While these rules are by no means the only lessons you need, they’re definitely a great starting point. Sometimes, though, things are easier said than done, such as watching your portfolio value plummet and still having the iron willpower of resisting the sell button. One of the best solutions I’ve found to this was to join a community of like-minded cryptocurrency investors. Educated and smart crypto-traders, as well as the community members, will all be there to support your efforts and will be holding with you in the rough times.
As mentioned above, get ready for tracking and research. If you want to be successful, track the latest cryptocurrency news, ranking and key indicators daily. Join the discussion threads on Reddit and Telegram. And don’t be afraid to ask fellow traders questions. If you look at those discussion threads, you will see that it is a very engaged and helpful community. This will help you to make smarter decisions. But don’t do the FOMO trade (Fear Of Missing Out). Don’t be caught in the fear of missing out the next big opportunity in the crypto space.
TIP: A good first foray into cryptocurrency investing is the obvious, buying a major cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. After that, you’ll probably want to trade USD for crypto on an exchange like GDAX. Once you have done that, you could try trading BTC and ETH for other cryptocurrencies. Trading “crypto pairs” can be rewarding, but it is more complex and often more risky than just buying a single cryptocurrency as an investment.

You cannot “buy the dips” if you have all your money to invest already invested. LET US STRESS THIS POINT! The point should be obvious, but it bears repeating over and over. It is tempting to go all-in, but that limits your options. Consider always having some funds to the side to buy an unforeseen downturn. Even if you want to “go all-in” on crypto… leave yourself at least a little money to the side just in case. If you are all-in and the price takes a hard downturn, it takes lots of options off the table. It is hard not to go all-in when a coin goes down 60% – 80% over the course of weeks or months, but sometimes they go down even more than that, and it is wise to always prepare for the worst case.
Howling, expounding, hyping, none of this makes a difference to a market of any size. Markets are gigantic stochastic processes and it takes truly historic events to change or make the trends. If someone loses money investing there is no person to blame and that harsh reality needs to be embraced by anyone wishing to make money in the long term. Personifying the market warps the investor’s ability to understand the mechanism of buyers matching sellers and prices being made. “He said this, she said that” might make for tabloid journalism but it doesn’t make trends.

Limits orders allow us to place an order at a specific price. We can specify the amount of coin that we want to buy or sell, at the price that we want this to happen at. You may have noticed that the order book is always full of sell orders that are a little higher than the current price and buy orders that are a little lower. The advantage with limit orders is that we can do do the same with our orders. The disadvantage is that our transaction likely will not be filled immediately and will count on the market price to make its way towards us.
Closing a trade in profit. It is important to take your winnings out of a trade. Cryptocurrencies move faster downwards than they do upwards, and you don’t want to be late cashing out of a trade. You also don’t want to be too early and miss out on extra profits. There are a lot of techniques to help you make this decision that are out of the scope of this beginner’s guide.
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Payment Methods – What payment methods are available on the exchange? Credit & debit card? wire transfer? PayPal? If an exchange has limited payment options then it may not be convenient for you to use it. Remember that purchasing cryptocurrencies with a credit card will always require identity verification and come with a premium price as there is a higher risk of fraud and higher transaction and processing fees. Purchasing cryptocurrency via wire transfer will take significantly longer as it takes time for banks to process.
Maybe you remember when, thanks to The Wall Street Journal, everyone thought the SEC was going to meet on May 7th to decide whether or not Ethereum (ETH) was a security. If you had taken up a large position in ETH prior to the 7th, you would have been disappointed when the price fell from ~$793 USD to ~$743 USD amidst news that there actually was no meeting after all.
Bitcoin trading occurs on exchanges. These exchanges accept your fiat currencies (like USD and EUR) in exchange for a cryptocurrency (like BTC). These exchanges maintain a liquid pool of bitcoin, allowing users to withdraw their bitcoin at any time. Investors who wish to trade on that exchange can deposit bitcoin into their personal wallet on the exchange, or make a wire transfer to the exchange’s bank account. The exchange notices this transfer, then credits your account.
Why is it necessary to do this way? When you go shopping, you try to find the best prices looking for discount programs, bonus campaigns and other ways to minimize your expenses. When dealing with crypto trading, you have no need to compare prices in different places as the cost is on the chart already. All you need is to understand whether this price is suitable for you or not.
This is not a get rich quick scheme. While returns can be good at times, I have seen periods of stagnation, five +30% market dips and a bear market. Whenever you enter the market, it could be on the rise, in a drop or be stagnating. I have also had days and weeks where I have seen a significant decline in my portfolio. I can't predict what the market will do when you enter. Please invest for the long term. This is much more volatile and risky than the stock market.
Consider setting stop orders after you buy. Did I really just wait to point #37 to commit a whole tip to stops?! They are super important for everything except maybe building a long position over time. A stop order will create a market order when a price is hit. This means stop orders are subject to slippage and fees, but this also means you can calculate your risk. As a very general rule of thumb, one might want to ladder stops when not at a computer to protect their investment. Sure, crypto markets are thin (low volume), and that means prices could dip and eat all your stops (super depressing when this happens). However, most of the time we don’t get very deep and temporary dips, and thus most of the time stops will work as intended and simply save your investment in the case of a downturn. I.e., use stops, but be careful and understand the risks.
In stocks, it makes sense to sell losers, but that isn’t always true in crypto. In stock trading, if a company is not doing well, it can be smarter to sell their stock and buy a stock that is doing well. In crypto, big changes can happen quickly. A bearish coin can make a turnaround at any support level or based on some good news or rumors and make 100% gains in a matter of hours. If you aren’t trading frequently and aren’t at a computer 24/7, it can be a solid move to slowly build a position in a coin that isn’t doing well, but that you think is a good long-term bet. The only exception to this rule is this, if you understand TA, it is generally wise to ladder out when all the short term averages have fully crossed under the long term and in when they have crossed over. Your goal is still the same, to build a position low and hold until highs, you are just practicing some risk management in between. This added measure helps protect you from long bear markets. In other words, only sell losers if you have a logical reason and trust yourself to buy back in. If not, focus on building average positions (but plan for the worst before it gets better). Bottomline on this: Stocks move much slower than cryptos. So a loser sold now and shifted to a winner can mean months upon months of rewards. Cryptos tend to move fast and go into bear and bull mode in groups and go on runs at the blink of an eye. Sell a loser today and shift it to a winner, and trends could be changing by the time you wake up. It isn’t that you should never sell the losers and buy the winners, it is that it is trickier in crypto than it is in stocks and the same logic doesn’t apply exactly.
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Swing Trading Strategy – Swing trading is somewhere in the middle of Day Trading and Trend Trading. This is because Day Trading is holding an asset from a couple of seconds to a few hours but never more than a day. Trend Trading, on the other hand, is when the trader looks for a longer timetable and keeps the asset between weeks to months. Swing traders hold an asset for a couple of days up to a few weeks.
Backed by trusted investors and used by millions of customers globally, Coinbase is one of the most popular and well-known brokers and trading platforms in the world. The Coinbase platform makes it easy to securely buy, use, store and trade digital currency. Users can purchase bitcoins, Ether and now Litecoin from Coinbase through a digital wallet available on Android & iPhone or through trading with other users on the company’s Global Digital Asset Exchange (GDAX) subsidiary. GDAX currently operates in the US, Europe, UK, Canada, Australia, and Singapore. GDAX does not currently charge any transfer fees for moving funds between your Coinbase account and GDAX account. For now, the selection of tradable currencies will, however, depend on the country you live in. Check out the Coinbase FAQ and GDAX FAQ

