Coinbase Review 2021 | Is it the Best Crypto Exchange in the USA?

Today we will review the Coinbase trading platform. It first US-based crypto exchange, which went public and valued at more than $100 billion.

Summary (TL;DR)

  • Coinbase is a leading crypto exchange based out of San Fransisco. It supports a wide range of crypto assets on its platform.
  • You can quickly get started on Coinbase by signing up and completing your account verification. 
  • You can learn about the various cryptocurrencies and the trading methods for free on Coinbase. Besides, you can earn free crypto assets through Coinbase earn.
  • The exchange offers additional products like Coinbase Pro, Coinbase Wallet, Coinbase Custody, and many more.
  • Coinbase Pro provides an extensive service to traders with high-end trading tools.
  • Coinbase supports making a transaction using cards. Also, you can make easy withdrawals from the exchange by using PayPal.
  • The platform charges one of the highest fees in the entire crypto market.
  • Coinbase has strict security measures with guaranteed FDIC insurance on online funds.

What is Coinbase?

Coinbase is a regulated cryptocurrency exchange that was established in 2012 by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam. Initially, the platform offered Bitcoin brokerage services. However, with the evolution of crypto assets and trading options, the exchange has constantly improved the platform.

Coinbase
Coinbase

Apart from this, the exchange aims to create a more fair, transparent, reliable, and efficient financial system powered by cryptocurrency. Furthermore, the exchange charges high fees but also makes it easy to buy crypto assets. As you can purchase cryptocurrency on Coinbase using bank transfer, credit card, PayPal, etc. 

How to use Coinbase?

Coinbase has a pretty intuitive user interface which makes it a matter of few seconds to start trading on this exchange. However, as a beginner, you might get stuck in some places. Hence, below is our step-by-step guide to help you in starting your trading journey on Coinbase.

How to create an account on Coinbase?

You can create your account on Coinbase by following just a few simple steps mentioned below

  • Go to the official website of Coinbase.
  • Click on the get started option available in the top right corner of the site.
  • Enter your name, email, and create a strong password.
  • Click on the check box located at the bottom of the form and hit the create account button.
  • Now verify your entered email by clicking on the verification link sent on your mail.
  • For completing the 2 step verification, you will have to enter your mobile number with country code.
  • Enter that code sent on your mobile and hit on verify. In case you have not received a code, click on Resend code option.
Coinbase Login
Coinbase Login

How to complete identity verification on Coinbase?

Follow the step-by-step guide to confirm your identity on Coinbase

  • Once you complete the 2 step verification, you have to fill in your credentials to complete your account verification. 
  • You have to enter information like your name, zip code, SSN code, occupation, etc. Double-check the information and then submit it.
  • In the next step, you have to upload a driving license or any government-issued ID. 
  • After uploading your identification proof, you need to take a selfie and upload it for verification. If possible, make sure that while taking a selfie, you have a transparent background.
  • Now after uploading your IDs and photos, you will receive a verification mail. If your verification goes in vain, you will have to retake the pictures.
  • In the verification mail of ID, you have to follow the link given there. You will be redirected to a page telling you that your account is ready.
  •  If you wish, you can buy crypto assets right away from there by clicking on the Buy crypto button located at the bottom of the page.
Coinbase Verification
Coinbase Review: Verification

How to buy bitcoin at Coinbase?

Bitcoin is perhaps the most popular crypto asset in the world. Hence it becomes a crucial aspect to understand how smoothly you can buy bitcoins from Coinbase. Here is the step-by-step guide to assist you with the same.

  • Sign in to your Coinbase account. On your dashboard, you can see the prices of all the crypto assets.
  • After that, click on the account located on the top center.  
  • Once you are inside your account tab, click on the “add funds” option located below the No transactions quote.
  • At this point, you will have two choices to deposit funds that is via wire transfer or by making a bank deposit.
  • Deposit funds through wire transfer: So for this, click the wire transfer tab that appears after clicking deposit funds. You have to enter your bank credentials, enter the amount of money you wish to deposit in USD, and just click on the continue button. This automatically transfers your fund into your Coinbase account.

                                                                or

  • Depositing funds through bank transfer: For this, you have to click on the bank deposit tab that appears after you click on the deposit funds button. Then click on the link bank account option. 

Now enter your bank credentials and wait for few minutes meanwhile it gets verified. After this, select the bank account you need to use, enable transferring funds option and click continue to transfer funds into your Coinbase account. 

  • Once you have deposited funds, go to the homepage of your Coinbase account and click on the buy/ sell tab and enter the amount of BTC you need to buy and confirm your order. Now, the exchange will transfer the received bitcoins to your Coinbase wallet
Coinbase wallet
Coinbase wallet

Buy/ Sell Crypto at Coinbase

On Coinbase, you can very quickly buy or sell a variety of crypto assets. It is a beginner-friendly platform, and you can transfer your funds from your bank account in one go.

Coinbase Earn: Learn and Earn Crypto

Coinbase promotes crypto education. It publishes courses about the various crypto assets and trading methods available at Coinbase for free. Not only this, you are given some amount of crypto assets for free when you complete these courses.

