Choosing an exchange can be a real-life quest! We want to make sure that the exchange is secure, fast, reliable. Oh did I mention security? Let’s also make exchange fast with low transaction fees. We clearly understand that there is no such thing as a crypto-exchange holy grail. Being good at everything means being good at nothing. To be a Crypto Dweller is to be ready for an epic adventure… “finding the best cryptocurrency exchange platform”.
B is for Basics.
A bit of explanation before we choose our best cryptocurrency exchange. A Cryptocurrency Exchange is (basically) a marketplace where anyone can exchange, trade or just keep an eye on any cryptocurrency. These exchanges help crypto investors sell their coins quickly and easily when they’re ready to cash out. From this point of view, it’s just a currency exchange for what my colleague describes as digital cash.
These platforms also help people invest in Bitcoin and alt-coins on the market through the act of trading (much like a stock exchange). In some exchanges, you can even exchange fiat and crypto both ways, depending on the type of cryptocurrency exchange you use.
Now some crypto-pedia: there are four different types of exchanges within which you can trade, buy or sell coins. To be a Crypto Dweller is to understand the differences between them, so you can choose your “type” of best cryptocurrency exchange.
The Big 4
The band members are Trading, Broker, Decentralized, and P2P exchange. It’s worth to say a word or two about them, basically to see all the pros and cons:
The most traditional crypto exchange in the Band. It allows users to trade coins for other coins – as simple as that. If you own Bitcoin and would like to own some alt-coin, yeah let’s do it. You can trade some of this for some of that using a trading exchange. The biggest pros of this type are price (low transaction fees) and the possibility of fast and easy investment in various coins. A Trading Exchange has a wide (I mean super wide) range of different coins, both popular coins, and fresh ICO tokens. This is both a pro and a con. Having many options is good, but to store info about them, the platform can get you dizzy. Luckily the interfaces are user-friendly. An obvious con is the lack of the option to exchange cryptos for fiat. We don’t do that here.
Another big con is maybe not as bad, but, there’s no “high” level of security. If the exchange your using gets hacked, your cryptocoins can be stolen.
Simplified definition: it’s the one where you can buy into crypto: both ways, exchange your fiat into cryptos, or cash out coins for fiat. Those platforms are well supported. They often provide professional customer service with an immersive interface and a guide. All this makes for the biggest pros of the Broker Exchange type: it’s the best cryptocurrency exchange in terms of usability. Let’s face it, if you are a newbie in crypto, this system won’t punish you for lack of knowledge. What’s more, it will help you to boost it up.
You can connect your bank account or debit/credit cards to simplify the exchange using your local currency. Where’s the hack? Platforms are limited to using only popular cryptos, bashing you with high transaction fees. We’re all “good people”, but want to make a stealthy, private exchange. Nope – Know Your Customer is in place here, and your ID needs to be here as well. Oh, and did I mention that despite the high level of fees and identification process this type isn’t super secure? Sometimes even less secure than a Trading Exchange.
Or being more pro: let’s call it DEX (Decentralized Trading Exchanges). Through blockchain, this type allows you to trade coins with other people directly. Since there’s no main server and main “point of entry” this system is hacker-proof.
Your coins can’t be simply stolen (as long as the thief isn’t right next to you on your computer!). A second big pro is that you can feel like a crypto-ninja. No matter how large your transaction is, you are cloaked, anonymous. But working with ninjas means there is no customer service. You’re on your own. If you are a pro, and know what you’re doing, it’s fine, but it’s probably not the best cryptocurrency exchange for newcomers. But remember, that there are fewer coins in these exchanges and fewer crypto options, and even with that, navigation is difficult. The nail in the coffin is it’s slow. Transactions here take longer than in other types and… you still need to pay more for such transactions.
Last in the Band. A Peer to Peer exchange is where you can trade cryptos without ID verification. Imagine anonymous auctions, where you can buy or sell coins with fiat or cash, simply by looking for buyers or sellers, setting up prices and offers. As always, the biggest pros of such system are: being peer to peer, having the ability to set and choose the price you want to sell for, dodging fixed market prices. P2P also keeps you completely anonymous and allows you to purchase coins using cash (in some cases, it’s not a general value of P2P). In exchange for these pros, P2P demands the highest transaction fees, giving you a limited number of available cryptos. And it’s sometimes unsafe.
Depending on who you are trading with – scam alert!
Choosing the best cryptocurrency exchange
Okay, time to go and search for such platforms. There are many, many of them. If you’re looking for a top 10 “ranking” of the best, just type it in your browser. You’ll see how wide the topic is! You can find tons of reports and reviews which will sooner or later point to a bunch of the same platforms. To find your personal answer to the question “which one is the best” you need to support the case with additional questions like:
Do I want to be anonymous?
Do I want to use my cash?
Do I want to use my local currency?
Do I want to trade cryptos for fiat?
How much do I care about security?
How much do I care about the speed of transactions?
How much do I want to exchange?
Let’s start the dialogue! Type in the comments below the exchange platform of your choice and why you are using it. Let’s face it – personal experience is a more reliable source of knowledge than reviews pumped with marketing & “expert opinions”.
Behind the scenes – making the best cryptocurrency exchange!
We deal with blockchain every day, and we fully understand the differences between exchange platforms and the mechanisms hiding in them. However, we also understand the differences between users and their expectations. What we want to achieve is to find a way in which we can help those platforms and systems become better. Surely it’s our common interest, so let’s see what we can do as a community. How do you feel crypto exchanges can be made better? Do you have an idea? Let me know.