integration of bitcoin.
Exchanges are the foundation of Bitcoin’s activity in any country. Looking at exchanges are a great way to see the adoption, and health of bitcoin in a country. Below is the Alexa ranking of 7 important exchanges around the world. Remember, the lower ranking, the more popular the site is.
- btc-e Global 4,312 and Russia 797
- Bitstamp Global 12,759 and US 17,282
- Kraken Global 32,710 and Belgium 2,395
- OKCoin Global 48,968 and China 12,042
- Bitfinex Global 59,718 and US 21,766
- Huobi Global 74,999 and China 11,996
- BTC China Global 71,106 and China 10,448
#6: Venture Capital
This year has been a tremendous year for Bitcoin businesses and venture capital. While the large sums of money being thrown at these companies might lose their meaning, they very important for the future of Bitcoin. Venture capital, as well as the advice and connections that comes with it, will have a huge beneficial effect on Bitcoin businesses. Businesses help Bitcoin infrastructure grow, making Bitcoin easy to use and get. Bitcoin’s future will be shaped by businesses, and the venture capital funding will help them get there faster with better products and services.
- “Chain Secures $9.5M in Funding”
- “KnCMiner Closes $14M Series A Investment Round”
- “Richard Branson, VC’s Pump $30 Million into BitPay”
- “Australian Investor Group Launches $30m Bitcoin Fund”
- “VC Investment Rate into Bitcoin to Skyrocket in 2014”
While many Bitcoiners grit their teeth at the sound of the word, regulation does have a big effect on the public. 2014 has been a big year for cryptocurrency regulations. While regulations are still being nailed down, many governments have started down the path. As this process gets underway, the public is starting to feel more used to hearing about cryptocurrency, which is setting the stage for wider adoption. Clarity on regulations is also very important for businesses and venture capitalists. Knowing whether the government is going to shut down or subsidize your business is crucial.
- “Isle of Man Looks to Make Room for Digital Currencies in Legal Framework”
- “NY State Releases “BitLicense” Regulations Draft for Businesses”
- “Japan Says It Will Not Regulate Bitcoin”
- “Bitcoin Derivatives Exchange TeraExchange Receives Approval From US Federal Regulator”
#8: New Financial Tools And Products
Exchanges have started to move into new services and products to encourage trading among their exchanges. While these new tools and products have been conversational and blamed for a recent decline in Bitcoin’s price, the tools and products encourage money to flow into Bitcoin and bitcoins to be traded. Both are very important for a still-growing currency.
- “FXOpen gets dramatic response to unique crypto offerings”
- “China Exchange OKCoin to Launch Bitcoin Futures Trading”
- “Huobi’s new fixed-interest bitcoin investment product should have the hairs on your neck standing at attention”
#9: New Hubs
Bitcoin is expanding to new parts of the world. Grassroots communities are popping up to spread the good word and build infrastructure for Bitcoin in their country. The biggest trend is Bitcoin communities popping up in emerging economies, which is one of Bitcoin’s biggest yet-to-be fulfilled promises. This has the potential to bring a large amount of people into Bitcoin. The seed is just being planted right now, but it will have a dramatic effect in the future as these cryptocurrency-driven networks develop.
- “No SWIFT, not even the Internet: Bitcoin in Russia still has potential”
- “Government's warnings won't stop Vietnam from embracing Bitcoin”
- “The Philippines: Bitcoin Remittance Innovation through Isolation”
- “Let the Bit Drop: Coinapult sets to Transform a Caribbean Island into Bitcoin Test Ground”
#10: Outside Hires
Bitcoin companies have been acquiring more and more well known talent. This new talent brings experience, knowledge, connections, and legitimacy. Silicon Valley veterans jumping ship and leaving traditional tech companies for Bitcoin companies is bringing awareness to just how influential the Bitcoin movement is becoming.