Finding a crypto exchange isn’t easy, especially when you have lots of them. Every Monday and Thursday, new exchanges open up, close, or even worse – get hacked. This begs the questions—Which crypto exchange is the best nowadays? Where should you put your money to buy and sell your bitcoin and/or altcoins?
On this page, we did the research on your behalf. Filtering crypto exchanges by brand recognition and reputation, range of offerings, security, trading experience, fee structures, and more. Let’s get started, shall we?
Overall Best Crypto Exchange – Binance
Why We Chose Binance as Overall Best
Binance (Binance Global) stands as our overall best exchange because it has many crypto trading and investment option. It it is also readily available to many regions worldwide compared to competitor exchanges.
|Relatively low fees||Not suitable for beginner traders|
|Has a wide range of trading options|
|Educational tool available|
|Advanced charting system|
Founded in 2017 by Changpeng Zhao (CZ), Binance has built a worldwide reputation as a reckoning force for crypto enthusiasts and traders. It has a US version for residents of its states. However, due to regulatory issues, the US version has limited offers compared to Binance Global.
Binance is an all-in-one exchange offering virtually all the basic things any centralized exchange would offer. Its range of offerings includes spot and margin trade, derivatives trading, P2P, DeFi exchange, staking, the Binance Smart Chain, and many more.
Trading experience on Binance is generally great. There is an advanced charting system for traders looking to personalize their charts and set technical tools. You can easily create order books for spot trades. Click this link to learn how to use Binance.
Security-wise, one cannot categorize Binance as very secure considering its hack in 2019 in which it lost about $40M worth of assets. However, Binance adopts strict security and audit measures, safeguarding investors’ funds in cold wallets.
Binance is not regulated and so suffers major setbacks, especially in the US. However, following the exchange’s years of service and consumer protection policies, Binance appears to be a trustworthy exchange.
Low-Fee Crypto Exchange – FTX
Why We Chose FTX
FTX is one of the top derivatives trading exchanges in the industry, with very low fees. The exchange is way above most of its competitors and offers many trading options to investors and traders.
|Good customer support||Complex trading environment|
|Low trading fees||Not suitable for beginner traders|
|Many trading options|
|Available to US customers via FTX.US|
FTX is a Bahamas-based crypto and derivatives trading platform. Sam Bankman-Fried and others co-founded the company in 2017 in Hong Kong before moving its headquarters to the Bahamas because of the country’s acclaimed framework and crypto-friendly atmosphere.
Trading experience is generally great on FTX. However, the platform is best suited for advanced traders or traders who may have basic knowledge of derivatives trading.
There are sundries of derivatives, including futures and inverse futures, to choose from and trade. However, the exchange complex commission structure may pose a limitation to low-volume traders.
FTX has a variety of licenses with which it operates in the region it serves. However, its regulatory compliance may not be the same for all the places it is present. Also, FTX is excellent security-wise.
Most Secure Crypto Exchange – Gemini
Why We Chose Gemini
Gemini is one of the top exchanges that has never experienced a hack. Its security systems are top-notch and industry standard.
Although this may not be a concrete reason to trust the exchange’s security protocols, Gemini regularly checks its security and audit procedures. In addition, it has a dedicated technical team of pen-testers.
|Strong security||Only available to select regions|
|Excellent UI/UX||Complex fee structure|
|Regulated exchange||Customer service is not excellent|
|Available to US customers|
The Winklevoss brothers, Cameron and Tyler, launched the Gemini exchange in 2015. The exchange has grown to become one of the big names in the exchange industries.
Gemini offers crypto trading services through the ActiveTrader. Gemini Pay allows you to spend on the internet. Users can earn interest through Gemini Earn incentives when they hold crypto assets in their unique Gemini Wallet.
There is the Gemini Credit Card for loyal traders to deposit fiat. However, this feature may not be available to all Gemini users. Gemini offers many other services like the Gemini Custody, Gemini Clearing, Gemini dollar, etc.
Trading experience on Gemini is great. High fees may just be the fault traders would find trading on the exchange. The platform is intuitively well-drafted and user-friendly, allowing users to navigate and use the platform easily.
