NFT Marketplaces in 2024

NFT Marketplaces

TL;DR
NFT marketplaces have moved away from previously standard formats, and there’s a general shift towards trading-oriented platforms geared with NFT finance in mind. Recently, Tensor has introduced features akin to options trading, while Magic Eden has launched its own native wallet. Additionally, there are several platforms focused on the crossover between art and NFTs, including Verse, Prohibition and Avant Arte.

The NFT space has changed a lot from just a few years ago, and a major shift has taken place around NFT marketplaces, in particular. At first, options were limited and methods of buying and selling were simple, with a shop front or auction house type approach, where you could browse for what you wanted and compete to buy. That all still exists, but there are now more dynamic approaches, and a shift towards trading-style experiences and the intricacies of NFT finance.

Let’s catch up with the most recent news and developments around NFT marketplaces, and round up the best options to make use of.

Tensor

NFT marketplaces
Image credit: Tensor

Launched in 2022, Solana NFT marketplace Tensor is simply one of the best platforms out there. That comes down to its smooth UX, and the fact that in Pro Mode, it gives you a fully data-driven trading terminal, with charts and TA. This makes it very intuitive for anyone coming from regular crypto trading.

What’s more, Tensor recently launched the Price Lock feature, meaning you can lock in a buy or sell price on an NFT over a fixed period (up to seven days), and anytime before the lock expires, you can buy or sell at the locked-in price. Essentially, what Tensor has introduced here is a facility for buying options on NFTs (although it doesn’t outright call it that), and users have a simple means of going short on an NFT collection.

Also, Tensor currently has a rewards system running, with users earning points for their activity, and making use of the Lock System is another way of accumulating points.

Magic Eden

A huge advantage of using Magic Eden is that besides supporting Solana and Ethereum NFTs, it’s by far the easiest platform on which to buy and sell Bitcoin Ordinals, meaning you can do a lot all in one place.

This month, Magic Eden also launched a new cross-chain wallet, developed in partnership with wallet specialists Exodus. The Magic Eden wallet is multichain, allows for cross-chain token swaps, and supports Bitcoin Ordinals and sats management (if you’re interested in the Ordinals-related world of rare sats.)

NFT marketplaces
Image credit: Magic Eden

Magic Eden is also promising perks for its wallet users including open edition NFTs, points multipliers and airdrops (in connection with Liquidium, Saturn, and CryptoSlam), and improved allow list odds for the upcoming INK drop (which is a very hyped-up new Ordinals project.)

Blur

The dominant NFT marketplace for ETH NFTs is still Blur, which first grabbed volume from OpenSea with its much faster, trading-oriented experience, and disrupted the NFT space further with its ongoing token rewards system.

NFT marketplaces
Image credit: Blur

Rewards Season 3, happening now, is being operated in connection with the highly anticipated Blast project (which is building a new Layer2), and the Blur community is in line for airdrops from Blast at the end of Season 3 (scheduled for May.)

Blur also has a lending protocol, called Blend, taking it into the NFT Finance realm. So that’s Blur, Blend and Blast, but don’t get them mixed up. 😵‍

OpenSea

NFT marketplaces
Image credit: OpenSea

You might be wondering what happened to OpenSea, the starting point for a lot of people’s NFT journeys back in the early days, and the answer is that it’s working fine and supports multiple chains, but has kept itself as a storefront-style marketplace.

OpenSea isn’t moving into NFT finance, isn’t really set up for a trading-style user experience, and also hasn’t gone down the road of token rewards for users. As a result, the platform has received some criticism, and this month, CEO Devin Finzer remarked–with reference to the possibility of OpenSea being acquired–that, “if the right partnership comes along, then that’s something we should certainly consider.”

Still though, OpenSea remains committed to onboarding newcomers (with the option, launched this month, to create a self-custody wallet using an email address), and for users who aren’t looking for either high speed trading or the token-farming churn, this OG exchange is an easy-to-use choice.

Joepegs

NFT marketplaces
Image credit: Joepegs

Ethereum was the original NFT chain, but 2023 saw a big attention shift over to NFTs on Solana, and Bitcoin Ordinals. That trend is continuing into the new year, as Solana and Bitcoin continue to look like major hubs for JPEG activity, but are there any other networks worth a look?

One clear contender is Avalanche, as the alternative Layer1 has tended to make gains along with Solana, but from just outside the spotlight, and is establishing a reputation as a home for gaming development and RWA projects.

If you’re planning to look into NFTs on Avalanche, then you’ll need to use the Joepegs exchange, which is part of the Trader Joe ecosystem. By comparison to the other platforms mentioned here, it’s a no-nonsense marketplace, but for straighforwardly easy trading, it does the job.

Art Platforms

NFT marketplaces
Image credit: Verse

Away from the more trading/finance-focused NFT platforms, there have been several new art-specialized platforms launching over the past couple of years. These tend to be built with carefully curated releases in mind, with auction mechanisms often the preferred way to drop new collections, and sometimes packaging up physical work and NFTs in experimental ways.

In this niche, some notable platforms to explore include Verse and Prohibition, and if you’re looking for a focus on physical pieces connected to digital items, then Avant Arte is the place to visit.

NFT Marketplaces in 2024 - - 2024

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