Bitstamp Exchange Review & User Guide

BITSTAMP – EXCHANGE REVIEW & USER GUIDE

A highly liquid UK-based Bitcoin exchange providing low cost, and free deposits for trading some of the industry’s top cryptocurrencies

FEATURES
  • Advanced trading platform
  • Sub accounts available to give increased control
  • Multiple customer service options
FUNDING METHODS
  • SEPA
  • Bank Transfer
  • Credit Card
  • Cryptocurrency

Pros

  • High Bitcoin trading volume
  • Quick customer service response times
  • No fees for cryptocurrency deposits and withdrawals

Cons

  • Previous exchange security vulnerabilities
  • High minimum fees for fiat withdrawals
  • Personal info and ID verification required for all users

EASE OF USE

ID verification can take quite a long time, which is not a good sign given that the exchange has touted a more streamlined process.

This will hamstring new users who may not be able to trade on the exchange for several weeks while their account is being verified.

Advanced traders will take to the advanced trading platform easily, but the exchange itself isn’t the easiest to use for beginners, and could cause them to struggle.

COINS TRADED

Bitstamp allows for trading of some of the top cryptocurrencies on the market, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin.

This is a solid list of some of the most traded coins, but certainly not a comprehensive list by any means. The exchange has had a history of adding new coins for trading, and could certainly do so in the future.

A large subset of users will be happy with the coin selection on the exchange, while more active users will have to go elsewhere for trading.

TRUST FACTOR

Two attacks on the exchange are reasons to worry.

Both attacks, one denial-of-service and one hack of 19,000 Bitcoin, suspended withdrawals on Bitstamp for days after occurring.

These attacks did happen several years ago, and the exchange hasn’t experienced any issues since.

Bitstamp claims to hold 98% of all coins offline and agrees to an audit by one of the big four accounting firms, lessening the risk of any potential theft.

The exchange has been around since 2011, making it one of the oldest exchanges in the industry.

These more recent security measures show Bitstamp is taking security very seriously in an attempt to rid themselves of any security breaches in the future.

PRIVACY

Identity information collection is unavoidable to comply with major federal regulations, but Bitstamp takes privacy very seriously, going as far as to encrypt authentication files sent to the exchange for identity verification.

This is a welcome sight for those worried about previous hacks to cryptocurrency exchanges.

FUNDING & WITHDRAWAL

SEPA deposits for users residing in European Union countries are the easiest and come with no fee attached.

The exchange recently switched credit card processors to Masterpayment, reducing its processing fee to a respectable 5% for credit card purchases.

Fiat withdrawals outside of SEPA come with a minimum $15 fee, a deterrent for international users with low level funding.

Overall, Bitstamp provides deposit and withdrawal options for everyone, regardless of where they’re located.

FUNDING METHODS

METHODFEETRANSACTION TIME
SEPA-1-3 business days
Bank Transfer0.05% (minimum $7.50)2-5 business days
Credit Card5%0-3 business days
Cryptocurrency-Instant

WITHDRAWAL METHODS

METHODFEETRANSACTION TIME
SEPA0.90 Euro2-3 business days
International Bank0.09% (minimum ($15)1-5 business days
Cryptocurrency-Instant

FEES

Bitstamp allows for free SEPA deposits, making it a great option for EU residents.

Cryptocurrency deposits and withdrawals also come with no fee, which is rarely seen in the industry.

Trading fees are dependent on the amount of trading volume done in a 30-day period, with 0.25% being the largest trading fee for smaller level traders, a level that is much higher than other industry participants that tout trading fees less than half that figure.

Generally, fees on Bitstamp are reasonable and even non-existent for those residing in the EU, and a bit more expensive for international users looking to fund their account.

All Bitstamp fees are outlined on their site.

CUSTOMER SERVICE

A support ticket is easy to open and is usually responded to within 24-48 hours unless the issue is more in-depth.

The exchange provides multiple different contact email addresses as well as a support phone number (it’s not toll-free however).

Bitstamp takes customer service seriously and wants its users to have a good experience using the exchange.

SPEED TO COIN

Unfortunately, a slow identity verification process severely impedes the time it takes to onboard to Bitstamp.

Some users report a quick verification process, but it’s essentially a crapshoot on how long it will take from user to user, with times reported up to one month in extreme cases.

Deposits and withdrawals via cryptocurrency are instant, but any other method will take up to 5 business days.

Overall, Bitstamp lies right around the industry average for the amount of time it takes to be up and running with cryptocurrency on the exchange, outside of the unpredictable verification process.

Signup - 5 minutes
ID Verification - Up to 1 month
Deposit - 1-5 business days
Trade - Instant
Withdrawal - 1-5 business days

VOLUME

Over $150 million per day is transacted in Bitcoin, making up over 60% of the total volume transacted on the exchange.

Ripple daily volume of over $30 million also provides some of the better liquidity found on the market.

Other coins such as Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash don’t provide as much volume but are still good options on the exchange.

Since it offers less than 10 coins, Bitstamp has focused on increasing trading volume on its core coins, which it expects to continue growing in the future.

FEATURES & BENEFITS

An advanced trading platform provides in-depth trading analysis including advanced charting indicators, tools, order book, bid and ask spreads with volume, and more.

This will keep active traders using technical analysis very happy.

