Web Connnection -
Written by Graydon
Monday, 17 April 2006
Tonight I'll start a series about BitPass a micropayment system geared towards lower priced electronic content
What's it do? Enable buyers to setup a pre-paid account that they can use to quickly, easily, securily purchase items online. For the sellers it has three options... 1) Studio - which hosts the content for you, 2) Professional - which doesn't host, but enables additional items such as subscriptions and streams to be sold and 3) Enterprise - which covers all items.
So, that's the basics...
BitPass has been around since December 2003 and is funded by numerous people.
It has some possibility and I like the idea of it because it focuses on lower cost items.
Any type of electronic content could be sold through the system (i.e. musicians looking to sell individual tracks, blogs looking to sell subscriptions to e-zines, artists / photographers eager to sell their work, etc...).
One additional item I like about it is the ability to link your pre-paid account to PayPal... which allows buyers to use their existing account with PayPal to access this "pre-paid phone card" type system.
Despite some of it's promise, it has some problems...
First, when you visit the site and browse around, you can't find any decent description of exactly how it works. No information about what you will need when you sign-up, and the information about PayPal is only found in one area. This does two things in my opion...
1 - Makes people somewhat suspicious about the overall service
2 - Turns people off from using the service.
So, how to solve this? Provide a nice "How-to" section for buyers and sellers that walks them through the process without having to sign-up. This should alleviate the initial apprehension about what to expect and demonstrate how easy the system is to use.
I'll do some follow up to the above shortly and actually take you through how to sign-up for the service, incorporate into your site (not that you need one) and look at what buyers actually need before signing up.
Last Updated ( Friday, 05 May 2006 )