Whenever the word NFT is thrown around, we instantly imagine the infamous million dollar monkeys. For some, it might be the notorious crypto punks. However, one thing is common between all of us. We find the world of NFTs a tad bit confusing. The use case around profile picture based NFTs (PFPs) is just too weak. A famous counter argument against these types of NFTs are that one can simply ‘right click and save as’ these images. While that is true, this is just one use case. While it may be amorphous for many, other use cases for NFTs are extremely strong.
In a nutshell, it is indeed a transformational technology that can impact daily lives of the people. In the lifecycle of a technology, initial implementation is generally basic and a mere replication of existing solutions. The same has happened with NFTs too. But the overall hype around them is absolutely unheard of. So much so, that the total volume traded on NFTs in the past year has surpassed $20 billion. The top two projects: Crypto Punks and Bored Ape Yacht Club have alone completed $3bn+ value. But where are these NFTs being sold? And where should one go to buy or sell them? Well, that is the topic for the day. Top 5 NFT marketplaces.
What is an NFT Marketplace?
Just like any other marketplace online, NFT marketplaces are digital stores where people come and list their NFTs and buyers come and buy them. Think of it like Amazon where mullions of sellers meet buyers. Just one difference here. Amazon is selling a physical product mostly whilst NFTs are completely digital.
These markets are a gateway to Blockchain backed digital assets. One can sell their NFT outside a marketplace as well, but being on one just makes it easier for everyone (developers, sellers, buyers).
Why are NFT Marketplaces Important?
As mentioned, it is completely plausible to sell and market NFTs outside a marketplace. But we think that these marketplaces are an extremely important part of the ecosystem. Here’s why:
A. One Stop Shop:
If you are a regular buyer of NFT art and want to explore every option before aping into one, NFT marketplaces are your go-to places. It would be extremely difficult to buy art from individual creators. Therefore, NFT marketplace becomes a single place to browse and buy NFTs of your choice.
B. Free Visibility:
Imagine that you are a creator and want to sell your NFTs. You come up with a top notch project and just about when you are ready to sell, bummer! How do people find you? So you come up with a marketing plan. You create a website, social media handles and start working on building a community around your project. And after all of that has happened, you might drop your first collection which would tell people that you exist.
Now compare that with listing NFTs on a marketplace. No body knows who you are and guess what? It does not matter. If people like the art, they might end up buying it. You can then leverage that success to create more art and start building your community.
If you are thinking that the only job of an NFT marketplace is to connect buyers and sellers, you are wrong! You see, when you buy an NFT. You are just writing on a Blockchain that you are an owner of a specific address. That address then contains your NFT content (image/text/video etc.).
Anyone could now tamper with the image on that address. Mind it, you are just the owner of the address and NOT the content on that address.
This is why picking a reputable NFT marketplace becomes even more important. This marketplace assures that these images/text/videos are stored securely and NOT changed.
D. Slashing Down Go-To-Market TAT:
Once again, if you are a creator, your launch TAT is significantly slashed with these marketplaces. For example, one could easily launch an NFT on OpenSea within 5 minutes of time. In fact, we created a step by step tutorial for that. You can refer to the same from here.
Top 5 NFT Marketplaces:
Now that we understand that these marketplaces are important, let us discuss about some of the top players of the market. Why? Because even within these market places, there are multiple factors to consider.
For instance, currently most of the NFT volume is on Ethereum and Solana Blockchain. The initial frenzy was led by Ethereum Blockchain where everyone was buying into them. However, gas fee soon became a huge problem a big problem. Therefore, Solana became a go-to Blockchain for a lot of NFT related projects.
Let us discuss some of they key platforms in this space:
If you are NOT hearing the word NFT for the first time in this blogpost, it is imperative that you must have heard this word: OpenSea.
OpenSea is the world’s largest NFT marketplace by volume. There are all sorts of digital assets available on this platform. Its a free to sign up marketplace where anyone could come with a creation of their own. The platform supports multiple options for creators like:
You could create one of a kind or multiple copies of your NFTs without any additional charge on OpenSea.
Since NFTs are based on Smart Contracts, OpenSea allows you to fetch royalties on every subsequent sale of your NFT. This would not have been possible in the case of a real world physical art.
Apart from these features, the platform recently plugged the problem of high gas fee by enabling users to mint NFTs on polygon as well. Minting and buying NFTs on polygon barely costs you less than a dollar. Therefore, making it an extremely cheap option to buy NFTs.
2. Axie Marketplace:
The world of NFTs changed the gaming space for good. Let us explain. Say you play Fortnite. You end up purchasing a few skins/weapons for your avatar in the game. But then, these companies can just remove them from their platform one fine day because you didn’t OWN them.
Now think of it from an NFT perspective. Say you purchase these assets as NFTs. You could take them with you in any game (in theory for now) and then may be even sell them for a higher price.
One such game that managed to leverage NFTs bigtime was Axie Infinity. Axie infinity allows users to breed, raise in game characters called ‘Axies‘. Every asset in the game is purchased using the native token $AXS as NFTs.
The Axie marketplace features all such assets and people come on the platform to buy and sell these assets.
SolSea is the OpenSea of Solana Blockchain. It enables creators to choose and embed licenses when they mint NFTs. Creators know what they are selling, collectors know what they are buying.
Another unique feature of SolSea is that it allows loading of your wallet using FTX-pay (a centralized exchange where you could purchase assets using your fiat money).
Even the average minting cost on SolSea is dirt cheap. As of now, it costs 0.00001 SOL to mint an NFT. This is equivalent of $0.015 with the current price.
4. WazirX NFT Marketplace:
WazirX NFT marketplace is an extended vertical of Indian exchange named WazirX (Backed and Owned by Binance).
It allows users to mint NFTs at a low cost. It uses Binance Smart Chain as its mainnet, therefore very little costs are involved.
Another unique thing that this platform is that it only allows verified creators to mint NFTs. These creators are required to sign up for a creator’s badge by showcasing their past work and social media.
This ensures that you get quality art on the platform and NOT some plagiarized random NFTs.
5. Refinable by Binance:
Another platform which is made on Binance Blockchain. This automatically means that there are very low costs involved.
Although the basic version of this marketplace is free, it does have some premium features as well. These features can be unlocked by purchasing the native token of this marketplace called $FINE. One $FINE is right now trading at $0.1. Each level would give you additional features like adding royalty clause to your NFT, creating multiple copies of it etc.
Let’s Get you Started:
NFT is a game of marketing. So when you chose your preferred platform, learn about the community first. Understand what works and what doesn’t on that platform.
Hang on while we kickstart your NFT journey here @pandatechie.in. Got a collection already? HMU.
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Until next time..
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