These days everyone knows about crypto, or at least they’ve seen Bitcoin popping up in news, on various portals and mentioned among colleagues. This peaks your interest and you can’t be the only one not to know about this crypto phenomenon. You do some digging around to find out what it is and grasp the basic concept of cryptocurrencies to find out that there is a whole world of altcoins out there. Each represents something, they have various possible usages and some of them look really interesting. In the end, you decide to get your feet wet in this innovative financial world that is strange and intimidating at first. If you are unsure how to do that, you’ve come to the right place. This article will walk you through all the required steps and explain how to buy altcoins. We promise that it’s not too hard, so stick with us and you will be ready to buy in no time.
Almost all altcoins have Bitcoin (BTC) trading pairs. There are others like Ethereum (ETH), Tether (USDT), NEO etc. depending on the specific exchange. ETH pairs are mostly used for fresh out of crowdsale ICO’s which are trading on decentralised exchanges (DEX). Don’t worry if you don’t know what all this crypto jargon means, you can find glossary in a separate article. Familiarise yourself with it before you continue reading.
Common misconception to note is that you don’t need to buy whole Bitcoin, you can buy any amount you want, no matter how small. Bitcoin is divisible down to 8 decimals. So you could buy only 0.00000001 BTC if exchanges allowed such small transactions.
But in order to buy your first altcoin of choice you first need to buy some Bitcoin.
Ready to buy?
The most popular crypto exchange with user friendly UI is Coinbase, it is trustworthy and has a good track record so far. If you come from US, your crypto wallets are insured up to $250,000 through FDIC insurance.
First things first, signup on Coinbase through our link.
You will get $10 for free after you purchase $100 or more worth of Bitcoin.
After signup you need to fund your account with fiat ($, €, etc.), there are two options available. You can make a deposit through bank account (SEPA transfer) which has lower fees but is also slower since you need to wait up to few days (usually 1-2 working days) for transfer to settle. The other option is buying with credit/debit cards, this method is much faster, you can buy Bitcoin immediately but it has higher spending limits and higher transactions fees. You can read more information about fees here.
On the next step you just select currency you want to buy – Bitcoin in this case – enter the amount and click on buy.
Congratulations! You just bought your first piece of Bitcoin and are ready to start exploring magical chaos of altcoin world.
Choosing your first altcoin
Since you are reading this article a friend of yours already shilled you an altcoin or you stumbled upon a fancy AD and you already know which altcoin you want to buy. But if not or if you are not yet sure, make sure to check out the most comprehensible list of altcoins which can be found on CMC.
Take a look around, go through top 20 coins, explore and see why are those coins on the top of iceberg. Visit their websites, read their whitepapers, check how their communities breathe, basically do your own research and pick your first altcoin. Moreover, we might do an overview of the most popular altcoins soon so keep checking this space.
There are many altcoin exchanges in existence today and each has its own quirks and nuances and there isn’t a single exchange which has listed all altcoins since there is way too many of them. You might need to choose exchange based on which altcoin you want to buy. We will use Binance for needs of this article since it offers the widest selection of the most popular altcoins. Binance is regarded as the best altcoin exchange by many. It has nice design, mobile apps for both android and iOS (first of its kind), reasonable fees, trustworthy founders, etc. Basically everything you need for your first altcoin purchase. Signup on Binance through our link.
In order to buy any altcoin on Binance, you need to transfer your Bitcoin from Coinbase. You can’t buy Bitcoin with fiat on Binance directly since Binance is strictly cryptoassets exchange.
On the top right you have four trading pairs to choose from and many altcoins listed beneath each trading pair. Choose BTC trading pairs for now. Select an altcoin you like, enter amount you wish to buy and hit the big green button. Order will get executed immediately since you selected market order like shown on screenshot. There are other types of orders but that is out of scope of this article.
And that’s it, you just bought your first altcoin, welcome to the world of HODL. 🙂
If for any reason you want to sell that altcoin for Bitcoin, just reverse the process and hit the big sell button.
Thanks for reading and let us know if you need any additional information,
Ana & Petar