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How to Buy Altcoins

What are altcoins and why do people buy them?

The word “altcoins” is an abbreviation for “alternative coins,” and it usually refers to all cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin (BTC). This term originates from the fact that altcoins are the de facto alternatives to traditional fiat money and Bitcoin. 

If you’re looking to buy and sell crypto, you may already know that there are thousands of different altcoins today. However, the first ones launched as early as 2011. Early examples aimed to improve energy efficiency, transaction speeds, and other aspects of Bitcoin. More recent ones depend on their developers’ goals, and can serve various purposes. 

There are numerous reasons why people may choose to buy altcoins. For instance, their aim of “plugging” perceived shortcomings of Bitcoin often implies that these coins are “improved versions” of the cryptocurrency they derived from. 

Utility is another common reason, as altcoins with more utility have a better chance of surviving market fluctuations, thanks to broader use cases, such as Ethereum’s ether (here’s where you can buy Ethereum). Users can opt for a wide variety of altcoins today, each of which typically performs a different function in the crypto economy.

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How to find new altcoins

Altcoin research is critical before embarking on any new crypto adventure or endeavor. A good starting point for researching any crypto project is its whitepaper, or other official documentation. The presence (or absence) of such documentation can tell you a lot about the project’s seriousness. Whether it’s a promising young project, or relatively cheap altcoin, a few things to look for while observing the whitepaper include:

  • Use case
  • Lock-up period
  • Tokenomics/token economics
  • Founding team
  • Social buzz
  • Roadmap

Use case

A project’s use case is its unique function, or main problem that the crypto project is attempting to solve. For instance, there are numerous Layer 2 projects whose goal is to improve the transaction times and low latency of traditional blockchains. Their aim is to achieve this without compromising decentralization and security.

Tokenomics/token economics

Tokenomics refers to a plan outlining the distribution of the project’s new crypto tokens. It typically includes what type of token it will be (inflationary or deflationary, with an unlimited or a limited supply, etc.), as well as other details. Some of them are how many tokens will be in the treasury, how many will be available for sale to the community, how many will go to the founding team and advisors, and more.

Founding team

The background of the project’s founding team is important in that it can similarly inspire confidence in the project’s success, or signal it may be wise to pass it up. For instance, you may verify whether the team behind the project is experienced or new to the market, and whether their backgrounds match the project. 

Additionally, it is critical to note if any of the team members have any fraudulent history with past projects. Beyond the founding team, you may also want to observe profiles of the project backers, and advisors.

Social buzz

Numerous crypto projects are community-driven, due to the fact that decentralization is at the core of cryptocurrencies. When it comes to confidence in a particular project, the growth of its community may be a significant positive indicator. Building crypto communities typically takes place on social media, so it may be worthwhile to check a project’s Discord, Telegram, and Twitter accounts.


A crypto project’s roadmap contains its timeline and major plans. When compared to what the project has accomplished, this aspect can indicate its level of seriousness. If the project successfully achieved its earlier plans on the roadmap within the specified timeframe, it can usually be interpreted as confidence-boosting. 

Where to buy altcoins

Cryptocurrencies, including altcoins, are available on countless altcoin exchanges. Among the most common ways of acquiring them are centralized exchanges (CEXs), decentralized exchanges (DEXs), and over the counter (OTC) purchases. 

If your goal is to combine security with ease of use, a platform like CEX.IO can be an excellent choice. Dating back to 2013, it has served more than six million users to date, and continues to expand and refine its comprehensive ecosystem of products and services.

Registering an account is straightforward and quick, and the platform provides an array of payment methods that empower you to act quickly should you find new altcoins that pique your interest. From e-wallets and bank transfers, to credit and debit cards, you can enjoy effortless fiat-to-crypto, and crypto-to-crypto transactions.

Moreover, CEX.IO’s award-winning platform is home to 300+ crypto markets. Combining deep liquidity, and advanced order types, Trading platform is an excellent resource to buy altcoins regardless of whether you’re crypto curious or crypto serious. It empowers users to:

How to buy altcoins with USD on CEX.IO

As a longstanding ecosystem of crypto products and services, CEX.IO provides an intuitive array of payment options catering to users from various regions and with differing preferences. Several of these methods include:

  • E-wallets
  • Bank (wire) transfers
  • Credit/debit cards

Regardless of which altcoin you’re looking to add to your portfolio, you can do so on our platform through the Instant Buy service, or our online crypto Wallet product. Below, we’ve outlined the necessary steps for both of these methods.