Security—our reason for choosing Gemini—is excellent. Gemini is also regulated and offers its services to a global audience, including the US.
Why We Chose Bybit
Bybit offers one of the industry-least trading fee structures. Traders may leverage its low commissions to increase profits. However, it is important to look out for in-house fees that may arise from using Bybit’s services.
|Low fees and commission||Unregulated exchange|
|Available worldwide||Not available to US customers|
|100x leverage on crypto|
|Offers insurance on investors’ funds|
|Advanced order types|
Bybit is a cryptocurrency trading platform from Singapore. It formally started operations in 2018 by its founder, Ben Zhou, and serves a global audience of crypto traders and investors.
The exchange is one of the fastest-growing exchanges in the industry, with over $12B in daily trading volume.
Trading experience on Bybit is good but most suitable for advanced traders. There is an advanced charting system in place, and users can create and fulfill order books easily.
Although in-house fees may apply, Bybit offers one of the industry’s lowest fee structures, and users may leverage this opportunity to make the most out of their trades.
Security-wise, we may not assume the exchange is perfect. However, it has excelled over the years in such terms. Bybit is not regulated, and many country’s securities regulations may not favor the exchange. It is also not available to US customers.
Why We Chose Kraken
Kraken is a big name with age-long experience in the crypto trading space. The exchange is also one of the most trustworthy exchanges out there.
|High-security protocol||Not so good customer support system|
|Beginner traders can use the exchange||Complex fee structure|
|Exchange is regulated|
|Available to US citizens|
Kraken is a US-based cryptocurrency trading exchange founded in 2011 by Jesse Powell following a security breach in the then-popular and defunct exchange, Mt. Gox.
Kraken serves a global crypto audience and offers cryptocurrency trading, allowing users to create and fulfill order books. There is a dark pool that allows traders to trade anonymously.
The exchange offers a rich trading experience. Its fee structure is quite complex but decreases as trading volume increases in 30-day trading. The exchange is befitting for beginners and advanced traders as it has beginner and pro trading versions.
Kraken is a regulated exchange and got its license from FinCen, a Virginia-based securities agency. In terms of security, Kraken is one of the few exchanges that has never experienced a security breach and regularly updates its security procedures.
Why We Chose Crypto.com
Crypto.com is an all-in-one cryptocurrency trading platform that offers both wallet and exchange services to users. It is available worldwide to many regions.
|100+ crypto assets available for trading||Complex fee structure|
|Easy to join and access||Not so good customer support|
|Yield farm and staking available||High minimum deposit limit|
|Top security protocol|
|Many offerings and products available to users|
Crypto.com is a Hong Kong-based crypto exchange. It has offices in over ten countries and serves many regions across the world too.
The exchange was founded in 2016 by Bobby Bao, Gary Or, Kris Marszalek, and Rafael Melo. It also boasts a user-base of over 10M worldwide.
Crypto.com offers spot and margin trading, allowing users to create and fulfill order books and trade at over 10x the initial deposits. The Crypto.com Pay and Spend allows users to spend their cryptocurrencies online, plus pay for utilities or digital products online.
Users can also earn through the exchange’s staking protocol. There is also a resourceful price tracker/checker to keep up with timely crypto price updates.
Crypto.com has an intuitive platform, making its trading experience seamless and amazing. Users can leverage its advanced charts to trade comfortably. Fees are quite high compared to the likes of FTX and Bybit.
Crypto has excelled in terms of security, adopting several industry-standard security procedures such as hot and cold wallets, and so on. In addition, the exchange is licensed by the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA).
Why We Chose KuCoin
KuCoin is a great exchange with a worldwide reputation. Users can trade at leverage up to 100x their initial deposits. KuCoin has educational tools to support beginner traders.
|Margin trading up to 100x leverage||Not so good UI|
|100+ crypto assets available||Strict KYC compliance|
|Support worldwide user-base||Not available to US citizens|
|Educational tools available|
|Advanced charting system|
KuCoin is a crypto trading platform based in Singapore offering worldwide crypto trading services. The exchange was founded in 2017 by two tech professionals—Michael Gan and Top Lan.
