Opensea: What is it and how does the NFT Platform work?


It’s undeniable that lately NFTs have come to the forefront of the general public, especially thanks to millionaire acquisitions of works of art that have contributed to increase their fame. The NFT sector is in continuous ferment and by now it seems that also the great companies have decided to launch themselves in this market arriving to produce native NFT or to sell them directly. Although there is a lot of talk about them, not many people know what they actually are. NFTs are nothing more than digital tokens based on a blockchain and endowed with a unitary identity that makes each one unique.

And if there are digital assets, it stands to reason that there should be a platform on which to regularly trade them. One of the most well-known platforms for buying and selling NFTs is certainly Opensea, which we will now go over in detail.

What is Opensea

Opensea is a platform, or rather a marketplace, founded in November 2017 and specialized in buying and selling cryptocurrencies and digital objects. To understand its relevance in the market, suffice it to say that it currently hosts more than 300 assets, as well as thousands of digital assets.

It is certainly interesting to note that, at least at the beginning, the platform was conceived to be destined to the CryptoKitties market, one of the very first video games conceived to combine the video game aspect with the innovation of the blockchain, later on, however, it assumed more complete and global functionalities.

At present Opensea is practically the reference platform for buying and selling digital objects. Directly based on the Ethereum blockchain, one of the most renowned cryptocurrencies in the world, it is able to support others as well and features the incredible figure of over 240 payment options a user can choose from to finalize their digital purchase.

How it Works: Features and Functionality

The way Opensea works is also what has determined its growth in the market and still continues to favor its consolidation among the general public. We’re talking about an extremely simple system, despite the fact that the subject is not the most immediate for those who are just approaching the world of digital assets. All you have to do is create your own profile on the platform, connect an Ethereum-based wallet, the most popular of which is MetaMask, and insert in it all those digital objects you intend to sell.

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The platform has been designed in such a way that a moment after connecting the wallet, it will automatically scan it for all the objects and assets needed to actually finalize a sale. The other users can freely view the objects contained in a portfolio and, if there is one they like, propose a purchase price or simply accept the one set by the seller. The operation is therefore very similar to Ebay.

If you want to view or modify the objects in your possession you can do so by going to the main account and clicking on the item My Items. The user will be able at any time to determine both the price and the duration of sale of a particular object, also, once the purchase has been made, you will receive a confirmation email. Opensea is available both as a web version and as an Android and IOS app.

How to Make Transactions on Opensea

In order to carry out buying and selling operations on Opensea, it is essential to have a cryptocurrency wallet that will then be linked to your profile. Currently the platform offers several of them, but the most popular and used, also for a matter of immediacy and simplicity, is undoubtedly MetaMask. Since Opensea is based on the same blokchain of Ethereum, if you want to buy digital objects you will need to own a certain amount of this digital currency.

How to Buy at Auction

Let’s see now how to buy. First you need to go to the official website of the platform and from there proceed with the registration of a personal account, with a request to enter personal data and email address. Once the account has been correctly created, it will be necessary to associate your wallet to the profile. Generally, this operation is done automatically, if not, just wait for the pop-up request to connect a wallet and select the one in your possession among those listed.

Once the integration between wallet and profile is done, you can move on to the next phase of discovering and viewing all the digital objects and assets present. To quickly view the wide variety of options available, just click on the Browse tab. Many of the objects can be purchased with a mechanism similar to a typical auction. When the proposed amount is the highest, the asset will be awarded and you will receive an email confirmation of the successful transaction.

To place your bid, just click on the item Place a bid and determine the desired amount. Multiple bids are quietly accepted, also because in the absence of a higher bid, the eventual auction will be extended by 10 minutes with respect to the natural expiration.

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How to Sell

Let’s see now how to sell. After having correctly registered on the platform and connected your wallet, you can move on to the real operational phase. If the user’s interest is in selling NFTs, it will be enough to click on the Create button and customize in all aspects the creation process that will lead to the creation of a digital object. 

Image, eventual notes and description will be all factors completely customizable by the user in total autonomy. Once the object has been created, it will be necessary to determine the conditions of sale and it will be possible to choose between two types of auction: Fixed price or Best offer.

Once this last detail has been established, the final step will be to pay the transaction to put it on sale and wait for a possible interested buyer with whom a sale will be established with the same dynamics already highlighted in the previous paragraph.

How to Sell ERC-721 Tokens

If you have ERC-721 tokens in your wallet, that is, tokens specially created for the Ethereum cryptocurrency network, you can auction them on Opensea. The first step to take will be to access the platform by interfacing the wallet containing the tokens and then click on My Items. From here it will be possible to select the item to be sold, in this case the ERC721 tokens, and confirm your decision by clicking on Sell.

Once all the details have been established, including the selling method, to proceed it will be necessary to click on Publish your ad. In order for the asset to be effectively available for a possible third party purchase, however, it is essential to make the payment of two transactions. The first, one-time one, is needed to authorize the user’s account for the selling activity; the second one is needed for Opensea to be able to access the cryptocurrency you are about to put up for sale.

Once these two steps are done, the token will be officially placed in the sale condition and you will be able at any time to see how the auction is proceeding either through your account or by simply clicking on the asset.

How to Create NFT Tokens

Opensea, despite being a wide-ranging marketplace, is mostly known as a platform specialized in NFT tokens. To be able to proceed with their creation and subsequent buying and selling, it is sufficient to have an Ethereum wallet and a MetaMask account, as well as obviously a profile on the platform itself.

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In an NFT token it is possible to insert almost any type of file during its creation, although they are mostly sold in audio, video or image formats. There are also limitations in terms of file weight, Opensea, for example, supports up to 100mb, however it advises users to limit themselves to half that to facilitate operations and minimize any possible errors.

The cost of creating an NFT token essentially depends on the price of the transaction on Ethereum. Once it is created, it will be possible to place it in your wallet, collect it or make it available for possible sale.

Costs and Commissions

As far as costs and commissions are concerned, Opensea applies a commission percentage of 2.5% on each successfully completed sale transaction. Opening and managing an account and creating a digital asset are completely free of charge.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, is buying and selling NFTs worth the effort it requires? And is doing it through Opensea convenient? The answer to both questions is positive, because despite the fact that this is a relatively recent trend, there’s no denying that it’s an industry to keep an eye on, as certified by various technical analyses and forecasts.

Opensea, for its part, proves to be a reliable platform where ease and immediacy of use certainly represent the main cornerstones. Of course, before approaching this market, it should be remembered that a period of training is absolutely indicated to reduce possible risks as much as possible.


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