Coinbase Review 20227 min read

Coinbase is a crypto trading platform that offers users the ability to buy, sell, and trade over 100 tradable cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, BNB, and Dogecoin. Coinbase is a big company with over 89 million users and $278 billion in platform assets.

Beginners will probably prefer the original Coinbase platform for simple sell and buy orders. More advanced crypto users can access added features through Coinbase Pro, available to any Coinbase user.

Cryptocurrencies are a relatively new asset class, which can be risky and volatile, not suitable for all investors. But, if you are interested in going into cryptocurrencies, Coinbase is a great choice for beginners and veterans too.

Investing in cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings (ICOs), or decentralized finance (DeFi) is highly risky and speculative, and markets can be extremely volatile. Consult a qualified professional before making any financial decision. 

Is Coinbase a safe company?

Coinbase as a company was founded in 2012 as a platform to send and receive Bitcoins. It has grown to support several unique cryptocurrencies and has over 3,700 employees worldwide. Also, Coinbase is a decentralized company with no headquarters.

Coinbase operates with users in over 100 countries, with customers trading approximately $547 billion per quarter. The company operates a robust cryptocurrency ecosystem that supports 11,000 financial institutions.

Coinbase operates two separate trading platforms and a separate cryptocurrency wallet service. Among the Coinbase suite of products, you’ll likely find everything you need to start and manage a cryptocurrency trading portfolio or plan.

Which cryptocurrencies are available on Coinbase

Coinbase accepts trading in over 100 cryptocurrencies and regularly lists new currencies. Here are some of the most popular Coinbase coins:

  • Algorand (ALGO)
  • Bitcoin (BTC)
  • Cardano (ADA)
  • Dogecoin (DOGE)
  • Ethereum (ETH)
  • Litecoin (LTC)
  • Polkadot (DOT)
  • Polygon (MATIC)
  • Shiba Inu (SHIB)
  • Solana (Sol)
  • Stellar Lumens (XLM)
  • Sushi Exchange (SUSHI)
  • Uniswap (UNI)
  • USD Currency (USDC)

What are the pros of using Coinbase?

  • Cryptocurrency Earning Opportunity: Earn interest on qualifying balances or earn a small amount of new currency through Coinbase Earn.
  • Easy to Use for Cryptocurrency Newbies: The main Coinbase site and mobile app are intuitive and allow you to quickly buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrencies.
  • Lowest prices available with Coinbase Pro: Anyone can upgrade to Coinbase Pro, a low-cost, multi-functional live trading platform.
  • Support for many cryptocurrencies: Coinbase currently accepts more than 100 currencies for trading, and the number is constantly growing.
  • Coinbase card: They recently launched a Visa Debit card which can help you use your cryptocurrencies for daily spending.

Why should you not use Coinbase?

  • Customer service issues: Coinbase receives low ratings for customer service, even with little or no serious account security issues.
  • High Transaction Fees: Transaction fees are often high on the main Coinbase platform.
  • No trading access for many other coins: While Coinbase accepts an impressive list of coins, a lot is missing.

Trading Experience

As mentioned above, the company operates two different platforms called Coinbase and Coinbase Pro. Each enables you to trade, buy, and sell cryptocurrencies but offers unique features.

Is Coinbase a Good Trader?

Its trading is beginner-friendly and easy for anyone with basic computer knowledge. Coinbase is available on the web or via Android and iOS mobile devices. If you have ever traded stocks through an online broker, you will find a similar experience.

You can see your Coinbase wallet from the main dashboard, and you’re never less than a few clicks away from a screen to buy and sell coins.

The crypto markets operate 24/7, so you can log in and trade anytime. Purchases are available using funds from your account or directly through a connected bank or card account. Extra fees may apply depending on how you pay to purchase cryptocurrencies. Purchases are credited to your account immediately, but you may need to wait for the deposit to clear before making a withdrawal on Coinbase.

Coinbase Pro

Coinbase Pro appears to have been created exclusively for professional traders, but anyone with a Coinbase account can log in and use the pro version. It offers several types of trading, including limit and stops orders which are not available on the main Coinbase platform. If you are switching between the two platforms, you can transfer your cryptocurrencies from Coinbase to Coinbase Pro.

What fee does Coinbase charge?

Coinbase does not disclose its prices and fees and recently removed the full list of fees from Coinbase’s online help section. However, the costs appear on the transaction screen when you enter a transaction, so you know what you are paying before entering a transaction.

Security

Coinbase uses industry-leading security practices to protect customer deposits and assets. That being said, there are always risks associated with using cryptocurrencies. Therefore, following the best online practices is essential to protect your account information.

Specifically, 98% of customer assets are stored offline using cold storage in a global network of warehouses, backed by digital and paper backups. It uses standard encryption and banking security for its website. Additionally, all accounts must use two-factor authentication, a measure to prevent others from accessing your account.

Even with these strong security measures, users still fell victim to scammers and hackers who drained their accounts. It is important to use unique random passwords on financial sites such as Coinbase to avoid this type of loss.

How to open a Coinbase Account

Signing up is a fairly quick and easy process, similar to opening a new online bank or brokerage account. To open a fully verified account, you must enter your details, including your social security number.

New account holders must present a photo of a government ID to prove they are who they say they are. If you’ve heard of cryptocurrency being anonymous, that should be your proof that Coinbase can track your transactions for tax reporting and other regulatory reasons.

Once you have set up your account and verified your information, you will be able to buy and sell cryptocurrency up to your Coinbase account without limit.

Customer Service

Customer service is one of the biggest issues for Coinbase users. It’s nearly impossible to contact anyone for help, so consider that Coinbase is largely self-serve.

Officially accepted customer service options include:

  • The Coinbase help page.
  • Email support tickets.
  • An automated phone system.
  • A chatbot.

Client Satisfaction

When everything works as expected, you will most likely become a satisfied customer. However, things usually don’t go as planned, and customer reviews point to poor customer support experiences and little help navigating scams, compromised accounts, and blocked accounts.

On Trustpilot, for example, Coinbase has a rating of just 1.6 stars with over 6,000 reviews. Most complaints relate to customer service, loss of funds, and freezing of accounts. Users commonly get the ‘restricted account’ error on Coinbase whereby the reasoning is not always clear. Customers from other review sites have left similar complaints.

Coinbase also suffers from an issue that seems to affect many competitors in the industry. Over 12,000 complaints have been filed with the Federal Trade Commission, with many former users claiming they received little or no support after losing funds to hacked accounts.

Account Management

You can view and manage your account using the Coinbase website and mobile app. You’re never far from seeing your wallet balance or entering an exchange:

If you want to manage your assets on the go, the mobile app is very user friendly and has everything you need in terms of account management.

How does Coinbase compare to other cryptocurrency companies?

The cryptocurrency market is changing rapidly with new competitors. You also can manage your cryptocurrency without a large centralized exchange like Coinbase. Its main competitors are Binance, KuCoin, Gemini, FTX, Kraken, etc.

Several crypto lovers use a combination of multiple cryptocurrency exchanges and wallets to access a wide variety of currencies, protect their cryptocurrencies, and keep their fees as low as possible.

Bottom Line

Coinbase is a superior platform for anyone who wants to buy, sell, own, and trade cryptocurrencies. It is especially useful for cryptocurrency beginners who want a simple buying and selling experience without worrying about the complexity of external wallets such as Metamask, and decentralized exchanges.

The main disadvantages of Coinbase are its pricing structure and customer service. However, it is a great choice for anyone interested in going into cryptocurrencies.