Beginner’s Guide to Binance: Complete Review

Beginner’s Guide to Binance: Complete Review

Binance has evolved considerably over the years into a full-fledged financial platform, warranting a full update of our Binance review. This article will give you a thorough overview of its features, and delve a bit deeper into the details on what makes Binance such a popular choice in the crypto community. And because we value ethics in the blockchain ecosystem, we will also have a closer look at its Binance Charity platform.

From a relatively modest cryptocurrency exchange, this crypto platform has grown into a behemoth in the sector. Thanks to the versatility of its services, Binance quickly surpassed the likes of Coinbase, Kraken, and other pioneers in the crypto trading industry. Today it sits comfortably in the #1 spot of crypto exchanges regarding users, trading volume, and the number of trading pairs on offer.

If you ever wanted to know whether this hype over Binance is warranted, keep reading this Binance review. Let’s get started with a bit of history.

Short Introduction to Binance

Changpeng Zhao founded Binance in 2017 through an ICO of the native crypto of the platform, the Binance coin (BNB). The success was immediate, as he managed to raise over $15 million through the public sale. Quite the starting capital for a new crypto exchange!

Quickly enough, the company released the Binance.com crypto trading platform. It took Binance less than a year to become the largest cryptocurrency exchange on the planet, with the biggest trading volumes around. It was literally crushing the competition, offering a huge array of popular crypto trading pairs, together with very low trading fees. Traders that used the BNB crypto received considerable fee discounts, making Binance the go-to exchange for almost everyone in the crypto markets.

What Is Binance.US?

The Binance.com trading platform is not available if you reside in the USA. In order to comply with regulations, US citizens need to migrate to a separate platform, Binance.US. This trading platform launched in 2019 to accommodate US citizens and is considered to be a watered-down version of the main Binance cryptocurrency exchange.

Compared to the original exchange, only a small selection of cryptocurrencies is available on Binance.US. The most popular ones are still present, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Dogecoin, among dozens of others.

To make things worse, not all US residents can open a Binance.US account. Users residing in Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, New York, Texas, and Vermont are unable to access any of the exchanges services. Consequently, if you are living in the USA, Binance might not be your best choice for crypto trading.

Note that this particular exchange is not the subject of this Binance review.

What Is the BNB Cryptocurrency?

Another important aspect of Binance is BNB (or Binance Coin) cryptocurrency, the native utility token of the trading platform.

At first, BNB had a limited number of use cases, such as providing discounts for trading fees to those that used it on Binance.com. However, the utility for BNB has increased considerably, and it can now be used for various purposes such as:

  • Paying for fees on the Binance trading platform.
  • Staking for securing the network and receiving passive income on the BSC.
  • Participating in auctions on crowdfunding Binance Launchpad platform.
  • Payment for transaction fees on the Binance Decentralized Exchange.
  • Various financial services (lending, borrowing, savings accounts) on the Binance platform.

All in all, BNB has evolved from a simple discount token into one of the best cryptos on the market.

What Is the Binance Smart Chain (BSC)?

Not to be confused with the Binance Chain, the BSC is a smart-contract capable blockchain that runs on a byzantine fault-tolerant consensus mechanism. It uses proof of stake for validation where BNB holders can lock their tokens to secure the network and gain rewards.

The BSC provides developers with an ecosystem for deploying dapps in a cost-effective manner, rivaling some of the leaders in the industry such as Ethereum. Consequently, the platform has encountered enormous success since its launch in September 2020. There are already hundreds of DeFi apps running on BSC, with PancakeSwap being one of the most significant ones.

What is the Binance Launchpad?

The Binance Launchpad is a crowdfunding platform for new and upcoming projects. In a nutshell, it’s the proprietary ICO platform on Binance, and only BNB holders can participate. Thanks to the popularity of Binance, up-and-coming blockchain projects can gain exposure to a large number of investors.

The main benefit for investors is that each project goes through a validation period. The Binance team assesses the viability before listing, ensuring that there is no risk of scams or rug pulls.

Many successful projects have been launched through this platform, including high-profile cryptocurrencies such as Axie Infinity, Elrond, and Matic (Polygon).

Binance Charity – Binance’s Donation Platform

To make this Binance review even more relevant to our cause of ethics in the blockchain space, we gave the Binance charity platform a closer look. In fact, the company has a separate website dedicated to social good and charity donations.

