The last year was a really good year for cryptocurrencies. A huge growth was seen in the crypto market and people’s interest grew more and more about buying and investing in cryptocurrencies.

Particularly, people were much more interested in knowing about Bitcoin, but as they went further they understood the concept of spin-off coins. The questions that raised most were:

  1. How to buy cryptocurrencies?
  2. Where to trade cryptocurrencies?

In this post, we will answer these two questions prominently so as to help you all out to ease out buying and selling of cryptocurrencies.

What is a Cryptocurrency Exchange?

A cryptocurrency exchange is a market place to buy, sell and trade cryptocurrencies.  The best analogy to understand in the terms of the real world is a Stock Exchange.

The main aim of any exchange is to provide an opportunity for anyone to invest in market keeping it ordered and fair.

The major earning of an exchange comes from the small token of the fee charged for making the transactions that users make on their respective platforms.

In the past few years, with a high rise of interest in crypto coins a lot of cryptocurrency exchanges have come up and they are continuing to grow.

Here, we will look at some of the crypto exchanges that can be considered as the best as of the year 2018.

The Features Of A Good Cryptocurrency Exchange

A lot of factors considered together can make a crypto exchange a best one but it may depend from person to person.

The two of the most import factor that tends a user towards a crypto exchange are security and reputation. Also, if an exchange is not secure it will really be very difficult for them to gain a good reputation.

The UI is also really important as if something doesn’t look good at the first sight, no one is going to explore it further. Thus, a good UI can make all the difference.

Other considerable factors are the available altcoins, the order types, maker/taker transaction fees, and payment options.

Among the traders, margin trading is also considered a very important factor. Although, as I said earlier the priorities differ from person to person.

The most generic choice for an investor is the one easily accessible and has a high reputation. On the other hand, the traders ought to go for the ones that can give then all the features in hand.

Now, let us go through a set of the top exchanges of 2018 and identify the pro and cons of each one.

  1. CoinBase/GDAX

Coinbase exchange cryptocointekhttps://www.coinbase.com / https://www.gdax.com

Fiat support: Yes

Altcoin support: None

Order types: Market, limit, stop limit

Transaction fees: No maker fees, moderate taker fees

Coinbase is one of the best known and most reputable crypto exchange as it supports 32 countries starting from North America to most of Europe, the UK and, Australia. In Asia, only Singapore is supported.

It is best for the entry-level investors. The available coins are only a few of the big players in the market such as Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and Litecoin.

After the banks have given the authorization the payments can be made without any hassle.

This is a bit different from traditional exchanges, where you must deposit fiat money in your exchange account before placing a buy order.

On the other hand, GDAX is an extension of the Coinbase and offers a real-time marketplace to trade in the same four coins as of the Coinbase.

But being of the traditional nature, the investors can swap their Bitcoin for Ethereum and vice-versa. They don’t charge any fee for moving the funds from Coinbase to GDAX.

Pro: Great for the beginners as they provide rather a simple platform for trading.

Con: They don’t have much of the tools to analyze the markets at a very intricate rate.

Join Coinbase

  1. Binanace

Binance exchange cyptocointekhttps://www.binance.com

Fiat support: No

Altcoin support: Great

Order types: Market, limit, stop limit

Transaction fees: 0.1% regardless of maker or taker

Binance is one of the most popular choices for the traders all around the globe. It is based in Honk Kong and when China banned cryptocurrency exchanges there was no problem in accessing Bianance as it was registered outside China.

It is a bit unique in that it was partially funded by its own ICO (BNB).

This has helped Binance to keep a very low transaction fee of 0.1%.

Another very unique feature of Binance is its incubator. It works with an aim to help pre-ICO blockchain start-ups to achieve their golds.

As they don’t support Fiat coins, one will have to buy Bitcoins, etc.

But as a wide range of altcoins is available with trading pairs for the Binance Coin, Bitcoin, Ethereum and Tether, the trading becomes really a bliss.

The exchange’s UI is split into two Beginner and Advanced, but equally clean UIs.

