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Coinbase Cryptocurrency Exchange

Are you thinking of investing in cryptocurrencies? Coinbase can be a good starting point. Not in vain; it is one of the oldest cryptocurrency exchange platforms.

Coinbase stands out for its ease of use but not so much for its low commissions. This guide will see what it is, its features, what commissions it charges, and how to know if it is a good exchange and wallet for you.

What is Coinbase?

It is a cryptocurrency exchange and wallet with which you can send, receive, buy, sell, and store cryptocurrencies.

It is one of the oldest cryptocurrency platforms and one of the largest in the crypto ecosystem. It is among the 15 Exchanges that handle the most volume and has more than 68 million users (in 2020, there were barely 40 million).


Coinbase was established in 2012 in the United States by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam. The company’s initial idea was to create a platform to buy and sell Bitcoin easily and safely through secure bank transfers. Both ease of use and security remain two of Coinbase’s paradigms today.

Coinbase or Coinbase Pro: which one to start with?

Coinbase allows trading with two different versions: the regular version and the Coinbase Pro version.

The differences between Coinbase and Coinbase pro affect the following:

  • The interface is what you see when you connect.
  • The functionalities and types of orders that you can give.
  • Commissions, which are lower with the By version.
  • Security is more advanced in the pro version.

If you have doubts about which one to trade with, the standard version is the most appropriate if you are starting in the world of cryptocurrencies or have never traded on the stock market. The interface is much friendlier, and the platform is much more intuitive.

That is what you will see in each case.

If you are considering active cryptocurrency trading, the Coinbase Pro version is more appropriate, while if you think of buying and holding, regular Coinbase will suffice.

Coinbase Coinbase pro
simple interface Advanced interface with trading platform design
Very intuitive platform Unintuitive platform
Market Limit Orders Allows you to include stop loss and other limit orders
Only allow you to buy cryptocurrencies Allows additional operations not tied to fiat currency
higher commissions more limited commissions
Ideal for newbies Thought for traders

Is Coinbase safe?

Security is key in the cryptocurrency environment and one of Coinbase’s hallmarks. This emphasis on security was, among other things, what earned it becoming the first licensed cryptocurrency exchange in the United States. This milestone happened in 2015.

How safe is it to invest in Coinbase? Are your cryptocurrencies safe? The answer is yes, although if you already invest in cryptocurrencies, you will know that it is safest to have it in your cold wallet.

Coinbase has several layers of security to prevent the theft of tokens and cryptocurrencies.

These are the most important:

1. Cold storage

Over 90% of the platform’s crypto assets are in cold storage systems.

In other words, the private keys of the crypto assets are stored offline in devices that are not connected to the Internet, and, therefore, they cannot be hacked.

In addition, they are all together in one place but distributed worldwide.

2. Double Authentication System

Coinbase mandates the use of a two-step verification system. When you start your session, you will receive a message on your mobile with a code to enter to access the platform.

In addition, once your portfolio exceeds certain amounts, they suggest adding one more layer with Google Authenticator.

3. Institutional Certificates

Coinbase was the first platform to be regulated by the US authorities and followed security regulations. However, it is not regulated in Europe or Spain by the National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) today.

In addition, the company went public on the US Nasdaq under the ticker $COIN, which increases the security levels that must be met.

4. Insurance for your Assets

As a complement to all these security measures, Coinbase has free coverage insurance for its customers in case of theft. In addition, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation also insures up to $250,000 per account.

How does Coinbase work?

Coinbase’s operation is very simple and intuitive. Once you have registered (I will explain how to do it later, but first, you must be clear about what you can obtain with this platform), you will only have to log in.

To do so, you must enter a code that will be sent to you by email or use Google Authenticator as an additional security measure. After logging in, you will access your control panel, where you can see the global status of your portfolio.

How does Coinbase work?

In this panel, you will see how your portfolio has evolved, what cryptocurrencies make it up, its price, and its weight within your investments.

You only have to go to the area you want to start investing. It can be bought to acquire cryptocurrencies or convert, send, receive, or obtain returns.

Now we are going to see what each of them consists of.

What can you do on Coinbase?

The basic version of Coinbase allows for easy trading with simple and easy-to-execute orders. These are the options to invest in Coinbase cryptocurrencies and the rest of its functionalities.

1. Trade with Coinbase

Coinbase allows you to buy, sell and convert the cryptocurrencies listed on the platform. You must go to the “Operate” area and choose your desired option to do this.

Suppose you want to buy cryptocurrencies on Coinbase. In that case, you will see a control panel with the listing price and its evolution, and you will be able to select the crypto assets you are interested in following.

Trade with Coinbase

To buy a cryptocurrency, you must enter a payment method, which can be by bank card or transfer. The first is immediate but more expensive.

You can also sell your crypto assets and transfer them wherever you want.

Finally, you can convert the cryptocurrencies you have to another crypto asset.

