A spokesman from the first major online retailer to accept Bitcoin, Overstock.com, has confirmed that the company is planning to conduct exclusive Bitcoin-only customer outreach including sales and discounts.
Speaking in an interview with Digital Currency Council vice president Sarah Martin ahead of his pitch at the Virtual Currency Today Summit at the end of April, the firm’s director of communications Judd Bagley explained that “incentives” were part of what was needed to increase consumer adoption of cryptocurrency.
“We’re preparing to do our part to short circuit the cycle by adding additional motivations for customers to use Bitcoin. For example, there will soon be Bitcoin-only sales and discounts for purchases made with Bitcoin.”
He continued by reiterating Overstock’s longer-term plan to increase company-wide use of bitcoin. Both suppliers and staff are on the radar for expansion of Bitcoin’s role within the company, with a combination of “education and incentives” being seen as necessary to gain the necessary support. “It’s a classic chicken/egg conundrum when it comes to consumer adoption,” Bagley explained, his comments gaining considerable recognition on social media.
Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne first signaled in January that staff would be given the option of receiving their salary in Bitcoin, with the company at the same time installing a Bitcoin ATM at its headquarters in Salt Lake City.
While the varied state-by-state environment has been a testing one for its Bitcoin integration, the company could be set to benefit from its home state of Utah’s seemingly moderate stance on cryptocurrency regulation. A bill advocating acceptance of Bitcoin for state services such as payment of taxes, via the setting up a specialized committee to investigate the potential role Bitcoin could play at state level, is currently being considered.
Bagley also offered his thoughts on the trending debate of how mass adoption of Bitcoin or blockchain technology will be facilitated, and specifically which will come first, stating:
“Longer term, we need to develop more non-currency applications for decentralized ledgers such as the Blockchain, and let the public get comfortable with the ease and security of it. Once that’s happened, cryptocurrency will seem an obvious next step. That’s when things will take off.”
He added, “In other words, Bitcoin 2.0 will facilitate the adoption of Bitcoin 1.0. I believe that someday, the fact that currency was the first application of the Blockchain will be the answer to a business trivia question.”
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