For any crypto aficionado, March has been quite an emotional rollercoaster. The bull run was at its peak and whatever crypto project you threw money at it seemed to turn into gold.
Along with the crypto market though, another one emerged: the NFT market. For a month, the headlines were all about Beeple selling for millions, and you can hear the “what are NFTs?” question at every corner, even at the barbershop.
Let’s start by answering the gazillionth time that question, and let’s come up with a new example for the sake of avoiding repeating, again and again, the same old explanation.
What are NFTs?
Ok, if you are here you are probably looking for some NFTs to buy, or most likely a guide on how and where to buy them. If you feel super confident about your NFT-related knowledge, just skip to the next paragraph, I dare you, c’mon.
Did you stay? So, you probably have quite a grasp of what Non-fungible tokens are, but I will take this chance to tell you what NFTs are not, as I see a lot of confusion on this.
So an NFT is something like a lottery ticket, a unique piece that cannot be exchanged on a par with anything else. I can give you my lottery ticket and you can give me yours. Let’s say my ticket wins the lottery, that’s a quality (lottery-winning) that your ticket doesn’t have, along with the different serial numbers on each.
If we just swap a one euro coin nothing like that happens, we would just end up having the very same thing.
Now, a lot of people speak of NFTs as if they are the actual piece of digital art. So you can hear folks saying stuff like “this NFT is so punk, beautiful, etc.”.
Bad news, that is wrong. The NFT is the certificate of property related to a piece of digital art or whatever thing (even physical), stored on a blockchain.
An NFT is not a piece of digital art, it is a blockchain-stored proof of ownership attached to any kind of file or physical good.
How to actually buy an NFT?
Ok, now that you have a better idea of what an NFT is, it’s time to buy one!
As you may know, there are many marketplaces that sell Non-fungible tokens, and each of them requires you to have a browser wallet.
You cannot avoid this step, as the first thing you will be required to do will be that of connecting your wallet to OpenSea, Rarible, or whatever NFT marketplace you are trying NFTs on.
Why do you need a wallet?
Because you will have to buy NFTs with crypto, usually Ether. To store cryptos you need a wallet, and a browser wallet allows you to buy stuff with crypto on the internet much faster than any other method.
The go-to wallet for NFTs is MetaMask.
MetaMask is easy to use and you don’t need much crypto-knowledge to start buying stuff with it.
The most important thing is the passphrase, write it down and keep it in a safe place as that is your only way to restore your wallet in case you were to change your device, or if anything bad happened.
Once you install MetaMask you need to top up your wallet with some cryptos, usually ETH.
Good! Now you can go to whatever NFT Marketplace you desire, connect your wallet, and start buying Non-fungible tokens.
Can I buy an NFT with other cryptocurrencies?
Bear in mind that buying on a non-Ethereum marketplace is much riskier from an investor’s standpoint. If you are into NFTs just for the sake of finding amazing digital artworks, then it’s all good, on the contrary, don’t forget that XTZ value is much more volatile (and lower) than ETH.
Buy an NFT: which buyer are you?
To buy an NFT you should understand the “why”. What’s driving you? We could break down NFT buyers into three categories:
- The Blockchain Nerd: usually a guy that spends his time on Crypto-related sub-reddits, and on cryptotwitter as well. He may have made a fortune with cryptos, or maybe he’s just posing on social media, whatever. The Blockchain Nerd is comfortable with the volatility that comes with the crypto market, also, he/she is really proud of owning something on a blockchain. You know when people say “I could copy this piece of digital art, why do I need to buy this?”, well for the Blockchain Nerd is about pride, about flexing on social with your blockchain stored digital artworks. This “genus” of NFT buyers is mostly attracted by collectibles, and it is most likely an avid (24/7 avid) player of Axie Infinity or Crypto Kitties.
- The fine art goes crypto buyer: this is a completely different scenario. Here, we’re dealing with someone that knows pretty well the rules for art auctions, is comfortable with Sotheby’s, Christie’s, etc. This person didn’t know anything about blockchain and crypto before the NFTS boom, now he/she bombards everyone around him/her with his/her newly-acquired NFT knowledge. “You buy an NFT for the art, the aesthetic, not for money” it’s his/her motto.
- The NFT Artist & Collector: this is probably the most interesting NFT buyer. Thanks to there being a diverse market, a lot of artists love to reinvest what they’ve earned from selling their NFTs into other digital artworks, thus creating an interesting and healthy art exchange.
- The “to the moon” investor: ok, we said three kinds of buyers, the 4th is just a bonus, an exaggeration, hopefully not a real buyer. Anyway, some people are into NFTs just to speculate on their price, so they just buy an NFT with no interest for digital art or whatever, they just hope that the piece they’ve just bought will skyrocket, pricewise.
Where can you buy cryptos that you will use to buy NFTs?
I’m not sure you actually need me to explain this, as I guess that if you’re into NFTs, you have some knowledge on how to buy cryptos. However, let’s explain this step as well:
- The fastest and easiest way to get some cryptocurrencies is to find a decent exchange (Kraken, Binance, Coinbase, all equally good).
- Once you’ve found an exchange, you need to put some fiat money into your account.
- Done? Ok! Now you can exchange your fiat money (Euros, Dollars, whatever) with a cryptocurrency, be that Bitcoin or an Altcoin, like ETHER.
- Now that you have some ETH, put those on your Metamask (see above) wallet and you are good to go.
Is there a better NFT Marketplace if I want to buy an NFT?
Well, it depends on what kind of digital artwork you want to buy. Are you into fancy digital art? Or digital collectibles like CryptoPunks?
For a more detailed comparison check our article, in the meanwhile here’s a very brief guide to the NFT marketplace that could best suit you when you will want to buy an NFT:
- Opensea: the old guy, one of the historical NFT marketplaces. Very simple UX, broad catalogue, you can literally find almost any kind of NFT as humanly conceivable. The main issue is that if you are new and it is your first time buying an NFT, you may feel a bit lost.
- Superrare: remember the buyer-type thing discussed above? Ok, Superrare is the fine art guy place. On this NFT marketplace, you will find some of the more artsy digital collectibles around.
- Rarible: on the other hand, this is the Blockchain Nerd cove, Rarible is a flashy, even chaotic, NFT marketplace where to buy an NFT, you will find digital gadgets, toys, cards. Everything is glossy. If you’re a gamer and/or a blockchain aficionado, this is your place (start from here!)
- Hic et Nunc: the Tezos NFT marketplace, where you will spend and earn XTZ. HEN, as they call it (swag!), is the go-to place for NFT artists/collectors, a very cool place where artists greet each other, buy each other artworks, and where you will probably find the most interesting digital artworks in the whole internet.
That’s it for today. Stay tuned for our upcoming “How to invest on NFT” brand new guide.
In the meanwhile, you can check our magazine to boost your NFT knowledge.