Polygon (formerly Matic Network) is a Tier 2 solution for Ethereum that provides a scalable, fast, and cost-effective platform for smart contracts, decentralized applications (DApps), and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). This article will tell to which extent Polygon is better than Ethereum and how to employ its advantages for developing an NFT marketplace on Polygon.
Polygon blockchain review
Jaynti Kanani, Sandeep Nailwal, Anurag Arjun, and Mihailo Bjelic founded Polygon in 2017 in India and named it Matic Network. Their top-priority task was creating a Tier 2 solution for Ethereum that would work faster, offer lower transaction fees, and be compatible with Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM).
In February 2021, the project team decided to rebrand and change the priorities to create a complete multichain system like Polkadot that can connect diverse blockchains into a single network. They changed the name from Matic Network to Polygon, yet the native network token keeps the MATIC name.
Due to the rebranding and development, Polygon’s scope went far beyond launching tokens, smart contracts, and DApps:
Hence, Polygon is a perfect platform for launching NFT marketplaces, especially if you want to implement the NFT 2.0 protocol that allows tokens to travel various blockchains (e.g., from Polygon to Solana and then to Polkadot), still keeping its price, liquidity, and protection.
- Polygon, as before, is a Tier 2 protocol for selling Ethereum-compatible smart contracts and DApps. It allows to increase the transaction processing speed and makes the fees lower.
- Startups can employ Polygon to launch sovereign tokens, smart contracts, NFTs, DApps, and blockchains, which will function faster and cost-efficiently compared to Ethereum solutions.
- Polygon allows the creation of applications launched on one blockchain that will use data from another blockchain, process them on a third blockchain, and send them to a fourth one.
Polygon benefits for NFT
Thanks to fast and cheap transactions, extra-high bandwidth, and rich toolsets for developers, Polygon became a leading platform for scaling Ethereum-compatible Web3 solutions. In the recent half year, the number of decentralized applications in the Polygon network grew six-fold: from 3 thousand in October 2021 to 19 thousand in May 2022. Furthermore, most applications are NFT projects like Uniswap, NFTically, Opensea, Aavegotchi, and Decentral Games ICE Poker.
The growth dynamics of DApps on Polygon in 2021-2022. Source
Polygon provides the following advantages for decentralized applications and NFTs, which it gained its growth:
- Low transaction fees. Thanks to technologies like Plasma, Optimistic Rollups, ZK Rollups, etc., the gas fee in Polygon varies between 0.0005 to 0.2 dollars (for ‘’tough’’ DApps). For comparison, the gas fee in Ethereum’s network is 5 to 100 dollars. Moreover, the gas fee for NFTs is significantly higher since it requires smart contracts; hence, NFT transactions cost 20 to 200 dollars.
- Hyper-fast transactions. Networks' bandwidth is another essential advantage. Polygon can process up to 65000 transactions per second, while creating a block takes 2 seconds. Currently, Ethereum’s bandwidth is 13-17 transactions per second, while generating a block takes 12 seconds.
- Large scaling potential. Polygon will not freeze or raise transactions fee when traffic grows; by the way, this is one of the significant Ethereum problems. Polygon implements several solutions like sidechains that increase the bandwidth if the number of active participants (nodes) increases.
- Access to quality infrastructure. While launching a decentralized application like Polygon, startups can employ Akash Network cloud storage, RPC solutions, and special packets for developers using Tenderly, Gelato, Certora, etc.
- Venture funding, and LP. Software developers also bring funding through Polygon investors and market makers that can attract liquidity to a new project.
- Access to PolyBuilders network. User solutions developers on Polygon can access internal chats of network developers to get technical support and find out detail on Polygon development.
- Technical support. Polygon offers an excellent support team and an infrastructure of Polygon media partners like Twitter, Spaces, AMA, and others that can help startups that require marketing. Moreover, Polygon cooperates with Crea8r DAO, the best community of content creators in the blockchain industry.
Polygon vs. Ethereum vs. Solana comparison
How to develop an NFT marketplace on Polygon?
An NFT marketplace is a trading platform where users can commonly create, sell, and buy non-fungible tokens. Namely, the process equals buying and selling products on eBay, Amazon, or Alibaba. The only significant difference between NFT marketplaces is that smart contracts process all transactions and record them in the blockchain; in our case, in the Polygon blockchain.
Step 1: Determine your niche
General NFT market. The trading platforms can be classified as general and specialized. General platforms include all shops that offer several product types. As for NFTs, these can be digital art, collectibles, sports, music, comics, films, series, and video games. These NFT marketplaces trade a wide range of products and win a wider audience, yet sacrifice personalization and targeted promotion focused on a particular client group.
Specialized NFT platform. The second approach is to launch a solution for a specialized niche offering a narrow product group; for example, it will provide users only with digital art or games. A more limited niche can be achieved by many means. For instance, the platform can trade NFTs created by influencers, like Valuables trades famous people's tweets. From the technical perspective developing a specialized platform is not much different from a general one, yet a specialized platform can offer personalized design and marketing.
Numerous marketing instruments like Google Trends can help to understand which niche is more relevant
Step 2: Select a blockchain developer
When you know the niche of your marketplace, the next step will require you to search for a technical partner with extensive experience in blockchain development and NFT solutions launch, like Merehead. Since 2015, our team has been launching blockchain solutions, from straightforward smart contracts to hyper-secure cryptocurrency exchanges and NFT marketplaces. We will be happy to help you implement your blockchain project.
Step 3: Define the project’s monetization model
Next, you will have to determine the business model, i.e., how your NFT platform will bring you profit. There are pretty many monetization models; each has its pros and cons. Here is a brief description of the most popular monetization models for NFT trading platforms.
- Fees. The most used monetization model involves charging a small commission on each transaction on your marketplace. Usually, the NFT vendor pays because he makes money, and therefore on an emotional level, he is not that uncomfortable about giving away some of his money. