I was talking to a business owner the other day. We were talking about payment solutions for him. He had heard about someone else's negative experience with Paypal so he was reluctant to use them in his own site. I don't put a lot of faith in hearsay, but he and I ended up talking at length about other options.
Frankly, there aren't many. I'm happy with Paypal so I use their services but I don't know what I'd do if I didn't want to. I'm sure it's the same way with many businesses that can't get a merchant account from their bank because they're a small operation.
As we spoke, I searched the Internet for online payments and was surprised to see other providers I'd never heard of. Notably, www.greenzap.com looks like they have a good system with some promise, as well as a potential marketing position to help.
In the future, especially with the rise in counterfeit currency, I see money being entirely online or perhaps a government issued legal tender as well as Internet-based money that can more easily move across borders.
What would it look like? I think others have tried, with ideas like e-gold (www.e-gold.com), an electronic currency backed by gold bullion… but it's not there yet. If you're an entrepreneur… do you have the answer?