KuCoin offers spot, margin, and futures trading, offering 100x leverage in-between. The KuCoin incentive is available in the form of staking and liquidity pool/campaigns using the USDT or the KCS token: utility token of the platform.
Trading experience on KuCoin is excellent. There is an advanced charting system in place for advanced traders to trade intuitively. Fees are also industry-oriented and spread across deposit, withdrawal, network, and trading fees.
Security-wise, KuCoin has experienced a security breach in the past but claims to adopt strict security measures to ensure user info and funds are safe-kept.
However, the exchange is not regulated and may face sanctions in some regions it operates, such as the US and some North American or European countries.
Why We Chose Huobi Global
Huobi Global offers many crypto trading assets and investment options, plus futures trading. More so, it is highly regulated in most regions it operates in.
|Low fees||Not available to US residents|
|Good customer support|
|Multi-asset rewards available|
|Crypto purchase using credit/debit cards|
|Available in 130+ countries|
|390+ trading options available|
Huobi started in China in 2013 until the Chinese government banned the use of cryptocurrencies in the country. However, the exchange expanded to have offices in several regions where it serves a global crypto audience.
There are several tradable crypto assets on Huobi Global. Huobi offers spot, margin, and derivatives trading. And users can trade at leverages of up to 5% and access brokerage services.
There are staking and mining protocols available to help traders maximize profits and make more money on the exchange.
Trading experience is also great on Huobi. There are advanced charts with indicators and technical tools, and users can create and fulfill orders easily.
Trading fees are quite complex on Huobi, usually 0.1-0.2% for both maker and taker. Other fees may come through withdrawal and network fees. Huobi Global is regulated in the UK, Japan, Thailand, Seychelles, South Korea, Gibraltar, and several other regions.
|Fees (Maker/Taker)||0.15% / 0.2%|
Why We Chose Poloniex
Poloniex fee structure is relatively low, especially for low-volume traders looking to scale their trades and increase their profit margins.
|Low fees||UI is not so great|
|Many crypto trading options||Not suitable for beginner traders|
|Advanced charting system|
|Decentralized exchange available|
Poloniex is a global crypto platform from Delaware, US. After a series of ups and downs, Circle Inc purchased the exchange in 2018, extending its office to Bermuda to offer worldwide services.
Poloniex offers spot, margin, and derivatives trading, allowing traders to create order books in-between. There are additional investment incentives for traders looking to expand their portfolios.
Poloniex partners with Tron to offer trade discounts in fees, staking, and decentralized exchange.
The trading experience on Poloniex is quite good, but many traders may not like its UI and distribution of features and services. However, Poloniex has advanced charting systems in place.
Poloniex also has a mobile app that beginners may find not-so-easy to use. Poloniex offers many trading crypto pairs—over 50. Users can create and fulfill orders on the platform too.
In terms of security, users may not consider Poloniex a safe exchange following its hack in 2014. However, its parent company ensures regular audit measures, making the exchange safe for trading again.
Poloniex is not regulated, but its age-long industry history could make it a trustworthy exchange for cryptocurrencies.
Why We Chose OKEx
OKEx offers many trading options, including OTC, spot, and derivatives trading. OKEx offers an industry-standard crypto trading service and is available in over 50 countries.
|100+ trading options||Not available to US customers|
|Good customer support||Complex fee structure|
|Available staking incentives|
|Supports fiat deposits|
|Offers educational tools|
OKEx is a Hong Kong-based crypto exchange that operates under the name: OKEx Malta LTD. It formally started operations in 2017 by its founder, Star Xu, and serves a global crypto audience.
OKEx offers crypto exchange services with over 100 cryptocurrencies available for trading. Users can purchase cryptocurrencies using their credit or debit cards.
The exchange also has a sundry of incentives, including staking, mining pools, and so on, to help traders maximize profits on the platform by investing funds that appreciate over time.
Trading experience on OKEx is good. Its trading unit is feature-rich. There are advanced charting mechanisms allowing users to access indicators and technical trading tools.
OKEx has experienced a security breach in the past. However, it was not as serious as most exchanges that have had the same fate. The exchange claims to regularly check its security procedures and ensure they meet up to the industry target.
