Every so often, entrepreneurs launch new tokens with unique features trying to fill one or the other gaps within the existing crypto offerings. While there are countless reasons to create a new token, ranging from solving new use cases to simply flexing, its long-term success is determined by the size of the community that holds and trades the token.
One of the main methods to get a newly launched cryptocurrency or token in the hands of as many people as possible is to get it listed on crypto exchanges. That being said, it is important to understand and adhere to the unique requirements set by crypto exchanges to be able to be considered for being listed.
In this article, we discuss the various requirements put forth by some of the most popular crypto exchanges to get tokens listed for trading.
What makes a good crypto token?
While most cryptocurrencies are purpose-built differently to serve various use cases, tokens that make a name for themselves in the marketplace share some common traits — that are highly appreciated by crypto exchanges.
Launching a new crypto token is no longer a big feat due to numerous white-label services and off-the-shelf offerings. However, when it comes to getting listed on crypto exchanges, the tokens need to prove their worth across multiple factors.
Tokens are usually distinguishable by the standards and blockchain ecosystem it runs on — Ethereum with ERC-20, Tron with TRX-20, Binance with BEP-20 and so on. Let’s start off with the secret ingredients of what makes the core of a good cryptocurrency token:
Continuous improvement has become a norm across the crypto ecosystem. As a cryptocurrency token, the community expects active participation from the team behind the cryptocurrency project.
Active participation involves — but is not limited to — sharing (weekly/monthly/yearly) updates about new developments, progress or plans, addressing concerns raised by the community and introducing new features based on the previously established roadmap and white paper.
While many cryptocurrency tokens have managed to witness a spike in trading volumes and market prices purely based on hype, the key to a token’s long-term success depends on its usefulness.
The usefulness of a token is determined by the use cases it aims to serve and the size of the community that backs the initiative. Most cryptocurrencies on the market launch with the goal of solving at least one of the existing pain points within the crypto or traditional finance space.
While the process of creating a new token has been eased down by the influx of numerous white-label services, it is important for tokens to serve use cases that can solve real-world problems.
Large user base
As previously discussed, a large user base serves as a clear indication of a project’s success. Community-focused initiatives such as airdrops and launchpads, known as initial DEX offering (IDO) platforms, are the primary means for crypto projects to harness an initial user base.
In the cryptocurrency ecosystem, higher liquidity relates to the ease with which tokens can be traded with each other on platforms such as crypto exchanges. In addition, having the ability to sell at will instills trust among investors in turn promotes more participation from the community.
Major crypto projects are just one orchestrated attack away from being drained off all funds and shutting down. Security is one of the main pillars for ensuring the trust and credibility of your project.
Exchange-specific requirements to get your tokens listed
Once a cryptocurrency project has figured out the above recommendations, its chances of getting into a crypto exchange increase tremendously. In fact, popular crypto exchanges including Binance, Coinbase and FTX have disclosed certain guidelines that help token-owners navigate through the specific geography-based requirements.
Get your token listed on Binance
Binance (and its subsidiaries) is the most popular crypto exchange in terms of the sheer trading volumes it supports across the globe, which is the reason why most newly-launched crypto tokens envision getting listed on Binance.
Applicants must begin their listing journey by filling out an appropriate form depending on whether the project wishes for a direct listing in Binance’s global portal (Binance.com) or participation in Launchpool/Launchpad initiative.
A direct listing is well-suited for projects that already have their tokens circulating in the market — either via airdrops, peer-to-peer or by being listed on other crypto exchanges. However, Binance’s Launchpad initiative caters to early-stage projects that are yet to release a token.
According to Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, the application form needs to be filled by a key person of the company such as the CEO and must disclose all relevant information as requested by the forms.
CZ also revealed that the number of users stands as the most important criterion for getting listed on Binance and on any of its subsidiaries. While Binance has not openly disclosed the exact prices to list a token on have not been publicly disclosed, the crypto exchange donates all listing fees to Binance Charity Foundation, a 100% transparent charity tracked on the blockchain.
