How Hard Is It To Create An NFT? NFT For Beginners

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Non-fungible tokens, a.k.a. NFTs, have fascinated the online public with their headline-making profits and puzzling creation process. Digital artworks minted into NFTs can potentially fetch profits in the millions, so it’s understandable why people would want to try making their own. So, how hard is it to create an NFT, and are there any extra costs before you sell one?

Read our step-by-step guide to learn more about creating NFTs, setting up your wallets, and putting your NFTs up for sale. This simple primer will help you get started with the right creation platform for your digital creations.

Additional NFT Creation Guides

If you’re looking to become an NFT creator on multiple platforms and exchanges, check out our other guides here:

How Hard Is It To Create An NFT?

It’s surprisingly pretty easy to turn a digital file into an NFT because you don’t need overly technical skills – virtually any digital or physical asset can be used to create one. 

Here are examples of what can be represented by an NFT on the blockchain network:

  • Music, such as Kings of Leon’s 2021 album When You See Yourself
  • Virtual in-game items like weapons, item skins, and character outfits
  • Collectible items such as digital trading cards
  • Video footage such as Wong Kar Wai’s unseen In The Mood For Love footage, which was turned into an NFT in collaboration with Sotheby’s
  • Artwork

Once you’ve decided on what you want to turn into an NFT, all you have to do is find the right creation platform and mint it. However, it gets tricky if you decide to sell an NFT outside of marketplaces. You’ll need knowledge of smart contracts to attach a token to your digital asset and deploy it on the blockchain network.

How Long Does It Take To Make An NFT?

NFT creation time depends on your creative process and how many people are transacting on the blockchain. If you already have a digital asset ready for minting into an NFT, then it depends on the network’s traffic. 

On some sites, it takes less than 10 minutes to upload your file, fill in the required fields, and make an NFT. But on heavy trading days, it can take as long as several hours before you successfully create your NFT.

How Old Do You Have To Be To Create An NFT?

Most platforms will require you to be at least 18 years old before you can buy, create, and sell NFTs. While it’s not illegal for someone younger than that to make an NFT, you’ll need a wallet to hold NFTs and crypto funds – these typically have a minimum age limit of 18 years.

What Is The Cheapest Way To Make NFTs?

The cheapest way to make an NFT is a combination of lazy minting and timing. 

Lazy minting allows a digital creator to make an NFT and put it up for sale without writing these transactions on the blockchain. When a buyer snaps up your NFT, the gas for writing your NFT on the blockchain is added to the gas for transferring it to their wallet. Lazy minting is a good way to avoid paying blockchain gas fees for an NFT that may not even sell.

There are also certain days and times when gas fees are lower. Gas fees are what you pay for transactions on blockchains. Because of crypto market changes and blockchain traffic, this amount can vary significantly. The more people using the platform of your choice at a given time, the higher the gas fee will be. It’ll take patience to figure out how best to time your NFT minting, but you’ll save a ton of money once you get the hang of it.

How To Create An NFT

Now that you know more about the timeline for an NFT’s selling and minting process, here’s a simple guide on how to create an NFT.

Step 1: Figure Out What An NFT Is

One idea that many people have of NFTs is that they’re digital art pieces. However, NFTs can also come in other formats.

It’s important for digital creators to know how an NFT works, but you don’t need to be a programmer. The simplest explanation is that an NFT is a digital token that’s stored on the blockchain network. While coins on crypto exchanges are interchangeable, every non-fungible token is distinct, can be sold, and has proven digital ownership of its files. These files aren’t necessarily on the blockchain itself. Rather, the blockchain stores a link to the file, along with the proof-of-ownership token to whatever the link leads to.

Technically, any digital file such as a piece of art or mp3 file can be sold as non-fungible tokens. However, if you’re using minting tools from a marketplace, take note of the formats that the platforms support. If you’re not sure what kind of NFT you’re going to sell yet, these limitations may narrow down your options.

Note that NFTs can also have a set rarity depending on how many copies you mint, much like a limited-edition baseball card. For example, you can mint only 15 copies to make your NFT rarer or release hundreds of copies so they’ll be more common. 

Step 2: Make Sure You Actually Want To Sell An NFT

The potentially high profits from selling NFTs make it an attractive business model, but there are some things you need to consider first. Transaction fees are a major consideration – some platforms let you create NFTs for free, but selling them may have other costs.

The Ethereum blockchain stores most of the NFTs sold, and every Ethereum blockchain transaction costs gas. Note that paying the gas fee is not a guarantee that your transaction will push through successfully. Most transactions succeed, and you can increase your chances by paying a little more. However, if it fails, you won’t get your blockchain gas fees back.

Another big consideration is the environmental impact of crypto-related activities. The most well-known crypto marketplaces run on Ethereum, and Ethereum’s proof-of-work system is extremely energy-intensive. If you’re selling and minting NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain, keep in mind that you’re adding to the world’s energy burden.

Some blockchains like Solana are working on reducing crypto’s energy burden. Ethereum’s also working on Ethereum 2.0, which promises to use a more energy-efficient proof-of-stake system. But until these changes are fully operational, selling NFTs means you’re making a big carbon footprint.

Step 3: Select The Platform Where You Will Sell Your NFT

There are many platforms where you can sell and trade NFTs, such as Axie Infinity’s Axie Marketplace, NBA Top Shot, and Solsea. When choosing the right NFT marketplace, base your decision on fees, the number of target potential buyers, and ease of payment.

