- Well established service with a good reputation
- Lots of payment options
- Reputation ratings and escrow service are utilized
- Users must be careful and analyse each seller
- Can be more expensive than other exchanges
LocalBitcoins is one of the oldest cryptocurrency exchanges to buy Bitcoin with it’s establishment in 2012. LocalBitcoins started in Finland and has since expanded to all over the world with site listings in 15582 cities spread throughout 248 countries. LocalBitcoins is different from most other cryptocurrency exchanges because it is a platform that connects buyers and sellers in an open, peer to peer marketplace. People looking to sell Bitcoin can connect with people looking to buy Bitcoin and have the ability to confirm transaction details before going through with the trade to ensure both parties receive their funds.
The whole premise of LocalBitcoins is to provide an easy and secure method for anybody looking to buy some Bitcoins for the first time. First time users can sign up and create an account within minutes by only providing their email address, a user name and password. Later users can go through a more thorough identification process to further their chances of connecting with a reputable Bitcoin buyer or seller. Users of the platform develop a history that proves trust between users and complete verification improves trust between users, especially if they’re new. Another difference of LocalBitcoins compared to other exchanges is that they offer many payment options including debit & credit cards, cash on deliver, cash via mail, bank wire, Western Union, and various e-wallets.
LocalBitcoins is not your ordinary cryptocurrency exchange that offers a fancy trading platform with trading charts, technical indicators and other features. It is not designed to be an exchange where you analyze the price movements of Bitcoin, but it’s rather a marketplace where people can simply buy and sell their Bitcoins for a competitive price in the LocalBitcoins marketplace. Buyers can analyse the price of Bitcoin by scrolling through the seller feed in the marketplace. Here, buyers can compare Bitcoin prices, minimum and maximum buy amounts, the seller trust rating, payment method, and location. These are the things buyers can analyse and decide upon when buying Bitcoins on the LocalBitcoins marketplace platform.
The marketplace platform itself is very easy to navigate and intuitively designed. Users can easily spot reputable buyers and sellers by scrolling through the marketplace and looking at their reputation score and attributes. Once the buyer sees a seller who is reputable and is selling at a good price, the buyer can simply click buy, choose their payment method and submit. The seller then must review the order and confirm for the transaction to be processed. The LocalBitcoins marketplace platform operates very smoothly and is relatively simple for anyone to use.
LocalBitcoins has only one market which is the buying and selling of Bitcoin. Bitcoin can be bought and sold for which ever currency the seller chooses, usually the local currency where the buyer and seller are located. The amount of Bitcoin available to purchase varies from seller to seller and is easily known when browsing through the available orders.
The primary method of customer support for LocalBitcoins is through support tickets. The LocalBitcoins support team are usually very quick to respond and are very helpful and informative with their responses. The support process is very good at helping you determine your issue through selecting your problem from a series of possible issues. This process helps the customer support help the user in a more informed way, and even allows the user to better identify the problem and identify solutions through the many articles and posts on their support page. The support page has an extensive FAQ list, glossary of terms, and various informative guides. In addition to these support options, LocalBitcoins has a forum section where users can discuss different issues and topics. This is often a helpful resource to find the information you’re looking for before submitting a support ticket.
Security and Fairness
The security of LocalBitcoins is primarily in the buyers and seller’s hands, but LocalBitcoins does everything in their power to ensure a safe and secure marketplace. For instance, an escrow service is used to securely hold funds until the transaction is confirmed on both ends. As well, the site incorporates reputation ratings that feature the traders buy and sell history and feedback from other users. Each user’s profile also has a trust score which is the first thing buyers and sellers look for when deciding who to trade with. Users can also utilize two factor authentication for added security when logging in to their account.
Every trader of LocalBitcoins is strongly advised to read and follow the security guide that is published on the website, for following this guide will greatly increase both the buyers and sellers trading experience. If any issues between the buyer and seller do occur, LocalBitcoins will do their best to resolve the situation by responding promptly to a users support ticket.