This article compares the two giants, Coinbase vs. Binance, two of the most popular and biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the market. We’ll be discussing various topics to help you decide which exchange is best for you.
So without further ado, let’s have our contenders battle it out and see who wins.
Firstly, let’s start with the fees. Depending on if you are an experienced trader making big trades or getting into cryptocurrency, fees can quickly add up. You should be aware of three main types of fees: deposit fees, withdrawal fees, and trading fees.
Let’s look at Coinbase first.
For Coinbase to make money on cryptocurrency purchases or sales, they charge a spread of half of a percent (0.50%) which may be higher or lower due to market fluctuations.
They also charge a ‘Coinbase Fee,’ which is the greater of these two.
A. Variable fee based on region, product feature, and payment type. The link is here for you to check out your fees based on your location. If you are using debit or credit, it is 3.99% everywhere in the world.
B. A flat fee based on the amount of crypto purchased
- If the total transaction amount is less than or equal to $10, the fee is $0.99 | €0,99 | £0,99 | C$.99
- If the total transaction amount is more than $10 but less than or equal to $25, the fee is $1.49 | €1,49 | £1,49 | C$1.49
- If the total transaction amount is more than $25 but less than or equal to $50, the fee is $1.99 | €1,99 | £1,99 | C$1.99
- If the total transaction amount is more than $50 but less than or equal to $200, the fee is $2.99 | €2,99 | £2,99 | C$2.99
For example, let’s say you want to buy $100 of bitcoin and pay with your bank account; the flat fee would be $2.99 as it is more than $50 but less than $200. The variable fee would depend on your region. For the sake of this example, let’s say you are in the US and the fee for purchasing with your bank account is 1.49% which is $1.49 in this case. The flat fee is greater than the variable fee; therefore, you will be charged the flat fee of $2.99.
- up to 2% crypto-to-crypto conversion fee
- 1.49% selling fee
- while there is no withdrawal fee from Coinbase, there is a network fee that depends on how busy the network is at that moment. The network fee is for the crypto miners to confirm your transaction.
Binance, on the other hand, has a more simplistic approach to fees. Their only fee is 0.10% done on trades worth less than 50 BTC in 30 days. If that limit is surpassed, the fees get even lower.
Winner: Binance is the clear winner in this category, as they make it simple and very cheap to buy cryptocurrency.
Signup and KYC Experience
KYC is known as Know Your Customer or Know Your Client. It is a security measure that goes through identifying and verifying the identity of a customer. Crypto exchanges need this information for you to make deposits, trades, and withdrawals. Some exchanges require full identification (passport, driver’s license, banking info), while some require very little, making it quick and easy to signup.
Signing up for a Coinbase account is very straightforward. First, you need to give your name, email address, password, and location. Then go to your email to verify and click the link. Next, Coinbase will ask for your phone number to send a 7-digit code to verify your number. You will now be prompted to fill in your personal information.
Once that is complete, you will receive another email asking you to now verify your identity. There are different options for identification (passport, driver’s license, or ID card). Connect your payment method, and you are ready to send in your application!
Approval from Coinbase can happen within 24 hours or a few days.
Once you click on the confirmation link, a pop-up should appear on the screen the first time you log-in, and immediately enable 2FA to increase your security.
2FA means 2-Factor Authentication, an additional layer of security required to log in to your account. It’s another password randomly generated every 30 seconds or so. The most popular apps are Authy and Google Authenticator.
Winner: Binance wins here as well. Signup is less than five minutes, and you are good to trade on their exchange. Coinbase KYC can be considered too invasive.
Ease of use & Feel of Website/App
This category will be looking at the functionality and ease of use of each website and its UI. Whether or not you are an experienced trader or just starting, a good design and flow of a website are essential in choosing the suitable exchange for you. Let’s compare!
Just looking at the home page of Coinbase clearly shows you that it is very intuitive and easy to use. They live up to their company mission statement, ‘Be the easiest to use.’ Their design is very aesthetically pleasing, simple, clear font and copy — none of that complicated crypto jargon. There is a reason why they have become one of the most popular bitcoin wallets — it appeals to the general public.
Binance, on the other hand, gives you everything that you would need when making trades. While it is still well designed, a beginner can easily be overwhelmed by the number of available options.
Winner: Coinbase. It has a cleaner, more simple design. We recommend anyone new to the crypto space to use and learn Coinbase and then move on to Binance or Coinbase Pro.
Now it’s time to get your money on to the exchange to make some trades. Let’s review the ways that you can deposit on each exchange.
- Bank Transfer (ACH)
- Wire Transfer
- SEPA Transfer
- Connected Bank Account
- Cryptocurrency/digital assets transfer from another wallet
Binance only offers crypto trading and not fiat. The only way to deposit money is through the transfer of digital assets. Don’t fret; you will still be able to use your credit or debit card to buy cryptocurrency, which we’ll discuss later on.
Winner: Coinbase provides more options to the user for funding their account, especially someone who has never bought cryptocurrency before.
Instant Buy Options ( Credit or Debit Card)
You will be able to use your credit or debit card to purchase cryptocurrency on Coinbase and Binance.
Depending on which country you are in will dictate which options are available. As of right now, Coinbase only allows Australia and Singapore to use credit and debit cards. Everywhere else is debit card only for instant buys.
You can use both credit and debit when purchasing bitcoin on Binance.
Winner: Tie as both exchange other the use of credit and debit card purchases.
Reputation & Security
Both exchanges are two of the most reputable in their business. They both have great security measures such as, 2FA which again adds an extra layer and password to your account. Let’s get into the specifics of each.
Coinbase holds 98% of users’ funds offline, which eases the thought and challenges of potentially hacking the exchange and taking money. The 2% kept on the exchange is insured by Lloyd’s of London, a specialized insurance company for businesses. Safe to say that your money is well-kept. Also, being based in the USA means Coinbase has to follow US financial laws, some of the world’s strictest.
Binance has had its troubles when it comes to security and scandals. In July of 2018, users reported missing funds due to a system upgrade. Binance apologized publicly and then gave a 70% discount on trading fees for the promotion caused. Although they had some hiccups, they for their security against hackers. Earlier in 2018, a hacker stole login credentials and tried to rob the exchange. Their security protocols detected that something was wrong and shut it down. No users lost their funds, and they even donated the hacker’s funds to charity!
Winner: I don’t think there is a clear winner here. Due to the happenings at Binance, some people have deemed the exchange skeptical. However, they are still one of, if not the biggest, cryptocurrency exchanges; they didn’t get there by having inadequate security. Coinbase, I believe, is the winner of this category just because they are more regulated and transparent of where user’s funds are, plus the Trading Experience.
Now let’s look at each exchange’s overall feel and experience.
Coinbase is the most accessible, most user-friendly exchange to use. Their clean, straightforward design allows all people, especially beginners, to purchase cryptocurrency quickly and hassle-free. I would recommend this to friends who are just getting into this space or looking to make an immediate purchase.
Binance’s trading view is a lot more advanced than Coinbase’s, but it provides the most products and services for your trading needs. There is no crypto-related service that Binance doesn’t have.
Winner: This category has no winner. I believe this is up to personal preference and capabilities when choosing a winner here.
Coinbase vs Binance: The Winner is…
After a long and hard battle between these two monstrous competitors, Binance comes out on top because of their vastly cheaper fees, user-friendly funding options, and they offer six times (600%) more coins to trade than Coinbase. If you like a clean and simplistic aesthetic, choose Coinbase. If you want to have every option and tool in the crypto trading market, choose Binance.