While cryptocurrency exchanges are the most popular way to buy these digital assets, it’s not always clear, which are the best to use. Each exchange offers different transaction fees, storage methods, asset listings, and more. It’s important to know which platform best serves you before picking one.
In this guide, we’re going to break down what’s best to consider when choosing an exchange.
The most obvious, but still an essential one. When choosing an exchange, make sure to know how secure it is. Know that it doesn’t have a history of fraud. Make a note of any cold storage methods it has or its insurance policies. If the platform can cover any lost funds as a result of a hack, that’s great news.
Different exchanges have different levels of transaction fees. Some, like Coinbase, charge much higher than most due to their security and accessibility. Others, like Binance, offer their own cryptocurrency to help cover some transaction fees. Do your due diligence and check which platforms have fees you can afford. Otherwise, you might be paying much more than preferred when trading crypto.
Some exchanges support a large variety of cryptocurrencies, like the aforementioned Binance. Others, like Coinbase, are much more limited in their offerings. However, more doesn’t necessarily mean better. Exchanges that aren’t careful about what they list can sell scam tokens to unaware investors. It’s vital your exchange of choice is very cautious about which assets they choose to sell.
Ensure an exchange supports various methods of payment. Bank transfers, debit/credit cards, wire, and other forms of instant transfer are ideal. Also, make a point to see if the platform supports your local fiat. Some exchanges are more localized, while others offer support on a global scale. This is an avenue that’s constantly growing as crypto moves mainstream, with methods like PayPal even being supported.
Note that some platforms will take days or even weeks to finish transactions. Keep an eye out for such platforms and make sure to avoid them.
No matter how shiny and appealing the main website may be for an exchange, make sure to read any and all user reviews. These document what actually using the platform is like. They’ll describe what the interface is like, how trading feels, and how customer support is.
If users appear satisfied, it’s highly likely you’ll enjoy the platform as well. That said, if reviews complain of security issues and hacks, you’ll want to stay away.
Take a look at the customer support avenues available on the platform. Do they offer email, text, and phone chat? Are support teams responding quickly, or do they take a few days? Is the team even useful with their support? User reviews can help with this, as well as your own research into the company.
Popular Cryptocurrency Exchanges
Now that you’re aware of what to look for when picking a cryptocurrency exchange, here’s a list of platforms to check out.
Coinbase is a popular US-based exchange. It’s quite selective of its offerings but features a top-tier support team and a ton of educational materials for newbies. However, it’s worth noting this platform charges higher transaction fees than most.
It does support a wide variety of payment options, though. That, and it even has a debit card to utilize your funds off of the platform.
CryptoExchange.com is another viable option. The platform easily allows you to fund your wallet with a bank account transfer. From there, you can trade with an expansive list of popular cryptocurrencies and start earning.
Finally, Binance is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. It supports a wide variety of assets and funding options. However, the platform doesn’t allow you to pay with debit or credit and requires you to reveal your identity which some traders might not like.