Now that you have your first NFT in place, or are perhaps thinking of buying one, where should you go?
Which of the many NFT marketplaces can you visit and purchase your first NFT?
If you were to casually browse for the best NFT marketplace, then you’ll be bombarded with tens of different options.
But which one should you go for?
Each NFT marketplace has something unique to offer in terms of transaction and commission fees, creating agreements, and other bonuses/services they offer.
One of the biggest factors that you have to consider while choosing a marketplace is the amount of commission it charges, the features that it is providing, the network it runs on (marketplaces running on the Ethereum network can charge high gas fees during periods of congestion) and the ease of minting your own NFT on the marketplace.
These are some of the most crucial factors that we have to consider before choosing our favorite NFT marketplace. In this article, we will review four of the biggest marketplaces against these factors.
So, let’s dive in.
OpenSea is probably one of the biggest NFT marketplaces, reaching $1.3B in traded volume in the month of August of 2021. Simply because of the sheer volume of sales it handles, it has been touted as one of the most popular NFT marketplaces and is also widely known.
Ease of Minting
When it comes to the ease of minting an NFT on the marketplace, the process is quite straightforward. Here’s how the process looks like:
- When you first access the website, you will be directed to the homepage. The first thing that you are advised to do is connect your crypto wallet to the marketplace.
- Once that is done, you can simply select “Create” and you will be redirected to a new page. On this page, you can simply select the “Create a new collection” option.
- You will then be asked to upload the file that you want to mint as an NFT. Note that during this stage, you will have to pay the required gas fees for minting.
Once this process is complete, you will easily be able to sell your NFTs on the marketplace and/or put them up for auction. The process of minting the NFTs on this marketplace is quite simple.
Now, when it comes to gas fees it entirely depends on the network congestion. The marketplace itself doesn’t need the gas fees, but the process of creating the NFT for your artwork on the Ethereum blockchain does. These fees are paid to what are known as miners. OpenSea has two types of gas fees that you have to pay:
- One-time fees, and
- Recurring fees
The first is the fee that you have to pay when you initially create your account. This is usually charged before any listing on the marketplace is done.
The second, recurring fees, is what you pay when you accept an offer and/or transfer an NFT to someone else and/or buy/cancel an NFT/auction.
There are some gas-free transactions on the marketplace as well, like creating a collection, listing an NFT at a fixed price, and listing an NFT as an auction.
Since OpenSea provides its infrastructure for free, it charges 2.5% fees on every NFT sale on the marketplace.
These fees are usually levied on the buyer or seller, however currently the buyer fees have been temporarily disabled. In this case, the seller can sell the NFT for 2.5% more of its original price, making sure that the fee charged by OpenSea is levied on the buyer and not the seller.
Rarible is also a popular NFT marketplace that has been doing great volumes in the past few months. Arguable, though it is quite behind OpenSea when it comes to traded volume, which is primarily because OpenSea has become quite synonymous with NFTs.
However, what makes Rarible different from OpenSea is that it is completely decentralized.
This means that it is not being run by a centralized authority but the various governance-related decisions about the marketplace are being made by the holders of its token, $RARI.
This is the first marketplace to bridge the gap between decentralization and NFT marketplaces. Because its governance is entirely decided by its token holders, implementation of proposals and/or changes can take time as everyone’s vote is essential before it is done.
Ease of Minting
The process of minting an NFT is as simple and straightforward as it is for OpenSea.
You simply need to connect your wallet, create a collection, set the price or place it on an auction, and your NFT collection will be live on the marketplace.
On Rarible, just like on OpenSea, you need to pay two types of fees. But, given that the platform is not centralized or controlled by a singular authority, none of it goes to Rarible itself.
The first fees that you have to pay on Rarible is to enable the transactions to take place between your wallet and the Rarible. This is the fee you have to pay to open the “communication” channel between your wallet and the marketplace.
The second fees is the gas fees, which you pay when you create an NFT and list it on the marketplace. This, too, does not go to the platform itself but is directed to the miners who participate in the validation of the transactions.
Rarible charges a total commission of 5%, which is levied half on the buyer and half on the seller.
Note that in most cases, these fees will be deducted in ETH, and not in USD. So, while listing your NFT for an auction, you’ll have to ensure that you have enough ETH to bear the commission charges as well.
SuperRare is another popular marketplace that was founded in 2017 as a digital artwork collectibles platform. The platform was created to facilitate artists and collectors come together and indulge in what the platform titles “social collecting.”
The idea was to foster the creation of a community that would see an organic interaction between artists and collectors, thus fueling the creation of an entirely new and unique community within crypto.
Users have the option to see who the top collectors and artists are, how many collections have been sold/bought/created by each, and how much ETH have they accumulated as a result. Just like every other NFT marketplace, the creator can program their smart contracts in a way that they get the profits from every secondary sale that happens on the marketplace.
Ease of Minting
To list your work on SuperRare, you will have to get an invite to do so. You simply cannot list your NFT on the marketplace because you want to.
All the artists that you see on the marketplace have been invited by the marketplace itself. You will have to provide details about who you are, your current portfolio, and why you think your work should be listed on the marketplace.
The amount of commission that SuperRare charges is perhaps what makes it a tad difficult to enter. They charge 15% commission for the first sale of the artwork.
Therefore, if you sell your first artwork to a fellow collector on the platform for 100 ETH, then you will get 85 ETH in your wallet, while the remaining 15 ETH will go to SuperRare.
For every subsequent resale of the artwork, you will be given 10% of the total amount, while the marketplace itself would not charge anything.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’d know what NBA TopShot is! It is one of the biggest NFT marketplaces for sports collectibles.
If you are a basketball enthusiast, then chances are you have either heard of this or might even have tried to use the marketplace. It allows fans and enthusiasts to collect digital moments of their favorite basketball stars as NFTs.
The best part about the platform is that you can both buy and trade your favorite moments.
The marketplace has been purposefully built for basketball enthusiasts and does not feature any other NFTs. It has processed millions of transactions in the past year and during the start of the year had become extremely popular amongst fans.
Most crypto analysts point at NBA TopShot as the platform that helped generate the early buzz around NFTs. Here are some notable features of the platform:
- Unlike other sports fantasy games, though, you are limited to only purchasing NFTs on the marketplace.
- The platform is not based on Ethereum, but on another blockchain known as Flow. It is said to provide faster transaction times and reduced transaction (think: gas fees) costs. This is why this platform has become so popular.
- The marketplace charges a mere 5% for every transaction/exchange that happens. Since users are not minting NFTs, there is no gas fees whatsoever.
The Bottom Line
Most NFT marketplaces are quite similar to each other when it comes to the features/services they provide. What you must consider before choosing one is the transparency of the platform itself and the commission that they are charging.
The best way to select one marketplace is to try and mint your NFTs on some of the most popular ones and seeing how the process goes.
Wherever you find it the easiest and most comfortable to mint and sell your NFT, that is the marketplace you can eventually select.