If you’ve heard of crypto-assets called NFTs, you’re probably aware of how popular they are in the blockchain space. From Bored Ape Yacht Club to Squiggles NFTs, these art projects go for thousands of dollars on the secondary market and attract new investors.
Before an NFT can be listed and sold on popular decentralized exchanges, it must be minted. What is minting, and what does it have to do with blockchain technology and NFTs? Keep reading to find out.
What Does Minting An NFT Mean?
“Minting” refers to the process of turning your digital asset into an NFT stored on the blockchain. These NFTs can also be traded through a cryptocurrency exchange.
Minting is a necessary step for artists and creators who want to harness the power of blockchain technology to immortalize their work while making a bit of money in the process. However, the whole process of minting can be a bit complicated without understanding NFTs and the blockchain, so we’ll give you a quick overview.
Before we dive into the minting process and what it entails, it’s important to understand the crypto assets themselves: NFTs.
NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are unique digital assets that can be bought and sold on crypto exchanges. Everything from 3D models to static images can be uploaded as NFTs. Buyers have provable ownership over NFTs through digital certificates called smart contracts.
These smart contracts (which are also essential to the minting process) operate as a blockchain consensus mechanism. That means that your ownership and the NFT’s transferability are managed on the blockchain – making it completely verifiable and immutable.
How Minting Works
Now that we understand NFTs and the blockchain’s immutable and verifiable nature, how does the minting process fit into everything?
The act of “minting” turns a regular file into a crypto collectible that can be stored on the Ethereum blockchain or Binance Smart Chain. In short, it turns a regular JPEG into a valuable asset that can’t be edited once it hits a cryptocurrency exchange in the blockchain space. This can be likened to the minting of fiat currency.
Once an NFT creator mints their NFT and it gets traded around on decentralized exchanges, they earn royalties from the sale.
The Benefits Of The Minting Process
NFT artists and creators upload their work onto crypto exchanges for various reasons, but there are some key benefits to minting a piece. Here are three of the biggest ones:
- Build and store a piece’s value: Like minting coinage for fiat currency, minting a digital file on blockchain space stores its value in a tangible and highly secure way.
- Creates democratic ownership: Uploading a piece to decentralized exchanges opens ownership to anyone who will buy it. This creates a more democratic space for collectors and enthusiasts.
- An avenue for making a profit: The number one reason artists and creators upload their work onto the blockchain space is because of the sheer number of people willing to spend digital currencies on NFTs. With the right strategy, artists could make life-changing sums of money on the secondary market.
How To Mint Your Own NFT
1. Connect Your Wallet To Your Desired Crypto Market
The first step to minting your NFT is connecting your wallet to a decentralized marketplace. Depending on your wallet, you can either paste your address into the market to use a QR code for a quick sign-in. Some wallets also have browser extensions that make the integration extremely simple.
2. Ensure Your Wallet Has The Relevant Digital Currencies
Even though you’re on the market to sell an NFT, you still have to stock your wallet with relevant currency before you can upload your assets. You’ll have to pay “gas fees” to mint your piece, so be sure to purchase currency off the exchange before starting the minting process.
3. Create Your Digital Assets
Once you’re all set up on the marketplace, you can start making or repurposing your old work to create your NFT. Anything can become an NFT, as long as it’s a digital asset. Videos, static images, 3D models, or even entire digital experiences can all be minted as NFTs.
4. Upload The Assets To The Marketplace
You can upload your digital assets onto the marketplace as soon as they’re ready. This process is called “listing”. On the listing screen, you can specify your NFT’s title and description, as well as how much you’re going to charge for it.
Once you’re settled on the finer details of your NFT, you can complete the listing and mint your piece.
5. Start Selling
As soon as your NFT’s details have been finalized, you’re ready to market and sell your NFTs to interested parties. Many creators market their NFTs on social media or hold contests to garner more attention for their launches.
Minting NFTs: Final Thoughts
Minting an NFT refers to the process of turning your JPEG, GIF, or 3D model into something permanent and immutable on the blockchain. Once a piece is minted, people can buy and sell the NFT, which usually nets a creator a few healthy royalties for every transaction.
However, every platform is unique and may have specific requirements for minting, so be sure to check before you upload your work.