The cryptocurrency market has been constantly expanding for years, led by Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) as the most popular cryptos with multibillion-dollar daily trading volumes and market capitalization. These two currencies have really shown the financial world of fiat money that cryptocurrencies can be a serious asset of the future, both in terms of digital cash, store of value, or smart contract functionalities, thanks to advanced blockchain technology.
It is worth noting that the cryptocurrency market is much more than Bitcoin and Ethereum, even though these two cryptos make up the majority of the total market cap. There are various altcoins with multibillion-dollar market caps such as Litecoin (LTC), Ripple (XRP), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Cardano (ADA), and others that offer users a broad variety of functionalities, from fast cross-border payments and increased user privacy all the way to powering decentralized applications and innovative web platforms.
Crypto trading has become a very lucrative business that attracts scores of experienced brokers who see an opportunity in the crypto market. We are going to take a look at how exactly cryptocurrency trading works and how you can keep track of the constant market fluctuations of coin and token prices on various exchange platforms.
Crypto Exchange Platforms
Cryptocurrencies have been traded just like company stocks ever since the first Bitcoin exchanges were launched in 2010. Since then, hundreds of different exchange platforms have been launched, providing traders and crypto enthusiasts with various services and possibilities.
Cryptos can be traded in a variety of ways, such as using OTC broker websites to deal directly with brokers that want to buy or sell certain assets or peer-to-peer trading with interested individuals independently of any trading platform. However, trading cryptocurrency through exchange platforms is the most popular and most secure way to buy and trade digital currencies.
The most popular exchange platforms are designed to offer users all the necessary services for trading crypto in one place. They enable users to buy various currencies with fiat money, using bank transfers, credit cards, or debit cards. The bought cryptos can then be exchanged for other cryptocurrencies within the exchange platform and they can be sent to your personal crypto wallet for safekeeping. Of course, you can keep your cryptos on an exchange platform account, but it’s a lot safer to send the assets to a secure wallet in case of any platform security breach or cyber attack.
When trading, it is a good idea to choose some of the popular exchanges such as Binance, Coinbase, or Kraken as your base of operations, but in order to become a truly successful trader, you need to follow the price fluctuation of cryptos across a wide range of exchanges.
This is where cryptocurrency portfolio trackers come in as a very handy trading aid.
What Are Crypto Portfolio Trackers?
The average cryptocurrency trader doesn’t deal with just one or two cryptocurrencies. They usually have a cryptocurrency portfolio that includes various digital assets. Bitcoin and Ethereum are probably part of that portfolio, but so are other cryptos with less market value.
Traders tend to invest in altcoins based on the background of a project and its use cases that show it has the potential to eventually rise in value. When you are dealing with—let’s say—10 or more cryptocurrencies in your portfolio, it can get complicated and time-consuming to follow the price fluctuations of all those currencies across a range of exchange platforms and carefully monitor the market. Especially given the fact that trading opportunities arise and disappear rather quickly in the crypto world.
In order to save time, money, and minimize the personal stress crypto traders occasionally go through, cryptocurrency portfolio trackers were invented. These portfolio trackers are highly advanced web platforms and applications that can draw huge amounts of data from numerous exchange platforms simultaneously to give traders all the necessary information about the price fluctuations in their portfolios and to highlight trading opportunities.
It’s much more practical to use a portfolio tracker to monitor price changes of your selected cryptos than to manually search a dozen exchange platforms and compare the prices that might even change while you search through all those websites. Experienced crypto traders track their whole portfolio using tracking software so they can concentrate on making business decisions instead of losing valuable time on searching individual exchange platforms.
Important Factors When Choosing a Crypto Portfolio Tracker
Given the fact that there are thousands of different cryptocurrencies and hundreds of crypto exchange platforms, there are also numerous portfolio tracker software solutions. Since you will be using this software to track the market price fluctuation of your cryptos and possibly even to buy and exchange currencies (as some trackers have such functions built-in), it is very important to choose your portfolio tracker carefully.
These are the three key aspects you should pay special attention to when choosing a cryptocurrency portfolio tracker.
User-Friendly Functioning and Layout
Think of the crypto portfolio tracker as an app you will probably be using on a daily basis, several times a day, especially as you expand your portfolio and start engaging in more complex trading operations.
This means that you need your app to be as simple as possible in terms of functioning. Trading cryptos and tracking their prices is a fast-paced activity and you really need to act quickly in order to make a profit. The functions of your portfolio tracker need to be straightforward so that you can learn all the options quickly and be able to use them.
The user interface is a key part of the whole user experience and you need to know where all the important parameters in the crypto portfolio tracker are located. You want to be able to easily see your portfolio in just a click or two, follow the prices of selected cryptos on various exchange platforms, or send some assets to a third party without having to consult app FAQsor spend your valuable time searching the app.
