What is an NFT?
An NFT, abbreviation for Non-Fungible Token, is a digital certificate of ownership of an asset. It acts as a unique digital identifier that cannot be copied, substituted or sub-divided, and is permanently recorded on a blockchain. Non-Fungibility is the fundamental property that distinguishes NFTs from other digital assets such as cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. A non-fungible object is something that is not interchangeable, due to an underlying uniqueness. Art is a good example of this: I can’t just copy the Mona Lisa and pretend it has the same value of the original piece.
NFTs, therefore, bring the concepts of non-fungibility, uniqueness, and scarcity into the digital world! This property is incredibly important. Our homes, art, collectibles, gifts, all the things that we have an emotional attachment to are non-fungible. But up until the creation of NFTs, this could not be adequately represented in a digital form. Now, NFTs enable this by marking digital assets such as images, audio and video files, with a sort of “digital signature” that certifies that digital asset to be unique. This uniqueness is indisputable as it is logged in an immutable blockchain.
How much does it cost to mint an NFT?
While technically you should pay a gas fee every time you mint an NFT into the blockchain, marketplaces such as OpenSea and Rarible allow you to mint as many NFTs as you want for free! At least it’s free for you. The gas fee will be covered by the buyer of your NFT. This practice is known as “lazy minting” and it is extremely convenient for creators, as it allows you to create NFTs without risking any money.
How much time does it take to mint an NFT?
Minting an NFT is something anyone can do in a matter of minutes. Marketplaces make this process extremely easy, and we will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to do this. You should note that depending on the traffic on the blockchain at the time of your customer’s purchase the transaction may be delayed, and therefore your NFT’s creation as well.
A step-by-step guide on how to mint an NFT
If you’re looking to mint your very first NFT, then this guide will explain to you everything you need to know to get started on OpenSea, which currently is the largest NFT marketplace out there. But if you wish to connect to other marketplaces the procedure is very similar. To log in to an NFT marketplace and start minting NFTs a crypto wallet will be necessary. If you don’t have one, don’t worry! We will also show you how to create your own crypto wallet. There are lots of wallet providers, but our guide will focus on MetaMask’s.
Step 1: Install MetaMask
Open Google Chrome and search for MetaMask, or open this link: https://metamask.io/
Here you can download the application, install it and add it to Chrome.
Once it’s successfully installed, a MetaMask window will appear and we can finally get started and create our wallet!
Step 2: Create your wallet
The MetaMask page that just appeared will ask you either to import an existing wallet or to create a new one. We will choose the second. You will then be required to create a custom password. Following that, you will be presented with a video on how to keep your wallet safe. We really recommend that you watch it, and learn the importance of your secret recovery phrase. This is a secret 12-word phrase that you and only you should know because anyone who knows this phrase will be able to access your wallet. If you lose your phrase, no one, not even the MetaMask team can help you recover the assets contained in your wallet. At this point, you will be presented with your secret recovery phrase. Write it down and keep it very safe. You will then be asked to confirm your phrase. And ta-daa your wallet is set up and ready to go! All the crypto assets that you purchase or receive, will be visible and accessible from here.
Step 3: Connect your wallet to OpenSea
To reach the marketplace you can click on this link: https://opensea.io/
Once on the website’s main page, click on the wallet icon, in the top right corner.
When the pop-up screen asks which wallet to connect to, click on MetaMask.
The MetaMask browser extension will then ask you to confirm the connection to OpenSea. And it’s done! Now your wallet is connected to its first decentralized application and your profile on OpenSea has been created.
Step 4: Create your NFT
Back on OpenSea’s main page, you can now click on the button “Create”. Here MetaMask’s browser extension will ask you for confirmation again. And it will open the following page:
Here OpenSea will ask you to provide some details and specifications about your NFT, such as:
- The digital artwork (image / video / audio / 3D model)
- The name you want to give it
- An external link
- A description
- The collection you want it to be part of
- Special attributes
- Unlockable content
- The supply, which is the number of NFTs that can be minted
- The blockchain
This is where you can choose whether to mint your NFT on Ethereum or Polygon. While most NFTs nowadays are minted on the first, you should consider the latter if you want to avoid Ethereum’s huge gas fees and long waiting times for transaction processing.
Congratulations! With that, you officially created your first NFT!
Step 5: List your NFT for sale
Now, this is the last step necessary to officially list your NFT! On this page, you will be asked to set a price for your artwork, and set a time limit for its auction.
You can finally complete your listing and sell your NFT on OpenSea!
Please note the marketplace will take a 2.5% commission fee on your future earnings. Also, since this is your first time making a sell order, the platform will ask you to pay a one-time initialization fee. The value of this fee may vary widely, depending on the network’s traffic but also on ETH’s price which is highly volatile.
To sum it up
Blockchain allows artists and creators worldwide to share and monetize their work in ways that were simply not possible before the introduction of NFTs!
As we have shown you, anyone can mint a non-fungible token in a matter of minutes. The technology is mature enough and user-friendly, therefore no coding skills are required whatsover. So what are you waiting for? Unleash your creativity and start minting as many NFTs as you wish today!