How to buy an NFT

The current process for acquiring an NFT is not so straightforward, mainly because these are new technologies that have not yet been adopted in the mainstream. User-friendliness is still a work in progress.

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The current process for acquiring an NFT is not so straightforward, mainly because these are new technologies that have not yet been adopted in the mainstream. User-friendliness is still a work in progress.

As of now, the process of acquiring an NFT goes as follows:

1. Identify the NFT or collection which you want to acquire

People discover NFTs due to the marketing efforts and ‘hype’ that the projects create to reach more eyeballs. Social media plays a big role.

2. Set up a wallet

You will need a wallet that is able to interact with the blockchain where the NFT lives. This is relatively easy but it is a necessary step and will require some time from the user.

The most popular wallets used to buy NFTs are:

  • MetaMask - Most known, works on Ethereum.
  • Phantom - Most used for projects built on Solana.

3. Fund the wallet with the respective coins

If you’re buying an NFT on the Ethereum network, you’ll need to acquire some ETH. If you’re buying on Solana, you’ll need to acquire some SOL. Some wallets let you fund them directly, but this step could also mean that the user needs to acquire cryptocurrency on a separate exchange and transfer it to their wallet. This requires some knowledge of blockchain transactions.

4. Mint the NFT / Buy it in a marketplace

There are two options:

  • If a project just launched and you are still on time, you can ‘mint’ the NFT directly from the smart contract set up by the artist or collective. This means you will be the first owner of that NFT, since you’ll be the person who will upload it to the blockchain. The artist or collective will usually set a minting price based on different factors (costs, demand, network, roadmap, etc.). You might need to be selected for this (see whitelisting).
  • If all NFTs have been minted, the only other option is to buy the NFT second hand from a marketplace (see marketplaces). There, you will only be able to buy or bid on NFTs from owners who have decided to put them on sale. The prices will be determined by the demand and supply of the collection at the time.

Important: The minting process will reward you with a random NFT. You won’t know which item from the collection you’ll get until it is revealed. On the other hand, marketplaces let you bid and buy the specific artwork that you might want to own (if it’s listed).


There are multiple marketplaces, some public and some private, with more being developed at the moment. Here is a list of the most popular ones with special mention of Looksrare which is exploding as we speak:


  • OpenSea — the world's "first and largest NFT marketplace." They reached the $1 billion trading volume mark for the month of August in 2021.
  • SuperRare — Highly-curated 1-of-1 edition NFTs. The “gold standard” in the current NFT space. 
  • NiftyGateway — Fast-growing NFT market leading the pack in sales volume. Highly sought after daily NFT drops, with popular visual artists and now celebrities getting involved. One of the few NFT platforms that accepts USD / credit card as payment.
  • Rarible — The most open and permissionless NFT marketplace. Anyone can create an NFT right away without needing an invite, and a roadmap is in place to make the platform community-run.
  • (COMING SOON) Coinbase NFT – Waitlist is now available. A peer-to-peer marketplace that will make minting, purchasing, showcasing, and discovering NFTs easier than ever.
  • Zora — Feed-style NFT platform in which the market of each piece is baked into the NFT itself and not run by the platform. Zora, therefore, doesn’t take a transaction fee on each sale like the other platforms. Creating NFTs is open for everyone. The Zora protocol is also open for anyone to build on.
  • Foundation — Beautifully designed and curated NFT marketplace with reserved bidding that, once met, unlocks 24-hour auctions. Creating NFTs is currently invite-only. 
  • Makersplace — An invite-only creator NFT platform that accepts both Ethereum and fiat currency. Recently partnered with Christie’s auction house to sell the first fully digital piece at Christie’s, by artist Beeple. 
  • KnownOrigin — Quality NFT art platform with multiple weekly drops. Offers accepted in ETH.
  • (NEW) Exclusible – Premium NFT platform for luxury brands and products metaverse-ready.


  • Solana Art - The first fully-fledged NFT marketplace on Solana.
  • Solsea - OpenNFT marketplace in Solana.


  • NBA Top Shots - The best highlights of the NBA as digital collectables. Closed marketplace.

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