How much does it cost to create your own NFT? We discuss several cost-determining factors inherent in NFT development.
Nothing can express the explosive rise better than non-fungible tokens in the last couple of years. The increase in value of more than 7000 percent (from $340 million to $24.9 billion) leaves no doubt about the bright future of the booming NFT market. Even the worst skeptics seem to give up taking NFTs as a crypto bubble nowadays. Both NFT creators and the broad public realize that NFT technology provides a state-of-the-art vehicle for deriving value from digital assets. What assets? Any kind, whether it is digital art, collectibles, or property certificates.
How much does it cost to create your own NFT? It depends on several cost-determining factors inherent in NFT development, and they are worth knowing not to regret wasting time and money.
How NFT minting goes
Almost anything created with digital technologies can be wrapped in an NFT. NFTs run on various blockchains that support smart contracts. Suppose you have a file that should be transformed into an NFT. What you need to do is to create an NFT smart contract on one or another NFT-compatible blockchain. The contract allows your digital property (the file you want to transform into an NFT) to exist as a block of data with a unique personal code within a blockchain.
In essence, the process of NFT minting resembles uploading personal data on a social network: once published, it reflects your ownership. An NFT-compatible blockchain acts as a social network, while your NFT smart contract becomes your personalized digital property. The very process is similar, no matter which blockchain is applied to NFT minting. The difference is in the cost of creating an NFT on Solana, Ethereum, Polygon, or other blockchains.
Cost-determining factors of NFT creation
It differs in price to create an NFT collection or a single non-fungible token. At the same time, the difference can be very insignificant if the marketplace offers the so-called lazy minting. The lazy minting option allows NFT creators to mint their tokens almost for free, and it can be done even for two or more blockchains simultaneously. However, the marketplace fees may vary over time, and the average cost to create an NFT may appear far beyond zero.
Choosing an NFT marketplace is the first cost-determining factor for NFT minting. For example, the most popular NFT platforms, such as OpenSea and Rarible, offer lazy minting with no upfront cost to create an NFT project on Polygon or Ethereum. It implies post-factum fees that will be charged after an NFT is sold. Such a fee is called the listing fee when NFTs are created for sale. In general, three types of fees can be defined:
- Gas fee. Blockchain transactions cost some money since particular expenses appear when the blockchain ecosystem operates. Hence, blockchains spend the so-called “gas” when running. The gas fee is a transaction fee at its core, therefore.
- Account fee. This type of fee depends on the marketplace used to create NFTs. They vary widely since the number of NFT platforms counts in dozens (if not hundreds) nowadays.
- Listing fee. This determines the cost of creating an NFT project since tokens are minted for sale in many cases.
In addition to various fees associated with NFT minting, NFT creators should consider other factors, such as the crypto market’s volatility when the value of cryptocurrencies fluctuates. Besides, the time of minting can also affect the cost of creating an NFT: more intensive on-chain activities are observed on weekdays, during which minting NFTs can be more expensive than on weekends.
How much does it cost to create an NFT on the most popular blockchains?
Even though many blockchains allow making smart contracts, the following three distributed ledgers are the most popular ones for NFT creation. They differ in terms of the fees and procedures necessary to mint non-fungible tokens.
The oldest programmable blockchain has set the tone in smart contracts. The transaction fee reached up to $100 back then for NFT minting. But those days are in the past, fortunately. Today, the largest NFT marketplaces, such as OpenSea or Mintable, offer both regular and lazy minting with no upfront cost to create NFTs on Ethereum. The OpenSea platform, for example, charges you the only listing fee of 2.5% of the total NFT price to take it after your token is sold.
This progressive blockchain is getting more and more popular among NFT creators worldwide. Solana requires a pretty affordable cost to create an NFT project, no matter how massive such a project may be. Three transactions are needed to mint an NFT on Solana, and each one costs 0.00045 SOL (native cryptocurrency of the Solana blockchain). SOL prices fluctuate up and down like any other volatile crypto, but a transaction rarely exceeds one (!) cent. Hence, the average cost to create an NFT on Solana is about $0.03.
Using the most popular NFT marketplace, OpenSea, to mint your NFTs on the Polygon blockchain makes sense. Why so? Because OpenSea allows doing it entirely for free. You will pay nothing to create and publish your non-fungible token on Polygon. But OpenSea is a commercial project, isn’t it? The approach is not purely altruistic: the platform charges you a 2.5% service fee derived from the selling price of your token. It compensates for the significant cost of creating an NFT marketplace to some extent. Even though the Polygon blockchain is used for NFT minting, the currency of the deal is ETH – the native crypto of Ethereum.
Conclusions – Cost to Create an NFT
Suppose you want to create your own NFT with no risk for minimum cost. In that case, the best option is to appeal to a professional NFT development service provider.