How to buy altcoins with CEX.IO Instant Buy service

Using the Instant Buy service requires the following steps:

  • Log into your CEX.IO account (or create one and get verified);
  • Hover your cursor over the Products tab on the homepage;
  • Select Instant Buy from the For Everyone column in the drop-down menu;
  • In the Buy cryptocurrency window, click on the drop-down arrow below the You receive field, and select the altcoin you’d like to buy;
  • In the You pay field to the right, select your fiat currency (USD) and enter the amount you’d like to spend on acquiring your chosen altcoin;
  • Click on the Buy button to the right of the You pay field;
  • You’ll be taken to the Add Funds window, where you’ll need to click the Select Payment Method button;
  • Confirm the purchase by following the instructions provided on the screen.

How to buy altcoins with USD using CEX.IO Wallet

Buying altcoins using your CEX.IO Wallet is just as intuitive, and includes the steps below:

  • Log into your CEX.IO account;
  • Hover your cursor over the Products tab on the homepage;
  • Click on Wallet;
  • You’ll arrive at the Wallet dashboard. Scroll down and select your preferred altcoin from the list of available cryptocurrencies;
  • Choose between Add Funds or Convert buttons;
  • If you choose Add Funds, the remaining steps are the same as for Instant Buy;
  • If you choose Convert, simply select the currency that you have on your CEX.IO balance and click the Convert button.

Tips for keeping altcoins safe

While there is no absolute security online, there are still ways to minimize the inherent risks. For instance, using altcoin wallets for storing holdings is a popular choice among crypto enthusiasts worldwide. Here’s how you can increase the security of your wallet:

  • Use a hardware wallet
  • Enable two-factor authentication (2FA)
  • Keep your software up-to-date
  • Use strong passwords
  • Back-up your wallet

Use a hardware wallet

A hardware wallet is a physical device whose greatest advantage is that it provides offline altcoin storage. This makes it virtually impossible for hackers to gain access to your altcoins. These wallets are hardly susceptible to online attacks because they are not connected to the internet. Trezor and Ledger Nano are examples of popular hardware crypto wallets.

Enable two-factor authentication (2FA)

This is an additional security feature requiring you to provide a second form of identification before being able to access your wallet. This second form of identification can be in the form of a biometric identifier (such as a fingerprint), or a code sent to your phone or email. Enabling 2FA adds an extra security layer to your wallet, making it more challenging for hackers to access your holdings.

Keep your software up-to-date

Software updates typically contain security patches that fix bugs or vulnerabilities that could potentially be exploited by nefarious actors. A crucial step in protecting your altcoins and securing your wallet is always ensuring that you have the latest version of available software. 

Use strong passwords

One of the most straightforward ways to secure your altcoin wallet is to use a strong password. A unique password contains a combination of lowercase and uppercase letters, special characters, and numbers. Simultaneously, do your best to avoid common phrases or words that can be easily guessed.

Back-up your wallet

In case your device is damaged, stolen, or lost, having a back-up available can be essential. It may be wise to keep a back-up of your wallet in a secure location, such as a paper wallet or a USB drive. Consequently, should something happen to your device, you can regain access to your altcoins without much hassle or stress.


Altcoins are becoming increasingly popular in the ever-evolving crypto landscape. Each project has a unique goal it was designed to achieve, and crypto enthusiasts from all walks of life select ones they’d like to acquire according to numerous factors. 

What they all have in common is the fact that buying these cryptocurrencies is made effortless and intuitive by CEX.IO, a reputable and longstanding ecosystem of crypto products and services. Explore CEX.IO today and see which altcoins await an invitation to join your portfolio. May the markets trend in your favor!


What are the different types of altcoins?

The different types of altcoins include governance tokens, staking-based coins, mining-based coins, and stablecoins. The type of altcoin depends on what its purpose is, and how it works.

What are some pros and cons of altcoins?

On the one hand, altcoin pros may include a wide variety of available coins, potential for higher survivability, and the fact that they aim to improve upon other cryptocurrencies’ weaknesses. On the other hand, altcoins are generally less liquid than Bitcoin, have smaller market capitalization, and have lower popularity. Additionally, numerous altcoins have lost community and developer interest.

Why choose CEX.IO to buy altcoins?

This platform’s longstanding reputation makes it an excellent choice for acquiring altcoins. It provides numerous convenient pathways to buy altcoins with USD, other fiat currencies, and also crypto-to-crypto transactions. Additionally, its award-winning Exchange Plus platform is home to 300+ markets, offering a wide array of interesting projects to choose from (not to mention live crypto prices).