Which Cryptocurrency Exchange is Best for Beginners?

Find out which is the best cryptocurrency exchange for beginners: Coinbase or Binance? Learn about their features & fees so you can make an informed decision.

Which Cryptocurrency Exchange is Best for Beginners?

Coinbase is our top pick for the best cryptocurrency exchange overall and the best cryptocurrency exchange for beginners. It offers a wide range of compatible cryptocurrencies and a high level of security. With the increasing interest in cryptocurrencies from financial institutions to everyday investors, it's important to have a cryptocurrency exchange account where you can buy and sell digital currencies, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum and Dogecoin. To help you choose the right account for your needs, Forbes Advisor reviewed the top platforms to determine the best cryptocurrency exchanges available today.

Binance, USA is a national exchange run by global crypto powerhouse Binance. It offers many of its parent company's advantages, including low industry fees and a wide range of cryptocurrencies available for trading. Advanced users can take advantage of a variety of trading orders, including limit, market and stop limit, as well as two powerful trading dashboards packed with important data such as spot price and 24-hour highs, lows and trading volume. New users who are unfamiliar with candlestick charts should stick with the Buy Cryptocurrency tab until they have a better understanding of the terrain.

Coinbase's hundred-odd tradable cryptocurrencies should satisfy most people looking to enter the crypto space, such as those hoping to invest in Bitcoin and Ether, but unfortunately, you'll have to go somewhere else to invest in the highly memeable Dogecoin. This convenience comes at a cost - its confusing fee structure charges more than you would for making the same purchase on the Coinbase Pro platform, which is free to use. If you're ready to level up and move to Pro, you'll probably find lower fees on most other major cryptocurrency exchanges, unless you're trading above a million monthly. Like its industry-leading international counterpart, Binance, U.

S. is regulated by the U. Department of Commerce and offers two comprehensive market dashboards with real-time market data. It allows multiple types of orders, including limit, market and stop-limit, which should cover the needs of most cryptocurrency traders, as well as over-the-counter (OTC) trading.

However, it's important to note that Binance, U. currently does not support margin trading - a risky practice that allows traders to use borrowed money to amplify returns while increasing the amount they can lose - which is why it is usually not recommended for beginner or even intermediate investors. Regulators are currently investigating how to handle margin trading of cryptocurrencies, and big names like Coinbase Pro have recently stopped trading on margin in the U. S.

Those who are determined to use margin to trade crypto can look to Kraken, which has slightly higher trading fees that similarly decrease for high-volume traders. Founded in the Paleolithic era of cryptocurrencies (201), Kraken offers a strong range of coins with low fees. Gemini may be best for beginners looking to dive into crypto waters due to its convenience and ease of use - although this comes with a higher (and confusing) fee structure that can pay off as you learn the ins and outs before graduating into your low-cost (or other platform) spot trading options. KuCoin provides access to an extensive library of altcoins at low rates - another big hit when it comes to the large number of coins available.

Bitstamp, one of the first participants in the cryptocurrency exchange space, currently offers a rather limited range of cryptos - although these may be enough to satisfy most traders - while BitFlyer offers a very limited range of coins but very low trading costs, making it an ideal choice for those who want to trade a large amount (or a little) of a small variety of cryptocurrencies. A cryptocurrency exchange is a market where you can buy and sell cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ether or Dogecoin. Cryptocurrency exchanges work much like other trading platforms you may be familiar with - they provide you with accounts where you can create different types of orders to buy, sell and speculate on the cryptocurrency market. Some cryptocurrency exchanges support advanced trading features such as margin accounts and futures trading - although these are less available in the U. Others have features such as cryptocurrency participation or cryptocurrency lending that allow you to earn interest on your cryptocurrency holdings - while most exchanges offer educational resources to keep you up-to-date on everything related to cryptocurrencies. Centralized cryptocurrency exchanges (CEX) are managed by an organization - making it easy for beginners to start cryptocurrency trading by allowing users to convert their fiat currency (such as dollars) directly into crypto.

The vast majority of cryptocurrency trading takes place on centralized exchanges - although some crypto enthusiasts oppose centralized exchanges because they go against the decentralized spirit of cryptocurrencies - plus they may require users to follow Know Your Customer (KYC) rules which require each user to disclose their identity (similarly when applying for a bank account) in order to combat money laundering and fraud. To address this risk, centralized cryptocurrency exchanges have tightened security in recent years - among other strategies they now store most clients' assets offline and take out insurance policies to cover cryptocurrency losses in case of a hack. If you like the convenience of a centralized exchange but want to reduce your risk - you can transfer crypto into a hot or cold wallet outside the separate exchange.