The goal of Binance Charity is a simple one – to empower billions of unfortunates through the multiple benefits cryptocurrencies provide. To this end, Binance provides donators with a transparent platform where each donation can be tracked from its origin to its destination. Moreover, the platform provides a robust infrastructure that can be utilized by NGOs to engage and manage volunteers all across the globe.

The Short-Term and Long-Term Impact of Binance Charity

One extremely positive aspect of Binance Charity is that the range of projects is quite vast.  For instance, there are short-term relief projects for natural or human-made catastrophes such as hurricanes or earthquakes.

More importantly, however, it’s the platform’s work on various long-term projects that matter the most. Donations projects like the famous COVID-19 relief have already reached millions of beneficiaries. In this instance, donation funds have directly been used to provide extremely important resources. Personal protection equipment for doctors, oxygen tanks for hospitals or direct crypto donations have already reached thousands of people in need.

Additionally, Binance charity has been working on reforestation efforts through the Three million project. Initially, the promise was to provide resources for planting 3 million trees (as the name suggests). However, this goal has been pushed further to 10 million, which is quite an ambitious number. To increase engagement with donors, the platform provides NFT certificates for every donation.

These tree-NFTs have multiple goals:

  • Donors can use them to track the trees that have been planted through their donations. Each NFT has the details of particular saplings embedded in their metadata. This allows users to track the location, species of the trees, and the date of planting.
  • They can be shared on social media to increase engagement and draw in more donors.
  • The NFTs will be planted in the Sandbox metaverse on virtual land owned by Binance. The virtual Binance forest on this metaverse will be a visual representation of all the trees planted through the donation program.

All in all, we can conclude that the efforts are genuine and that Binance’s reach and reputation play in favor of the less fortunate in this instance.

How Does Binance Charity Work?

On the platform, donors can specify the project they wish to donate to, and directly transfer cryptocurrency in a specific wallet for that relief fund. In this case, the funds will be directly sent to the local organization that handles this project.

In case donors don’t have a preferred project, they can simply deposit funds into the Binance Charity Wallet. This blockchain program gathers donations and allows the Binance Charity Foundation to allocate funds depending on their priority. Transparency is key here, and Binance provides a full transaction ledger of all donations and funds allocations.

Binance Review – Apps Overview

With those basics out of the way, let’s get into the gist of our Binance review by giving you a thorough overview of all of its features. But before you are able to use any of the services on Binance, you will need to verify your ID on the platform. This is a short KYC procedure that involves providing your full name and address, as well as a copy of an ID document.

Once that has been taken care of, you have three different options on how to use the platform:

Worth noting is that you can secure your login to any of these options using two-factor authentication.

[ep-pro-tip title=”Pro Tip”]Pro Tip: Download the Binance Mobile app and use it as an additional 2-FA with your Google authenticator to easily login into the desktop and web-based versions of the platform. [/ep-pro-tip]

The wallet on your Binance account is a custodial wallet. This means that you do not have the private keys to your funds. Consequently, every time you withdraw any amount from Binance, you will need to go through a withdrawal request period.

Buy Bitcoin, Ethereum, and many more

In its most basic form, Binance functions as fiat-to-crypto brokerage (and vice versa). Through the “Buy Crypto” option on the homepage, you will be able to purchase and sell various cryptocurrencies using fiat money, mainly with credit and debit cards.

This includes popular coins such as BTC, ETH, DOGE, XRP, or LTC together with a large selection of low-cap, highly volatile cryptocurrencies. It’s a convenient instant buy option for beginners that wish to start their cryptocurrency journey. Moreover, the platform accepts dozens of different fiat currencies, which increases the chances of avoiding high bank exchange rates.

Trading on Binance

Here’s where things start to get interesting in this Binance review. Binance became famous for its trading capabilities, so let’s have a look at all the options at your disposal.

Convert

The convert option is the most basic way to trade cryptocurrencies available on Binance. It provides you with a simplified interface, with access to all of the trading pairs available on the platform.

There are no complicated charts or indicators here. You simply choose which two coins you want to trade and enter your desired amount. You have two options for setting the price:

  • Market – which instantly completes your order following the market price.
  • Limit – which completes the order once a certain price threshold is met (lower or higher than market).

All in all, it’s a great tool for beginners or investors that don’t have time to fuss around with complicated trading charts.

