We’ve come a long way from the crypto industry being only synonymous with Bitcoin. Things have changed a great deal, with new and attractive crypto products coming out. More and more people are interested in getting a piece of the crypto pie, and that has necessitated the industry to rise to the occasion.
Enter crypto onramps. These are platforms where people can use fiat to buy crypto. Onramps look to make it easier for users to convert fiat to crypto. While they may have the same goal, each looks different from another.
Some have cheaper fees, others have a better UI/UX and others have a longer product list than their counterparts.
Fortunately, the software that powers many of these companies has gotten exponentially better since the early days of Bitcoin. This article will explore some of the best crypto on-ramps from a visual point of view.
Why is a Good UX Important?
For many crypto newbies, the user interface of their first crypto exchange or on-ramp will decide whether they will continue in their crypto journey.
While professional traders may be obsessed with having hundreds of coins to trade and ultra-low fees the average crypto user might be better served by a simple on-ramp that lets them buy or sell Bitcoin.
Don’t underestimate the value of having a good user interface to start your crypto journey. Here’s a closer look at some of the best:
US-based Coinbase is the largest exchange in the country and the first-ever exchange to become a public company.
Coinbase is widely regarded as one of the easiest-to-use crypto exchanges in the world with a wide assortment of different cryptocurrencies on tap. The company has relatively high fees but it might be worth it for those looking to get a quick start with crypto.
1. Fees: High fees — with PayPal and debit card users coughing up the most — $3.99 for purchases. It’s Coinbase Pro iteration features lower fees, with a maker and taker fees fee chart reflective of the standard market rate.
2. safest exchanges to trade-in. It has made security not just the responsibility of users but also employees’. Also, the exchange stores 98% of user funds in cold storage — insuring them against online vulnerabilities such as hacking.
3. Supported countries: Over 100 including the USA
Crypto.com is a cryptocurrency exchange launched in 2016 that aims to be a “one-stop-shop” destination for all things crypto.
The Singapore-headquartered exchange supports buying and selling, staking, Visa Card rewards, a DeFi suite, trading NFTs, and more.
Crypto.com is more complicated than Coinbase but some users may enjoy the “gamification” aspect of the crypto.com app, which no doubt keeps users logging on.
1. Fees: Crypto.com uses the maker-taker model to charge fees. You can expect to pay between 0.04% and 0.40% of your transaction if you’re a maker. Takers will shell out between 0.10% and 0.40%.
2. Security: The exchange makes up for in security what it lacks in customer service. It’s the first cryptocurrency exchange to achieve ISO certification, among other notable security measures.
3. Supported countries: 100+, including 49 states
San Francisco-based Kraken is a crypto exchange launched in 2013. The exchange supports 69 cash-to-crypto pairs for trading.
Kraken distinguishes itself from the crowd by offering spot transactions on margin trading. The exchange is a great option for beginner traders who want to learn the ropes — with reasonable fees and ease of use.
Kraken is significantly more complicated than Coinbase and Crypto.com but you can turn off the advanced mode to have a relatively simple crypto trading experience.
1. Fees: You can pay anything from 0.0% to 0.26%. How much you pay depends on your trade volume in the past 30 days and the currency pair in question.
2. Security: One of the safest exchanges with 95% of funds in offline air-gapped cold storage.
3. Countries: 100+ including USA (but not available in NY and WA)
Moonpay is a payment infrastructure company that lets users buy and sell cryptocurrencies with fiat money. It’s different from exchanges, which allow you to swap cryptocurrencies.
At the time of writing, Moonpay says it’s available globally, except for Louisiana, Hawaii, Texas, and New York.
1. Fees: Minimum of 4.5% for credit/debit cards and 1% for bank transfers
2. Moonpay data is encrypted using statstate-of-the-security protocols
3. NFTs: Buy NFTs with a debit/credit card on NFT Checkout
Onramper is a standalone onramp launched in 2020 that aims to bridge the gap between centralized finance and the frictionless future of money. The onramp acts as a “fiat gateway aggregator” — meaning that it consolidates fiat gateways to make things simpler.
Fiat gateways like Moonpay, Indacoin, Mercuryo, Wyre, and Utog can embed in Onramper and enable users to exchange fiat for crypto in a very simple process.
When you visit onramper.com, there’s a section where you can buy crypto right away. To get started, create an account with one of the gateway options.
At this time, Onramper supports 75 cryptocurrencies, including Polkadot and Solana. It also supports 42 fiat currencies. Supported payment methods include credit/debit cards and wire transfers.