This tutorial will explain how to purchase cryptocurrencies on OpenBazaar, a decentralized marketplace which never has platform fees and doesn’t require registering an account. You’ll learn how to buy cryptocurrency with a different cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin. At the moment OpenBazaar doesn’t support people buying cryptocurrency with regular fiat money such as US Dollars or Euros, though it’s a feature that will hopefully be supported in the future.

Here’s a video tutorial explaining the process:

Step #1: Download OpenBazaar

Visit OpenBazaar.org and click on the installer link for your operating system. Once the installer file is downloaded, open the file and it will begin the process of installing OpenBazaar.

Step #2: Select cryptocurrency

You will be asked which cryptocurrency you want to use. This is the cryptocurrency that you will pay with as a buyer, or receive as a seller. This is not the currency that you wish to purchase.

Select Purchasing Cryptocurrency

At the moment OpenBazaar users are limited to using only one cryptocurrency at a time, and can only choose BTC, BCH, or ZEC. However in the near future users will be able to use multiple currencies at the same time, and will have LTC, ETH, and other coins available to use.

Step #3: Complete Onboarding

Go through the onboarding process and enter whatever information you choose. If you want to remain private then keep the randomly generated name assigned to you. Choose the currency you want to have prices displayed in; you’ll want this to be the currency that you most commonly use so that the prices of goods and services are familiar to you.

Read the terms of service, and if you agree then accept them.

Complete Onboarding

Step #4: Search for cryptocurrency listings

You’re now up and running on OpenBazaar, so let’s find some cryptocurrency listings. Click the “Discover” button on the top right of the client (the blue tent). After selecting a search provider, you’ll now see lots of listings on the network. To filter down to only cryptocurrency offerings, use the search provider’s filters on the left. You’ll now see a list of cryptocurrencies for sale. Find what you want and click on the listing to view it.

Search for Cryptocurrency

Step #5: Buy the cryptocurrency

It’s recommended that you find a vendor who has a “Verified Moderator” on their listings. This means you will be able to choose escrow from a reputable third party. You can tell if they offer a verified moderator by looking for a little orange badge underneath the seller’s name.

Now that you’ve found some crypto you want to buy, click the “Trade now” button to start the checkout process. You’ll need to enter a receiving address for the funds you’re buying. As in the example below, if you’re buying Decred then you’ll need to put in a Decred address that you control where the seller will send the cryptocurrency you buy.

Then choose payment type. Unless you fully trust the vendor, you should use a moderated payment with a verified moderator. Enter the amount you wish to buy, then review your order and click “Pay.” You’ll now see the payment screen.

Buy the Cryptocurrency

Step #6: Send Payment

Once you’ve placed the order you now need to pay for it. There are two ways to pay in OpenBazaar. One is by scanning the QR code on a mobile wallet or copying the details on the payment screen into a separate wallet and sending payment. The other method is using the internal OpenBazaar wallet.

If you don’t want to use a separate wallet, or you try using an external wallet and you receive an error message, then it’s best to use the internal OpenBazaar wallet and click the “Pay from Wallet” button.

Before you can pay from the OpenBazaar wallet, you’ll need to fund it. To do this, click on the wallet button, then in the wallet interface click “Receive Money.” This will display a QR code and address you can use to fund the wallet. Note that you’ll need to wait for one confirmation on the blockchain before the funds are spendable.

Receive funds in OpenBazaar Wallet

To pay for orders you’ve already placed, click on “Purchases” in the dropdown menu on the top right (your profile picture) and then click on the specific order.

Once payment has been sent you’ll see a green check mark appear and it’s now up to the vendor to fulfill your order.

Step #7: Check your order

To check your order, click on “Purchases” in the dropdown menu on the top right (your profile picture) and then click on the specific order. You’ll see a bar showing the progress of the order.

Once the seller fulfills the order you should see it showing “fulfilled,” and the vendor should send confirmation such as a transaction hash to prove they sent the funds to the address you provided. Enter the transaction hash into a block explorer to verify, or just check the wallet where you expected the funds to be sent. If you’ve received them, leave a review and close the order out. It’s important that you do finish the order, otherwise the funds will not be released from escrow and the seller will be forced to open a dispute to claim their funds.

If you don’t receive the funds in a reasonable period, message the seller to ask why. If you get no response after a while or something else is wrong with your order, you can choose to open a dispute with the moderator by clicking the “Dispute Order” button when viewing the order in your purchases.

OpenBazaar is also a platform for goods and services. While you’re waiting for the vendor to send your new coins, check out what the marketplace has to offer.

Now you know how to purchase cryptocurrencies privately and with no fees using OpenBazaar.


Get involved with our community on Slack and Reddit and make even a small purchase on OpenBazaar today to see what you think! If you’re not sure where to start, you can check out the official OpenBazaar stores—BTC Store and BCH Store and make a small donation or score some great OpenBazaar gear!


Do you want to help build this with us?

Download OpenBazaar right now to start buying or selling in minutes or just see what's for sale at OpenBazaar.com.

Developers, join us on Github to contribute to this open-source project!

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