Classic/Advanced

The Classic and Advanced trading platforms are where you will be spending most of your time as a spot trading enthusiast. If you have any experience with technical analysis and reading charts, you will be right at home here.

The interface will provide you with every indicator possible to find the best entry and exit prices and allow you to deploy advanced trading strategies. Moreover, you will be able to use advanced order types essential for capital preservation, such as limit stops and stop losses.

Margin trading

Margin trading is another popular type of crypto trading available on Binance. It’s a high-risk, high-reward method, where the trader borrows money from the exchange with the hope of multiplying their gains. In a nutshell, users can put the funds in their accounts as collateral and leverage more capital than they possess.

The advantage of margin trading for spot trading is that it allows the use of leverage on more exotic altcoin pairs than those present in the futures market. Depending on the trading pairs, traders can leverage from 2X and up to 10x. You will find the market pairs where margin is available with a small 2X next to their ticker.

This trading method also includes all of the advanced trading indicators and order types. Note that before being able to trade with margin, you will need to deposit funds into a specific margin account. This is in order to separate the collateralized funds from your daily trading capital.

[ep-pro-tip title=”Pro Tip”]Pro Tip: Setting stop losses is essential when margin trading, as this method can amplify losses as much as it can increase gains. [/ep-pro-tip]

P2P

The P2P section allows Binance users to access a digital currency market where they can buy and sell cryptos to each other. In this instance, Binance acts as an escrow, ensuring both ends of the trade are respected. Once the seller receives their payment, Binance releases the assets directly to the buyer’s crypto wallet. It’s a similar concept to P2P marketplaces like Paxful and LocalBitcoins.

The P2P market allows users to access various payment methods that are otherwise unavailable in other sections of the platform. Since the payment methods mainly depend on the user that is posting the offer, you will be able to find some unusual methods. These can include popular electronic payment processors (Revolut, Transferwise, WeChat, etc), or bank-specific transfers that further decrease transaction fees.

Additionally, since P2P accepts bank transfers, you will be able to pay with various fiat currencies, including EUR, USD, GBP, AUD, CNY, JPY, among many others.

[ep-pro-tip title=”Pro Tip”]Pro Tip: P2P provides the most versatility regarding payment methods, with more than 60 different ones available. [/ep-pro-tip]

Derivatives Market on Binance

Other than spot and margin trading cryptocurrencies, Binance offers its users trading options on various derivatives. This derivatives platform can be considered as a separate entity from its spot trading counterpart and requires a specific account, similar to margin trading.

Crypto Futures Trading

When trading crypto futures, users are able to speculate on the value of cryptocurrencies, without really purchasing any coins. Instead of the actual cryptocurrency, traders purchase financial contracts that give them the obligation to buy or sell various assets at the moment of expiration of this contract. Binance offers two types of futures contracts for various cryptocurrencies:

  • Perpetual, which have no set date or price. Instead, the user can choose to go long or short and close the position whenever they wish.
  • Quarterly, which expire every three months.

Traders can use as high as 125x leverage, making this an incredibly risky, but profitable venture. Moreover, traders can choose between two major types of settling contracts:

  • The USDⓈ-M Futures contracts, allowing settlement in USDT or BUSD, two major stablecoins supported by Binance.
  • The COIN-M Futures contracts, allowing settlement in cryptocurrencies.

The major selling point of crypto futures trading on Binance is the fact that you can bet against the market. This way, you can keep making profits, even though the market is declining, a perfect strategy for bear markets.

Grid Strategy Trading

Binance offers the Futures Grid, an advanced tool for experienced futures traders. This tool automates the buying and selling of futures contracts based on a grid, starting from an initial long or short position.

For example, a trader might be placing an initial long position in BTCUSD, hoping to see the price of Bitcoin rise in the future. Meanwhile, they can place additional buy orders at each time the price goes $200 below the BTCUSD market price. To complete the grid, they place additional sell orders each time the price goes $200 above the market price.

Consequently, this approach allows the trader to make profits from price fluctuation within the trend of their initial position.

Trading Battles

Finally, traders can engage in Futures Battles, which is a gamification of the futures trading platform on Binance. In this “skirmish mode” traders choose to go long or short in the BTCUSDT market in 1-minute sessions. Participants predict whether the price will rise or fall in this time interval, and the platform matches opposite positions automatically.

After the expiration of the one-minute battle, the user that predicted the price movement correctly receives Binance points. Users can later use these points to redeem rewards. All in all, it’s a great addition to the platform, as it allows beginners to understand how futures work and the impact of leverage on their portfolios.

