Your Step-by-Step Guide to Buying NFTs
There are a number of online platforms that support the sale of NFTs or were built specifically to sell them. This article will go through general guidelines on where to buy or sell NFTs and how to buy NFT tokens.
To support the NFT space are a range of marketplaces available that cater for different NFTs. You could for example be interested in artwork, sports memorabilia, collectables or a range of other things. Therefore, the type of NFTs you are after will determine the marketplaces you could use.
There are NFTs that are sold outside of the standard NFT marketplaces. For instance Christie’s sold the artwork Everydays by Beeple. It is the most expensive NFT that has been sold to date for $69.3 million. Selling their first NFT was quite the raving success for Christie’s so the auction house will likely be selling more NFTs in future.
There will be more companies or auction houses like Christie’s getting involved in the space. It is really the same business as it is still auctioning items, just expanding the range to include digital assets in the form of non-fungible tokens. However, there are a number of platforms that have been built catering solely for the sale of NFTs.
How to Buy NFT Tokens
To purchase or sell NFT tokens you will need a crypto wallet. Most NFT’s are placed on the Ethereum platform so most likely you will need an Ether wallet. However there are other NFT blockchains. Some of them have been built leveraging the Ethereum platform. Hence you may need to use another cryptocurrency instead.
Each platform is different so you will need to check out what you will need beforehand. Before you do anything you have to figure out the platform that is most suitable for you to sign up to.
Selecting Where to Buy and Sell NFT Tokens
The NFT space has been developing for a few years, so there aren’t a lot of companies out there. Still, however it is really quite surprising at how many platforms already exist. Here are a list of platforms and what they specialise in:
The Most Well Known
Crypto.com NFT platform
For art, celebrities and sport collectables. The platform has invited and attracted top creators like Aston Martin, Snoop Dogg and Boss Logic.
NBA Top Shot
For collectables and trading cards
NBA Top Shot has spent more than $230 million buying and trading digital collectibles of NBA highlights as has been featured on CNBC.
For art, collectibles, domains, trading cards, sports, utility, virtual worlds.
One of the first and largest NFT platforms
Other NFT Marketplaces
- Atomic Hub – Collectables, trading cards
- BakerySwap – Art
- Blockparty marketplace – Art, brands, music
- Foundation – Art
- GhostMarket – Art
- Known Origin – Art
- NFT showroom – Art
- Nifty Gateway – Art
- Rarible – Art, collectables, sports, trading cards
- Treasureland – Collectibles, utility, trading cards
- Venly (previously known as Arkane Market) – Game collectables
- VIV3 – Collectibles, trading cards
Once you selected your marketplace it is now time to move to the next step.
Next Step – Buy NFT Tokens
Here we will cover OpenSea since it is one of the largest and has a one of the most vast selection of NFT categories.
1. Buy Ether
OpenSea only allows you to purchase NFTs with crypto. Mostly you can purchase using Ether. However there are other NFTs that require other types of crypto for purchasing. If you do not have cryptocurrency and need to buy you can have a look at the exchanges page or the trading platforms page.
Trading platforms will have better rates, but they can be more complex to use. So if you want something straight forward the best thing to do is to use Coinmama. Coinmama will not hold crypto for you, so you will need to have a wallet. You can use MetaMask which OpenSea will suggest.
However, if you are going to buy a large amount of crypto that you will not use all at once we suggest using a hardware wallet. A lot of hacks happen on a regular basis targeting exchanges and different crypto related platforms. Therefore it is best to get additional security of a hardware wallet like Ledger or Trezor. You can shift crypto onto your MetaMask wallet as needed.
2. Link Your Wallet
Generally speaking most online platforms outside the NFT world work by first asking you to sign up. On OpenSea you will need to link your wallet first as it identifies you using your wallet. On the home page click the ‘Create’ button.
You will then be taken to this page
You will need to link your Ethereum wallet with another wallet. This is because OpenSea does not hold your crypto and does not store NFTs.
The most popular wallet is MetaMask which is why it is the default option on the screen. It is a browser extension with great flexibility. You do not necessarily have to use MetaMask, you can use any other options available in the “Use a different wallet” list. MetaMask is supported by Brave, Google Chrome and Firefox browsers.
Metamask is a wallet that stores Ether and processes transactions on the blockchain. It allows you to swap any token on the Ethereum network as you need.
Follow the prompts to sign up onto MetaMask. Once you are done you can head to the top right profile icon and edit your profile.
3. Search For NFT Tokens
Click ‘Marketplace’ in the header menu. You will see there a lot of NFT tokens listed and available to buy. Currently there are over 15 million tokens so it helps to know what you are interested in buying. You can use the search bar or you can sort the items using the filters provided. It all looks very much like a standard layout you would get from an online clothing store or anything else, but for NFTs instead.
Note that although you can view prices in USD you cannot purchase in USD. This is only meant to be a handy conversion so that you know the exact amount you are spending in the non-crypto equivalent.
One thing you should do is hover over the left side of the screen and scroll down to the bottom where you will find the list of tokens. This filters the NFTs on the right by what crypto it will take to buy them. Most NFTs listed will ask for ETH as payment.
Filter down the options until you have chosen an NFT you would like to buy and go ahead and purchase it.
When you click to purchase an NFT you will need to pay for the NFT and pay a gas fee. A gas fee is a payment that goes to the miners that maintain the Ethereum network. It is mainly a reflection of the computing power it takes to process the transaction.
Gas fees can be high, lately they are over $100. The Ethereum network is currently trying to bring down the gas fees. Especially because if you only want to buy something that costs less than $100 it will be quite a lot just to process the transaction.
You can however select to process the purchase on a slow, normal or fast speed which will alter the price of the gas fee. By selecting slow the transaction will take a few hours, but the gas fee will be lower.
Be Careful What You Buy
Like with everything you have to exercise caution when on the internet. Not everyone is genuine and you have to be aware of scams. Artists are noticing that their works are popping up on sale on NFT platforms.
Artworks are not being placed online by themselves, but someone else is minting the artworks. These scammers manage to get through the entire verification process on the NFT marketplaces impersonating artists. Artist Derek Laufman is one such artist that got caught up in this sort of mess.
He did flag the issue on Twitter and Rarible the NFT marketplace that had ‘his work’ took down the scammers profile. Unfortunately, someone on the platform had already bought an artwork.
The best thing to do is to be cautious. As much as a platform tries to ensure artists and artworks are genuine there are those that slip through the cracks. The best thing to do is to research beforehand to verify if the artwork and artist are authentic.