What Is Coinbase?
Coinbase is one of the well-known crypto exchanges in the US, offering a wide range of features and services to beginners and experienced traders. With more than 170 cryptocurrencies, 500 crypto-to-crypto trading pairs, and advanced tools for tracking digital assets, Coinbase offers something for everyone. This Coinbase review will answer all your questions you may have.
Trading platforms are at the heart of what makes Coinbase so popular—users can trade on several different platforms. The original Coinbase platform allows for quick purchases using US dollars.
You can also use Coinbase Pro, which has an Advanced Trade feature, advanced charting functions, adjust limit and stop orders, and make crypto-to-crypto transactions. This will allow you to trade without fees for a monthly subscription of around $30. On the other hand, its transaction fees can sometimes be hard to understand.
Coinbase Pros and Cons
- Beginners find it easy to use: Coinbase has a user-friendly mobile app and website that makes it simple for people new to cryptocurrencies to buy, sell, or exchange.
- Support for many cryptocurrencies: The platform offers trading with over 170 currencies and continues to add more as the crypto market evolves.
- Option to earn crypto: Customers can earn interest on eligible balances or get small amounts of newly released coins through their Coinbase Earn feature.
- High transaction Coinbase wallet fees: Transactions conducted on the Coinbase platform tend to be quite expensive in terms of fees charged and sometimes need clarification.
- Only a few altcoins to trade: Although Coinbase supports an impressive selection of cryptocurrencies, some popular alternatives still need to be available for trading.
How to Create an Account at Coinbase?
In order to create a Coinbase account, you must meet specific criteria. First, you must be at least 18 years old and possess a valid government-issued ID. You also need an internet connection and phone number to complete the process. Fortunately, opening the account is free of charge, so the user will incur no fee.
After clicking on the “get started” button on the homepage, you will enter your name, email address, and password before verifying your location through email. You must also validate your phone number for two-step authentication as an additional security measure. Afterward, answer some questions regarding employment status and source of funds. This allows Coinbase to ensure that all transactions comply with anti-money laundering regulations.
Once that’s all done and verified by Coinbase staff members, you can link up a payment method, such as a debit or credit card or bank transfer. You can start funding your account and buy digital currencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum.
How to Buy Cryptocurrency on Coinbase?
Creating a Coinbase account is simple:
- Just sign up or download the app and then provide a valid ID and proof of address to complete the process. Verifying your identity may take longer than expected, depending on your location.
- To start trading, select Buy & Sell from Coinbase.com or tap (+) Buy on the Home tab in the mobile app.
- Then search for and choose cryptocurrency from the list of assets available. Input an amount in local currency that will be automatically converted into your selected crypto; use arrow buttons to switch it if needed.
- When ready, tap “Preview buy” and confirm by tapping “Buy now.” Once you’re done, you’ll be taken to a confirmation page.
- Congratulations. You now own cryptocurrency.
Coinbase supports plenty of popular coins, such as:
Bitcoin (BTC), Cardano (ADA), Ethereum (ETH), Solana (SOL), USD Coin (USDC), Avalanche (AVAX), Polkadot (DOT), Dogecoin (DOGE), TerraUSD (UST), Polygon (MATIC), Dai (DAI), Crypto.com Coin (CRO), Shiba Inu (SHIB), Cosmos (ATOM), Litecoin (LTC), Uniswap (UNI), Chainlink(LINK), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Algorand (ALGO), Decentraland (MANA), and ApeCoin (APE).
Payment methods vary slightly depending on your country of residence, but for US customers, Coinbase accepts the following payment methods: Bank account ACH, cryptocurrency deposit and withdrawal, debit cards, PayPal, Google Pay & Apple Pay, and wire transfer.
One of the first questions that might come to your mind is—how secure is Coinbase? It holds your money, so this should be your concern in life. Insurance of any kind is a must-have.
Luckily, Coinbase has taken steps to protect its customers, like checking the dark web for user passwords, recommending third-party security keys, and using the bcrypt algorithm. US dollar deposits are kept in FDIC-insured bank accounts.
Despite this, there’s still a risk of someone stealing your account information. It’s essential to practice online safety by using strong passwords and keeping your email address and phone number private.
Remember that all accounts must have two-factor authentication enabled as an additional layer of security against unauthorized access. Also, you should always check the Coinbase exchange fees before depositing to know how much of your money you will pay for its services.
Unfortunately, even with these measures in place, thousands of users have been victims of hacking or other malicious activities resulting in financial loss. Thus, using unique passwords on websites like Coinbase when dealing with money is essential.
Although Coinbase has criminal insurance that covers site breaches, it doesn’t extend to compromised logins, so users should adhere to their safety recommendations. Several hacks occurred between March and May 2021, resulting in the emptying of over 6,000 accounts.
What Are the Risks of Coinbase?