OKEx is not regulated and may face sanctions operating in some jurisdictions such as the US and many more.
Why We Chose CEX.io
CEX.io offers one of the top and secure crypto trading services in the US and beyond.
|High security||Customer support is not so great|
|Suitable for beginners|
|Available to US customers|
|Brokerage service available|
|Easy to access and join|
CEX.io is a cryptocurrency trading platform founded in 2013 and based in the UK. The exchange is a global brand for crypto enthusiasts with age-long experience in the industry.
CEX.io has a team of over 200 with offices in over five different cities, including the US, Ukraine, and Cyprus. The exchange also boasts over 3M users worldwide, making it one of the top cryptocurrency trading platforms in the world.
There are over 60 tradable cryptocurrencies available on CEX.io in the spot and margin trading units. Traders can trade at leverages up to 100x their initial deposits and buy cryptocurrencies using credit or debit or international wire transfers.
CEX.io has a well-designed trading environment providing extra comfort for traders on the platform. Users can also access its brokerage services and incentives. Its fee structure is quite complex but fair.
CEX.io is a regulated trading platform available in over 40 US states and over 50 countries worldwide. The exchange also adopts strict security protocols to safeguard user funds and information on the platform.
Why We Chose Coinbase
Coinbase stands as a global brand for cryptocurrencies, complying with regulations of many jurisdictions worldwide.
|Many trading options||High fees|
|Suited for beginner traders||Customer support is not so good|
|Available to US customers|
|Accepts fiat deposits|
|Excellent user interface|
Coinbase is a US-based crypto exchange that offers its services to a worldwide crypto community. The exchange started offering its services in 2012, a couple of years after Bitcoin’s launch.
Coinbase offers trading services that allow users to create and fulfill orders through the Coinbase Pro. Coinbase also accepts fiat deposits, buying, and selling of cryptocurrencies using credit cards.
Trading experience on Coinbase is quite okay. The platform’s general environment is intuitively well-designed and best suited for beginner traders. Its chart allows easy monitoring and tracking of trades, making it easy for traders to make informed decisions. Click this link to learn how to use Coinbase.
Coinbase has excelled well over the years in terms of security. Nonetheless, the exchange regularly checks its security measures, ensuring it meets up with occasional security demands.
Coinbase has the license to operate in the US; a reason traders comfortably trade cryptocurrencies on the platform since there’s nothing to fear as long as AML and KYC-wise.
Comparing the Best Bitcoin Exchanges
|Crypto Exchange||Supported Currencies||Fees (Maker/Taker)||Best For||Available Transaction|
|Binance||100+||0.1%/0.1%||Altcoins, P2P||P2P, Spot trade, Margin trade, Futures,|
|FTX||50+||0.025%/0.075%||Derivatives, Inverse Futures||Futures, Spot, Margin|
|Gemini||50+||0.25%/0.35%||Security||Spot trade, OTC|
|Bybit||50+||0%/0.1%||Low fees||Spot, Margin, Futures|
|eToro||30+||0.5%-0.75% on spreads||Brokerage, Beginners, Social trading||Copy-trading, brokerage trading|
|Kraken||50+||0.25%/0.25%||Security, Altcoins||Spot, Margin, OTC|
|Crypto.com||100+||0.4%/0.4%||Altcoins, Fiat deposit||Spot, Margin, OTC, Futures|
|Huobi Global||390+||0.2%/0.2%||Altcoins||Spot, Margin, Futures|
|KuCoin||100+||0.1%/0.1%||Altcoins||P2P, Spot, Margin, OTC|
|Poloniex||50+||0.15%/0.16%||Altcoins, Staking, etc.||Spot, Margin, Futures trades|
|OKEx||100+||0.08%/0.1%||Altcoins||OTC, Spot, Margin, Futures|
|CEX.io||50+||0.1%/0.1%||Beginners, Brokerage||Spot, Margin|
|Coinbase Pro||50+||0.5%-2.00% for Maker and Taker||Beginners||Spot trades, OTC|
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Crypto Exchange
Ease of Use
Your first consideration is whether you’re a beginner or advanced trader. Then you can proceed to pick an exchange based on how easy it is to join and use.
