Although Bitcoin might be a fan favourite for Australian cryptocurrency investors, there is still a tonne of altcoins out there showing some great growth indicators.
If you’re new to digital currency and want to step into the blockchain with a currency a little lower on the popularity ladder than Bitcoin, like Ethereum, Ripple or Litecoin for example we have some information for you below.
We’ll take a look at some of the popular exchanges to buy Bitcoin, of course, though these platforms also support investing in some other popular cryptocurrency too. Take a look.
Mini Crash Course
Much like BTC or Bitcoin, all altcoins or cryptocurrencies for that matter are purchased through an exchange. These currency exchanges are similar to a forex platform or stock exchange, however, they’re a little more fine-tuned to the cryptocurrency world.
You’ll have to sign up for these platforms to start buying digital currency like Ripple, Dash or Litecoin, though the process isn’t too complicated. When you’ve joined a cryptocurrency exchange, you can then login and transfer some funds from your bank account and begin making trades. Be sure to have a look at the best cryptocurrency to invest in at the time, and get started.
Of course, there’s a little more that goes into this, like the conversion from AUD/NZD to USD for some trading platforms, though choosing a coin and signing up to a trading platform is a good place to start.
With that out of the way, it’s good to know that as Australians we do have a myriad of options available to use when it comes to purchasing altcoins from the funds directly out of our bank account.
The issue that we face is that these exchanges only support a small number of altcoins, aside from the big names we mentioned above, XRP, ETH and LTC there isn’t a whole lot else.
That said, let’s have a look below at the steps you’ll need to follow to buy altcoins with fiat currency from your credit card, debit card or bank account and to start trading in a regulatory compliant way.
For some context, we’ll be teaching you how to buy altcoins with the Swyftx platform given that it’s the easiest to start trading with for Australians and one of the best exchanges to buy cryptocurrency, full stop.
Other exchanges to consider include CoinJar, CoinSpot, Binance, Independent Reserve and CoinBase. Though these aren’t as well rounded as the Australian exchange below.
Getting Started with Swyftx
As we said, the Swyftx crypto exchange is incredibly easy to use, so take a look at how to get crypto trading.
Setting up an Account
Being the go-to for Aussies looking to start crypto trading, Swyftx is effortless to set up and features plenty of security from the get-go. You’ll be subject to two-factor authentication along with low-fees and a simple buying, swapping, and selling experience here.
Head over to https://swyftx.com.au to create your account by hitting SignUp
Once you have an account with Swyftx get over to the SETUP MFA which is the service’s two-factor authentication solution to make sure you’re kept ultra-secure when trading. It’s important not to leave avenues for hackers to infiltrate your account, so be sure to do this first.
You’ll find the setup process under the “Security” tab on your Profile Page.
Going Through Verification
Following the multiple authentication setup, you’ll then need to work toward verifying your account, which doesn’t take too long. In fact, as far as we know, it’s the smoothest verification process out there.
Head over to the navigation pane, choose the Profile tab and you’ll see a Verification button.
Be sure to have your email, identification documents, and a mobile number handy to verify your account.
One final step following this is filling in your documents on the website itself.
There are a few personal documents that need to be shared, the same as a typical stock exchange like the ShareInvesting Platform with ANZ. Don’t be too concerned about posting these documents either, all these exchanges are required to keep these documents encrypted and secure.
Add Your AUD Funds
Once verification is complete, it’s now time to add some fiat currency or AUD to your account. This process is easy too, given that Swyftx supports PayID and BPAY so getting some cash into your account should only take a couple of minutes, or a few days depending on how your bank operates.
For those with a balance of Bitcoin in a wallet somewhere, you can deposit this too and begin trading cryptocurrency with it right away.
Start Investing in Altcoins
Now that your Swyftx account is set up and has funds available, you can start buying and selling cryptocurrency. Whether you’re looking for BTC, XRP or any of the smaller coins, you’ll find the process incredibly easy here.
Head to the Trade Page
On this page, you’ll find a long list of all the cryptocurrency you’re able to invest in, and we’re glad to say there’s a tonne.
To purchase a coin, all you’ll need to do is click on a cryptocurrency or search for one in the search bar. You can then click on the chosen coin and tell the Swyftx platform how much of your AUD balance you’d like to invest in this coin.
And that’s it.
You’re set up and have already started investing in altcoins through the Swyftx platform, it really is that easy. If you do have trouble though, you can reach out to the customer support team for some help. They’re ultra-attentive and helpful, so if you have any questions from trading pairs, trading fees or even transaction fee queries, they’ll be ready to help.
We would like to suggest, however, that you set up a hardware wallet on your device if you’re looking to invest and hold your coins. This will help you reduce the chance of losing these coins should there be an issue on the Swyftx end or in another wallet type.
If you’re a day trader though, keeping your coins on Swyftx for easy access is a better alternative.
Understanding Altcoins, Bitcoins and Cryptocurrency
To keep things as simple as possible; an altcoin is any digital currency or crypto asset that is not Bitcoin. As Bitcoin was the initial digital ‘coin’ in a sense, these altcoins are the alternate coin to Bitcoin.
For example, a Litecoin is a Bitcoin alternative. It’s still a digital currency or a cryptocurrency or a crypto asset, it’s just not a Bitcoin.
One way to understand altcoins is that these are all different models based upon the idea of Bitcoin — though they all work to solve or better themselves when compared to Bitcoin. A lot of these coins are designed for different reasons, when Bitcoin is far too slow for daily transactions, another coin (like Litecoin) stands in to operate a lot quicker, making it an ideal choice for replacing fiat currency.
Without exaggeration, there are hundreds of different altcoins, all with different methods of use, fee structures and levels of volatility. One reason why investing in cryptocurrency has become so popular is thanks to the diversity in the number of coins there is, generally speaking, there is something for everyone.
A few common altcoins you may have heard of include Monero (XMR), BitCoin Cash (BCH), Ether (ETH), NEO, Verge, IOTA, Cardano (ADA), and Ripple (XRP). All of these coins are ‘altcoins’ and all are a cryptocurrency.
An important thing to keep in mind is that a lot of altcoins are smaller in total volume and cheaper than Bitcoin, which makes them a lot more volatile — in an already volatile market.
When it comes to buying altcoins and trading, it’s important not to be too ‘jumpy’ and to sit and watch the market as it makes moves. A lot of newbie investors struggle to handle the rather sporadic movements in altcoin and there is certainly a learning curve to this if you’re coming from the stock market, however, the process isn’t too complex.
Payment Methods and Currency Conversion
As we briefly mentioned above, there are a few different ways to buy altcoins with your AUD or Australian Dollars, and we will take a look at these below.
Although not too many cryptocurrency exchanges support this as a high-speed trading method, there is a handful who do, including Swyftx or CoinSpot.
If you’re looking for a familiar means of transferring your funds from the bank into your exchange, then bank transfers are a great option. You can connect your bank account directly to the exchange and have a constant flow of funds for your investing endeavors, making for a smoother experience than if you have to transfer for each purchase.
Keep in mind that some exchanges do incur some rather hefty fees for bank account transfers, and some banks limit the speeds at which your transfers take place. Anywhere between 3 hours to a few days is common.
PayID, BPAY, Osko, and POLi
For those investors in a little bit of a hurry, these payment methods are for you. They do incur a higher fee than bank transfers, however, they do work almost instantly every time, so long as your bank has your verification details and supports instant transfers.
Look for an exchange that supports platforms like BPAY, OSKO, POLi and PayID for a rapid transfer. Both CoinSpot and Swyftx support these platforms, though fees are 0.9% and 0.8% respectively.
Credit Card and Debit Card
Given the exuberant fees charged on credit cards and debit cards for altcoin, there aren’t too many exchanges that support these methods of payment. However, there are some global cryptocurrency exchanges you can turn to if you really want to use a credit card for your crypto trading.
You’ll have to head over to Bittrex or Binance for these payment methods, though they are pretty great platforms when it comes to getting the most out of your time in cryptocurrency.
It might come as a surprise that PayPal is rather uncommon in the crypto world, and not too many exchanges support the service. There are workarounds though, like linking your debit or credit card through PayPal and then linking these cards to your exchange, though there’s not too much else.
You might be able to find a local cryptocurrency trader who supports PayPal directly to their account, but overall, if you’re using PayPal you might not have too many places to turn to.
Using Over-the-Counter or OTC for Bigger Investors
Designed explicitly for ‘whale investors’ looking to keep the market stable, the OTC option exists to allow you to make large crypto orders in a way that doesn’t upend the market and cause huge price fluctuations in the coin’s price.
You’ll have to turn to exchanges with good liquidity and a trading volume to match, and at current the only exchange we would suggest is Binance for its altcoin-focused OTC desk.
Final Things to Note
With all of those methods of payment and ways to buy altcoin in Australia out of the way, it’s good to have a place to store these coins – much like typical trading, you need somewhere for your coins to, and a typical bank account won’t cut it for these high-tech crypto assets.
For the traders who buy to hold, we would suggest storing your ‘coins’ or their keys, rather, in an offline wallet that is secure and not at risk of being targeted in any sort of hack. Some of these wallets can literally be a USB in which you store your coins and eject it from your device to keep them stored securely and offline – just don’t lose the USB.
For the traders who day trade, we’d direct you to store in an easily accessible online wallet that gives you the chance to trade without having to routinely access these keys.
All that said, there is a range of ways to buy altcoins in Australia, and a fair few payment methods supported to get you started. Be sure to invest with a regulatory compliant cryptocurrency exchange and never invest more than you can afford to lose.