Jumping into the world of cryptocurrencies can be thrilling, especially when you begin to discover and unlock the great uses of Bitcoin (BTC).
By 2021, you probably know someone who owns fractions of it—or perhaps you're already among those folks.
But if you haven't started your crypto journey yet even though you have been planning to do so, here is a list of top ten tips and things you should know before you buy Bitcoin.
1 - You can buy fractions of Bitcoin
First things first, you don't need to buy 1 BTC to get started in your crypto endeavor—unless you have the money, of course. At the time of writing (September 2021), Bitcoin is selling at over 46,000 USD and that's a huge amount to spend if you're just starting.
Bitcoin is a highly divisible asset, which is why you can buy fractions of BTC on a wide range of different crypto exchanges.
Some even allow you to start with as little as 10 USD worth of BTC (like Paxful!), making it easy for you to get started.
2 - A reliable and secure crypto wallet is a must
Bitcoin is a virtual currency that runs solely digitally. It has no physical representation like paper bills that could pile up in your wallet or coins that could jingle in your pockets or purse. Instead, it runs and operates with the help of technology or computers and smartphones connected to the internet.
Before you buy Bitcoin, you need a digital wallet where you'll send, receive, track, and manage your BTC funds and transactions.
Make sure you get a secure and reliable crypto wallet from a trustworthy provider. Remember, we're talking about your money here, so it's better to be safe than sorry!
Some crypto marketplaces like Paxful let you enjoy a free Bitcoin wallet right after signing up. Using wallet directly on an exchange or a p2p marketplace is the easiest and fastest way to set up a crypto wallet.
A platform wallet is less secure than cold storage wallet with which you own your private keys, but it is convenient for small amounts of crypto or for your trading stack. Most traders opt to leave part of their trading stack on platforms where it is easily accessible.
3 - You can buy BTC from trading and P2P exchanges
Looking for the right place to buy Bitcoin? Your options include traditional and peer-to-peer (P2P) exchanges.
Trading platforms have been around for a long time. This type of platform operates using order books that match buyers and sellers. Think of them as middlemen that help you complete a trade or transaction.
Your other option is P2P exchanges, where you can transact directly with a buyer or seller instead of having an intermediary.
You get to choose your trading partner, how you want to send or receive payment, and which payment method you prefer, among so many other customizations. Simply put, you and your trade partner complete transactions yourselves.
4 - Not every bank supports crypto transactions
Bitcoin's early years were far from being perfect. Like any innovation, BTC wasn't immediately accepted and trusted by many people when it first came to light.
Some concerns about privacy and uses have circulated in the fintech space, which is why some banks and other financial institutions remain skeptical about it.
If you choose to fund a cryptocurrency purchase directly from your bank account, you will likely need to answer some questions. The exact same routine awaits your off-ramp, that is, selling crypto for fiat and withdrawing into your bank account. Be prepared to document the origin of your money.
On the flip side, you don't need a bank account to launch your crypto adventure—which brings us to our next important point.
5 - There are tons of ways to quickly buy Bitcoin
Believe it or not, buying Bitcoin is not complicated at all. Different crypto platforms offer numerous ways to help you get your hands on BTC right away. Paxful, for example, allows you to buy BTC with the nearly 400 payment methods it supports.
You can buy Bitcoin with Paypal, bank transfers, online wallets, cash payments, and so many more. All that's left to do is choose the payment option that best suits your needs to get started.
6 - Bitcoin is a highly volatile asset
When Bitcoin was introduced by Satoshi Nakamoto, its value was nothing.
Fast forward to today (September 2021), Bitcoin's market price is at over 46,000 USD—insane, right? This dramatic price change is proof that Bitcoin is a highly volatile asset, which is why many investors and crypto enthusiasts became fascinated with it right away.
In case you didn't hear, Bitcoin reached an all-time high of about 65,000 USD in April of 2021—that's the kind of volatility we're talking about!
7 - Trading and investing are two different things
Crypto trading and investing are often interchanged by many.
While both are great ways to make money, trading and investing are different. When you're investing in crypto , you're geared up for the long-term potential of the assets you choose, with the goal of selling them in the years to come. This means that short-term price movements aren't really your thing and those don't bother you.
But when you're trading crypto , you're more concerned about the hourly and daily movements of crypto prices in the market. Crypto traders make money by buying BTC at low prices then selling them at a higher price—could be in the next minute, hour, day, or week. This is why they're always closely looking at the market trends and making quick decisions about how to earn money out of the price movements.
8 - Use 2FA and keep your password safe
Cyber hackers are always looking for their next potential target, so it's essential to always keep your crypto account passwords safe.
Make sure it's a unique, strong, and complex combination that's difficult to guess. You should also never reuse passwords, especially not for accounts related to money.
This way, all of your accounts won't be easily compromised in case one of your passwords has been successfully cracked. And as always, keep your passwords to yourself.
Most crypto wallets also allow you to enable two-factor authentication (2FA) to add another layer of protection to your Bitcoin funds. Remember, if your crypto is lost or stolen, it's gone forever.
9 - You can buy BTC with minimal to no fees
When you buy Bitcoin, the percentage of fees varies depending on the platform or exchange and the payment method you choose. Some marketplaces offer higher fees, while others allow you to buy fractions of Bitcoin with lower to no fees.
Platforms like Paxful enable you to buy Bitcoin with zero charges regardless of which payment option you choose. This makes it even easier and more affordable to get started with crypto.
10 - Bitcoin is pseudonymous
Contrary to (still) popular belief, Bitcoin transactions aren't entirely anonymous.
Bitcoin transactions are pseudonymous. People's identities on the blockchain network aren't stored, but every transaction they make is publicly broadcasted and permanently recorded.
Now it's important to mention that Bitcoin addresses, private and public keys, and transactions are all read in lengthy alphanumeric text strings. This means that you won't quickly identify who the person behind those long text strings is.
However, if your real-world identity is directly linked to a Bitcoin address, people in the network can track or trace the other transactions you've made or took part in.
Ready to buy your first fraction(s) of Bitcoin?
After more than a decade of existence, more and more individuals and businesses from different industries have started to get their hands on crypto.
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When are you planning to join millions of Bitcoin holders worldwide?