As we all prepare to flip our calendars over to 2021, we begin to think of the changes and resolutions we’ll make for the New Year. Some will want to drop a few pounds while others will promise to be better with their money. A select few, however, will want to learn more about blockchain technology.
Part of learning about blockchain and cryptocurrency is learning about altcoins. And one of the key aspects of knowing about altcoins is where and how to buy them. So how does one go about getting their hands on some of those precious altcoins? It’s not as hard as you might think.
What are Altcoins?
Altcoin is another word for what many in the industry refer to as alternative cryptocurrencies. Basically, they’re any digital currency that’s not Bitcoin. However, these currencies do not have to operate on the blockchain. They simply need to exist in the industry as a cryptographic technology.
Some popular examples of altcoins you’ll find in the market include Neo, Ripple, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Stellar, Tether, and Litecoin. There are hundreds of projects available within the industry, so you should have no trouble finding one that appeals to you.
Buying Altcoins Directly
The most common way to get your hands on altcoins is through an exchange. I’ll get to that in a moment, but first let’s talk about another way to get altcoins: by directly purchasing them. There are a few ways you can go about doing this. Let’s take a closer look at each of these methods.
How to buy altcoins on Robinhood with USD
If you want to own altcoins, one of the easiest direct methods is to use Robinhood. The platform has both a web-based site and mobile applications, so you can get your altcoins anytime you want. Purchasing your favorite digital coins is pretty straightforward on Robinhood.
The process involves setting up your account and providing the necessary information. This includes some personal information like name, address, bank account, and social security number. Yes, this is very private information, but Robinhood requires this to comply with investment platform regulations.
Now that the hard part is done, just fund your account with some US dollars, find your preferred cryptocurrency on the Robinhood site, enter the amount you want, and hit that submit button. That’s it! You can track your investment through the website or via the mobile app.
One thing to keep in mind when using Robinhood is that the platform does not support coin withdrawal at this time. So if you purchase some Bitcoin Cash and want to transfer for it to a digital or hardware wallet, that’s not going to be an option.
P2P is short for peer-to-peer, which is exactly what these types of networks are. You’re trading directly with another user. The appeal is that you don’t have to mess with exchange regulations like KYC or AML. However, the drawback is that you don’t have a safety net in place if something goes wrong. You’re just out your money or crypto. Some of these platforms are trying to implement rules to provide security while remaining true to their intended goal of allowing completely anonymous transactions.
Two of the more popular P2P platforms are Paxful and HODL. On these exchanges, you load your account, then look for someone who is willing to part with the altcoin you want. Often the prices are higher than you’ll find on a typical crypto exchange, but you also aren’t likely to be charged deposit or withdrawal fees.
Additionally, if you’re looking to get your altcoins in a specific price range, it might take a while. Sellers want to get the most out of their investment, so you’ll need to be patient to get what you’re looking for. Overall though, P2P networks are a great way to get altcoins without the fuss of going through the personal identification process.
You’ve been able to purchase Bitcoin through ATMs for a while now, but the ability to get altcoins through one Is a fairly recent trend. While these machines don’t offer the long list of altcoins you’ll find on exchanges, you can still locate ATMs that let you purchase Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Dash.
Still, it’s a great way to get some altcoins. Just use your debit card or credit card, give the machine your digital wallet address, and wait for your funds to be transferred. If you prefer the anonymity that digital currencies offer but don’t want to deal with an exchange or a P2P platform, using an ATM is the way to go.
Buying Altcoins with Cryptocurrency Exchanges
When you’re ready to buy altcoins, you’ll need to select an exchange or platform that offers the altcoin you want. If there’s a specific coin on a specific exchange, you’ll need to determine that before you start buying. Here are a few of the more popular exchanges that offer a strong list of altcoins.
How to buy altcoins on Coinbase with USD
Coinbase is arguably the most recognizable cryptocurrency exchange in the world. It is a popular exchange that has more than 6 million users in over 30 different countries. The platform does well over 6 billion dollars in trades.
The exchange, which resides in San Francisco, CA, touts itself as the world’s largest Bitcoin broker. Coinbase is known for both high liquidity and high buying limits, so if you want to buy popular altcoins with your US dollars, it’s one of the best options out there. Additionally, it’s an intuitive and user-friendly platform.
