It could be the ETH merge pump, it could be the broader economic conditions. The fact is that the attention has shifted to short term plays in low cap cryptos and at least in terms of new users, small exchanges that offer a lot of penny coins are winning. The big CEX platforms are just about keeping the level.
All organic traffic estimates in this article were retrieved on 26th July 2022 via Ahrefs.
Coinbase has entered into austerity mode, scraping both it’s Google ads and affiliate program, citing that they can’t afford paid traffic anymore.
The other big-shot exchanges are not exactly booming either, look at Bitfinex here, but it is important to note that high volume traders on Bitfinex or FTX will generate a lot more income per user than penny crypto traders and airdrop hunters in the Web3 dens.
Still, Binance, Bitfinex and FTX don’t list every new piece of vapourware that gets airdropped on Gleam.
Here’s the list of exchanges that are clearly the best for trading low cap cryptos as they are raking up new altcoin traders who look specifically for those markets.
The list goes from the loser to the winners.
Not all small exchanges are winning
At the bottom of the list sits Bitforex, a Hong Kong based no-KYC exchange that also specialises in ultra low cap coins. The niche they are focusing on most strongly are memecoins - Bitforex is where all the original DOGE clones were listed during their heyday.
It seems that Bitforex is being overlooked in the market. They run giveaways and fee promos to attract new customers, but so far it hasn’t worked out well for them with little interest from people online.
Traffic gains based on geo
Another small but gaining platform is WhiteBit, which seems to be getting a lot of traffic from Russia and Ukraine right now. This looks like a geo preference rather than anything else, the exchange is not doing anything super interesting or innovative. The highest traffic search queries are on buying Shiba Inu or Nano without KYC.
PrimeXBT is a winner that was surprising to me, but at a closer look they seem to be getting most of their traffic to their blog where they feature price predictions for various established altcoins. The exchanges considered winners here have most of their high traffic keywords pointing directly to markets.
Latoken is one of the fast growing dens for web3 penny crypto. They actually claim they are the fastest growing one, which doubt, as you’ll see below.
Latoken specializes in listing small altcoins that you can’t find on other exchanges, they don’t require KYC, run airdrops on platform and all their listed coins are paired with a crypto - usually USDT, BTC and ETH.
The interface is really made for penny crypto traders.
You can list out markets based on data such as niche (Web3, GameFi, NFT) or whether the coin has VC backing. There is a paragraph with basic data about each coin right on platform. This way you can skim through altcoins in a niche that interests you and get the idea without doing a lot of extra research.
Trading fees are not outrageously high on Latoken, but one of the catches is the withdrawal fee which is really out of proportion.
The withdrawal fee is the reason why Latoken wasn’t listed in the list of platforms where you can trade between USDT and USDC, even though Latoken has that market and does not require KYC for it. However, the USDT withdrawal fee on Binance chain gets up to 15 USDT whereas on Phemex you will pay usually less than 1 USDT.
Judging from organic traffic estimates, Phemex is the winner among the centralised exchanges that specialize in low cap altcoins. They are building a pretty successful knowledge base which is responsible for some of the traffic gains but overall the are getting most of their traffic directly to trading pairs.
It’s true that Phemex is clever with their marketing. They run a lot of giveaways and airdrops to promote their newly listed coins, they run special promos on their locked staking accounts and the UI has the same kind of visual spam notifications as Binance, popping up all the time: They are annoying but they keep people engaged.
The promos and airdrops started happening regularly as well, which always works great for building a loyal user base. Phemex is certainly not run by amateurs.
As Latoken, Phemex is a crypto-only exchange - all pairs are crypto or stablecoins. While they do not list as much of super low cap crypto as Latoken, trading on Phemex is cheaper and withdrawals as well.
Phemex trades perps as well, so to get your markets filtered by niche you need to first click through to the list of spot markets. The categories Phemex runs include Metaverse, Infra, Memecoins, NFT blockchains and more. The “Details” button gives you a quick rundown on the coin’s value proposition.
In my opinion, Latoken’s filter is more user-friendly because it only takes a few seconds to find coins that are relevant to niche. On Phemex you need to hover or click to get more details about a coin.
On the other hand, trading there is overall a better experience and it’s really cheap. If you’ve read the guide on trading between stablecoins, you’ll have seen that exchanging USDT for USDC on Phemex takes literally 10 minutes including deposit and withdrawal, the fee is next to nothing - and that’s without KYC.
If the market has spoken, then Latoken and Phemex are clearly the places to be if you want to trade low cap altcoins in niches like Web3, Metaverse or GameFi.
I want to recommend the following: Latoken is a great place to quickly find out which low-cap coins interest you, but before depositing, head over to Phemex. It might not have as many penny stocks in its list compared with Latoken, but it’s worth checking out if your market is listed.