In this article, you’ll learn how to trade cryptocurrencies using Uniswap and MetaMask. It might seem scary at first, but it’s safe and fair user-friendly.

What is Uniswap?

Uniswap is a really exciting project. The reason why most people use it is so they can get their hands on smaller coins that are yet to reach larger exchanges.

It is a decentralized exchange, otherwise known as as a DEX.


How to use Uniswap

Find a coin you want to trade

Using either CoinMarketCap or CoinGecko, find a coin that trades on Uniswap.

The reason why you should go through either of these sites is so that you can find a valid address for the coin that you’re looking to buy.

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I’ve chosen LTO network above.

You’ll notice that Uniswap shows the altcoin as trading against WETH.

WETH aka. wrapped ETH, is ETH that conforms to the ERC-20 standard.

Why WETH?

  • ETH does not conform to ERC-20:- Normal ETH was made before ERC-20 and does not conform to this standard. And therefore cannot be traded against other ERC-20 tokens.
  • Wrapped ETH can be traded more efficiently:- as WETH is an ERC-20 token itself, you can trade it for other ERC-20 tokens efficiently.
  • Save on gas fees:- the transaction fees incurred by normal ETH is quite high. WETH fees are lower.
  • Easy to convert:- Wrapped ETH can be unwrapped into normal ETH thereafter.

If you want to know more about WETH, check out weth.io.

How do I get WETH?

It’s very easy:- you can literally trade your ETH for WETH on UniSwap. The gas fee for this is very low too. We cover this further down in this article.

Goto to Uniswap

Click on the hyperlinked ticker on CoinMarketCap or CoinGecko. This will automatically link you to the appropriate trading screen on UniSwap.

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Clicking the market ticker against Uniswap V2 on the LTO network page on CoinMarketCap.

The reason why we go via this route is so that we don’t accidentally select a fake version of the coin we’re looking to buy.

Uniswap is decentralized and there are some malicious actors. Be aware of this, and use common sense or a trusted source.

Importing the token

After you navigate to Uniswap via a trusted source, CoinMarketCap, you’ll be asked to import the relevant coin address.

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The previous warning is reiterated formally. Make sure you’re importing the correct coin.

Choosing how much you want

Type in however much you want to spend or however much you want to buy. The swap will be automatically calculated.

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Connecting Uniswap to MetaMask

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Uniswap will connect directly to your wallet. It will not access your private keys, and transactions will require your confirmation.

The most common approach is to use MetaMask. MetaMask is a browser extension wallet. It’s very popular, safe, secure.

Make sure that it’s only asking to view the address of your permitted accounts. Anything more should throw up red flags. Make sure you’re using app.uniswap.org.

Wrapping our ether to save on fees

First, exchange your ETH for WETH. This way we’ll get better fees, and better transaction times.

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And await the completion of the trade. If you click the pending button, you’ll get the links for your Etherscan transaction.

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And on completion, you’ll be see a completed notification.

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Buying the altcoin we want

Now that we’ve got out WETH, we can choose WETH from the tokens we want to swap.

Approve your WETH

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And, as we imported the coin earlier, we can also select LTO from the drop-down list for the “to” option.

Confirm WETH Approval

Now we can approve WETH. This will popup a MetaMask notification, asking for our confirmation.

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We also see the fees associated. You can adjust these by going to Edit, but I’m not going to go into that in this tutorial.

Initiate the Swap

The approval will take a little time, but on completion we’ll be able intiate the swap.

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We then confirm the Swap, to make sure its definitely what we want.

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Once more, we approving the transaction on MetaMask.

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Then seeing that our transaction has been submitted.

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This is confirmed by the notification that we have swapped our WETH for the chosen amount of LTO.

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We can confirm this transaction has taken place on Etherscan.

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Check we’ve got our coins

Once the transaction goes through, we can see our tokens in MetaMask.

And there we have it, we’ve bought altcoins through UniSwap!

Conclusion

The process of buy altcoins through Uniswap is slightly more complex than going to Coinbase. I’ll agree with that.

But, you get access to a world of untapped gems, only accessible on Uniswap.

You’ll need a wallet that connects to Uniswap, in this case, we’ve used MetaMask. Once we got some ETH, we wrapped it to save on fees and make transactions faster. Then we swapped it for LTO, an altcoin we fancied!

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