Since the birth of cryptocurrency in 2009, traditional Bitcoin (BTC) exchanges have been the most popular way to buy and sell cryptocurrency. Although they’re still the most popular, peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms like Paxful are paving the way for a more people-centric way of buying crypto.
What is Paxful?
With ultimate payment flexibility and a robust security system to back it up, Paxful has become the leading people-powered marketplace on the planet.
Launched in 2015, Paxful only has one goal in mind: for everyone to have equal access to finance. Because most traditional exchanges require their users to sign up using a bank account, the unbanked and underbanked population are immediately disqualified from participating. P2P platforms like Paxful tip the scales by allowing these populations to participate in transactions they were previously denied.
Pros and cons
As we mentioned earlier, the most significant selling points of Paxful are ultimate payment flexibility and a robust security system.
If you’re looking to buy Bitcoin, Paxful has nearly 400 payment options available, allowing users to trade virtually whatever they want for BTC. On the platform, you can sift through thousands of offers, find great deals from trusted vendors, and start with as little as 10 USD. They also have zero buyer fees, giving people an excellent experience for those who are just beginning.
On the flip side, if you want to sell Bitcoin, you can earn money by creating an offer and setting your profit percentage. Offers are also highly customizable and can be tailored to fit what best suits your needs.
To help secure the users on the platform, Paxful creates a safe trading environment with features like their high-security escrow service, two-factor authentication, and state-of-the-art blockchain analysis tools to help identify bad actors on the platform.
With all that said, it’s impossible that a platform like this doesn’t come without its cons.
Because sellers on the platform get to set profit percentages, you’re likely to encounter overpriced crypto. Users may get greedy at times, especially if you’re looking to trade a payment method that isn’t so popular. However, it’s worth noting that this goes both ways: if you’re looking to sell BTC with a not-so-popular payment option, you get the chance to earn more.
There’s also a slight chance of running into scammers. Although Paxful has done a great job of tightening up security, the occasional scammer may sometimes slip through the cracks. As a user on the platform, you’ll have to take the time and learn the potential red flags bad actors can have to ensure that your money stays safe.
Lastly, on Paxful, you’re limited to three fully-integrated cryptos: Bitcoin, Ethereum (ETH), and Tether (USDT). There are thousands of cryptocurrencies out there and just being limited to three is a point taken away from Paxful. However, there are workarounds. For example, there are nearly 40 digital currencies that are part of their payment method roster but until they’re fully integrated on the platform, it’s going to hold them back.
Overall, it’s safe to say that the pros outweigh the cons—especially since there are workarounds for Paxful’s most significant disadvantages.
How to buy BTC on Paxful
If you’re interested in buying Bitcoin, Paxful’s process can be simplified into three main steps—assuming you’ve already created your account.
Step 1: Look for an offer
Input your preferences on the home page and click Find Offers. Paxful will show you the list of available offers. From there, all you need to pick one—remember to look at the seller’s feedback score, the price of the BTC, and if the user is active. If you need more details, you can click the Buy button to see the full scope of the offer.
Step 2: Start the trade
When you’re ready to trade, enter the amount you’re going to buy and click Buy Now. Carefully follow the seller’s instructions and then mark the trade as Paid.
Step 3: Receive your BTC
Once you send your payment in and mark the trade as paid, give the seller a few minutes to verify the transaction. As soon as it’s confirmed, they’ll release the BTC from escrow and it’ll go straight into your wallet. From there, all you need to do is leave feedback and your transaction is complete.
Overall, Paxful is a great place to trade crypto—whether you’re a seasoned veteran or an eager beginner. The clean interface makes it easy to trade, the roster of payment options makes crypto accessible, and you feel safe with the environment they’ve built.