With a market capitalization of over $220 billion at the time of writing, Ethereum is the second largest cryptocurrency in the world. Millions of people own Ether and many more are interested in buying it. But how do you buy Ethereum for yourself?
What is Ethereum?
Ethereum itself is not actually a cryptocurrency. Rather, Ethereum is the name given to the open source blockchain, with Ether serving as a native cryptocurrency on the network. While this is the case, Ether and Ethereum are synonyms and are often used interchangeably.
The Ether cryptocurrency is second only to Bitcoin, and has been wildly successful since its launch in 2014. The ICO (Initial Coin Offering) for ETH valued a single Ether token at $0.31 USD, but has risen to over $4,000 at its peak. Very few cryptocurrencies have generated enough public trust to increase in value in this way.
Understand the risks of buying cryptocurrencies
Seeing the value of Ethereum tokens skyrocket in just a few years makes this cryptocurrency look like a promising option for investors. In reality, however, putting money into cryptocurrencies like this is risky, which can be seen when you take a closer look at the history of Ether.
While a value of $1,800 USD per token is very high, it is not the peak of Ethereum. In November 2021, Ether peaked at around $4,400, but its value fell sharply in the weeks and months that followed. This means that anyone who invested in Ether between 2020 and 2021 could lose a lot of money if they don’t sell at the right time.
Many investments carry risks like this, but cryptocurrencies are exceptionally volatile. It only takes one tweet from a meme-obsessed billionaire to make the value of cryptocurrencies go up or down, and this is just one example of the external factors that influence currencies like Ether. You don’t have to ignore the crypto space entirely to avoid risks like these; you have to spend some time learning about cryptocurrencies before committing your money.
Where to buy Ethereum
Like any currency, you can buy Ethereum through various options. You can organize private purchases of cryptocurrencies, but this can open the door to many risks and at the same time make it difficult to control the cryptocurrency market in which you buy. It usually makes more sense to buy Ethereum on a cryptocurrency market. This will allow you to learn more about the coins you buy while also providing a layer of security not found in private sales.
There are a lot of excellent ethereum exchanges available online. You just need to find one with the right features for you. Coinbase, BlockFi, and Binance are just three examples of Ethereum exchanges that have built quite a reputation in recent years. Each of these platforms is beginner-friendly, making it ideal for your first foray into the world of cryptocurrencies. You should explore the exchanges available in your country before choosing the one you want to use.
Optional: try a cryptocurrency platform demo
One of the key benefits of an Ethereum trading platform is the ability to experience demos. Many of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges offer free demo accounts that are loaded with virtual assets, providing an opportunity to learn how they work without putting your money on the line. eToro it offers a $100k demo account to its users and this is what we will be using for the rest of the article.
How to buy Ethereum
At this point, you may be wondering “How do I buy Ethereum?”, and we have the answer for you. Following the steps below will help you buy your Ether on eToro (although the process is similar on most sites), store it safely, and figure out how to get the most out of it using your chosen platform.
1. Create a cryptocurrency purchase account
The first step in this process is to create a shopping account on the platform you plan to use. This is nice and easy; you just need to choose a website, hit the signup button, and provide all the information they ask for. Some platforms ask questions specifically to gauge your investment experience. Don’t worry about getting these questions wrong, as they don’t affect your ability to buy Ethereum.
2. Add regular currency funds to your account
Once you’ve set up an account, it’s time to add some regular currency funds to your account. All Ethereum markets force you to do this before you can trade as a way to authenticate your funds and comply with anti-money laundering laws (and you can’t buy Ethereum without real money!). As long as you choose a reliable website for this, you will have no problem accessing your funds for the next steps.
3. Buy your Ether cryptocurrency
Each Ethereum market has its own process for buying currencies, but they generally give you similar options. eToro has been designed to simplify this process: go to the ETH information page, click on Trade and choose the amount of Ether you want to buy. You will have the option to Trade or Order when you make your ETH purchase.
- Trade: This is an instant purchase of Ethereum when the market is open. You will always receive your ETH at its current market value when you choose this option, and this can be a good starting point for new investors.
- Organize: Choosing to order Ethereum allows you to set a price for the coin you want to buy. When the market value of Ether rises or falls to this level, an automatic order will be placed while the market is open.
We bought $5,000 worth of ETH with our eToro demo account, which gives us the equivalent of 2.54 Ether. You can see how well your investment is doing in real time when you buy crypto assets like this, and most platforms offer the same options to help you assess your investments. In this example, we bought our ETH at the wrong time and immediately started losing money!
4. Optional: withdraw your Ether to a secure wallet
Some people will choose to sell their Ethereum very quickly, while others will want to keep it. Most ETH exchanges will allow you to withdraw your currency to an external wallet under your own control. This can have many benefits, but the main reason is to keep your Ethereum safe. Using a hardware crypto wallet with very limited internet connectivity is the best way to keep a cryptocurrency safe.
Find your Ethereum address for the wallet you also want to send Ether to. It will look similar to this: 0x1e248170bc259319bd3621871830c253ef88e18d – A 64-character hexadecimal string. Copy the address of the account you want to send to, paste it into the cryptocurrency exchange and hit send.
5. Optional: Create alerts if your plan is to sell your Ether
No one wants to spend their lives monitoring the value of their crypto assets to get a good return. Fortunately, moderating trading platforms like Coinbase and eToro do this work for you. You can set alerts to tell you when prices are rising or falling, allowing you to get the best selling price when you decide to move on to another investment. Knowing the right time to buy and sell has always been the key to success with investments like this.
Setting alerts and tracking prices is a key part of developing and sticking to a crypto trading plan.
Invest in Ethereum
As we mentioned earlier, buying cryptocurrencies is risky compared to many investments. This risk can translate into huge rewards when you play your cards right, and Ethereum still has a lot of room to grow. Of course, however, you need to understand crypto assets and the market they belong to before deciding to invest your money in an investment like this.