However, the exchange has its drawbacks as well. For starters, it has some of the highest fees in the industry. While this may not be a big deal if you’re just starting out and only purchasing a small amount of altcoins, if you start trading or buying more, you’ll probably want to switch to one of the other exchanges on our list.
Plus, your altcoin options aren’t as numerous as they are with other platforms. You’ll have no trouble buying Ethereum, Litecoin, and Dash, but if you want to buy more nuanced or lesser-known altcoins, you’re better off using a different exchange.
How to buy altcoins on Kraken with USD
If you’re the type of person who likes to dive right into the deep end of the pool, Kraken might be the altcoin exchange for you. The exchange itself is known for its safety and security, making it one of the best places to buy crypto. However, unless you’re an experienced trader, you might be in for a challenge.
Even though Kraken isn’t as easy to grasp as other exchanges, you’ll have plenty of altcoins at your fingertips once you do. The trading platform is catered toward those who understand buying, selling, and trading crypto, so you’ll have to do your homework. Users get low fees on the platform, so it’s worth learning more about crypto trading.
The great thing about buying altcoins on Kraken is that it supports plenty of trading pairs with US dollars. ETH, LTC, USDT, BCH, and XRP are all altcoins you can purchase on the exchange directly with your US dollars. Or you can exchange your fiat currency for Bitcoin and then trade for your preferred altcoin that way.
Kraken boasts more than four million users and plenty of altcoins, so you’re sure to find what you want when you’re ready to sign up. Plus, since its launch in 2011, the platform has done nearly $150 billion in trades. With its high trading volume, high liquidity, and a long list of trading pairs, Kraken ranks among the market’s best altcoin platforms.
How to buy altcoins on Bittrex with USD
Third, on our list of exchanges to buy altcoins is Bittrex. Based in the United States, Bittrex is a safe and reputable exchange due to its compliance with all Securities and Exchange Commission requirements and regulations. The platform is among the largest in the world when it comes to BTC trading volume. So if you have some Bitcoin and want to trade it for altcoins, Bittrex might be right up your alley.
You’ll have to go through the site’s KYC process before you trade, and don’t forget to set up for two-factor authentication, so your account is secure. Bittrex also gives users who set up additional security features higher trading limits. The site doesn’t allow users to deposit fiat currencies, so be sure you have plenty of cryptocurrency on hand if you want to use this crypto exchange.
Unlike Kraken, Bittrex is a great exchange if you’re new to the crypto market. Users will experience plenty of features like monitoring altcoins, candlestick charts, and more when using this crypto platform to buy their favorite digital currencies.
How to buy altcoins on Binance with USD
This platform ranks as one of the top 10 crypto exchanges globally and offers users well over 100 altcoins to trade. If you prefer to use an exchange to get your altcoins, Binance is an excellent option. Since it supports millions of users from all over the world, you know you’re going to have plenty of liquidity, which means you’ll get your altcoin almost as soon as you click that “submit” button.
Like other exchanges, you do have to go through the identification verification process if you use Binance to purchase altcoins. There’s good and bad associated with KYC and AML. For some, it means their transactions are protected and secured. The exchange can determine who is trading and can take the appropriate measures if someone is misbehaving.
On the other hand, some people prefer to have their privacy, which is one of the driving benefits of cryptocurrencies. Either way, Binance is a solid choice if you want to use fiat currencies like US dollars, Euros, or Pounds to add to your altcoin collection.
How Can I Buy Altcoins?
Now that you have an idea of where you can get altcoins let’s talk about how you can buy altcoins. Follow along in our step-by-step guide below, so you’ll know exactly what you need to do to get some altcoins into your crypto wallet.
The first step in buying altcoins is deciding which altcoin to buy. Maybe you got a hot tip about the best cryptocurrency ever from a friend of yours, or maybe an interesting new project popped up on your news feed. Regardless of where you heard about the altcoin, you can do the most important thing before buying is learning as much as you can about it.
Once you’ve learned as much as you can, research some more. It can never hurt to be as thorough as possible. After all, it’s going to be your hard-earned money that’s going to be invested in the altcoin you’re buying. There are hundreds of altcoins on the market, and many fail within the first year or two. Take a moment and ask yourself some hard questions to ensure the project you’re investing in is legitimate and worth your while.
Fiat Money or crypto?
When it comes to buying altcoins, the reality is that there are many that you simply can’t buy with fiat currencies like US Dollars or Euro. As a result, you’ll have to buy Bitcoin, then swap it for the altcoin you want to own. That will require some research on your part in finding the right exchange, but we’ll get to that momentarily.
