Can You Buy a Fraction of a Bitcoin

Cryptocurrencies are digital assets powered by blockchain technology that has been at the center of attention for decentralized trading enthusiasts since the very first crypto — Bitcoin (BTC) — was launched. 

Because of the popularity of cryptos, many individuals and organizations sell them, from specialized crypto trading platforms to peer-to-peer sellers and even retailers. Most sell Bitcoin, which has become almost eponymous with the word “crypto.” It remains more popular than all other cryptocurrencies. It is also the biggest crypto by market capitalization.

With that said, the price of Bitcoin has increased enormously in the past few years, reaching tens of thousands of USD — and, although the variations in the value of digital currencies are always hard to predict, the potential of Bitcoin’s price skyrocketing even further remains a possibility. 

If you’re looking to acquire BTC assets, you may find it unaffordable to buy a whole Bitcoin, and you might even be wondering if it’s possible to acquire just a tiny fraction of this cryptocurrency for a lower price.

Stack of sliver bitcoins on black background

Fortunately, there are many different ways to perform Bitcoin transactions in today’s marketplace. It offers a lot of flexibility in terms of how you can buy BTC assets — through crypto brokerage, Bitcoin exchanges, and in various other ways — as well as in the quantities of Bitcoin you can acquire. 

In this article, we’ll talk about the possibility of buying a small amount of Bitcoin. We’ll also provide you with Bitcoin-related investment advice should you choose to purchase any BTC quantity.

Can You Buy Bitcoin in Fractions?

To answer this question straight away: Yes, you can buy less than one Bitcoin. In other words, you can buy fractions of a Bitcoin — and very small fractions, at that. In fact, this is a typical choice for most Bitcoin buyers who don’t have enough money to buy a whole coin.

What’s the Smallest Fraction of a Bitcoin You Can Buy?

The smallest unit of Bitcoin is called a satoshi. This name honors Bitcoin’s creator, Satoshi Nakamoto. To this day, Satoshi Nakamoto remains anonymous for the general public in every way except in name, which many people think is actually a pseudonym for a group of developers. Whatever the case may be, in terms of Bitcoin assets, you can currently buy as little as a single satoshi and no less.

One Bitcoin equals one hundred million (100,000,000) satoshis. In other words, as a decimal value, one satoshi is the same as 0.00000001 BTC. Other smaller divisions of Bitcoin include the microbitcoin (μBTC) equaling 0.000001 BTC, the millibitcoin (mBTC) equaling 0.001 BTC, and so on.

If you’re one of many beginners in the field of crypto or a first-time Bitcoin buyer, you’d do well to purchase lower quantities just to verify if your Bitcoin wallet works properly. There’s usually nothing wrong with crypto wallets, but it’s still safer to start by acquiring only a few dollars worth of Bitcoin on your wallet to ensure you won’t have any issues with crypto withdrawals from your wallet.

How to Buy BTC

As mentioned above, there are several different ways to purchase Bitcoin in any amount. The most common types include crypto exchanges, Bitcoin brokerage, peer-to-peer (P2P) trading, and Bitcoin ATMs. 

Small shopping cart with bitcoins inside

Crypto Exchanges

A cryptocurrency exchange is typically a business that provides crypto traders with a platform for buying, selling, and trading cryptocurrencies through the internet. Crypto exchanges are the most popular way to buy Bitcoin with fiat or other cryptocurrencies.

The vast majority of exchanges allow for Bitcoin purchasing, and they’ll let you acquire any smaller quantity of satoshis, too. Apart from bitcoins, you can also find multiple altcoins on most crypto exchanges, with some of the most commonly traded coins including Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Tether (USDT), Cardano (ADA), Polkadot (DOT), Dogecoin (DOGE), and many more.

There are countless cryptocurrency exchanges out there that you can use to buy any amount of Bitcoin. Some of the more famous and well-established ones include Binance, Kraken, Coinbase, Robinhood, and more. 

If you’re new to buying Bitcoin, picking one of the exchanges mentioned above would be your best option because these platforms have already made a name for themselves on the market. This means that larger trade volumes pass through these exchanges every day, and with their experience and reputation come more robust security measures and improved user experience. Such a setting would be ideal for you to learn the ropes of Bitcoin trading quickly and effectively while at the same time feeling safe because of the robust safety mechanisms powering these exchanges.

