How to Buy Crypto - Beginners Guide to Buying Cryptocurrencies
So you are interested in buying some cryptocurrencies? Maybe Bitcoin? Or another cryptocurrency like Ethereum, Ripple or perhaps new altcoins like Cardano, VeChain or Tezos?
Whichever cryptocurrency that you are looking to buy, this is the perfect guide for you. We will in this guide walk you through the steps of buying a cryptocurrency. And make what might seem a bit complex and overwhelming, super easy for you.
We have been in your situation. Overwhelmed by how difficult it seemed at first. So we understand. Follow this guide on how to buy cryptocurrencies and you will get started investing in no time.
How to buy crypto
There are a few key areas to consider when looking into buying cryptocurrencies. They are the following:
- Which cryptocurrency do you want to buy?
- How would you prefer to buy the crypto? With cash, bank transfer, credit card or debit card, or PayPal, Skrill or another online payment service?
- How much do you want to buy for?
- Where do you want to keep your cryptocurrencies?
Which cryptocurrency do you want to buy?
The first step is to figure which of all the cryptocurrencies you are interested in buying? Did you get a tip from someone you knew? Or did you read about Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency somewhere?
There are more than 2000+ cryptocurrencies available for you to purchase online according to Coinmarketcap.com. That’s a huge amount. And I doubt you want to buy that many. And we wouldn’t recommend you to buy more than a few if perhaps just one to start off with.
So the first decision you need to make is which crypto should you invest in? We would like to inform you in the world of cryptocurrencies you might run into the name of altcoins. Which are cryptocurrencies, or ‘coins’ that are not Bitcoin basically? Or Bitcoin and Ethereum today perhaps (according to some).
And usually, people consider some of the coins that have been around for a longer time to be less of ‘alt’ and more established. And we would recommend that if you want to buy some crypto, that you follow this approach to start off with.
First, it might be a smart idea to start with buying the more established major cryptocurrencies. Such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dash, etc.
And when you get more experienced in how it all works you can try to see if there is another altcoin that you want to buy. This way you can start off with the more ‘secure’ cryptocurrencies.
Decide which cryptocurrency that you want to buy. Recommended to start with the more established cryptos before you move on to the slightly riskier altcoins.
How would you prefer to buy the crypto?
Today there are more options available for new crypto investors when it comes to payment services. We can easily buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with our credit cards or using an online payment service such as PayPal, Skrill or Neteller. Or via a traditional bank transfer.
Some of the options are of course easier than others. Buying crypto with a card is, of course, one of those. But that can sometimes come with slightly higher fees. Something for you to be aware of. But that might be fine if you are just starting off and buying for a smaller sum.
But depending on what you can and want to buy crypto with you have different options available for you. I.e. different cryptocurrency exchanges or cryptocurrency brokers online. Like websites that enable the purchase of cryptos for people like you and me.
The usual options for buying cryptocurrencies online are:
- With a bank transfer (wire transfer)
- With a card, credit card or debit card (VISA or Mastercard)
- With an online payment service (PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, Sofort, Giropay, iDeal, etc)
- With cash
So depending on the option that you want and can use there are different cryptocurrency exchanges and brokers that you can use. Not every site has the same options. Don’t worry we will leave some recommendations below for which exchange or broker you can use for all of those options for you in the Where to Buy Crypto section.
How much do you want to buy for?
Another important factor is to consider is how much do you want to buy crypto for? What can you afford?
This might affect which sites to use. But first and foremost it is useful for you to think about before investing in cryptocurrencies.
You need to be aware of that all investments comes with a risk. A risk that they might lose in value instead of increase. That is true for stocks, funds, commodities (gold, silver, oil, etc) but especially for cryptocurrencies. Cryptos comes with a greater risk, but potentially higher rewards also.
But nothing is a sure thing in investments. So speak to a financial advisor before investing to make sure you understand what you are doing. Depending on where you live there are different websites you can use to find a financial advisor if you don’t already know one.
Useful links to find financial advisors:
Where do you want to keep your cryptocurrencies?
Ok, let's say you bought your first cryptocurrencies. First congratulations. You took the first step. The second step you need to know about is deciding where to store your cryptocurrencies.