For example, you can create NFTs that are hosted on the Ethereum blockchain for free through OpenSea’s lazy minting system. However, these free or low-cost marketplaces also come with downsides. For example, lazy minting marketplaces like OpenSea and Rarible may charge a one-time account initializing fee that costs hundreds of dollars. Others may charge fees for removing your NFT for sale or take a cut of every sale you make.

Step 4: Set Up A Crypto Wallet

Cryptocurrency wallets are crypto applications used to hold crypto coins and NFTs. Set up a wallet that is supported by the blockchain you plan to use for your NFTs. For example, MetaMask is a popular choice because it’s compatible with many Ethereum-based platforms and is also available as a mobile app or Chrome extension. Other wallets like Coinbase may be a better choice because they offer support for non-Ethereum-based blockchains such as Bitcoin.

These wallets require you to make a username and password, but they’ll also give you a seed phrase for added security – this 12-word phrase, chosen at random, allows you to regain access to your account. This is essential if you need to install your crypto wallet on a different device or uninstall the app. It’s highly recommended that you use a password manager for this, but we also suggest writing it down and storing it somewhere secure.

Keep this seed phrase safe – if you accidentally forget this phrase and your password, you won’t be able to access your wallet and any accounts you’ve set up with it. This also means losing access to any non-fungible token or cryptocurrency stored there.

Step 5: Connect Your Crypto Wallet

Once you’ve set up your wallet, it’s time to link it to your chosen NFT marketplace. For example, if you’re using a wallet with a Chrome or Firefox extension like MetaMask, a pop-up will request to connect your wallet. If you’re using a wallet app like Coinbase, you can connect using a QR code scanner.

Be wary if you receive messages trying to connect to your wallet, especially if you’re not in the middle of a transaction. Scammers may be trying to trick you and steal your NFTs and coins. Generally, trusted sites like Axie Marketplace are very secure. However, think twice if you’re on an unfamiliar site and suddenly receive a request.

Step 6: Create An NFT

When you’re done connecting your wallet, go to the creation section of your chosen platform. The platform may allow you to make a single NFT or a collection. For example, Rarible allows you to sell NFTs as a single, while OpenSea lets you place your created NFT into an unlabeled collection first.

On the creation page, upload the file you plan to mint and sell it as a non-fungible token. Note the site’s file type and size restrictions before you upload! After uploading, give your file a name. There may also be an option to add an external link, which you can use to link to your site or social media accounts for promotion.

If there’s a description field, use it to give your potential buyers more details about what they’re purchasing. For example, if you have an NFT that can be used in a video game, you can put their stats like defense and attack power in this field. If this is an art piece, it can indicate the medium used and the date of creation.

Your chosen platform will also allow you to choose a blockchain for minting, such as Polygon or Ethereum. Each blockchain will charge different fees. Some will offer other options, such as minting additional copies of an NFT.

Step 7: Put Your NFT Up For Sale

Once you’ve received a message that shows your NFT was successfully created, put your NFT up for sale. Different platforms will have different listing options, such as traditional fixed-price listings, open bids, or timed auctions. If you have a limited clientele in mind, this is also the part of the process where you can make it available only to a select set of buyers.

Some platforms allow you to set a royalty percentage or how much you’ll get from every future sale of your NFT. For example, if someone buys your NFT for 1 ETH and then sells it for 3 ETH, you can get a percentage of that new sale price. The default for most platforms is 10%, so you’ll get 0.3 ETH in this example.

List your NFT for sale by selecting “complete listing” or a similar option on your chosen platform. In some cases, you may have to complete additional transactions with your wallet. For example, Ethereum requires a one-time initialization fee for your ETH wallet. Polygon transactions are free, so you’ll simply get a screen message saying your NFT is now listed. 

Once all these transactions are completed, your NFT is now listed for sale!

How To Create Rare NFTs

The key to creating rare NFTs is to limit their number and mix up their traits. If you’re creating a collection, you need to add unique traits that make them as distinct from each other as possible – too many NFTs with too many similarities may drive the price down.

Generative art allows you to make a large, cohesive collection without repeating traits and devaluing your art. Consider collaborating with popular influencers or celebrities to drum up interest in their fanbase. Adding other elements like music or animation to NFT art can also make the piece more exciting for more collectors. 

Key Takeaways

Creating an NFT is a surprisingly straightforward process that many people can do, even without advanced programming knowledge. The most challenging parts are coming up with a concept, increasing their potential value, and timing your creation so you don’t pay hefty gas fees.

If you need help putting your NFT project together, check out our other crypto guides on Tokenfy. We’ll help you create your NFT collection and put it up for sale in the best marketplace for you!

Creating An NFT FAQs

Do I have to use a marketplace site to create an NFT?

You don’t have to use a marketplace to create NFTs. You can make your own smart contract, deploy it on your preferred blockchain, and then mint tokens through it. This route is very technical, so we don’t recommend it unless you’re a blockchain developer or otherwise knowledgeable in programming.

How much does it cost to make NFTs?

The cost of making NFTs depends on the platform that you’re using and the time you create it. Some platforms allow you to create NFTs for free. Others charge a minting fee even before the sale, so you’ll have to pay even if your NFT doesn’t sell.

Do I need a crypto wallet to create an NFT?

You need a crypto wallet to create an NFT because most marketplaces charge fees. Crypto wallets allow you to store the cryptocurrencies you need to pay those fees, as well as any NFTs that you collect in the future.

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