This is a more advanced and more technical matter, it is for those who know what they do, it is not for the ordinary user. And first I’m going to explain a little. We assume that most use web solutions like WordPress (WP) + Woocommerce for their web stores. We recommend these because they are currently the only most independent and controllable platforms. The others like Shopify, Drupal and things like that are very tight when implementing BTC and there is no room to handle. For those who have websites made from scratch without platforms, you have to talk to their web developer to implement this type of payments.
In the BTC world, there are two ways to “ride”:
- a public, open, easier to implement on your website, using intermediaries (third parties who can track you or not), with maintenance costs, where you as a user do not have much space to move and directly control your BTC. Come on, it’s like you’re going back to the banks / payment platforms. But for beginners it is a good step. This form does not need much technical knowledge about Bitcoin, you only need access to your administration part of your website and install the necessary plugins.
- and another more private, safer, more sovereign, which respects the basic principles of Bitcoin (Not Your Keys = Not Your Bitcoins), WITHOUT costs or commissions, but here you already have total control of your BTC, you your txs, you your privacy and in addition to the privacy of your customers. This form needs a little more advanced knowledge of how the plugins for Bitcoin and special LN (Lightning Network protocol) work.
Everyone decides how they want, I give them both solutions. But, don’t forget, we use BTC to regain our privacy and sovereignty.
1. Broker plugins. Here I do not give you any step-by-step tutorial because on their websites they make it very easy to do it. For small websites that want to start with BTC they are good solutions. I’m just going to list them here, the order doesn’t matter, is just random:
- CoinGate – easy web integration with WP plugin, you can also list your store in your merchant directory. LN available
- GoURL – simple plugin for WP and many more types of web platforms, even pure PHP
- CoinPayments – variety of plugins and utilities for your website and also merchant directory. LN available
- Blockonomics – a good tool for your website, it works directly with your personal wallet, but they still DO NOT have LN
- OpenNode – 1% commission only if you withdraw money in fiat currency, or onchain, it is a good tool to start with. LN available and free. Here is a simple guide on how to do it.
- Globee – another with a 1% commission and integrated LN
- Crypto Woo – a more advanced solution, direct to your private wallet, but with higher commissions. No LN at the moment
2. BTCPay Server. This is already a serious thing and advanced knowledge is needed to install an independent machine that takes care of everything that is BTC transaction of your website. This is one of the best solutions on the market so far. Lots of documentation on its website, demos, and a community that can help you at any time. We recommend it for medium / large stores with a large volume of txs in BTC. BTCPay server is a totally private and sovereign solution, 100% controllable by you, without commissions (of course it is your own server / bank).
A separate machine is required (virtual or physical), it can be used with VM or Docker or there are already providers that offer hosted BTCPay servers already configured (see the documentation on their website). Change you can use your own machine, some NUC-PC or small machines, with linux with / without Docker, where the BTCPay server is installed. For a medium / advanced computer it is NOT difficult to install, there is a lot of step-by-step documentation and also a plugin for WordPress / WooCommerce.
Great guide step-by-step how to setup your online shop with BTCPay Server.
There are also machines already prepared with BTCPay server, buy, connect, enter and customize your store (play & play):
- NODL – https://www.nodl.it/nodlbox
- Lightning in a box – https://lightninginabox.co
- myNode BTC – https://mynodebtc.com/ – excellent machine!
- Umbrel Node – build your own node with a Raspberry Pi
3. Self Hosted Solution BTC – LN. Here you also need advanced knowledge of Bitcoin and of handling WP plugins. It would be recommended to have your own machine: VPS or physical in your store or even your own web server if you have enough storage space). This depends on each one how it is handled in this environment and on the possibilities. The procedure is the same.
- have the machine prepared with a Linux OS, you can also use one of the machines mentioned in point 2 about BTCPay, only you ask for them without BTCPay installed or you install them yourself.
- a good internet connection, which is ALWAYS available without interruptions (an optical fiber is optimal)
- Public fixed IP, for the LN node. It can be done with dynamic IP and onion addresses but this requires advanced knowledge of who installs it for you.
- Open ports on the access router.
- access to the web administration part to install and configure the plugins
- BTC node installed and configured (the machines mentioned above already have them installed)
- LN node installed and configured (the machines mentioned above already have them installed)
- Electrum wallet configured (onchain payments)
- WP plugin for onchain payments: NoMiddleMan Crypto or the Crypto Payments Woo
- Payment platform with BTC / LN in your LN node: Lightning Charge by Elements Projects
- WP plugin for your website to connect C-LN Charge with your node: Woocommerce Gateway Charge C-LN
- WP plugin for your website to connect LND node with your Woocommerce
4. Self Hosted Solution BTC ONLY onchain. If you consider that at the moment you do not want to accept payments by BTC-LN and only onchain, you do not need any other machine apart from your own website. This would be for stores that want to start testing and have a quick solution and promote their page with BTC payments. Then the LN solution can be implemented without problems.
Warning: this solution is slower to confirm onchain transactions with BTC and also has higher costs for the customer (not for the store). For example, if you have a clothing store and a product is worth € 5 or € 10, a miner commission (to send the tx) of about 10 or 50 cents may seem expensive to a customer. But hey, if you are a real bitcoiner, you will not care about the commission. Important is the experience of paying with BTC.
For this you only need:
- a configured Electrum wallet
- the WP NoMiddleMan Crypto plugin installed on your website
- another plugin that does the same is Crypto Payments Woo
5. Other useful tools for a website:
- Paywall Link – create a link to a content on your website (articles, documents, audio / video files, photos) that you want to share in a way that they can pay you before viewing / opening / saving them. This tool can also be connected to your @LNtxBot wallet account on Telegram.
- Paywall Content – “hide” part of the content of a web page, behind a paywall. The content is revealed only after the web visitor pays the amount of satoshi you want. There is an option for those who still do not have BTC to see advertisements, which also pay you
- Plugins collection for Lightning Network: https://github.com/lightningd/plugins