Those just getting started will find the Basic view to be simple enough, while the Advanced view provides some tools for more experienced uses to do some basic technical analysis.

Also the platform offers mobile application for Android and IOS.

Pro: A broad selection of altcoins with low transaction fees.

Con: It can keep an eye on Chinese crypto regulations.

Join Binance

  1. Bitfinex

Bitfenix best exchange cryptocointekhttps://www.bitfinex.com

Fiat support: Yes

Altcoin support: Moderate

Order types: Market, limit, stop limit, trailing stop AND margin trading

Transaction fees: Moderate

It can be considered as one of the most professional exchanges out there right now.

So professional in fact, that the time of writing, they have temporarily disabled the creation of new accounts so as to support existing accounts instead of “new, small accounts.”

This exchange takes security very seriously, especially after the hack of 2016. It has really recovered well after that.

It has a rich feature platform. The order types are really good including a trailing stop loss, fiat support and margin trading.

Experienced traders are seemed to be satisfied by Bitfinex.

Another great and unique feature of Bitfinex is a customizable interface and in-browser notifications.

Bitfinex also has developed a special app for Android and IOS devices for the convenience of its customers.

The minimum trade opration commission is 0.1%

Pro: Top rated features for serious traders.

Cons: Limited altcoin collection.

Join Bitfinex

  1. Bittrex

Bittrex best exchange cryptocointekhttps://bittrex.com

Fiat support: No

Altcoin support: Great

Order types: Market, limit, stop limit

Transaction fees: High

It is one of the crypto exchanges that have a usage all around the world.

It is based on the US and supports a real lot of altcoins. At the current position, it supports over 190 altcoins and it is ever growing.

A downside to using Bittrex is the high rate of transaction fees (at present 0.25% on all trades).

The UI is considered really good and also provide a significantly high number of technical analysis tools.

Pro: A large set of altcoins available.

Con: A high transaction fee.

Join Bittrex

  1. Poloniex

Poloniex best exchange cryptocointekhttps://poloniex.com

Fiat support: No

Altcoin support: Good

Order types: Limit, stop limit AND margin trading

Transaction fees: Moderate

If you are looking for decent variants of altcoins, this is the best exchange for you.

It makes Poloniex one of the most adored exchange worldwide. It allows trading on a margin thus, adding a huge advantage to the trading.

But only a few coins are available for the margin trading which is one of the really rare features to find in the exchanges these days.

The UI is really simple but doesn’t provide any advanced technical analysis tools. On the other hand, the UI is really informative.

Pro: Provides margin trading.

Con: A handful range of altcoins available.

Join Poloniex

  1. Kraken

Kraken best exchange cryptocointekhttps://www.kraken.com

Fiat support: Yes

Altcoin support: Moderate

Order types: Market, limit AND margin trading

Transaction fees: Moderate

It is a crypto exchange that sees the highest volume among the European traders. It is based in San Francisco.

Kraken can be considered as one of the most fluid crypto exchange with few best perks such as fiat support, a few altcoins, and margin trading.

Fiat currencies EUR, USD, JPY and CAD can be utilized after a bank wire deposit. The major disadvantage of the UI is the navigability.

Pro: Great set of features for trading.

Con: The UI is rather very complicated to navigate.

Join Kraken

  1. Bithumb

Bithumb best exchange cryptocointekhttps://www.bithumb.com

Fiat support: Yes (KRW only)

Altcoin support: Low

Order types: Market, limit

Transaction fees: Low

 Bithumb has a place between the traders which deals in high volume despite being an exchange exclusive to Korea.

It has fiat support as well as deals in dozens of biggest coins making it one of the few places where you can trade straight between your base fiat currency and coins like Ripple and Monero.

The UI of Bithumb is really very simple and easy to use but on the other hand, it is really effective as well.

Unlike most other exchanges, you’ll see no charts to show price history, making it unappealing for those looking to do any amount of day trading.