In the world of cryptocurrencies, there are things known as cryptocurrency wallets. These are your own wallets where you store cryptocurrencies. And a very common thing in the crypto community is that you store your own cryptos.
Every cryptocurrency needs to be stored in a crypto wallet. And there are many different types of cryptocurrency wallets you can use.
First, to make it very easy for you, we can differentiate it between your own personal (non-hosted) wallet and a ‘hosted’ wallet. Where the hosted wallet can be at an online cryptocurrency exchange wallet), or any third party provider (learn more about hosted wallets here).
For hosted wallets
Maybe you bought some cryptocurrencies at Coinbase or Binance (two very popular cryptocurrency exchanges). And when you create an account with them they also create your own wallet at their sites. This wallet is your own wallet but it is still hosted at a 3rd party provider. So technically it is the exchange’s wallet.
With hosted wallets, there are risks that if this site or exchange gets hacked then maybe your cryptocurrencies are at a risk. And unfortunately hacks to cryptocurrency exchanges are very common. Also with a hosted wallet, your private keys to your wallet are stored on the hosted wallets site.
That is why many experienced cryptocurrency investors always recommend to newcomers that they should store their cryptocurrencies in their own wallets.
It is a few more steps of work but it means that you can yourself secure your cryptocurrencies. And keep them protected from hacks.
For non-hosted or personal wallets
So the more secure and recommended option than just leaving your cryptocurrencies at an exchange is to store them in your own non-hosted wallet.
With a non-hosted wallet, you secure your own private keys. Which are basically the keys to access your wallet.
And here again, you have a few different options available for where you can store your cryptocurrencies. These are your most common options for your own personal crypto-wallet:
- A hardware wallet - a physical device. This is the most secure option for storing cryptocurrencies. These are famous for being nearly impossible to hack.
- A mobile app - a convenient option but there could be risks of hacks to the app. And potentially you could lose your phone. So you need to secure your backups to the wallet somewhere safe too.
- A non-hosted online web wallet - These are basically just online sites that lets you either/both create a crypto wallet and also interact with a crypto wallet. Meaning send cryptos from it and check your balance. A couple of options are Blockchain.com, MyEtherWallet, and My Crypto.. These are all free of charge to create your own crypto wallet
So with hosted wallets comes convenience perhaps but lesser security. And using your own wallet isn’t that much work. Unless you plan on moving your cryptocurrencies daily. Or trade with them.
Where to Buy Crypto
Now you got a very good understanding of the basics for buying and storing your cryptocurrencies, you can also confidently move on to the most important part. Buying your first cryptocurrencies.
Like we said above depending on what payment method you want to use, how much you want to buy for, but also where you live in the world affects what options you have.
So when it comes to buying cryptocurrencies these are the most common options that you have available.
- Buy them at a cryptocurrency exchange - like Binance, Kraken, Bittrex or Coinbase for example
- Buy them at a cryptocurrency broker - Changelly, Bitpanda, and Coinmama for example
What’s the difference between a cryptocurrency exchange and a crypto broker?
A cryptocurrency exchange is almost like a full crypto bank. Here you can both deposit money via a bank transfer. You can store your cryptocurrencies here and you can, of course, buy and sell cryptos.
Whereas a crypto broker is just a website that facilitates the trade, so here you can usually only buy cryptocurrencies. Although some brokers also make it possible for you to sell cryptocurrencies at their website too.
We recommend either one for you as a beginner. What is important to be aware of is that crypto brokers usually don’t have any crypto wallets for you to store your cryptos at. So you need to have a cryptocurrency wallet before you buy cryptos at a broker site.
Here below we will recommend some of the easier crypto exchange and crypto broker options for you. And we have considered the security of the platforms, what payment options they have available (card payments, bank transfers, PayPal, etc) and the reputation of them.
Recommended cryptocurrency exchanges to buy crypto at
Here are three cryptocurrency exchanges that we ourselves use for buying and selling cryptocurrencies, but most importantly we know are tailored for beginners.
What is great with cryptocurrency exchanges is that if you learn how to use one you will know how to use them all. And if you are planning to stay around in crypto then you should learn how to use a crypto exchange.
- Coinbase and Coinbase Pro
Creating your own account with cryptocurrency exchanges is free. So no need to worry about any costs for setting up your own account.