2. Send and receive cryptocurrencies

Coinbase also allows cryptocurrency transactions. In other words, you can send and receive cryptocurrencies in the “Pay” section in the central menu or in the “Send/Receive” section.

With this option, you can send your cryptocurrencies to other Wallets or Exchanges or receive them, both yours and from other people. For this reason, review the data well before doing so.

3. Store your cryptocurrencies

Coinbase has a Safe for your cryptocurrencies whenever you want.

This security vault is a cold wallet that adds 48 hours from when you give the order to withdraw your crypto assets until the operation is closed and has several levels of security.

4. Earn money for learning

We are facing the classic system of earning money by doing surveys, only that the surveys are about cryptocurrencies, and the payment is with crypto asset currency that you have just been presented with.

The rewards vary between 3 and 10 euros in the current crypto active, which you can later convert to the cryptocurrency that interests you.

5. Staking

That is the latest functionality Coinbase has added and lacked compared to alternatives like Binance. Staking consists of blocking your cryptocurrencies and receiving a percentage of interest in return.

In other words, a crypto repository. While your assets are blocked, you cannot operate with them, although they will continue to increase or lose value. If you invest long-term in cryptocurrencies, it is a formula for obtaining an additional return or a passive income, if you prefer.


Coinbase has added staking as a formula to support the change that Ethereum 2.0 brings. It only allows you to do it with a few currencies, and it is available in the “Get Performance” section.

What Cryptocurrencies can you Buy on Coinbase?

How many cryptocurrencies are on Coinbase? The number of cryptocurrencies you can buy and sell on the platform is limited. More than 90 cryptocurrencies are listed right now, well below what you will find in other, more complete exchanges.

That is one of the weak points of the platform. Of course, most of the most important are available to invest in.

Of course, the platform allows you to follow the price of more than 4,000 crypto assets, although you cannot trade with them through its Exchange.

Trading Limits on Coinbase

How far can you take your trading on Coinbase? The limit that you can buy and sell in each operation will depend on the verification status of the account, but the maximum is 30,000 euros.

Fees on Coinbase

How much does it cost to invest in Coinbase? Only a little compared to other traditional assets, but much more than in other more advanced Exchanges.

Coinbase commissions depend on the operation you are going to carry out. You will have to pay every time you:

  • make a deposit
  • you make a withdrawal
  • buy a cryptocurrency
  • You sell a cryptocurrency

And how much will you pay for each commission?

Coinbase charges total commissions or expenses between 0.5% – 4.5% depending on the purchase amount, the method of purchase, and the cryptocurrency in question.

Operation Commission
Buy and sell 1.49%
Purchase with a credit card 3.99%
Bank transfer to Coinbase from your account 0%
Bank transfer to your account from Coinbase €0.15

How to sign up for Coinbase?

Creating your Coinbase account is very simple; you can do it 100% online, and it should take at most 10 minutes.

These are the steps to follow:

  1. Access Coinbase. If you do it with this invitation, you will receive 10 dollars (8.64 euros) to operate.
  2. Fill in the personal data with first name, last name, email, and password.
  3. Verify the email by clicking on the email that will arrive.
  4. Establish two-step verification with the mobile with the link that will come to you by email.
  5. Identify yourself personally with your ID, passport, or driver’s license, and take a selfie to verify your identity.
  6. Wait for the account to be verified.


Once you finish the registration process, all you have to do is add funds and start trading. That easy.

Opinions about Coinbase

Is Coinbase legit? What do your users think? First, you should be clear that Coinbase is not a scam. It is one of the most recommended when investing in cryptocurrencies if you are not used to investing.

That does not mean that it is perfect. His score in TrustPilot does not even reach the pass in TrustPilot.

Opinions about Coinbase

The main problem with the Exchange and the negative opinions are:

  • The commissions.
  • The time it can sometimes take to verify documents.
  • Some failures in money transfers to Coinbase.

Our Opinion Who is Coinbase for?

Coinbase is a good option for those who start or have a long-term investment approach in cryptocurrencies. It is a more secure and intuitive platform (more than the average).

It can be a good starting point to familiarize yourself with the crypto environment and then leap to more complex platforms like Binance.

We keep a small percentage of my cryptocurrency on Coinbase as an item in my investment portfolio.

Alternatives to Coinbase

The platforms to invest in cryptocurrencies have increased in recent years, and you must be careful when selecting the Exchange with which you work. In the case of Coinbase, its simplicity makes it very particular.

Still, if you have experience with stock brokers and prefer to save on fees, here are some alternatives to Coinbase:

  • Binance: Perhaps the clearest option. It is one of the platforms with the highest volume and users, and its commissions are lower. It also has two interfaces, a simpler one and a more advanced one. Here you can see a review of Binance.
  • Bittrex: Another outstanding exchange with several features and a diversity of cryptocurrencies. 
  • Kraken: Other classic Exchanges that have improved the interface and usability over time. It is a good option for those looking to immerse themselves in the world of cryptocurrencies fully.


Finally, you can tell us about your experience with Coinbase in the comments.

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