What is the Best NFT Marketplace for Beginners?

22 Dec

If you are just starting out in the NFT (non-fungible token) space, it is easy to get overwhelmed. With so many artist peddling their NFTs everywhere, it is easy to throw in the towel and say “I give up!”

I know, because I’ve been there!

I remember going on OpenSea (the most popular Ethereum based NFT marketplace) and thinking to myself “I have no idea where to start” and “Gosh, everything is crazy expensive!”

And so I quit. Figured NFTs weren’t for me. The reality however is:

  1. NFTs are here to stay.
  2. OpenSea isn’t the only NFT marketplace.
  3. Ethereum isn’t the only NFT friendly blockchain.

With that said, what is the best NFT blockchain? What is the best NFT marketplace? How can you get an “in” on some of the hottest NFT art communities?

Best NFT Blockchain?

Asking anyone this is like asking “who is the best car manufacturer?”

You’re going to get a dozen different answers depending on who you ask. So it is important to make the question more specific. For example: Ethereum is by far the biggest and most popular blockchain in the NFT space right now, but it is also the most expensive one to use.

If you are looking to complete a purchase quickly, you can easily expect to pay an extra 10% and up in transaction fees. Which is crazy… especially when you realize that some of the more popular NFT art pieces cost several thousand dollars a piece.

Another big issue with Ethereum is the fact that they are not decentralized. At least not completely. Meaning “we the people” do not have final say.

The fairest “by the people for the people” blockchain I have seen to date is Raven ($RVN). It is based on the original crypto currency – Bitcoin – and is an up and coming opensource project.

Most important of all: it is decentralized and arguably a lot safer for NFT collectors than Ethereum.

Asset Aware Wallet

One of the first things you’ll need to start your NFT collection is an asset aware wallet. Yes, a lot of crypto wallets allow you to send and receive payments, but many are not actually asset aware. Meaning if someone sends you an NFT there, you won’t be able to see (or do something with it).

My personal favorite is a browser based wallet called Mango Farm Assets. It is 100% free to use, is safe, and takes about 30 seconds to get (no need to download anything).

Using their Raven wallet, you can receive $RVN payments as well as Raven assets.

Best NFT Marketplace?

This again comes down to preferences. Personally, I am a big fan of Ravenist.com. As the name suggests, it is based on the Raven blockchain and is super easy to navigate. It is still up-and-coming but more and more people are using it every day.

Because it is the newer kid on the block, you get plenty of opportunities to invest early into different art projects from up-and-coming artists. This alone is huge. Especially if you’re looking to get into NFTs to make money.

There are a few other NFT marketplaces that are based on the Raven coin blockchain (Ex: RVNFT.art, JustNFTs.io) but none of them are as user friendly as Ravenist.com in my humble opinion.

Getting Hooked Up

When I looked at getting into NFTs, I quickly realized that pretty much all the people buying NFTs at a bargain and flipping them for fortunes, had some sort of connection to the artists that gave them a huge advantage over the casual marketplace scroller.

This can be extremely disheartening when just starting out. For me personally this was a huge turnoff from the big Ethereum based marketplaces. I felt all the odds were stacked against me for starting out “late”, and it was partially true.

The big draw into Raven based NFT projects – for me – was the community. Because the community is still a lot smaller, it is also still a lot more intimate. Meaning, you can join the discord channel of any of the biggest artists on a Raven marketplace and get a heads up on when the next NFT drop will take place.

Being part of their community means you can ask questions, get to know the artists, find out what rare features to look for in an NFT piece, etc. This alone can give you a HUGE advantage – especially when just starting your NFT collection.

So my recommendation for you right now:

  1. Join Ravenista.com
  2. Follow them on twitter @Ravenistcom
  3. Join their Discord channel

Once you find an artist you like, find them on twitter and join their discord channel (if they have one). Then get involved in the community and ask questions (if you got some). I have learned a TON just from chatting with various members in the community.

What NFTs to Buy?

The short answer is: the ones that speak to you. The long answer is: it depends on what it is you want to do with it.

If you’re hoping to eventually flip an NFT at a handsome profit, try to catch the ones that are rare. A good example of this would be the rare one of a kind piece I snapped up recently: Charcoal Drawing of Robin Williams.

If you’re hoping to buy a piece or two from a series, I’d recommend finding out what the rarest traits in that series are and catch the ones that have the most of them. The trick here is to be ready when they drop a new batch so you’re the first one pouncing on them.

The more “rare” a piece is, the more valuable it is… and the more valuable it will become in the future.

NFT Art Projects to Watch

A lot of people list random stuff, but one thing you really should look for in an NFT art project, is the community. How many raving fans does it have? As mentioned before, the best way to find out is to join the artist’s communication channels.

At the end of the day the success of each NFT project comes down to the buzz it creates and maintains. If the artist does not maintain his community, the odds of their art ever becoming sought after pieces are rare.

I always pick up undervalued pieces I see hitting the market, so my collection is not the best representation of my favorite NFT projects, but it will include some of the ones I follow closely.

Here are a couple of the artists I watch closely:

  • Fowl Punks: One of the original series on Raven and a highly sought after collection. It’s a small collection of birds that was followed up by the bird watcher series. The bird-watcher binoculars feature each bird from the Fowl Punk series, so if you can get a watcher with the bird he’s watching, you got yourself a very valuable collection.
  • Degen Smoker: This project is very much alive and I believe – to date – it is the biggest (most sold) NFT art project on the Ravencoin blockchain. Despite the artist himself not selling on Ravenist, it’s definitely a project to keep an eye on.
  • Orcs Plus: For some reason this one is not very popular, but it has a sweet-spot in my heart. Small very limited series!

Of course there are plenty of other ones as well, but those 3 are some of my favorites.

Conclusion

There are plenty of NFT marketplaces on a bunch of different blockchain, but – in my humble opinion – Ravenist (on the Raven blockchain) is one of the best. Especially when just starting out.

Beyond that, if you find an artist you like, find them on Twitter and join their Discord channel. Check out their community. Then try and snipe a few of their rarest pieces (or regular pieces that speak to you).

Remember: There are plenty of NFTs to go around. Never feel you’re missing the boat. Just jump in with both feet and get your hands dirty. Learn as you collect. Hold or sell your collected pieces at a price you’re willing to let go of them.

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