Coinbase Pro

Coinbase Pro has superior options available for trading that are best suited to advanced level traders. You can go for limit, market, and stop orders with comparable low admission fees with a pro. Not only this, Coinbase pro consists of more innovative charting capabilities with additional trading tools.

Coinbase Prime

Coinbase Prime mainly exists for institutional investors and large financial organizations. It is regulated, safe, and compliant. Additionally, It features cold storage backed with insurance. Also, it can access the fully-featured Coinbase trading API. We shall discuss this in detail as we move ahead.

Coinbase Pro: Trading Exchange

Coinbase Pro is a unique product of Coinbase that mainly breathes for individual crypto traders. It supports advanced trading tools and orders that blend with a clear and intuitive UI. You can trade in various pairs securely and safely. 

Coinbase Pro
Coinbase Pro

Below are some crucial features of Coinbase Pro that you must know:

  • User Interface: Coinbase Pro has a well-aligned and fascinating user interface. Above all, the panel finely delivers access to your entire trading history, order books, and advanced charting tools.
  • Liquidity: The critical aspect of Pro is that it offers high liquidity on all of its trading activities. 
  • Insurance: Coinbase pro is stable and insured. FDIC guarantees it with a limit of up to $250,000. Not only this, the platform has strong support from the finance community and is trusted by potential investors.
  • API Base: The platform is integrated with steadfast API support. Through this, you can deploy additional tools like bots and intuitive interfaces. Hence, the API adds to the overall functionality of the exchange.

Trading at Coinbase Pro 

If you wish to start trading on Coinbase Pro and save your time in discovering everything yourself, then follow the below steps:

  1. If you already have a Coinbase account, simply login into your Coinbase Pro, and if you don’t, then go to Coinbase pro.
  2. Click on the “get started” option located in the top right corner.
  3. Fill up the necessary details like email, name, and password in the sign-up form. Now hit the create an account button.
  4. Verify your email by clicking on the verification link sent on your mail.
  5. Now, suppose you haven’t completed 2-step verification providing your phone number previously in your Coinbase account. In that case, you have to do it here.
  6. After completing Two-step verification, you have to verify your identity using your documents, photo, etc.
  7. Suppose Coinbase supports your fiat currency; in that case, you will have an option to link your bank account for depositing funds. However, you can skip this step and deposit funds using any of the acceptable cryptocurrencies.
  8. Now login into your pro account and click on the deposit option to deposit funds.
Coinbase Review: Deposit Bitcoin
Coinbase Review: Deposit Bitcoin (This is our address, don’t send money on this address)

Coinbase Review: Available Payment Methods

As we already know, Coinbase supports payments through cards and PayPal. Here is the list of all-

  • Credit/ Debit Cards
  • Wire Transfer (SEPA for Europe and ACH for the USA)
  • PayPal (for withdrawal only)

Coinbase Review: Main Features

While reviewing Coinbase, it is vital to understand all the features provided by the exchange. Let us have a look at all of them.

  • Wallet: Coinbase has independent wallets through which you can store and manage your crypto assets. These wallets are fully secure and easy to use and are available as mobile apps for android and iPhone users. Also, you can very quickly send or receive money through your Coinbase wallet by just using the username of your friends.
  • Coinbase commerce: Coinbase allows e-commerce merchants to accept cryptocurrencies in their businesses. because of this, they can quickly receive crypto assets on their websites from anywhere in the world. A powerful plugin with advanced public keys is used to create an easy, secure, and simple infrastructure for the websites. Through Coinbase commerce, the customers can easily make transactions on the website using crypto assets. 
  • Coinbase everything: On logging into your account, you can easily find the ‘For You’ option on the left sidebar in your dashboard. Through this tab, Coinbase provides valuable educational content and news related to cryptocurrency.
Coinbase Everything Review
Coinbase Everything Review
  • Coinbase Custody: It offers advanced and loyal custody-related solutions in the world and also supports all the crypto assets that investors adore. Coinbase custody is an independent New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS). 
  • USDC: You can think of USDC as a stable coin. Now that means you can always redeem 1 USDC at the price of 1 US dollar. Interestingly on Coinbase, potential customers can earn exciting awards for holding USDC. Since it’s a stable coin, its price doesn’t fluctuate frequently.
  • Ventures: Besides delivering good brokerage services and solutions in the crypto economy, Coinbase has a foothold in early-stage ventures.  That is, Coinbase ventures invest in rudimentary and early-stage crypto start-ups with mind-blowing ideas. For more information, you can refer to the announcement blog post by the exchange itself.

Coinbase Review: User interface

Coinbase is one of the best crypto exchanges when it comes to user interface and ease of use. So, Coinbase has an easy and straightforward interface that is beginner-friendly. 

Coinbase User interface Review
Coinbase User interface Review

The illustrations on every page make it even more fascinating to interact with the exchange. You can jump on any desired page by scrolling at the bottom of the website.

