NFT marketplaces – Weekly fundamentals #58

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A walkthrough of the most interesting charts and trends in crypto, with a focus on key business drivers and protocol fundamentals.

This week’s newsletter focuses on the NFT marketplaces market sector, that has a designated dashboard on Token Terminal. Let’s dig in!

NFT marketplaces are platforms that allow users to buy, sell, and/or create non-fungible tokens such as digital media, collectibles, art, assets, etc.


Below is visualized the daily trading volume for all projects in the NFT marketplaces market sector over the past year.

Key takeaways

  • The NFT marketplaces dashboard currently lists 13 projects.
  • Total trading volume within the NFT market has decreased significantly over the past year.
  • As of today, only OpenSea and Blur are valued above $1B. Looking at all-time-highs, a total of 6 of these projects have surpassed a $1B fully diluted market cap at some point in time.
  • We can break down the NFT marketplaces into the following sub-categories:
    • Zora, Sound, Manifold, and Catalog are primary mint platforms. The rest are secondary sales marketplaces.
      • Sudoswap and NFTX are pool or AMM-based marketplaces, in contrast to others that are orderbook-based.

Key takeaways

  • Over the past year, competition within the NFT market has intensified, and the number one spot in terms of trading volume has rotated from LooksRare to OpenSea to X2Y2 and most recently to Blur.

Key takeaways

  • Despite launching in October 2022 and being the newest market entrant, Blur quickly dethroned OpenSea, the incumbent that has been around since 2018, as the market leader in terms of trading volume.
  • With the promise of future airdrops, Blur has continued to strengthen its lead over OpenSea. However, Blur’s rise has not gone unnoticed. Just yesterday, OpenSea announced a new product called OpenSea Pro, an NFT marketplace aggregator targeted at pro traders & collectors, which could be viewed as a direct competitor to Blur’s offering.


Below are visualized some of the key metrics based on absolute numbers and growth rates for the NFT marketplaces market sector.

Key takeaways

  • Blur is the current market leader when including all trades – without applying any kind of wash trading filter.
  • There is a clear correlation between token incentives and volumes. Currently, the largest token incentive payouts occur on Blur, LooksRare, and X2Y2.
  • It’s worth noting that OpenSea is a clear market leader if we only consider platforms that have no token incentives.
  • OpenSea, Sound, Zora, Manifold, Foundation, and Catalog do NOT have a token. In contrast to DeFi, where protocols tend to launch a token early on, it seems to be more difficult for investors and users to get exposure to NFT growth via marketplace or infrastructure bets.
  • NFTX is the only marketplace that saw its trading volume increase. Out of the rest, SuperRare and Blur have been able to sustain volumes the best, with drops of less than 15%. Over the same time period, Catalog, Sound, Manifold, Zora, and Sudoswap have seen drops of over 50%.
  • It is worth highlighting that the % changes are dependent on the absolute values, with lower values often seeing more volatility in growth rates. Marketplace logic might also affect the volatility: primary mint platforms, such as Zora, can see large, temporary upticks in activity as a result of one-off drops or collaborations, as was the case with the recent “Base, Introduced” NFT drop on Zora by Coinbase.

Key takeaways

  • For secondary marketplaces like OpenSea and Blur, fees consist of marketplace fees and creator royalties. For minting platforms, fees include the volume as that is the sum of fees paid to the drop creator.
  • Blur’s volume also includes aggregator trades to OpenSea, LooksRare, and X2Y2. For these trades, no fees are accounted for Blur.
  • In general, fees are down more than volumes, due to fewer royalties being enforced and paid by collectors. NFTX and Rarible are the only platforms that are up in fees month over month.
  • OpenSea is down more than other big platforms. This is due to OpenSea temporarily removing marketplace fees for the most popular collections to compete with Blur.

Key takeaways

  • Most marketplaces are already monetizing and generating revenue. Of these, LooksRare and X2Y2 are already distributing revenue to tokenholders.
  • Marketplaces that are not currently monetizing include Blur, Catalog, and Manifold.
  • NFTX’s low revenue number is due to the protocol not actively monetizing volume. Revenue events only occur when there are no liquidity stakers to distribute fees to.

Key takeaways

  • In general, user activity has decreased significantly month over month.
  • Despite Blur leading the pack in terms of trading volume, OpenSea is still the clear market leader when ranked by daily active users. Blur has built their product for pro traders, who trade with higher volumes than typical retail users who seem to prefer using OpenSea. It will be interesting to see how OpenSea’s new offering for pro traders changes this dynamic.

Video of the week

In this episode of 15-minute fundamentals, we dive into the current state of Perpetual Protocol with core contributor, Jamie Holmes.

00:00 Introduction
Recap of the past few months at Perpetual Protocol
Drivers behind current momentum
05:05 Lazy River 2.0 – introduction of fee sharing
06:28 Overview of Lazy River’s smart contracts
08:07 Hot Tub vaults
08:27 The problem that Hot Tub vaults solve
08:55 Overview of Hot Tub’s smart contracts
11:05 Ensuring security – smart contract development process
12:26 The market and Perpetual Protocol’s position within it
14:29 Growth drivers and challenges
19:02 What’s next for Perpetual Protocol?

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Product tip of the week

Tips for getting the most out of Token Terminal

You can easily add and compare entire market sectors in data tables. This is especially helpful if you want to analyze the data points for several market sectors in one view.

The authors of this content, or members, affiliates, or stakeholders of Token Terminal may be participating or are invested in protocols or tokens mentioned herein. The foregoing statement acts as a disclosure of potential conflicts of interest and is not a recommendation to purchase or invest in any token or participate in any protocol. Token Terminal does not recommend any particular course of action in relation to any token or protocol. The content herein is meant purely for educational and informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as financial, investment, legal, tax or any other professional or other advice. None of the content and information herein is presented to induce or to attempt to induce any reader or other person to buy, sell or hold any token or participate in any protocol or enter into, or offer to enter into, any agreement for or with a view to buying or selling any token or participating in any protocol. Statements made herein (including statements of opinion, if any) are wholly generic and not tailored to take into account the personal needs and unique circumstances of any reader or any other person. Readers are strongly urged to exercise caution and have regard to their own personal needs and circumstances before making any decision to buy or sell any token or participate in any protocol. Observations and views expressed herein may be changed by Token Terminal at any time without notice. Token Terminal accepts no liability whatsoever for any losses or liabilities arising from the use of or reliance on any of this content.

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