SMS price alerts are a neat feature that is not available at most other exchanges and give users real-time updates to coin price movements.

API access allows anyone to build applications on top of the exchange, and sub accounts are useful for active traders looking to better organize their portfolio.

The combination of these features are some of the best in the business.

TOTAL SCORE

Bitstamp does several things very well.

Free deposits via SEPA and cryptocurrencies make for an amazingly cheap way to start trading.

Advanced trading tools and charting indicators keep active investors happy while instant purchase options are great for beginners, although the platform isn’t intuitive enough for beginners to feel comfortable right away.

A potentially long verification process is a bump in the road for an exchange that is a solid option for European Union residents and active traders around the world.

BITSTAMP – USER GUIDE

Bitstamp requires a registration and user identification process before any cryptocurrency purchase can occur. Make sure you have your personal information and government-issued ID ready for the verification process. Once verification is complete, you'll find it easy to purchase the cryptocurrency of your choosing.

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1. Sign up

Registration only takes a few minutes and can be completed with name, email, and country of residence information.

Check your email to find the information for your Bitstamp account.

Your Client ID and password information will be provided in the email which you will need to log in to Bitstamp.

Write down both of these pieces of information as you will need them to sign in to your new Bitstamp account.

Immediately upon logging in with your new account information, you will be prompted to change your password.

Create a new password for your account and change your password to update your account information.

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2. Verification

Once you have successfully registered and logged in to your account, you will need to verify your account in order to make any deposits or trades on Bitstamp.

To begin the verification process select from Personal Account Verification or Corporate Account Verification based on your needs.

You will be prompted to fill in details about your personal information, including your address, date of birth, and social security number (for US taxpayers).

Front and back images of your ID document must also be submitted, along with a proof of residence in the form of a bank account statement, utility bill, or government-issued document such as a tax statement or certificate of residency.

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3. Authentication

Bitstamp offers two-factor authentication (2FA) through one of two methods: Google Authenticator and DUO.

To set up 2FA navigate to the Security option on the left-side panel and select Two-Factor Authentication.

First, write down your authentication key. You will use this in case you lose your mobile device and are unable to access your Google Authenticator or DUO application for 2FA.

Next, use one of the two methods available to scan the QR code and type in the 6-digit authentication code where directed.

Click the Enable Two-Factor Authentication button at the bottom of the screen and you’re all set!

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4. Payment Method

To make a deposit into Bitstamp, first navigate to the Deposit page via the top navigation pane.

You’ll be prompted to choose the deposit method you would like to use from the left-hand navigation pane.

If you’re unsure what deposit method is best for you, click on the ‘Which method should I choose’ button to find out more details about each deposit option.

Once you’ve decided on a deposit method, follow the instructions to complete your deposit and secure currency on the exchange.

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5. Purchase Cryptocurrency

Once you have deposited fiat currency into Bitstamp, you can use the instant purchase option which allows for fast cryptocurrency purchases.

Navigate to the Buy/Sell page from the top navigation bar.

From this screen you have a few options for making a cryptocurrency purchase.

Instant orders are fast and simple while more advanced options such as limit, market, and stop orders are options for more advanced traders.

To make an instant order purchase, select the Buy option and note how much fiat currency you would like to spend on your purchase.

Bitstamp will calculate the appropriate fee as well as the total amount of cryptocurrency you will receive.

If you’re happy with the transaction information provided click the ‘Buy’ button at the bottom of the page to complete the transaction.

Transactions can always be reviewed in your account by navigating to the Transactions section on the left-hand side navigation panel.

From the Transactions view you can view details from all your transactions, including date and time of transaction, transaction type, amount purchased and price, and any applicable transaction fee.

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6. Trade/Market View

The Bitstamp trading view provides a great platform for analyzing market trends, charting technical indicators and figuring out your next investment decision.

  1. Currency trading pair and price. Pair can be changed by clicking the down arrow and choosing another trading pair.
  2. Account information and balances corresponding with the selected trading pair.
  3. Last trades on the exchange for the selected trading pair
  4. Candlestick charting with advanced indicators and tools available. Buy and Sell functions are at the bottom-right of the charting tool.
  5. Visual market depth of current bid and ask spreads
  6. Order book with bid, ask, and volume information
  7. Open orders on your account. This pane will display purchase and sale options if selected.
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7. Withdraw

There are several different withdrawal options on Bitstamp. Choose the option that best suits your needs listed on the withdrawal page.

Cryptocurrency withdrawals can be made to any third-party wallet, and the exchange has special instructions when withdrawing to a hardware wallet such as Ledger Nano or Trezor.

Follow the instructions prompted if selecting this withdrawal method.

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Bonus Tip – Sub Accounts

Sub accounts give you the ability to allocate different parts of your portfolio to different accounts, giving you more control over cryptocurrency trading.

Using a sub account on Bitstamp is completely free and can be accessed from the account dashboard. Sub accounts can be customized to include any or all of your cryptocurrency or fiat deposits on the exchange.

Bitstamp

7

Ease

6.0/10

Trust

7.0/10

Funding

8.0/10

Fees

7.0/10

Pros

  • High Bitcoin trading volume
  • Quick customer service response times
  • No fees for cryptocurrency deposits and withdrawals

Cons

  • Previous exchange security vulnerabilities
  • High minimum fees for fiat withdrawals
  • Personal info and ID verification required for all users