There’s also the option on some exchanges to use your credit card or initiate a bank transfer to purchase altcoins. If you’re comfortable with this method, it’s a quick and easy way to get into the market. For the sake of simplicity, you may also want to own two wallets. Once for your BTC and one for your altcoins.
Select an exchange
Now we get to the point where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. It’s time to choose the right exchange. This doesn’t have to be the same exchange you used to purchase your BTC, but it needs to support the altcoin you want to buy. Of course, if you want more than one, you’ll have to either find an exchange that supports all of them or use multiple exchanges.
Check out sites like CoinMarketCap to get an idea of what crypto exchanges have to offer. You can see what trading pairs are available, how much an exchange does in daily volume, along with hourly trades. Unless you’re already an experienced trader, your best bet is probably to avoid lesser-known exchanges for the time being.
There are a few reasons for doing so. First and foremost is security. More popular exchanges are reliable and safe. After all, who’s going to keep using an exchange if it gets hacked or doesn’t offer the necessary security for your digital assets? Second, you’ll get more liquidity when you use a popular exchange.
Why is this important? When you have higher liquidity, you’re more likely to get your altcoins faster. Plus, they’ll trend closer to the market value when your order goes through. Just like with your altcoins, do your research on exchanges. Ask important questions so you know as much as possible about the platform you’re using.
Trading dollars for altcoins
Now that you’ve found the cryptocurrency exchange you want to use, it’s time to start trading. Whether you’re using Binance, Coinbase, or another method, you need to exchange your dollars for your preferred altcoin. Find the trading pair that includes the altcoin you want to buy, then take a close look at the history of the pair to determine the best time to trade.
If you’ve never traded before, you might want to take a few moments and discover more about how orders work on an exchange. Or practice using Ethereum and Bitcoin. Nearly every exchange will support the BTC/ETH trading pair. Once you’re familiar with the process, create an order, enter the amount you want, and click the submit button. All you have to do now is just sit back and wait.
Moving altcoins to your wallet
Once your order completes, your altcoins will then reside on the exchange. If you intend to hold your cryptocurrencies, then you’ll want to move your altcoins off the exchange and into a digital wallet. If you’re unfamiliar with wallets that hold cryptocurrencies, they’re available in two options: hot and cold.
A hot wallet is a wallet that is always connected to the internet. These wallets can live in a web browser, on your computer’s desktop, or your smartphone via a mobile app. Cold wallets, on the other hand, are not connected. These include paper wallets and physical hardware wallets. If you really want to keep your altcoins secure, keep them in a hardware wallet.
5 Alt Crypto Currencies that You Should Buy With USD
There are literally hundreds of altcoins you can invest in for 2021, but to be blunt, some just aren’t going to be worth your time. If you have your eye on a specific project,then by all means, get to investing. If not, here are 5 alctoins you might want to consider for 2021.
Ethereum is second only to Bitcoin, so if you want an altcoin to buy, get some ETH. The project has a massive market cap and is a huge player in the decentralized finance market, which has been one of the hottest growing sectors throughout 2020. While there are other projects that are more “appealing,” Ethereum is going to give you substance over style.
Another interesting project for 2021 is Cardano, or ADA. This proof-of-stake coin has been hard at work on a feature that will allow for over 1 million transactions to process each second. If that sounds like a lot, it’s because it is. If Cardano can deliver on its Hydra solution, it’ll be hard to keep this altcoin down for long in 2021.
Originally a decentralized app on the Ethereum network, Tron is now it’s own platform, offering users a way to share and monetize their own content. The beauty of Tron is that it doesn’t require users sign up for a middle man like an app store. It’s a transparent platform and has shown significant growth throughout 2020. Not only that, but the project has many solutions in the works for 2021, which is why many investors are bullish on Tron.
Stellar boasts itself as a global digital payment system, albeit one that performs transactions for a fraction of what they would cost with other payment methods. With partners like Deloitte, Stripe, and IBM, it’s not hard to see why Stellar is on the radar for many investors in 2021.
Last on our list of altcoins to check out in 2021 is Tezos. Like Ethereum, Tezos is supports both decentralized apps and smart contracts. However, Tezos differs in that it gives its holders the ability to vote on the direction of the project. As a result, the platform is always open to new and innovative features while avoiding hard forks and splits that other projects suffer.