Coinbase and Coinbase Pro
This is the same company that has two different exchanges. And we wanted to mention both of them so that you realise that there is another (Coinbase Pro) that you might want to use later on when you get more experienced. But here we will focus on Coinbase.
This is an American exchange that has been around since about 2012. And it is today one of the largest and most used cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. And it has grown to become so popular due to how easy it is use.
- Wide range of payment options available. For example you can buy crypto with a credit card or debit card (VISA or Mastercard). Or you can make a bank transfer to Coinbase. Or even buy crypto with PayPal at their site.
- You can sell cryptocurrencies here for Fiat currencies, as in the USD, EUR, GBP, etc. Which makes it easy for you to later on might want to sell or cash out your cryptos (learn more here).
- They also have a mobile app for both iOS and Android (learn more here).
To get started with Coinbase:
- Head over to www.coinbase.com and click on ‘Get started’ to create your own account
- Provide them with your personal details and email address, you will also use your phone for added security
- When logged in you can buy crypto at Coinbase with a card, bank transfer or PayPal
- Store your cryptos at Coinbase or at your own personal crypto wallet
Binance is one of the biggest and most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. They got one of the biggest selections of available cryptocurrencies that you can buy and sell on their platform. Here you can comfortably register and stay around for the long-term. Knowing that they will have most of the cryptocurrencies in the world available for you to buy and sell.
- You can also buy cryptocurrencies with a card here (credit card or debit card) but you can also do a bank transfer at their Binance Jersey exchange if you are based in Europe.
- Binance have one of the best trading volumes for most cryptocurrencies in the world. That means you can confidently use it to easily buy and sell cryptocurrencies
- Binance have great innovations like the SAFU fund. That shows they are working hard to create a better and safer cryptocurrency exchange
To get started with Binance:
- Head over to www.binance.com and click on ‘Register’ to create your own account
- Provide them with your information required and email and then it is recommended to set up 2F-Authentication (another security layer required for your account)
- Now you can buy cryptos with a card or with other cryptocurrencies.
- To buy crypto via a bank transfer we recommend you head over to www.binance.je to create an account there. And then you can transfer any cryptocurrencies to your other Binance account.
Kraken is another U.S based cryptocurrency exchange. And it proudly calls itself one of the oldest Bitcoin exchanges in the world. And they got started in 2011 so yes they are one of the oldest and today most recommended exchanges to buy not only Bitcoin but lots of other cryptocurrencies.
Kraken has grown to become such a popular figure for being easy to use, trusted and with a good range of payment methods and available cryptocurrencies for buying and selling. So we can confidently recommend Kraken to you.
- Wide range of payment methods, bank transfer (SWIFT, ACH, SEPA, etc) for both depositing funds but also withdrawing funds
- Big range of available cryptocurrencies for trading
- Easy site to use, with good customer support
To get started with Kraken:
- Head over to www.kraken.com and click on ‘Get started’ to sign up for a new account with Kraken
- Go through the registration steps to complete the sign-up process
- Deposit funds via your bank or buy cryptocurrencies with other cryptocurrencies at Kraken (learn more about deposit methods here).
Recommended cryptocurrency brokers to buy crypto at
The other option that you have for buying cryptocurrencies besides using a crypto exchange is to use a crypto broker.
As we previously mentioned when you use a cryptocurrency broker you usually need to have your own wallet before the purchase. Sometimes these crypto brokers can help you create a new wallet directly when buying at their sites.
But with a crypto broker, you buy crypto with a credit card or debit card directly at their sites. And what is great with this is how easy it is and the nearly instant transaction.
The recommended crypto brokers are:
Bitpanda is a crypto broker with more than 30+ digital assets that you can buy on their platform. They also have a mobile phone app for both iOS and Android and their web version.
Now Bitpanda is a bit unique as it is a broker but with storage option. And dedicated apps also. Which makes it a highly interesting option for this broker list. It also lists a lot of digital assets, more than most. It is however only available for Europeans.