The process of buying Bitcoin through an exchange is relatively straightforward. You start by creating an account on the exchange platform and choosing a payment method through which you’ll buy assets. Exchanges commonly let you use a debit card and a credit card, and some will even let you directly link your bank account for payment. From there on, you can place an order for the exact amount of Bitcoin you wish to buy and proceed by purchasing your payment method. Finally, you can store your assets in a Bitcoin wallet, which is a hardware or a digital wallet that holds the public and private cryptographic keys you need to use the crypto you purchased.

Bitcoin Brokerage

You can also choose to buy Bitcoin through crypto brokers. These brokers can be retail shops that can sell you Bitcoin directly, or they can play the role of mediators between you and a Bitcoin seller.

When a Bitcoin broker mediates a sale, they have less control over the transaction between you and the seller than traditional, centralized exchanges. As opposed to brokers, exchanges can charge you more in withdrawal fees and make your transaction details public. The process of trading crypto through a broker is also known as over-the-counter (OTC) brokerage.

Hand giving bitcoin to open palm

OTC brokers typically operate websites that you can access simply by filling in a form. From there, the broker will try to find a match for you — in our case, someone who wishes to sell smaller quantities of Bitcoin. Once the broker finds a seller, you’re informed that you’ve been matched. From there on, you’re put in direct contact with your seller and arrange all the details of the transaction with them.

Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Trading

Another way of buying Bitcoin is through peer-to-peer (P2P) transactions. These transactions can be done in two ways: either through specialized peer-to-peer exchange platforms or through direct contact with a person selling Bitcoin.

In the case of P2P platforms, they’re somewhat similar to regular centralized exchanges — in fact, some of these exchanges offer their own P2P versions, such as Binance’s P2P platform. The difference between the two types of platforms is that while regular exchanges use automated engines to complete crypto transactions, P2P platforms give you information about potential sellers. In this way, through P2P exchanges, you can pick your favorite seller and price instead of letting a centralized exchange do all this for you.

If you want to avoid exchanges altogether, you can also trade directly with someone you know and trust. This also includes sellers that a trusted party recommends. Here, it’s essential to make sure these sellers deliver on the promise and transfer the Bitcoin assets you bought from them, as you’ll have no guarantee of this from any mediator.

Bitcoin ATMs

Lastly, you can also buy Bitcoin from Bitcoin ATMs. The name might be misleading — unlike the ATMs in standard usage, which let you withdraw money from your bank account, Bitcoin ATMs let you purchase Bitcoins with your own money instead. You can typically do so with a card or with cash. Some of these ATMs will even let you sell Bitcoin for money, but not all.

While buying Bitcoin from exchanges or OTC brokers happens online, Bitcoin ATMs are physical machines you can find in a variety of different locations, including hotels, airports, restaurants, and similar service providers. With that said, Bitcoin ATMs are far less widespread and are typically only found in parts of the world where there’s increased Bitcoin trading activity. 

Blond woman wearing green dress using orange bitcoin ATM

Bitcoin ATMs typically impose daily BTC transaction limits, so you can’t buy vast quantities of Bitcoin at once — but if you’re in the market for smaller amounts of Bitcoin, this shouldn’t be a problem. However, Bitcoin ATMs do charge heftier withdrawal fees compared to crypto exchanges.

To find a Bitcoin ATM near you, you can use the Coin ATM Radar website, which uses an interactive map of Bitcoin ATM machines. Through it, you can check whether there are any Bitcoin ATMs near you, where exactly they’re located, what payment methods they support, ID requirements for withdrawing BTC to an external wallet, and other options. 

Different Ways to Buy Smaller Fractions of a Bitcoin

Now that you know you don’t have to buy a whole Bitcoin, you can start looking for the ideal solution for buying smaller fractions of Bitcoin assets. The most common options you have include crypto exchanges, Bitcoin brokerage, P2P trading, and Bitcoin ATMs.

We hope this article can help you make an informed decision on which way of acquiring BTC assets suits you best. Be aware that once you acquire any quantity of Bitcoin, you’ll also need a Bitcoin wallet to be able to use your newly acquired crypto assets for trading and purchasing.