Coinbase Fees 

It not wholly possible to state the exact fee structure of Coinbase as it varies depending on your country and type of transaction. Furthermore, Coinbase is prominent for charging a pretty high amount of fees. However, generally, Coinbase charges deposit fees ranging from 1.49% to 3.99%, depending on the payment method you choose.

Coinbase Fee
Coinbase Fee

Below is a general overview of Coinbase fees – 

  • Spread fees revolve around 0.50%, and you must keep in mind that it is approximate. The accurate fees can vary as per fluctuations in the price of cryptocurrencies on Coinbase Pro.
  • The fiat fees range between $0.99 to $2.99, which ultimately depends on the number of transactions you complete.
  • Keep in mind that Coinbase charges no fees for digital currency conversions. However, the spread margin on these conversions is about 2%.

At Coinbase Pro, you have to pay a taker fee from 0.04% to 0.5%, which depends on a tiered system. You can depose the taker and maker fees for various tiers in the below table:

Pricing TierTaker FeeMaker Fee
<$10K0.50%0.50%
$10 – 50K0.35%0.35%
$50 – 100K0.25%0.15%
$100K – 1M0.20%0.10%
$1- 10M0.18%0.08%
$10 -50M0.15%0.05%
$50 – 100M0.10%0.00%
$100 – 300M0.07%0.00%
$300 – 500M0.05%0.00%
$500M +0.04%0.00%

Transaction limits on Coinbase

Now let us have a look at the transaction limits of Coinbase. It is always important to keep in mind buying limit depends on the level of account you have. To go for higher limits, you need to verify your identity entirely. 

For instance, fully verified US traders can make transactions up to $50,000 per week. Below is some general information on transaction limits on Coinbase:

  • You can withdraw up to your maximum available balance. That means you can withdraw all the amounts available into your account.
  • For sending and receiving money through Blockchain, you must unlock level 3, in which you have to valid state ID. 
  • For more information on limits and levels, visit here.

Coinbase Review: Security

It is not a matter of astonishment that Coinbase flawlessly sets security standards in the finance industry. It is clear from the fact that Coinbase is among the handful of exchanges that provide insurance through FDIC. 

Coinbase comes out of the USA, and it is evident that it has to satisfy US regulatory security standards.  Also, the exchange is very transparent about storing funds of its users. Customer funds are stored separately from company funds.

Coinbase Security Review
Coinbase Security Review

Apart from this, Coinbase claims to store 95% of its user’s funds offline in cold storage hardware wallets. The remaining funds that are stored online are already insured. That means that the funds will be refunded to the users deploying the insurance in case of any hack.

Considering the other security measures, Coinbase has 2-factor authentication along with complete identity verification of the users. You will have full control of the funds stored in your offline wallet.

Coinbase Support

Coinbase provides customer support through emails. Apart from this, it has a vast and diverse knowledge base that it offers through its learn and earn program and extensive FAQ. 

Also, you can use the FAQs column as most of your problems are already answered there. Coinbase offers 24×7 support through email. You can contact the support team by clicking on the ‘Contact Us’ button.

Coinbase Review: Pros and Cons

ProsCons
The exchange offers a  beginner-friendly user interface.Coinbase owns allegations from the year 2016 of monitoring its users’ accounts.
You can earn free crypto assets on Coinbase to check their functionality in the real market.The fees charged by the exchange are among the highest charges.
Coinbase is a transparent exchange. It keeps the security of customers-related information and funds on its top priority list.Back in 2017, Coinbase reported a massive downtime on its website. It is crucial as bitcoin prices back then were attaining new heights of accomplishments.
The exchange offers high liquidity.Coinbase does not have desired customer support. 
Coinbase offers free crypto through Coinbase Earn.
The exchange offers a different platform for institutions and individual traders.

Coinbase Review: Conclusion

Coinbase is a secure and easy-to-use platform for buying and selling crypto assets. However, Coinbase has the crucial downside that is the high fees charged. Apart from this, in terms of features, the exchange remains unbeatable.  

Through Coinbase, beginners, as well as advanced traders, get broad exposure to the investing world. The wide range of crypto assets with its many products like Coinbase Earn and the USDC Stablecoin made Coinbase a perfect exchange to kickstart your trading journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to withdraw from Coinbase?

To complete a withdrawal, you can visit the balance section and then click on the withdraw button. Then on the next window, enter the amount you wish to withdraw and paste the wallet address of your receiving wallet. Finally, hit the send button.

How to delete a Coinbase account?

First of all, you’ll have to go to your profile section and then head over to the settings. There you’ll have to scroll all the way down until you see an option to close an account at the bottom of the page. Finally, hit that button and close your account, but do make sure you don’t have any funds in your Coinbase account before closing it.

How legit is Coinbase?

Coinbase is a legitimate, regulated cryptocurrency exchange. The platform adheres to all the crypto laws in the United States. Since it comes out of San Fransisco, it is implausible that the exchange will ever run away with your assets.

Is it safe to give Coinbase my SSN?

The exchange requires your SSN at the time of account verification to check your background information. As per the US crypto regulatory norms, it is essential to provide your SSN, which helps report taxes and prevents money laundering.

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