- Buy instantly one of the biggest selections of cryptos amongst all brokers at Bitpanda. Bitcoin, Ether, Ripple, IOTA, Litecoin, OMG, Cardano, NEO and many more
- Buy with a range of payment options. From bank transfer (Fiat currencies available directly are: EUR, CHF, GBP or USD), VISA, and Mastercard, Skrill, Sofort, Neteller and more
- Storage for your cryptos with a wallet option at their site. Which is also stored securely in offline wallets making it harder for hackers to steal
How to get started with Bitpanda
- Head over to www.bitpanda.com and click on ‘Get started’ to create your own account
- Provide them with your details and email address
- Verify your account and then deposit money into your Bitpanda account to buy cryptos
Another popular option for the easy-buying of cryptocurrencies is Changelly. Here you can as the name suggests change one cryptocurrency for another. But also buy cryptocurrencies instantly at their site.
You can now also sell cryptocurrencies via a SEPA transaction at their site (only for EU customers). For buying cryptos at Changelly you can use your VISA or Mastercard. As well as some prepaid and virtual cards. Check their site to find out more.
They also have a fairly big selection of cryptos and constantly adding more exciting coins.
- Buy cryptos instantly with your credit card or debit card. For example Bitcoin, Ether, Cardano, BAT, BNB, ATOM and many more
- Sell cryptos and cash out directly via their site for EU customers via a SEPA (bank transfer)
- Change cryptos for other cryptos instantly using their site. Which is a neat little feature?
How to get started with Changelly
- Go to www.changelly.com and click on ‘Buy crypto’ button
- Select the cryptocurrency that you want to buy and the fiat currency (USD, EUR, GBP, etc) and the amount that you want to buy for
- Provide them with your card details and personal details
- Enter the wallet address that you want to send your cryptos to (you need a crypto wallet before buying. Use blockchain.com or MyEtherWallet for example to create one)
- Complete the purchase
Coinmama is an established crypto broker that is used by more than 1,8 million users around the world. And they have been around since 2013. With Coinmama you can buy cryptos instantly using your card or via a bank transfer.
Coinmama has cryptos like Bitcoin, Ripple, Ether, Litecoin, Cardano and few others amongst their selection
- Instant transactions for the most popular cryptocurrencies.
- High spending limits, depending on your verification level (1-3) you can have daily spending limits from $5,000 to $7,500 and monthly of $12,000 USD to $30,000 and $100,000
- Helpful articles on how cryptocurrencies work, how to buy them and much more over at https://www.coinmama.com/blog/crypto-education/
How to get started with Coinmama
- Go to www.coinmama.com and click on ‘Sign up’ to create your own Coinmama account.
- Enter your email, name, and country of residence.
- Complete the sign-up process by verifying your email address
- When logged in you can either deposit funds from your bank or buy cryptos instantly using a bank card, either credit card or debit card. As long as it is a VISA or Mastercard.
Final tips for buying cryptos
Before we conclude this article on how to buy cryptos we wanted to provide you with some final tips and recommendations. To help make your first crypto purchases become as easy as possible and without any possible barriers to face.
- Remember that you don’t have to buy whole coins/cryptocurrencies. You don’t have to buy 1 whole Bitcoin, 1 whole Ether or 1 whole NEO. You can buy cryptos in fractions
- We urge you to consider buying a crypto hardware wallet as soon as you can. You will thank yourself for securing your cryptos when you read about new hacks happening
- Don’t over-invest in cryptos. Avoid the FOMO and invest only in crypto what you are willing to lose. And can afford to lose. With that we mean you should never invest your rent money in crypto. Or another investment for that matter
Use our site Go CryptoMarket to compare crypto prices
We also wanted to recommend that you can use our site to compare prices for your favourite cryptocurrencies at the connected exchanges and brokers on our site.
By using this feature you can check so that you will always get the best price possible, check out how this works for Bitcoin here.
Other features that we have on our site are:
- Price alert - set alerts for certain prices. So you are the first to know when for example Bitcoin drops in price
- Compare cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency exchanges against each other. Which has the best reviews? The best features? Check it out here
- Read and leave reviews for both cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency exchanges. So that you can trust that you are using a safe exchange, or buying crypto with a lot of potential
- Exchange filter search - check which exchange is the best for you with our exchange filters. For example, if they have bank transfer options, card payments, fees, etc - check it out here
Now we hope that this guide covered everything you needed to know and then some for buying cryptos. We wanted to make it as complete as possible. So that you can always come back to it if you ever feel unsure again.
But this guide should cover everything you need to know for getting started buying cryptocurrencies.
Good luck! And let us know if there is anything you are still unsure about