Pro: It is an easy place to deal in cryptocurrencies.

Con: Without an access to Korean Won, there would be no trade.

Join Bithumb

  1. ShapeShift

Shapeshift best exchange cryptocointekhttps://shapeshift.io

Fiat support: No

Altcoin support: Great

Order types: Market

Transaction fees: Low

 It is one of the unique exchanges out in the market. It fulfils the goal of cryptocurrencies by decentralizing the trade processes.

Thus, no accounts are needed in order to swap coins. Although it has no fiat support, a low barrier to entry to a really large selection of altcoins, it has become a really popular exchange among traders.

Another promising development from the Shapeshift team, Prism, currently sits in closed beta and has attracted a lot of interest among crypto investors.

Pro: The Decentralized process of trading.

Con: Traditional investors can only invest.

Join Shapeshift

  1. Kucoin

Kucoin best exchange cryptocointekhttps://www.kucoin.com

Fiat support: No

Altcoin support: Great

Order types: Market, limit, stop limit

Transaction fees: Low

 Although it is a Chinese exchange, it deals with BTC, ETH, NEO, USDT and KCS. It also supports a large variety of altcoins which includes the recent ICOs and emerging cryptocurrencies.

At present they support over 50 coins. The trading fee is really low with 0.1% but withdraw fees vary from coins to coin.

The UI is rather very good, the order book is active, and trading section integrates with TradingView.

Pro: Access to rare coins with low fees.

Con: The selection of coins is a good to buy is still fairly low.

Join Kucoin

  1. Cobinhood

Cobinhood best exchange cryptocointekhttps://cobinhood.com

Fiat support: Yes

Altcoin support: None

Order types: Market, limit AND

Transaction fees: None

 It is a very new exchange in the market but it has been able to get a lot of buzz in the crypto world.

The best part is it has got zero transaction fees. The UI is simple and very similar to that of the GDAX.

Cobinhood provides an ICO underwriting service. This means that once a participating coin’s ICO ends, the coins can be immediately listed on Cobinhood.

This is what provides Cobinhood with the funds so as not to charge any fee on transactions.

Although a child in the crypto world, it seems really promising and will really prosper down the road.

Pro: No Transaction fees.

Con: Not an established platform.

Join Coinhood

  1. CEX.io

CEX.io best exchange cryptocointekhttps://cex.io

Fiat support: Yes

Altcoin support: Yes

Order types: Market, limit, stop limit

Transaction fees: moderate taker, lower maker

 CEX.io is based out of London. It allows an access to 99% of countries globally along with instant Bitcoin buying and selling through a simple bundle interface.

CEX.IO is the first cloud mining provider and has become a multi-functional cryptocurrency exchange, offering cross-platform trading through the https://cex.io, mobile app, WebSocket and REST API.

CEX.IO has worldwide coverage, multiple payment options, and a 24⁄7 support.

Pro: No limits on purchasing Bitcoins.

Con: Credit card processing fee is 3.9% plus $0.25 per purchase.

Join CEX.io

 

BEST IN CLASS

After a brief analysis of various cryptocurrency exchanges, if you are not sure even not where do you want to invest and buy, here is a best in class selection on various factors.

  1. Best UI

Poloniex is the best-in-class with respect to UI. It provides a wide range of analytics tools for traders who tend to use services such as Coinigy or TradingView.

Poloniex offers little in that department, but it’s such a solid UI with intuitive navigation and a good set of order types.

In particular, I really love being able to scroll through all coins and their price and volume while viewing the chart of one coin

  1. Best Availability

Coinbase/ GDAX is the best-in-class when it comes to availability. There are reports of account creation taking upwards of a month on some exchanges.

Coinbase’s high reputation for account creation, security, etc. make it the go-to platform for investors and traders all around the world.

  1. Best Altcoin Selection

Binance is the best-in-class when it comes to the selection of altcoins. Binance offers one of the widest altcoin selection in the market.

It’s great UI and low transaction fees make it a great choice for traders who need access to all those coins.

 

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