You've got a store, but which currency should you use?
When you build your Minecraft server store with PlayerLands, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is what currency to use when you’re making transactions and for the prices of your items. If you’re in Europe are euros the best choice? Or would it still be better to use dollars? And how about if you’re in the UK - or Brazil? In this guide we’ll look at how to make an informed decision on currency for your store.
TL;DR Dollars are likely to be your best bet no matter where your server is. Read on to find out why.
Familiarity is important
Because Minecraft is played all over the world, the initial temptation is to charge in whatever currency is used in your home country. Although that’s entirely possible, there are a few reasons why it may be worth further analysis before going with what you know. The first of those is that unless you live in the US or Eurozone, the chances are most of the world will not be as familiar with your currency.
One problem with that lack of familiarity is a lack of trust. Especially online, players and the wider public at large, tend to trust what they know, and if your currency is not one they’re instantly at home with, it can make them sceptical about shopping in your store. Even if that only affects a proportion of your potential sales, you could still lose money simply by pricing items in a currency that’s less well known.
Another reason to choose a well understood currency is perception of value. Without getting into exchange rates and frequent foreign exchange calculations, players browsing your store may be unclear on the exact cost of items to them if the currency you’re charging in isn’t well known to them. That means each transaction will have to be preceded by a currency exchange calculation, creating a significant and unnecessary barrier to purchase.
Because of Minecraft’s global popularity you can’t expect every player on your server or every shopper in your store to be native to your currency, but as long as they have an impression of the value of each item - is this a good price for a skin? Is this sword worth it? - then your job is done. They can make a choice, spend the money and get on with their game.
Strength, solidity, and flux
Another thing to consider when selecting a currency is its stability. If the currency you trade in suddenly devalues, you may find players’ attitudes towards prices in your store shifting with the exchange rate. It can also mean you need to adjust prices to match the new value of the currency. Choosing a currency with a solid history of consistency versus other countries’ legal tender is really important.
One of the reasons PlayerLands doesn’t bother with crypto-currency transactions is their volatility. An even bigger reason is the difficulty of using them, and the time it takes to transfer in funds then actually use them to pay. If you have to plan purchases a day in advance as you wait for funds to clear or a blockchain to update itself, it takes a lot of the fun and spontaneity out of shopping. We just want players to be able to grab and go, not plan it like a military operation.
Euros or dollars?
So in looking for a currency that’s globally known, with a near-universal familiarity, a well understood value against local money, and a history or strength and non-volatility, you’re really left with two options: euros or dollars. Whilst they are both solid choices, there are good reasons to go with dollars.
Firstly the US dollar is the world’s strongest currency. With nearly $2 trillion in circulation at any given moment, it’s the widest distributed and most often traded currency on Earth, and as a result tends to hold its value really consistently. If you have your cash in dollars, it’s highly likely to be worth as much or slightly more in a year or two’s time. Given the historical dependability, the chances are dollars will continue to be strong.
Dollars are also pegged to the world’s largest economy. China is approaching its scale, but not its stability, which is why so many transactions are undertaken in dollars. Around 90% of foreign exchange deals that take place worldwide involve the US dollar. Given that there are 185 traceable currencies, that’s an astonishingly high proportion, and it shows no sign of changing.
The US still holds global trust, and this extends to its currency. The euro is excellent, but is both more prone to change in value versus other currencies, and also less widely traded. Even inside the Eurozone, unless you just don’t have any American or International players, dollars will probably still prove to be a better and more widely understood way of pricing goods in-store.
So while your PlayerLands store can support different currency pricing, we would still almost always recommend pricing goods in dollars. They’re used, understood and valued in every corner of the globe, and it gives the best platform from which to market your goods as broadly as possible. Whether your server is Minecraft, Rust or any other multiplayer game, the chances are your players will know, understand and trust American dollars.