Ethereum is quickly becoming known as one of the most popular cryptocurrencies in the world, with many experts speculating that it may eventually surpass BitCoin (BTC) as the industry leader. Although the latter remains the most commonly bought and traded cryptocurrency, Ether’s recent rate of growth is as high or higher than BTC and all other blockchain-based systems. With that said, you’re probably thinking about buying some, but before you do, be sure to heed these tips first:
1. Research the Process Beforehand
The process of purchasing Ether is similar to that of buying BTC or any other cryptocurrency online, but it’s still a good idea to know exactly how the transactions work before you start investing. While the full scope of the process goes beyond this introductory buying guide, Crypto Head’s website is an excellent resource for learning more about the specifics involved in purchasing Ether.
2. All Exchanges Aren’t the Same
Keep in mind that the exchange you use will affect the overall price of the Ether, especially if you’re going to be investing large amounts. Some of the top Ethereum exchanges include Coinbase, Kraken, Plus500, BitPanda, BitStamp, Local Ethereum, Gemini, and GDAX.
3. Consider the Deposit Method and Storage
Typically, the deposit payment methods offered include PayPal, bank transfer, credit or debit card, or SEPA. However, it’s also possible to purchase Ether with BitCoin, which is covered more below. The deposit will take between 24 hours to 3 days to post to your account. While most small-time investors use online software-based wallets, the safest method of independent storage is to store the Ether in a hardware wallet, which is essentially a server designed to store blockchain-based currencies. The most popular hardware wallets are TREZOR and Ledger.
4. It’s Possible to Purchase Ethereum Anonymously Using BitCoin
Normally when you sign up for an Ethereum exchange you’ll have to provide basic information about your identity and address during an “Anti-Money Laundering” (AML) or “Know Your Customer” (KYC) check. However, those who’d prefer to buy Ether anonymously may potentially do so by using a peer-to-peer coin exchange like Local Bitcoins, which would allow you to purchase BTC and then trade it for Ether via ShapeShift or other sites that allow you to pay for Ether in BTC.
Ethereum vs Other Cryptocurrencies
Right now, Ethereum is rightfully known as BitCoin’s biggest rival, so for the sake of hedging your bets and keeping a balanced portfolio, it makes sense to invest in more than just one cryptocurrency. During the course of 2017, the value of BitCoin increased 12x, but towards the end of the year that trend seemed to taper to a peak as value dropped roughly 40% during the last week of December. On the other hand, Ether’s value has increased a remarkable 60 times during the course of the past year and shows no signs of slowing down. Thus, investors looking for a way to multiply their funds in the short-term should strongly consider strengthening their stock in Ether between now and 2019.