Security and regulatory risks are somewhat of a concern for crypto traders. Coinbase stores most of its user funds offline to prevent hacking. However, there’s still a slight risk that bad actors could breach their online systems.
Even though Coinbase ratings are excellent, as cryptocurrency regulations rapidly evolve, Coinbase may need to change to comply with new laws and regulations. This could affect user experience or cause unexpected interruptions in service. Remember that these are not isolated risks tied only to Coinbase but impact many other platforms.
While writing the Coinbase review, I discovered that it had taken steps to minimize these risks by registering with FinCEN and complying with applicable state money transmitter laws in all states where it operates. It also holds customer funds separate from company operating funds, which helps protect users if something happens to the exchange itself.
Multi-factor authentication is used for user accounts, data encryption is implemented at rest and in transit, and the systems are constantly monitored for suspicious activity or threats posed by bad actors.
Trading digital currency carries certain risks, and prices can fluctuate rapidly. Coinbase has instituted sell limits on accounts to protect customers from potential losses. However, more than these may be required if the total digital currency stored value is high.
To ensure the security of your account, we advise taking the following steps:
- Verifying that your email address is properly receiving all notifications from Coinbase;
- Ensuring two-factor authentication is up-to-date and functional (I recommend migrating from SMS two-factor to Google Authenticator for enhanced security);
- Familiarizing yourself with buy/sell limits available on your account;
- Completing any pending identity verifications (which may be unavailable during times of significant volatility);
- Expecting payments to take at most the maximum number of days indicated when making a deposit or withdrawal.
Coinbase offers two trading tools in one account—a basic and an advanced option. The basic option has a simple design that makes it easy to use, while the advanced trade provides more features such as charts, live order books, and limit orders.
However, the downside is that the fees for using the basic tool are much higher than the advanced tool, so I suggest subscribing to this advanced option if you’re investing big. It’ll save you money on Coinbase exchange fees.
Tips for Beginners
If you’re new to crypto trading, these are the tips for managing your portfolio:
- Do research and educate yourself: Cryptocurrency markets are highly volatile, so it’s essential to do your research before investing in any cryptocurrency.
- Start small: If you’re new to cryptocurrency trading, start with small investments until you become comfortable navigating the market and making trades in the app. Only invest what you can afford to lose.
- Diversify your investments: Cryptocurrency is a highly speculative asset, so don’t put all your eggs in one basket by investing exclusively in Bitcoin or Ethereum (or any other single coin). Instead, diversify across multiple currencies to reduce risk. Your portfolio is easily accessible through the Coinbase app.
- Use reliable exchanges and wallets: Make sure you use a reliable exchange and wallet provider when buying or selling cryptocurrencies. Preferably one with high levels of security and customer support.
- Trade responsibly: Many investors get caught up in FOMO (fear of missing out) when they see prices rapidly rising or falling on crypto exchanges. Remember that these fluctuations can work against traders if they move too quickly without proper market data analysis.
Coinbase App Review
The Coinbase applications for Android and iOS have received high ratings from users due to the many features they include that mirror those of the desktop site. These features cater to all kinds of crypto investors, regardless of their experience level.
Beginners will find simple tools that allow them to sell and buy digital assets easily. More experienced traders can use more advanced tools to compare, track and trade different currencies.
In addition to its trading platform, Coinbase also provides a dedicated wallet for mobile users. The Coinbase app is highly acclaimed, earning over one million reviews on the App Store with an impressive 4.7 rating, while the wallet has a 4.9 rating. It’s an ideal choice for newcomers looking for an easy way to get started.
Coinbase Pricing and Fees
You may ask yourself—does Coinbase charge fees? Yes, Coinbase charges fees, and they depend on whether you’re a taker or a maker. When you buy or sell something on Coinbase, keep in mind the costs involved before confirming the trade.
Let’s take a look at the Coinbase fee structure:
- $0 – $10K: Taker fee of 0.60%, Maker fee of 0.40%
- $10K – $50K: Taker fee of 0.40%, Maker fee of 0.25%
- $50K – $100K: Taker fee of 0.25%, Maker fee of 0.15%
- $100K – $1M: Taker fee of 0.20%, Maker fee of 0.10%
- $1M – $15M: Taker fee of 0.18%, Maker fee of 0.08%
- $15M – $75M: Taker fee of 0.16%, Maker fee of 0.06%
- $75M – $250M: Taker fee of 0.12%, Maker fee of 0.03%
- $250M – $400M: Taker fee of 0.08%, Maker fee of 0.00%
- $400M+: Taker fee of 0.05%, Maker fee of 0.00%
Remember that you’ll also pay a fee for depositing and withdrawing money from your account. This is a flat 1% fee for these payment options:
- Bank Account
- USD Wallet
- Debit/credit cards
- ACH Transfer
- Wire transfer
Coinbase Pro offers its users competitive and dynamic pricing based on their trades’ size. The fee structure is divided into several pricing tiers, with lower fees offered for higher trade volumes.