A week in the crypto market is equivalent to three months in the traditional capital stock exchange, in terms of events and occurrences. One who wants to jump right into the deep water of crypto trading has to follow it not just on a daily basis, but on an hourly basis. It’s not everyone that can play this game. Nevertheless you need to consider the amount of time invested in the process. Sometimes it pays off to be a long-term investor, rather than a daily trader. By the way, as a daily trader it does not necessarily mean you are bound to buy and sell and trade every single day. Trades can reach their destination within minutes, as well as within months. Think about the time you are willing to invest in studying and tracking the market. Remember your time has marginal cost, or in other words – your time has a price tag. If you have decided to put your time and effort into trading on a daily basis, it is better to start with small doses and examine the performance prior to increasing invested amounts. This is yet an additional benefit of crypto – the possibility of trading on micro-transactions. Unlike the capital market, where if you put an eye on Apple stock, you would need to buy a minimum share equivalent to a couple thousand bucks, in crypto you can perform transactions of a few cents.
Hey Will. Thanks for the helpful guide! I’ve just gotten into crypto and found this info extremely useful. Just a question regarding how you keep your alt coins safe. As far as I can tell, you can’t keep many of these alt coins on a Trezor hard wallet, so do you just use something like My Ether Wallet instead? Cheers mate! Here’s to a cracking 2018!!
To stress some points made above, realize that a diverse portfolio and investment strategy will eat into gains as often as it staves off losses. The only way to make big profits most of the time is to make risky moves. If you go all in on a single coin at a given price and it goes up, that is a payday. If it goes down, your investable funds are locked into that crypto (unless you want to sell at a loss). Diverse strategies protect against this, but they will also eat into your potential gains (as it is rare for everything to go up or down at once). Know what you are looking for and know how to weight your portfolio to reflect that.
You’ll find that different exchanges cater to different markets. Today, most countries have at least one cryptocurrency exchange specializing in their own currency. There are exchanges that can accept New Zealand Dollars in exchange for bitcoin, for example. Other exchanges are known for certain pairs. Bithumb, for example, has particularly strong liquidity in the ETH/KRW (South Korean Won) pair at the moment (and it’s easily the most popular cryptocurrency exchange in Korea).

UPDATE October 1st 2018: Binance is still my favourite cryptocurrency exchange to trade on but I have changed my strategy big time over the last couple of months. I have been using a cryptocurrency trading bot to make my trades for me and have seen awesome results so far… This is the Notorious Bot – which is becoming pretty famous in Crypto circles. Using the bot reduces the time and stress involved with trading manually and maximises the potential for profit with minimal risk. Crypto trading bots are only really right for those who have a portfolio of at least 5k in cryptocurrency already, if you’re in that position have a read of this post where we review cryptocurrency trading bots and introduce you to the Notorious Bot.
Dollar cost averaging one’s purchases of Bitcoin reduces risk in sudden changes. This reduces the sting of or sudden pricing changes, reducing reliance on a single point of entry. By increasing your Bitcoin investment over time, you reduce the desire to buy or sell often. If there’s anything we’ve learned from the long run is that Bitcoin is here to stay (knock on wood). Stick to your gut, but don’t ignore others.
If you’re new to cryptocurrency, you were probably sucked into this rabbit hole for one of three reasons: You heard about the hype regarding Bitcoin, Litecoin or another very popular coin and you wanted to be one of the first adopters of a potentially world-changing piece of technology. You saw the returns that people were getting from cryptocurrencies and heard…
Daytraders try to utilize special short-term course fluctuations. In the crypto space, this brings them profits between one and three percent. On other values they lose money. It’s almost a zero-sum game. Allegedly, good day traders average one to two percent in profit per day. We tried it and we are evidently worse than the statistical probability.