Online trading has existed longer than cryptocurrency, so everybody is already accustomed to what sort of criteria an exchange needs to fit for it to be suitable for professional use. For instance, it is common knowledge that a great exchange needs to be fast, user-friendly, have ample volume, and low fees. These qualities are the same for both crypto exchanges and exchanges for other asset classes, however, with enough money and resources these are easy to achieve. Dozens of exchanges fit this criteria, but only of handful of them are actually considered top-of-the-range, industry-standard platforms. While these qualities are necessary, they are not the only thing that it takes to break out and become an astonishing exchange. There are other, perhaps more subtle factors which need to be met.
Here is a small handful of such factors to keep in mind. This criterion has been designed specifically for cryptocurrency exchanges, but it may also apply to exchanges for other asset classes.
Genuine interest in the industry
Exchanges play a significant and instrumental role in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. Not just are they a tool for traders to earn, but they are the intermediary between long-term holders/enthusiasts and the projects they have a profound interest in. Exchanges are used regularly by people who do not actually trade, but rather accumulate assets in their favourite coins and tokens. This naturally means that they must cater to two profoundly different demographics. While that can be tough, there is one thing that unifies them: they both have faith that the cryptocurrency industry is nowhere near its economic or social peak. Both groups are confident that adoption has not reached its full swing yet.
Exchanges need to embrace this idea too if they wish to be at the top of their game. While it is true that traders and enthusiasts are willing to go to any service to buy and sell their assets, the fact that there is so much variety means that platforms need to recognize how to stand out. Showing real interest in the future of the crypto and blockchain industry is the best way to do that. An example of this is with Binance.
While they have a perfectly functional centralized exchange, they have chosen still to produce a decentralized version. This decision is enough to prove to the wider community that they take blockchain technology seriously. The concept of decentralization is at the heart of cryptocurrency, so by building a decentralized exchange they are revealing how inline they are with the desires of the masses.
The buying and selling of assets is a somewhat cold and robotic process; it leaves little to the imagination, and offers little creativity. Nothing can change this fact, but there are subtle methods that an exchange can take advantage of to break from the crowd.
Doing something which expresses uniqueness and originality can go a long way. Doing something that other exchanges are not even attempting is both a powerful marketing strategy, and a great way to gain publicity. An example of an “exchange” which clearly knows how to work with its individuality is Bancor. Rather than functioning as a conventional exchange, it allows users to seamlessly convert ERC-20 tokens with each other, without the need for a buyer or seller on the other end.
Bancor actually does not call itself an exchange; however it certainly exists within the same field.
An ideological stance
This point is tied in closely with that of individuality. The primary function of exchanges may be to facilitate in the buying and selling of products, but that does not mean they cannot take a stance on certain issues. Many companies are scared of aligning themselves with ideological viewpoints as they fear alienating some users, but the act of doing so is, alone, powerful enough to create loyal and regular customers.
An example of an exchange which takes an ideological stance is RightBTC. The platform believes that coins and tokens shouldn’t be forced to pay outlandish fees just to be listed, so they created a system which allows companies to list their assets free of charge. The only stipulation is that they must pass an evaluation, and receive a significant number of votes from the public.
This is a stance which resonates with the community, as crypto fans are unhappy with the extortionate costs that projects have to raise just for a simple listing. Revealing their opinion on the situation, and trying to change the industry, is the type of behaviour which generates loyalty.