Depositing via crypto or ACH transfer is free of charge. In contrast, wire deposits come with a flat fee of $10, and withdrawals cost a flat rate of $25. In addition, all collateralized crypto transactions incur a 2% processing fee upon completion. There are no sign-up costs associated with Coinbase Pro. Still, each blockchain network has mining fees applicable to transfers conducted within it.
For trades up to $10,000, the taker fee is 0.60%, and the maker fee is 0.40%. For trades between $10,000 and $50,000, the taker fee drops to 0.40% and the maker fee to 0.25%. This trend of lower fees for higher trade volumes continues, with a taker fee of 0.05% and a maker fee of 0.00% for trades over $400 million.
This fee structure offers incentives for users to trade larger amounts while still providing reasonable fees for smaller trades. Overall, Coinbase Pro provides transparent and reasonable fees for its users, making it an attractive platform for both retail and institutional traders.
One of the most important complaints users have about Coinbase is customer service. Because it’s nearly impossible to reach a human for assistance, consider Coinbase to be primarily self-service. Customer service options that are officially supported include:
- Support tickets through email
- The Coinbase support page
- A telephone answering service
- A chatbot
However, these services are often unreliable due to long response times or a lack of resolution for complex problems.
Users consistently report that it’s tough to contact a human representative. Many customers feel they need more customer support options. As such, Coinbase customers prefer to rely on self-help resources such as help articles to solve their problems rather than wait for a response from customer service representatives.
The most common complaint in Coinbase reviews is that customer service could be faster or more helpful in resolving issues. Many customers have reported long wait times for support, with some waiting days and weeks to get a response. In addition, Coinbase often needs more capacity to handle large volumes of inquiries at once, leading to further delays.
Coinbase has tried to address these problems by creating more efficient processes and increasing its support staff. It has also introduced 24/7 phone support so that customers can get help when they need it the most. Despite this effort, customers remain unsatisfied as they experience difficulties while trying to resolve their issues with Coinbase’s customer service team.
Coinbase has a low average rating on Trustpilot, with frequent mentions of customer service issues, frozen accounts, and lost funds. This is not an isolated problem; many other companies in the industry face similar customer complaints.
On the plus side, customers frequently comment on Coinbase’s user-friendly interface, which makes it simple to buy and sell Ethereum, Bitcoin, Litecoin, and other cryptocurrencies. Many also appreciate how quickly Coinbase processes transactions and its competitive fees compared to other crypto exchange platforms.
In conclusion, this review of Coinbase shows that it’s a safe and reliable place to buy and sell cryptocurrencies. It has a trading feature-rich platform good for both new and experienced traders. However, users should be aware of fees associated with transactions conducted on the site. Also, customer service can be unreliable at times.
It should be emphasized once more that Coinbase provides a premier platform for users to purchase, trade, store, and transfer digital currencies. It benefits newcomers to the cryptocurrency world who want an uncomplicated buying and selling process without having to concern themselves with the intricate details of external wallets or decentralized exchanges.
Additionally, as with any cryptocurrency exchange, customers should take extra precautions to protect their funds by using strong passwords, two-factor authentication, and other security measures to avoid falling victim to hacking or fraud.
Is Coinbase trustworthy?
Coinbase is generally considered to be a reliable and secure platform. Coinbase has invested heavily in security measures, including two-factor authentication, offline storage of funds, insurance protection for stored digital assets, and more. For beginners, Coinbase offers an easy-to-use interface that allows users to buy and sell cryptocurrencies safely.
What are the pros and cons of Coinbase?
Coinbase is a popular cryptocurrency trading platform that offers an easy-to-use website and mobile app for beginners. It supports over 170 currencies and provides opportunities to earn cryptocurrency. However, it has high transaction fees and only a few altcoins available for trading. Coinbase is constantly improving and implementing new tools to help its customers.
Should I give Coinbase my SSN?
I tested this for the purpose of the review of Coinbase. The platform asks for the last four digits of the Social Security Number. This is done for three primary purposes:
- Verifying your identity;
- Ensuring the necessary tax documents are reported to the IRS correctly;
- Adhering to anti-money laundering regulations.
Is Coinbase safe for beginners?
Yes, Coinbase is considered to be safe and secure for beginners. The exchange platform has taken measures to ensure the security of user funds. These measures include storing 98% of customer funds in offline storage, using two-factor authentication (2FA) for all accounts, and providing an insurance policy that covers digital assets stored on its servers.
Is Coinbase a good investment?
It depends on your individual goals and risk tolerance. Coinbase has experienced rapid growth in recent years, making it a potentially attractive investment for some. However, as with any investment, risks are involved. Therefore, use this Coinbase review as a guide.