Guide to Buy Your First Bitcoin on Coinbase

Coinbase, Exchange Guides

Our Guide to Buy Your First Bitcoin on Coinbase walks through the absolute easiest way to buy bitcoin. Coinbase  is the industry-leader for new bitcoin investors and is well-funded, regulated, and insured.  Coinbase takes the security of your bitcoin and information to the highest level.  It offers a bank-like interface that is familiar and simple to invest bitcoin.  There are no complicated exchange charts or order types on Coinbase.  You simply enter the amount of bitcoin you want to purchase in U.S. dollars and choose buy.  You can purchase bitcoin with your credit card, debit, card, or checking account.

You can read also learn about pros and cons of Coinbase versus our other favorite bitcoin exchanges for beginners in our Beginner’s Guide to Choosing a Bitcoin Exchange. Let’s get started!


Create Coinbase Account

The first step is to register for a Coinbase account.   Below is the account registration page you will see when you click a link to Coinbase from Crypto Space Guides.  If you sign up with Coinbase through Crypto Space Guides, you will receive $10.00 of free bitcoin if you purchase at least $100.00 in bitcoin.  To start, Coinbase registration requires your first name, last name, email, password, and state of residence.  Choose a strong password.  Do not save a copy of your password on your computer.  Do not use a password for Coinbase that you use for any other website.  As a backup, we recommend that you write your password on a piece of paper that you store with your other valuables in a secure location.  Click Create Account when you are ready to proceed.

Coinbase Referral Page

Verify Email Address

Coinbase will ask you to verify your email address to continue with the sign up process.  You should receive a verification link from Coinbase within minutes of submitting your name, email, state of residence, and password.  Click “Verify Email Address” in the email to continue with signing up for Coinbase.

Coinbase Verify Email

Verify Phone Number

Coinbase will ask you to verify your phone number to continue with the sign up process.  This is vital because your phone number allows you to enable two-factor authentication, which is an absolute must have for securing your account.  Simply enter your phone number.

Coinbase Enter Phone Number

Set up Two Factor Authentication

Two factor authentication is when you receive a code on your phone via text message or an app that you must enter in addition to your password.  You should always use two factor authentication on Coinbase or any other cryptocurrency exchange.  After entering your phone number, you will receive a text message from Coinbase with a two step verification code.  Enter the code into the available space to proceed to your Coinbase Account.

Coinbase FInalize Phone Verification

Add Payment Method

Congratulations, you now at least have a Coinbase account!  There is nothing you can do with your Coinbase account until you add a payment method to use in purchasing bitcoin and verify your identity.  Choose “Add a Payment Method” to get one step closer to buying your first bitcoin.

Coinbase Add a Payment Method

Link Bank Account or Credit/Debit Card

You could purchase bitcoin with a bank transfer from your checking account, which currently takes 4-5 days to process and has a 1.49% fee for U.S. residents.  You could also purchase bitcoin with a credit or debit card, which processes immediately but has a 3.99% fee for U.S. residents.  Choose your preference.

Coinbase Account Funding Method

Enter Credit/Debit Card or Bank Account Details

To add a credit or debit card, simply enter your card details just like on Amazon or any other e-commerce website.  To add a bank account, select your bank name and enter your online login credentials.

Coinbase Add Card
Coinbase Add Card
View and Modify Linked Cards and Bank Accounts

You can always see, add, or remove linked bank and card accounts.  Just go to your Settings at the top of the page and choose “Linked Accounts.”

Coinbase View and Modify Accounts

Verify Identity

Coinbase complies with laws that require financial institutions to verify the identity of customers.  These are often called KYC (Know Your Customer) laws.  Therefore, Coinbase will ask you to provide information and documentation verifying your identify.  If there is a delay in your first purchase of bitcoin, it will be that it can take some time (up to several days) to verify your identity.

Coinbase Verify Identity

Provide Identification Document

Similar to opening an account with any financial institution in the United States, you must provide a photo identification card such as a driver’s license to prove your identity.  Make sure to take crisp and clear photos of both sides of your ID card to avoid unnecessary delays in creating your Coinbase account.

Coinbase ID Card Tips

Visit Buy Page for Bitcoin

You now have your identity verified and your Coinbase account linked to your bank account and/or card. It’s time buy some bitcoin!  Choose “Buy/Sell” from the upper left of Coinbase webpage.  Then choose the “Buy” tab and make sure you have selected Bitcoin.  You should see a green checkmark next to bitcoin as shown below.

Coinbase Buy Page

Enter Amount of Purchase

First, choose your payment method in the box titled “Payment Method.”  Second, enter the amount of U.S. dollars you want to invest in bitcoin in the lower left.  After that, all of the remaining fields on the page will automatically populate.  Review the information on the right side of the screen containing your payment method, the price of bitcoin, the amount of bitcoin purchased, the amount of U.S. dollars spent, when the bitcoin will be available to you, and the transaction fee.   When you are ready to proceed, press the “Buy Bitcoin” button.

Coinbase Purchase Amount

Confirm Bitcoin Purchase

Review and double-check the final details of your bitcoin purchase one more time.  When you are ready to execute your purchase of bitcoin, choose “Confirm Buy” to buy bitcoin.  Congratulations, you have just purchased your first bitcoin on Coinbase!

Coinbase Confirm Purchase


You Are Ready To Get Started With Coinbase.  Visit Coinbase Now!