The Absolute Beginner’s Guide To Cryptocurrency Investing
The Absolute Beginner’s Guide To Cryptocurrency Investing will take you through the whole process of buying, sending and receiving cryptocurrency on both Coinbase and Binance. If you don’t feel ready to invest just yet, we recommend you start by familiarizing yourself with our ‘Beginner‘ guides, in order to learn about fundamental blockchain concepts.
Start By Creating Both A Coinbase And A Binance Account
Coinbase is perhaps one of the easiest on-ramps to crypto investing. It is easy to sign up and buy cryptocurrencies within a matter of minutes, however Coinbase have high fees (1.49-3.99%) compared to some of its largest competitors.
Coinbase offers approximately 150+ of the most established cryptocurrencies on the market, but those interested in trading altcoins will not find a great selection here.
Binance is a feature-packed exchange that is perfect for experienced crypto traders and investors, as there are plenty of trading tools and options available. For a beginner, I admit it can be a little overwhelming, but once you get the hang of it you will realise why Binance is such a great platform. Binance is extremely well established, offering over 40+ fiat currencies and 500+ cryptocurrencies to customers around the world, with no deposit fees and extremely competitive trading fees (maximum 0.1%), in addition to a 10% trading fee reduction for new sign-ups through our affiliated link below.
Both can be used as a point of entry, but banks have a tendency to be more lenient towards allowing transactions to and from Coinbase (depending on your geographical location).
It is strongly recommended to have verified accounts on both of these platforms.
Fees (Maker/Taker) 0.075%*-0.1%*
Available for Trade 500+
10% reduced trading fees*
Europe, Asia, Oceania, Africa
Fees (Maker/Taker) 1.49%*-3.99%*
Available for Trade 75+
$10 sign-up bonus*
North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Oceania, Africa
Before you get started and buy anything, you first need to verify your identity.
When everything’s been verified, you’ll land on your Dashboard.
Select Buy / Sell on the upper right-hand side.
Click the Buy field to select the asset you’d like to purchase.
Enter the amount you’d like to buy denominated in crypto or your local currency.
Select your payment method.
Click Preview Buy to confirm your purchase (you can always click the back arrow to make a change).
If the details are correct, click Buy to complete your purchase.
Coinbase Fee Overview
- Bank account or Coinbase wallet: 1.49%
- Debit card: 3.99%
- Instant card withdrawal: Up to 1.5% (minimum fee of $0.55)
- ACH transfer: Free
- Wire transfer: $10 ($25 outgoing)
You can use your credit/debit card, or you can also link your bank account. Using your credit or debit card to purchase is quick, but they add an extra fee.
Your bank account usually takes about a week, but there’s fewer fees.
In order for Coinbase to verify that you’re actually using an authorized account, they’ll do two small verification transactions (under $1 each). This may be instant if you used your card, or it may take a couple days for your bank account, but if you have online banking, they will generally show up under pending transactions.
Note: Your bank or credit card may deny your transaction to Coinbase initially and place a freeze on your account. It’s a toss-up.
Before you proceed to buy anything, I’d recommend calling them up and letting them know that you’ll be making a purchase on Coinbase with that bank account or card.
Save yourself that headache of a cancelled transaction.
1. On your Internet browser, go to Binance.com and login with your Binance account. If you don’t have one, click here to open a Binance account.
4. A pop-up window will open on the website where you can enter your card information, such as your card number, expiry date, and CVV code. Enter these details, then click Next. You’ll be prompted to enter more information such as your country, address, city, and postal code. Once you’re done, click Pay Now.
5. You will now see a Confirm Order prompt, where you can check if your order is correct. To confirm your order, click the checkbox beside the “I have read and agree to…” section and then the Confirm button. Please note that you have 60 seconds to confirm your order.
Binance Fee Overview
- Bank account: 0%
- Debit card: 0%
- Instant card withdrawal: 0.5%
- ACH transfer: 0%
- Wire transfer: 0%
- Market Maker 0.1%
- Market Taker 0.1%
- Paying with BNB 0.075%
Note: You can buy in fractions, and DO NOT need to purchase a whole Bitcoin, Ethereum, or Litecoin etc.
As you can see in my example, you can buy 0.09 of a Litecoin if you’d like. You can buy 0.005 of a Bitcoin as well.
If your intention is to transfer the funds over to an exchange (e.g. Binance) to continue trading, then Litecoin will provide you the cheapest transaction fees.
Exchange platforms match buyers with sellers. Like a traditional stock exchange, traders can opt to buy and sell Bitcoin by inputting either a market order or a limit order.
When a market order is selected, the trader is authorizing the exchange to trade the coins for the best available price in the online marketplace.
With a limit order set, the trader directs the exchange to trade coins for a price below the current ask or above the current bid, depending on whether they are buying or selling.
Binance is one of the largest exchanges out there with one of the greatest selections of markets.
It’s one of the more simple exchanges to use, in addition to offering the lowest transaction fees on the market (exceptions may apply)
When trading on the Binance Exchange, each trade will incur in a standard fee of 0.1% (trading fees are determined by your monthly trading volume and BNB holdings). You can either pay the trading fees using the assets you are trading or you can pay for them with BNB. If you choose to pay in BNB, you will get a special discount on your trading fees.
