Last Updated on March 16, 2023
The market for NFTs took off in 2021, with individual sales regularly soaring into the tens of millions. As a result, interest in buying, selling, trading, and creating NFTs has undoubtedly skyrocketed with all that capital flowing through this relatively new digital space.
If you need a refresher, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are inherently unique digital assets stored on the blockchain that cannot be copied or altered in any way. One of the typical problems with creating, selling, and buying digital creative goods on the internet is that they can be copied and duplicated endlessly, to the point that it’s impossible to discern who the original creator was.
NFTs solve that problem since they are fully verifiable, thus allowing investors to know they are purchasing the original, and injecting confidence into the creator economy, enticing talented individuals – who would otherwise steer clear – to join the fray.
On that note, the next burning question for new buyers and sellers alike is usually, “where can I buy and sell NFTs?” Fortunately, your choices are not limited to one or two marketplaces when trading NFTs. In fact, your options are quite vast, and you can usually find a marketplace that specializes in your particular variety of NFT, thus bringing you one step closer to finding that ideal buyer or discovering the perfect investment opportunity in your area of expertise.
With all that out of the way, let’s take a look at the best NFT marketplaces for each category of NFT in 2023.
Best All-Round – OpenSea
OpenSea is a decentralized marketplace built on the Ethereum blockchain that enables the buying and selling of NFTs. Art, domain names, game items, collectibles, and music are only some of the types of token-based goods available on the site. It’s free to use the site and set up your marketplace. However, OpenSea does charge a 2.5% fee on every sale.
NFT minting and gifting are both supported as well. To make the deal even sweeter, OpenSea accepts 241 different payment options to make it accessible to a wide range of people from around the world. OpenSea passed a huge milestone recently, boasting over $10 billion in sales, making them the largest NFT marketplace on the planet.
Best For Gaming – Axie Infinity
Axie and Axie Infinity (an NFT-based online video game) is the 2nd largest NFT marketplace in the world and the highest-grossing blockchain game on the market. All the NFTs that can be bought and sold on the platform are related to the game.
The game is centered around raising, breeding, fighting, and trading the NFTs called “Axies.” Tokens like Smooth Love Potions (SLPs) and Axie Infinity Shards (AXS) are players’ main sources of income and are vital for growth within the game. Speaking of player income, in some countries like Vietnam, the Philippines, and Brazil, Axie Infinity players have turned the game into a steady, full-time job.
Best for Digital Collectibles – Rarible
Rarible is a community-owned marketplace where you can buy and sell digital collectibles. It is currently the fifth-highest Ethereum-based NFT market in all-time trading volume, with $210 million changing hands.
You may buy and sell any form of NFT on Rarible, just like on OpenSea. That makes it readily accessible to a wide number of users. Rarible enables sellers to build large amounts of the same NFT and sell them on the same listing. With that said, Rarible seems to have carved out a niche for digital collectibles, despite it having a wide range of offerings. With this in mind, if online collectibles are your area of interest, then it’s worth checking Rarible out.
Best For Art – Nifty Gateway
A more colloquial term for NFT is ‘Nifty,’ which should clarify the origins of the Nifty Gateway name. Nifty Gateway, which operates on the Ethereum blockchain, has set itself up as the go-to marketplace for NFT art enthusiasts. Unlike other platforms like OpenSea, which market to a wide-ranging audience, Nifty is the place to go if you’re looking for art.
Nifty does charge some pretty high fees, though, at 15% per transaction. That is the highest among NFT marketplaces. However, keep in mind that a typical art gallery will charge around 30-50%, so it is still a bargain compared to real-world fees.
Similar to Nifty Gateway, Superare wants to trade exclusively in digital art. They want to be considered the one-stop-shop for high-end art in the Ethereum blockchain economy.
With so much competition biting at their heels, it will be a tough road ahead. SuperRare will need to effectively brand themselves to avoid getting swept away by the bigger fish. That’s because marketplaces like OpenSea do not discriminate. High-end, low-end, whatever the end, can be listed on their platform.
Centralized Exchanges (CEXs) – Binance, Coinbase
As centralized cryptocurrency exchanges like Coinbase, and Binance jump into the world of non-fungible tokens with their NFT marketplaces, many questions are being asked about if the NFT world is heading down an inevitable path towards centralization.
Centralization is at the core of what NFTs and blockchain, in general, exist to combat. Yet, there are some key benefits to using a centralized marketplace for NFT investors and traders, such as increased security and support, as well as an increase in liquidity (as can be seen with the wider cryptocurrency market). For now, it remains to be seen what effect the emergency of centralized NFT marketplaces will have on the industry, although one would expect a world where both decentralized and centralized marketplaces coexist, appealing to both sets of traders.
With the NFT space heating up and revolutionizing many of the creative industries, the online marketplaces will play a key role as investors, sellers, and NFT artists look for a platform to facilitate their trades. While marketplaces such as OpenSea and Rarible offer just about every type of NFT, there are a variety of specialized marketplaces that may offer more benefits to those trading in a specific niche, such as gaming or online collectibles.
NFT marketplaces are platforms where you can buy, sell, and trade NFTs. In addition to providing a solution for buying and selling NFTs online, they have features such as collections, categories, and search functions to help you find the NFTs you are interested in.
The best NFT marketplaces can vary depending on your needs and interests. The biggest and most popular one is OpenSea, which is like the "Ebay of NFTs". With that being said, there are different marketplaces targeting different type of NFTs and audiences as well. Check our article for more information.
To start buying and selling NFTs on a marketplace, you will need to create an account and connect it to a cryptocurrency wallet, such as MetaMask. You can then search for and purchase NFTs, or list your own NFTs for sale.