A Step-By-Step Guide to Buying your First Cryptocurrency
This article is my attempt to create a simple, comprehensive guide for buying a digital currency. For the sake of simplifying things, the following guide was done using the Coinbase signup procedure. The signup process is somewhat similar on other platforms.
Before purchasing any type of cryptocurrency, I would highly recommend doing some research in order to understand exactly what you are getting into. The cryptocurrency industry is relatively new and has a very volatile market. Therefore, it would be wise to invest only the amount you are comfortable with (meaning the amount you are willing to lose).
Note: Signing up on cryptocurrency exchanges requires you to be at least 18 years old. Also, the currency used in the following screenshots is the Canadian currency.
Step 1: Choose your exchange
The first step in purchasing any cryptocurrency is choosing an exchange. There are various exchanges offering different cryptocurrencies. However, as a beginner, I would recommend using either Coinbase or Binance, as I believe them to be the best and most trustworthy platforms.
As a bonus, if you register using the Coinbase link and spend $100, we both get an additional $10 worth of Bitcoin.
Step 2: Create your account
This step only requires you to confirm your email by clicking on “Verify Email Address”.
Step 5: Enter your phone number
You’ll then be asked to enter your phone number, and Coinbase will send you a verification code on this number.
Once you receive this code via text, enter it on Coinbase to proceed.
Step 6: Verify your identity
Once you’ve confirmed your phone number, you should have access to the Coinbase trading platform. However, before trading, you need to verify your identity in order for you to be able to withdraw your money when the time comes. You also need to verify your identity in order to be able to raise your limit higher than the limit of 250$/week initially set by Coinbase.
Verification should be instantaneous, but there may be the rare chance when CoinBase may review manually and your limit will be increased at a later point.
In order to verify your identity, you need at least one of the following documents :
- Driver’s license
- Photo ID (Any national valid identity card with your picture)
Note: Getting your account approved on an exchange can take weeks. If you’re unsure about buying, I recommend to create an account right now and get it approved anyway. It’s free, and you don’t have to buy, but if you decide to buy, you won’t have to wait.
Step 7: Setting up a Payment Method
There are several types of payment methods that you can link to your Coinbase account.
For more details on adding a payment method, follow this link.
Step 8: Buying a cryptocurrency
Once your identity has been verified and your payment method has been set up, you are now able to purchase your first cryptocurrency.
To buy your first cryptocurrency, you need to go on the Buy/Sell Page and click on Buy.
As of today, Coinbase supports 5 types of cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic and Bitcoin Cash. Hopefully, in the future, they will have a wider variety of coins to buy.
- CoinBase supports 5 coins, make sure the one selected is bitcoin.
- Coinbase charges a commission, so ensure your total including the commission is under your total limit.
- If you are planning to use your max limit — you can click on buy max
- Click on Buy Bitcoin when you are ready.
- Now click on Confirm
The transaction should take only a few seconds before it appears in your wallet.
Step 7: You are all done
Congratulations, you have just purchased your first Cryptocurrency!