Finances on Binance

As we mentioned earlier in this Binance Review, the company offers more than just a trading platform. You can access a variety of financial products to help you increase the size of your holdings over time.

Savings

The easiest way of making passive income through Binance is by locking your funds into a savings account. Binance allows you to lock your crypto funds and receive interest on more than 130 different cryptocurrencies, with various interest rates. There are two types of savings:

  • Locked Savings – where you can lock your funds for predetermined amounts of time. In this case, interest rates are higher, but your funds remain locked until the expiration date.
  • Flexible Savings – where you receive low yields, but can recover your locked funds anytime.

Both are low-risk methods to make some additional income while you aren’t trading with the funds in your account.

Liquidity Pools

Binance offers a liquidity mining opportunity where you can earn high yields by providing liquidity to the platform for decentralized swaps. When providing liquidity, users will receive rewards from the fees whenever other traders utilize this liquidity pool.

For example, you can provide liquidity in the CAKE/BTC pool by providing CAKE and BTC coins. Every time users use this trading pair on the swap platform, 0.2% of the fees go to the liquidity providers, in proportion to their stake in the pool.

Staking

Similar to savings accounts, users can stake their coins to support the functioning of various blockchains through Binance. They function on the same principle as savings, where fixed staking brings better yields. Flexible staking is less risky but provides fewer rewards.

Crypto Loans

Additionally, you can request a line of credit in the form of some cryptocurrencies by providing crypto as collateral from your trading account. You can reimburse these loans within 7, 14, 30, 90, and 180 days.

That said, borrowing on Binance is not the best offering on the market. Loan-to-value rates are incredibly high, 60% and up. This means that you will need to have more collateral than the loan you are applying for, which defeats the purpose of the loan.

Binance Review – Payment Methods Quick Overview

The payment methods on Binance are heavily linked to the regulations of your resident country. As such, depending on where you are situated, you will be able to choose between various methods such as:

  • Visa or Master Card Credit Card and Debit Card.
  • Bank account transfers.
  • Wire transfers.
  • ACH transfers.
  • SEPA transfers, etc.

If you find yourself limited, remember to use the P2P trading section, where you can purchase crypto using 60+ different payment methods.

Binance Fees

Binance has the major advantage of offering low fees for trading. The spot trading fee starts at 0.1% for market and taker fees and goes as low as 0.015% depending on the volume traded.

Because the platform offers such a large array of services, covering all of the fees in this Binance review would be counterproductive. If you are interested in checking them out in detail, follow this link.

Withdrawal fees, on the other hand, are similar to what we can see with other similar platforms such as Coinbase. For Bitcoin, the withdrawal fee is 0.0005BTC, and that’s without the transaction fees of the blockchain. Withdrawal fees differ for every cryptocurrency, so make sure you check them out before proceeding.

What About Customer Support?

Unfortunately, Binance support is notorious for being slow and unresponsive. It’s one of the major drawbacks of using Binance as your main exchange. If you encounter an issue, it can take days before it’s resolved.

While most centralized exchanges suffer from this issue, poor customer experience has become unusually common on Binance. The 2.0 score on Trustpilot is a good reflection of our own experience with their customer service, which is in simple words, almost non-existent.

Concluding our Binance Review

The time to conclude this Binance Review has finally come. Binance is a giant in the crypto ecosystem, there’s no doubt about it. Through its wide array of services, it caters to all types of crypto investors. Both beginners and expert traders will find something to love, including streamlined on and off-ramps to the crypto market, as well as elaborate trading tools.

Moreover, the addition of the crypto futures market and advanced financial products turn Binance into a well-rounded financial platform for all types of investors. You can either take risks or play it safe with steady earnings, whatever rocks your boat.

Additionally, there are some genuine efforts to provide a transparent donation platform powered by cryptocurrencies. With more than $70 million raised in crypto, Binance’s efforts have been quite remarkable in this regard.

If you can look past the poor customer service, Binance is the complete package when it comes to centralized exchanges.

Ivan Djordjevic

Ivan is a professional copywriter that specialized in cryptocurrencies and blockchain. He has been an active contributor and participant in this space since 2013. Over the years, he has built up some serious knowledge about blockchain protocols and has taken the opportunity to share this valuable information with his readers on various blogs.
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