Your crypto portfolio tracker is the core software app of your crypto-related ventures. It’s like all the necessary information for decision-making—along with access to your assets—in one place. Depending on the tracker app, you may even have built-in crypto exchange functionalities or crypto news trackers with links to media updates about selected cryptos, and you will probably have your crypto wallet connected to the app.
This is why your selected portfolio tracker needs to be safe and have top-notch security. You can’t afford to risk your assets. It is quite possible that your bank account will also be linked in some form to the portfolio tracker and you don’t want it compromised either.
You need to look carefully at the security features of a tracker app when choosing one and search for options such as multi-layer encryption and two-factor authentication
Range of Tracked Currencies and Exchanges
No cryptocurrency portfolio tracker covers all existing cryptos. The most popular portfolio trackers however do cover a really broad range of the most traded cryptocurrencies that can be added to your watchlist. If you plan to deal just with the most popular cryptos like BTC and ETH, then you don’t have to worry about whether your tracker supports these cryptos, but if you are looking to trade various altcoins then it is a good idea to thoroughly check the supported currencies.
Popular portfolio trackers have built-in crypto exchange functionalities and can be connected with a wide range of crypto exchange platform accounts such as Binance, Coinbase, and Kraken. When you connect your tracker app with your exchange platform accounts, you can instantly conduct trading operations without any extra steps and expensive additional transaction fees.
It’s best if you check the list of supported coins, tokens, and exchange platforms when choosing your portfolio tracker, in order to get the most out of the app, especially if you are choosing a paid program.
Popular Cryptocurrency Portfolio Trackers
Even when you analyze these three key factors when choosing a portfolio tracker, it’s still quite difficult to select the right one, because there are so many features and options offered by various apps.
Here is a selection of four top picks when it comes to cryptocurrency portfolio trackers, that will cover all of your crypto-related activities.
Blockfolio is one of the most popular cryptocurrency portfolio tracking apps on the market. The first and most important thing about this app is that it comes with no tracking fees and no trading fees. You don’t pay anything to the platform for tracking the price fluctuation of your portfolio or for monitoring other selected cryptocurrencies, along with price alerts.
The platform enables you to trade directly, using your connection with selected exchange platforms and there are no hidden transaction fees you need to pay to Blockfolio when trading cryptos.
Over 6 million users are utilizing Blockfolio thanks to its highly user-friendly interface and functions which enable users to carry out all operations with just a few clicks. The mobile app is compatible with both iPhones and Android devices and has a quite practical and fast-paced design which results in a smooth and simple user experience.
There are over 10,000 supported cryptocurrencies by Blockfolio, which makes it one of the most effective portfolio trackers available. For comparison, most of the other popular crypto trackers cover a couple of hundred or even just a couple of dozen of the most traded cryptos. This means that you can follow, trade, and manage all of your assets with Blockfolio, even if they include various less popular tokens that are yet to become popular because the adoption rate of new cryptos within the Blockfolio app is very fast. New currencies are constantly added.
A special bonus for Blockfolio users is that apart from not having to pay any fees for the app, they can also earn money from using the app on a daily basis. You can earn 10 USD per trade, in coins, if you use Blockfolio for trading cryptos. The support team is also very helpful and friendly, but the app really runs smoothly and you probably won’t need much help from the support team.
Cointracking is another highly popular option for crypto portfolio tracking. The main difference from various other portfolio trackers is that this app is also a highly sophisticated cryptocurrency tax report software. In fact, this is its main function, but it also has a very user-friendly and advanced portfolio tracker section. You can easily connect Cointracking to your exchange accounts on 75 of the top exchange platforms in order to track your transaction history and enable a fast and reliable crypto tax report generation without worrying about calculating taxes manually. Cointracking does all the hard work when it comes to your taxes.
One of the features that make this iOS and Android compatible software a real crypto powerhouse both in terms of portfolio tracking and text reports is the constantly available support team and professional consulting regarding all topics concerning crypto. The app is also great for companies that deal with cryptos with its Cointracking Corporate module.
As far as security, this app comes with great safety measures, designed to protect your crypto portfolio and data with advanced encryption and two-factor authentication. All the data is stored safely on Cointracking servers.
There are four service plans available for Cointracking users, ranging from Free to Pro, Expert and Unlimited.
CoinTracker is one of the top crypto portfolio trackers that provides a broad range of services and possibilities to users. You can track your portfolio, monitor price changes, and automatically generate tax forms based on your trading history, pulled from your connected exchange platform accounts.
The app supports more than 2,500 crypto assets. Its interface features a general dashboard with all the relevant metrics about your portfolio such as the fluctuation of coin prices in real-time, historical price change data, withdrawals, deposits, trading history, and the market capitalization and trading volume of your selected cryptos.
The crypto tax filing aspect of CoinTracker works exceptionally well but this service doesn’t come for free. There are four service plans in the app, ranging from free to enthusiast, pro, and custom.