Get your token listed on Coinbase
Coinbase, too, takes a similar approach for listing new crypto assets on its exchange, which begins with filling up a form. Upon submission of the application, the tokens undergo evaluation based on Coinbase’s self-derived digital asset framework.
Coinbase does not charge an application fee initially but may impose it in the future, depending on the volume of the submissions and related operational costs. The exchange also lists tokens without requiring an official listing request — purely based on its compliance with local regulations and market demand.
The crypto exchange rolls out new token listings in four phases: transfer-only, post-only, limit-only and full trading. Each phase represents the degree of functionality Coinbase has allowed for the particular token.
Get your token listed on Kraken
Kraken takes a much more traditional approach and accepts listing requests through an official email address, wherein only a developer or a member of the crypto project is expected to share the required details.
The crypto exchange has not publicly issued a set of guidelines but recommends all applicants to provide as much information as possible about their projects to increase their chances of getting listed.
Get your token listed on Crypto.com
Crypto.com requires all of the new token listing applicants to make sure their digital assets have passed legal and security reviews based on the jurisdiction they intend to serve. In the application form, Crypto.com specifies the need for aspiring tokens to solve a problem or address the needs of the market.
Note: Crypto exchanges including FTX and Gemini have either stopped accepting new applications due to various regulatory hurdles or have chosen not to disclose their listing requirements.
What to do once you’ve applied for a token listing?
The process of applying for a listing can be as daunting as what comes after. Irrespective of the size or status of the projects, certain traits remain common for all tokens that eventually outshine the masses.
Below are some of the important considerations every good cryptocurrency project must adhere to:
Share regular updates
Crypto exchanges are fond of projects that have inculcated the habit of sharing regular weekly/monthly updates with their general public. Some of the popular modes of sharing regular updates are Twitter, official blogs, Medium, GitHub commits and more.
Embed native ecosystems
Crypto exchanges prefer tokens that have compatibility with the exchange’s in-house chain. For example, cryptocurrencies built on the BEP-20 token standard will have a higher probability of getting listed on Binance than any other crypto exchange.
Binance also recommends incorporating BNB/Binance USD (BUSD) into the project’s ecosystem to have a better chance of getting listed.
Coinbase, on the other hand, focuses more on a cryptocurrency’s stature in terms of operating a regulated digital asset. As a result, tokens with prior regulatory approvals will have a better shot at passing through Coinbase’s screening process.
Nurturing an active community is considered a fair indication of a project’s long-term success. Voting mechanisms for system upgrades, timely airdrop opportunities, and other activities involving community support contribute to sprouting and retaining the project’s overall activity.
Wait until your application is approved
Crypto exchanges are on the receiving end of countless applications for token listings — ranging from promising projects to someone that’s just trying their luck. As a result, exchanges are known to take a lot of time to sift through the applications and approve only those who adhere to the listing requirements.
Crypto exchanges recommend applicants continue working on their projects regardless of being selected or not. Exchanges often monitor older listing applications and may choose to contact them based on their ongoing market performance despite being rejected in the past.
Finally, projects must refrain from reaching out personally to officials and owners of crypto exchanges for updates on the approval status or sharing any white paper. When contacted by the crypto exchange, projects must make sure they have received the communication from an official email address, which is usually signed with a digital signature. Keep in mind that the selection criteria for getting listed on a crypto exchange keep evolving over time as and when new regulations and offerings come into play.
Trading as a marketing tool
Being listed on crypto exchanges for trading helps improve trust and credibility among investors. Cryptocurrency projects use this extensively to market their projects/tokens and, as a result, gain more investors. Moreover, getting listed on any one popular crypto exchanges plays a domino effect in opening up doors for other players in the market.
One of the primary ways to introduce new capabilities into your existing cryptocurrency blockchain is through smart contracts. Read Cointelegraph’s comprehensive guide to learn more about smart contracts and how they work.