How to Buy or Mint an NFT?

Fund Your MetaMask

In order to complete transactions with your MetaMask wallet, you need to buy Ethereum from whichever crypto exchange your location supports and send the funds to your wallet address (you can find and copy this near the top of the MetaMask extension window). Most transactions should take less than 5 minutes and appear in your MetaMask. You’ll notice that the exchange also includes a network or transaction fee, which is most likely equivalent to gas fees.

Gas refers to the fee required to successfully complete a transaction, including sending ETH, minting or trading NFTs, and approving any contracts. Gas fees are dependent on the supply and demand for the computational power of the network.

Now that you have your wallet set up and funded, you can obtain your first NFT via minting or purchasing from an NFT market — we will use OpenSea as an example.

Mint an NFT

All projects have to begin with buyers minting the NFTs. Commonly, projects will have a Discord server where they will update the community with the project launch date. They will have a website where you can connect your MetaMask wallet and mint the number of NFTs you want to receive.

PLEASE NOTE: it is extremely important not to click on any links in your Discord direct messages. The NFT world is full of scammers that impersonate a project or creator’s profile to get you to mint and lose your funds. Sometimes they can even empty all of your assets! Project teams will never directly message you to mint. In instances where some Discord servers were compromised, scammers took full control of announcements and posted scam links. Projects do not do stealth mints or launches before their initial date. Remember: if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is! More information about scammer tactics will be detailed in the next medium story.

There is also something called the whitelist, which provides you with early access to mint. This helps to avoid a gas war so you don’t pay an extremely high gas fee to approve your transaction. What is a gas war? It refers to a surge in gas prices, occurring when the demand for computational power massively outstrips supply and a large number of transactions looking to get confirmed within a small time frame create congestion. The higher the gas paid, the higher the priority of the transaction to be confirmed.

Once you connect your wallet and click mint, a MetaMask window appears and summarizes the ETH required to mint your NFTs, a suggested gas fee, and the maximum amount of ETH required to mint. In the case of gas war, it’s best to increase your gas limit, otherwise, the standard gas setting should be sufficient. Then, you can either choose to proceed with the minting by clicking “Confirm” or stop it by clicking “Reject”. After clicking “Confirm”, your transaction will be sent for confirmation on the blockchain, and when all is approved, your NFT will appear in your MetaMask.

Purchase an NFT from OpenSea

The most popular trading site for NFTs is currently OpenSea (or sometimes we call it the BrokenSea.)

Go to https://opensea.io/ and find the profile icon. Click “Profile” and you can connect your MetaMask extension in a few steps. Just click “Sign” at the end and your profile will be set up. From there, you can browse or search for a collection to purchase NFTs from.

It is recommended to use the filters, such as “Buy Now”, price range, or traits, when purchasing NFTs so you can save time in locating them. Once you find the NFT to purchase, click on the asset. If it is available, click “Buy Now” and it will prompt a pop-up window where you need to agree to Terms and Conditions, before “Checkout”.

Then, the MetaMask extension window will be triggered, and you’ll follow the same procedures as you do when you mint an NFT. Once the transaction is successful, your NFT will show up in your wallet as well as on your OpenSea profile.