Many exchanges are beginner-friendly and offer educational tools or demo accounts to help beginners understand their offerings and learn how to trade cryptocurrencies if possible.
Type of Trading
Not everyone is familiar with the types of trading available on exchanges. However, advanced traders should have a basic understanding of them.
Also, knowing the type of trades offered by exchanges will help you know what to expect when you get on the platform. The types of trading may include spot, margin, futures, OTC, inverse futures, etc.
Everyone has a payment method that is easier and available to them based on their locations. Payment methods for crypto exchanges include crypto-to-crypto, the use of credit/debit cards, or other forms of fiat deposits.
Understanding the payment method peculiar to a crypto exchange will help you trade quickly and avoid future problems.
While cryptocurrencies take the most slut in the crypto trading sphere, some crypto exchanges, such as eToro, Binance, etc., allow you to trade against the USD, EUR, GBP, etc.
Taking note of the fee/commission structure on an exchange can save you money. Some exchanges may pose as low-fee exchanges while subtly adding in-house fees that strike your balance during withdrawals.
Loyalty Programs and Discounts
Active/regular traders should receive discounts as their trade volumes increase. Unfortunately, not many exchanges reward their traders with rewards for their loyalty on the exchange.
No one wishes to lose their hard-earned funds to malicious attacks, which have plagued exchanges over the years. That’s why you need to go through the exchange’s security policies to know if it suits your demands.
It’s advisable to check whether the exchange has insurance policies protecting users against the potential loss of funds.
Regulated exchanges are safer as they comply with local laws that protect users’ funds. This doesn’t mean that unregulated exchanges are not safe. However, you need to weigh the pros and cons of regulation before you opt for any exchange.
This quality has helped exchanges like Poloniex, Coinbase, and Binance stand irrespective of the backlashes they’ve faced in the past.
An exchange that has a good reputation tends to last longer than an exchange that doesn’t. For this reason, you must ensure you are trading on an exchange with robust experience in the industry.
One service exchange cannot survive without is the help center or customer service. Customer support builds connections between users on the platform.
Unfortunately, most high-volume exchanges do not offer good customer support services because of their large user-base. This encounter may pose a threat to their services, leaving them with their “reputation” as the only rope keeping customers glued to them.
Account verification process
It is easier to sign up on exchanges with simple verification processes. While some exchanges will allow you to start trading right away, others may require you to wait for up to 48 hours before your verification procedure will be concluded.
The liquidity or trading volume the exchange helps to know its reputation and the level of trust users may have on the platform. Also, knowing the minimum amount needed to begin trading on an exchange will help you know which category you fall into and the fees you are likely to spend using the platform.
While most crypto exchanges follow similar patterns of trading cryptocurrencies, others may employ unique systems in their portfolio. Below is an overview of how you can get started trading cryptocurrencies.
First, know the type of crypto exchange you are on: fiat-to-crypto, crypto-to-crypto, or decentralized exchange. It will help you to know which deposit option will be most suitable.
The next step is to join or sign up, complete KYC, and then proceed to deposit funds into your account. Deposited funds typically enter the main account, after which you can transfer them to your trading account: spot, margin, or derivatives accounts.
When you’re done with this, you can begin analyzing markets and trading cryptocurrencies.
A crypto exchange is a platform that connects buyers and sellers. There are centralized exchanges (CEX) and decentralized exchanges (DEX). While CEX allows you to trade cryptocurrencies in total or partial compliance with regulations and policies, DEX gives you total control of your activities.
Crypto exchanges follow a similar pattern in terms of trading, commission, security protocols, range of offerings, and regulation. However, some exchanges may be an exemption from the rule.
Features you should expect in a crypto exchange include order books, trading/price charts, deposit or withdrawal panels, help centers, indicators or technical tools, etc.
Purchasing cryptocurrencies is quite simple. However, regional regulations may affect the process, such as using debit or credit cards or the availability of international wire transfers.
If you experience regulations-related bottlenecks, you can easily purchase cryptocurrencies using the P2P platforms on exchanges like LocalBitcoins, OKEx, Binance, etc. You may also buy crypto using your credit or debit card on platforms like Simplex, Banxa, etc.