How to Sell Bitcoin

Whether you want to spend or hold bitcoin, at some point you’ll probably want to sell some.
Jul 22, 2021
Crypto Explainer+
Beginner

Similar to buying bitcoin, there are several options when it comes to selling the digital asset.

As already mentioned in the previous section, you can purchase bitcoin directly on crypto exchanges, bitcoin ATMs, P2P marketplaces or traditional brokers. Likewise, you can also sell the cryptocurrency via any of these channels, with the exception of some bitcoin ATMs.

You can sell your bitcoin on the same exchange or stockbroker where it was purchased by placing a sell order. As the name suggests, a sell order is an instruction to a broker (crypto exchange) to sell an asset at a particular price.

Bitcoin can also be exchanged or swapped for other cryptocurrencies or stablecoins, such as ether or tether (respectively.) This is useful if you wish to take profit on your bitcoin investment or prevent the value of your portfolio from declining.

If you plan on withdrawing the fiat equivalent of your bitcoin, you would need to first place a sell order involving your preferred fiat currency. Once the order is fulfilled, most exchanges will allow you to withdraw your funds directly to your bank account. Note, most exchanges have a minimum withdrawal amount, which means if you leave small balances in your exchange account you might have to deposit more in order to get the remaining amount out.

Overall, Binance, Coinbase, Huobi, FTX and Kraken are examples of some high-volume exchanges where you can buy and sell bitcoin. Volume refers to the amount of money or digital assets being traded on the exchange at any given time. High volumes mean it’s more likely you’ll be able to successfully complete your sale at any given time.

It is also worth mentioning that depending on the volume of your order and how much you wish to withdraw, you may be required to go through some form of identity verification. “Know Your Customer" (KYC) procedures are now mandatory for many crypto exchanges, just as they are for traditional financial institutions. Therefore, you may be required to submit information such as a valid identification card, utility bills with your house address or a Social Security number, to verify your identity.

Apart from crypto exchanges and bitcoin ATMs, another alternative is through peer-to-peer markets. In this case, the transaction happens directly between you and the buyer. You can register as a seller on platforms such as LocalBitcoins, Paxful and BitQuick.

Localbitcoins screenshot

Although each platform handles payments a little differently, the process is essentially the same. First, you need to register as a seller on any of these platforms and then set up your sell order. You will be notified when someone shows an interest in your offer. Some platforms such as Localbitcoins have a built-in escrow service to ensure transactions run smoothly. You can receive payment for your bitcoin via Moneygram, cash in the mail, gift cards, bank deposits and even cash in person, depending on your preferred option. If you decide to make in-person trades, make sure you transact in a public setting and be aware of the major risks involved.

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