The app has a smooth crypto wallet synchronization feature that works automatically, meaning that the coins and tokens in your connected wallet addresses are automatically added to the list of monitored assets in CoinTracker. A specific characteristic of CoinTracker is that it enables integration with more than 300 cryptocurrency exchanges, which is among the largest number of exchanges covered by any portfolio tracker.
The user interface is quite simple and the app is easy to use by both beginners and experienced traders. You just have to connect your wallets and exchange platform accounts to CoinTracker and you can start controlling your whole crypto portfolio from the general dashboard.
Delta is a crypto portfolio tracker launched in 2017 which features a very simple and practical design and interface that enabled it to achieve huge popularity in under a year from its launch, by gaining more than a million users worldwide.
The developer team behind Delta has constantly been adding new features and upgrades ever since, in order to provide users with new functionalities that will simplify their portfolio management. Delta is different from other crypto portfolio trackers because it can monitor more than just cryptocurrencies. It isn’t uncommon that a crypto trader also invests money in company stocks. With Delta, the whole asset portfolio from cryptos to stocks can easily be monitored and managed, without the need to use multiple apps for portfolio tracking.
This app is iOS and Android compatible and supports more than 300 exchange platforms and more than 5,000 cryptocurrencies, which will satisfy all your crypto tracking needs.
Delta gives users some highly advanced features in the free version while upgrading to the paid plan increases the versatility of the app by enabling more exchange platform and crypto wallet connections, as well as priority support.
When it comes to security, Delta excels. This app doesn’t allow trading from within the app, which can be viewed as a downside by many traders, but it can also be viewed as a tight security feature since cyber attacks and security breaches are prone to happen in the security gaps caused by risky API connections to exchange platform accounts.
You can connect all your exchange platform accounts to Delta and monitor the price changes of your portfolio but you can’t trade from the app, which means that the trading decision you make based on input from Delta, can be realized only directly through your exchange accounts.
Don’t Forget About Crypto Taxes
Taxes are definitely something you should always be aware of when trading cryptos, especially if you’re trading higher volumes that can get you some serious profits. Your local government tax policy shouldn’t be taken lightly because tax evasion is a serious felony in all parts of the world and it can get you into serious legal trouble.
Tax reports are the core element of fulfilling your crypto-related tax obligations. You can choose to manually fill your tax reports, by yourself if you have the necessary knowledge about local tax regulations and some experience in filing taxes.
However, if you don’t have experience regarding paying your crypto taxes it is best to either hire a tax expert to file your taxes instead or to use professional software that generates tax forms and fills them based on your trading history and crypto wallet balance. Some of the crypto portfolio trackers we have mentioned, like CoinTracker and Cointracking have integrated, fully functioning tax software services.
Regardless of the method you choose to file your crypto taxes, it is of utmost importance to file them correctly and in a timely manner to avoid unnecessary fines from government tax authorities.
When trading cryptocurrency on a daily basis, you need to take into account the potential tax implications your trades will have, based on the legal regulations in your country. For instance, the IRS considers cryptocurrency as a legit form of property that can be taxed, even though government agencies don’t recognize cryptos as a valid financial instrument.
This means that if you invest money in cryptos and conduct trading operations or exchanges, these operations are considered capital gains that will be taxed because of the benefits you have received by buying, holding, or exchanging cryptocurrency.
FIFO and LIFO
When filing taxes you should pay attention to the two popular accounting methods that may be used. First in, first out (FIFO) is an accounting method in which the assets an individual or company has first purchased are also the first assets that are disposed of, while the rest of the inventory is made of assets that are purchased last. This method is usually used by tax agencies like the IRS to calculate standard taxes for most taxpayers.
The alternative accounting method is called last in, first out (LIFO), which assumes that the last purchased assets are the first ones to be disposed of. Both methods can be used for taxing cryptocurrency capital gains, based on your trading volume. This is why it is important to find out under which accounting methods your crypto trading activity falls under.
This can be very complicated if you are new to the tax reporting process and it’s a great idea to consult a tax expert to get some trustworthy advice. The fee you will pay a tax consultant is worth it because you will know exactly which of your trading activities fall under tax obligations and exactly how to fulfill them.
A Few Ending Words…
The cryptocurrency market is without a doubt very robust and complex. If you are looking to make crypto trading a serious source of income, you need to really learn how the market works and one of the basics is that you need to dedicate a lot of time and attention in order to spot business opportunities on time and make a profit.
This is where crypto portfolio trackers really make a difference because they will give you a competitive edge in tracking the pricing of your portfolio and enable you to make the right decisions at the right time.
You shouldn’t forget to file your crypto taxes regularly also, because if you become a successful trader, you will definitely have serious tax obligations that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
With the appropriate crypto portfolio tracker software such as the ones listed in this guide, in-depth knowledge about the crypto market, and some patience, you can stay in the loop with all the important crypto trades and price fluctuations on the market.