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Choosing the Best NFT Platform According to the Latest Market Data

Daniel Urbánek
Daniel Urbánek
April 14, 2023
News, Education, Ethereum

Cannot decide whether to use OpenSea, Blur, LooksRare, or X2Y2? Let us help you choose the best NFT platform according to the latest market data comparison.

Out of the dozens NFT marketplaces available, a few of them emerged as leaders in their field. We are talking about the big four - OpenSea, Blur, LooksRare, and X2Y2. Because each marketplace offers unique features, It can be quite challenging to choose the best-suiting platform for your cause. Continue reading to find out the most recent market data comparison and feature overview. Choose the platform that best suits you!

TL;DR:

  • Blur has experienced rapid growth in terms of trading volume, while OpenSea is slowly declining
  • Trading volume does not necessarily correspond with user numbers, indicating the presence of professionalized big-volume traders (Whales)
  • Most whales are using Blur for its high speed and wide selection of analytical trading tools
  • LooksRare and X2Y2 historically have a very high percentage of wash trading volume thanks to their incentive structures

Quick Comparison

OpenSea: The biggest and most established NFT marketplace post is held by OpenSea for a long time. It is a go-to platform for many traders and collectors, offering basic functions and intuitive design. If you like the idea of interoperability and/or have collections on multiple chains, OpenSea is probably the platform for you.

X2Y2: The majority of NFT platforms used to have a tendency for centralization, which was the impulse for creating X2Y2 - the main OpenSea competitor. With its lightweight design and functionality, X2Y2 is an ideal choice for beginners. It focuses on decentralization by distributing the governance and platform profits to X2Y2 stakers.

Blur: On a more advanced note, Blur is the option for professionally-oriented traders and collectors. Running solely on the Ethereum mainnet, Blur offers its users a wide selection of analytical tools and features. It is one of the fastest marketplaces available, which could come in handy in this fast-paced industry. Blur has its own token BLUR, serving mainly for governance.

LooksRare: focuses mainly on the incentive structure of their token LOOKS, to promote trading activity. It has a unique set of smart contracts not forked from OpenSea. LOOKS stakers can get a share of the platform profits in wETH. NFT sales and listings are also incentivized by an amount of LOOKS. Because of the incentive structure, LooksRare historically had problems with wash trading.

Volume and Growth

Below we can see the assessment of daily trading volume across the different trading marketplaces in the past 3 months. Visibly major share is reserved for Blur, second goes OpenSea, third X2Y2, and the rest of the volume is divided among smaller platforms.

And just to get a grasp of the situation within a wider context, here is a similar comparison in a 2-year range.

We can see a massive decline in the trading volume of OpenSea, which was gradually replaced by Blur, around the end of 2022. This could be the result of professionalization of the NFT scene, with the majority of the big-volume traders transferring to the more advanced environment of Blur.

Number of Traders Across Platforms

Tapping into the number of traders and combining it with trading volume can give us valuable insights into what type of trader is the most common on each platform. Again we start with the data from the past 3 months on the daily number of traders on various platforms.

The situation here is quite different, as OpenSea manages to hold its top position, even when compared to Blur. Note that X2Y2, which was in 3rd position in trading volume, has now been surpassed by three other platforms in the number of users.

In the bigger time frame, however, we can see a long-term decline in the user numbers of OpenSea. Two reasons come into mind, for one the overall crypto market cooldown across the entire 2022 projected itself surely into NFTs. And secondly the transfer of some users into more suitable and affordable platforms.

Wash trading

Wash trading has been a recurring problem within the NFT sector. It occurs when an individual or entity simultaneously buys and sells the same asset to create the illusion of increased trading activity. This deceptive technique aims to attract other traders or investors by making the asset appear more popular or liquid than it actually is.

The table below is an all-time comparison of wash trading across the major NFT platforms.

Two particular platforms catch the eye in terms of wash trading volume percentage. LooksRare and X2Y2 both have an incentive structure that is built on rewarding trading volume. This enables users to collect more rewards by artificially inflating the volume by wash trading.

What Platform is Right for You?

We have analyzed the latest market data and looked at the different features of major NFT platforms. If you are looking to choose one, it is best done by considering your interest. Are you a professional trader/collector looking for an advanced toolkit and high speed? Choose Blur

Or are you a complete beginner looking to purchase your first NFT? In that case, X2Y2 offers the best services for you, even accounting for the high wash trading volume. OpenSea remains a safe bet for all categories of users, especially if you operate on a lot of chains at once.

Overall the market trend seems to be aiming more toward quality and affordability. As I mentioned before, the professionalization of NFTs has come a long way and it is becoming harder for smaller retail investors to catch on in this field. Decentralization also seems to be an important aspect for users. Many platforms are issuing their tokens to engage their community in the governance process.

Disclaimer: The content of this piece reflects the writer's opinion. This article is not intended to provide financial advice and is meant solely for entertainment and educational purposes. Investing in cryptocurrency involves significant risk. Capital is at risk, and returns are not guaranteed. Always conduct your own research.

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