Coinbase Pro and Coinbase is the same entity. So if you have a Coinbase account (you have one right? If not, click here to get your Coinbase account set up), then you’ll be able to use Coinbase Pro to trade, send, and receive all the coins that Coinbase supports with lower fees.
Coinbase is a brokerage that also serves as a crypto wallet. You can buy or sell digital currency from Coinbase using real (fiat) currency. While Coinbase Pro is an exchange, letting investors buy and sell from each other on an open market.
Although FTX.US is relatively new to the cryptocurrency market, it has already established its position in less than two years. This is primarily because the exchange has managed to offer an assortment of financial products that are highly appealing to experienced crypto traders.
FTX.US was created by Wall Street and Silicon Valley veterans, and quickly became one of the world’s best-known cryptocurrency exchanges. It is an incorporated corporation in the state of Delaware. It is registered as a money services business with FinCen.
FTX.US is the United States-specific variant of the main FTX.US exchange. It’s essentially the same exchange certain features and markets stripped away for the sake of complying with stringent US regulations.
- Start at the Home/Dashboard page
- Select Send/Receive
- Enter the amount of crypto you’d like to send. You can toggle between the fiat value or crypto amount you’d like to send.
- Enter the crypto addres, phone number or email address of the person you would like to send the crypto to.
- Select Continue to review and confirm the details of this send.
- Select Preview
- Select Send on the blockchain and follow the remaining prompts.
Note: All sends to crypto addresses are irreversible. Make sure you have the correct address, then input the amount you want to send in USD or the amount you want to send in the respective cryptocurrency in the next box over.
To get the address someone can send you some cryptocurrency at, click the Receive button.
You can get the address, as well as a QR code, that you can receive cryptocurrency at.
Make sure you’re only sending Bitcoin to a Bitcoin address, Ethereum to an Ethereum address, etc.
An error on this could result in your funds being permanently lost.
1. Log into your Binance account and go to your wallet overview page.
2. Click on [Deposit] at the top right side of your screen.
3. Select [Deposit Crypto].
4. Select the cryptocurrency you want to deposit. In this example, we will deposit USDT.
However, if your intention is to transfer over in order to continue trading then Litecoin will provide you with the cheapest transaction fees.
- BEP2 relates to the Binance Chain.
- BEP20 relates to the Binance Smart Chain (BSC).
- ERC20 relates to the Ethereum network.
- OMNI refers to the OmniLayer that runs on the Bitcoin network.
- TRC20 relates to the TRON network.
- BTC refers to the Bitcoin network.
- BTC (SegWit) refers to Native Segwit (bech32), and the address starts with “bc1”. Users are allowed to withdraw or send their Bitcoin holdings to SegWit (bech32) addresses.
- The network selection depends on the options provided by the external wallet/exchange that you are making the withdrawal from.
- If the external platform only supports ERC20, you must select the ERC20 deposit network.
- DO NOT select the cheapest fee option. Select the one that is compatible with the external platform.
- For example, you can only send ERC20 tokens to another ERC20 address, and you can only send BSC tokens to another BSC address. If you select incompatible/different deposit networks, you will lose your funds.
7. Copy the deposit address provided by Binance and paste it on the corresponding platform’s address section (where you intend to withdraw your funds from).
8. After confirming the withdrawal request, you have to wait until the transaction is confirmed. The confirmation time varies depending on the blockchain and its current network traffic. Please, wait patiently for the transfer to be processed. The funds will be credited to your Binance account shortly after. You will receive a confirmation email when your funds have been confirmed.
9. You can check the [Transaction History] page for more information on your recent transactions.
Want a cryptocurrency that you couldn’t purchase directly?
The easiest, and far less intimidating option to use is the ‘Convert’ tool, simply select the token you have and the token you want to convert it into. For example if you followed the previous steps to assure the lowest possible transaction fees, you’ll have Litecoin in your spot wallet, which you can convert into USDT. And then you convert that USDT into, say Dogecoin directly without having to use the classic trading tool. The conversion tool will then convert these immediately based on current market price. However, do note that not all trading pairs are available to the converstion tool.
The next step is the ‘Classic’ market trading interface.
For an introduction on how to use this you can check out our guide explaining the different order types.
How to keep your cryptocurrency secure
Two-Factor authentication is a must, and an authenticator app like ‘Google Authenticator’ is the most secure. Two-Factor Authentication, in a nutshell, provides an extra layer of security on your accounts by means of you manually verifying that you’re actually the one logging in.
There are two ways you can apply 2 factor authentication on your accounts (of course, depending on what option the site allows):
- Via an Authenticator application. Some exchanges and applications allow ‘Authy’, but the vast majority use ‘Google Authenticator’. They function the same, as applications on your phone. Be sure to write down the installation passphrase in case you ever lose your phone. You will also need this in order to verify setting up a new phone. (most secure)
- Via SMS. You’ll receive text messages to your phone number when you try logging in or making a transaction. (least secure)
For a more in-depth security overview, visit our guide on how to keep your cryptocurrency secure
Coinmarketcap will be your cryptocurrency go-to for just about everything. Here you can see the following: