BlockTrades: What it is and how to use It

6 March 2018 1:34 pm

A Beginner’s Guide to Crypto Exchange Services


With the current state of the cryptocurrency markets, users have so many options to choose from when it comes to buying, selling, trading, and exchanging different cryptocurrencies. The amount of exchanges out there, both centralized and decentralized, can be overwhelming for those still new to the industry (as well as a headache for those who are experienced).


So what options do you have if you’re just wanting to purchase a coin and you don’t want to go through the hassle of setting up yet another exchange account, verify your identity, transfer BTC or ETH (and pay a fee for doing so), then trade the BTC or ETH for the coin you actually want (and pay a fee for doing so), then, finally, you withdraw the coins you actually wanted in the first place, guessed it: you pay (yet another) fee for doing so.


Things have got to be easier for trading. The amount of hassle in the markets can turn out to be one of the greatest barriers to entry if the crypto community isn’t careful. Enter: BlockTrades.


You may already be familiar with some other services that are similar in what they offer, but we’re going to take a look at BlockTrades and show you not only how to use it, but why it’s an increasingly important option for those looking to exchange crypto assets.


What is BlockTrades?


BlockTrades is an incredibly user-friendly platform for directly exchanging one crypto asset for another. Instead of going on the open market like one might do for day trading, BlockTrades is closer to a traditional exchange platform where you simply trade one asset for another using the current market price. You can think of it as a digital version of when you visit a foreign country and might bring your native currency to be exchanged for the local currency before beginning your exploration of a new city!  


Getting Started


So you’d like to get started using BlockTrades—fantastic! Now let’s get into the nitty gritty of using the platform (you’ll see very quickly that there isn’t really any “nitty gritty,” the platform is remarkably easy to use).


Create an Account (or not)


This is one of the perks of BlockTrades: you don’t need an account. If you’re looking to do a quick exchange and simply get the coins you’re looking for, then you can easily use the dashboard and receive your funds with no need to register an account.


However, if you’re serious about keeping track of your transactional history (which those of us in the US ought to be in regards to the fun new tax season) then it’s highly recommended to create an account. Creating an account will log and keep track of all your past transactions.



Creating a new account is simple and painless. All you need to do is sign up with your email address, choose a password (Security Tip: Not the same as your email password), and a link will be sent to your email address to activate the account.




Regardless of whether you’ve decided to use BlockTrades with an account or not, the process of initiating an exchange will be the same. Let’s take a look at what you’re prompted with:



The first thing you’ll need to decide on is which cryptocurrency you’re going to use for an exchange. The box on the left (pictured above) will show which currency you’re sending to be exchanged. Right next to the currency name, in this case Ether (ETH), you’ll see a small arrow indicating a drop-down menu.



The drop-down menu will give you a variety of payment methods for exchanging cryptocurrencies. You can see many of them above, but the list also includes other payment methods such as: BitCNY, BitEUR, BitShares, BitUSD, OPEN.BTC, OPEN.DASH, OPEN.ETH, and Bitcoin.


Next up, we’ll want to select the crypto asset we’re looking to trade for. Like we did with the first box, we’re going to find the box on the right this time.



This time we’ll be selecting what we’re receiving rather than sending. Again, we can select the drop-down menu and take a look at the options.


For this example, we’re going to be selecting the option of trading Ether (ETH) for BitShares (BTS), so I’ll highlight and select the BitShares value on the list and it will direct us back to the dashboard.


When we return to the dashboard with our selected pairing, BlockTrades is going to give us a bit more information before continuing. Take a look below at the highlighted bits.



The first green box (up top) shows users what the maximum amount of the specific cryptocurrency you’re allowed to deposit at a time is. Luckily, 60+ ETH is a pretty large amount! I think most of us looking to exchange likely won’t need to worry about such a high limit.


But the second green box (just below) does tell us come crucial information, and that’s the going market exchange rate BlockTrades is using for the exchange. You’ll see above that, at the time of compiling this guide, 1 ETH will get you 3,621.4 BTS. You can read about how BlockTrades gets their market prices here.


Enter Address and Get Sending


Now that everything is set up and we’ve decided on both the send asset and receive asset, we’ll need to enter our BitShares address (public username) to tell BlockTrades where to send the BTS..


Once you’ve entered in your address, you have the option to include a memo below, for the purposes of the guide, I’ve simply written that this is for the guide! Next, you’ll need to click on the “Get Deposit Address” button (highlighted in green). This is going to tell you where to send the Ether (ETH) for the exchange.



After clicking on “Get Deposit Address,” you’ll be prompted with two options: you can either selected the public address given (with a button to automatically copy the address) or you can use the QR code on the right to scan the wallet address for users on mobile. Copy the address in given in the rectangular box (that’s what we’ll be using in the next step).


Send Payment


All that’s left to do now is to go to your ethereum wallet and enter the address we were just given. We’ll go to whatever payment method we chose, in this case Ether, and go to send a transaction (for the purposes of the guide, we’re going to make an example “MyEtherWallet” account instead of a personal one and go to the Send Ether & Tokens tab on the top menu.



Once here, we’ll use the address we copied from the previous page and paste it here in the “send” tab, just like you would for sending ETH for any other transaction. After pasting the address, you’ll enter “Generate Transaction” and wait. Congratulations, you’re all set! If you open up your BitShares wallet, you’ll see the BTS have been received (after network confirmations are done) and you’ll have the amount you sent after subtracting the fee.

The process is essentially identical regardless of what you’re trading for. With Bitcoin, you just need to enter your wallet address and wait for confirmation, as you would with any other withdrawal from an exchange or receiving payment from another party. Now that you’ve got everything you need to start exchanging, you can get started with BlockTrades today!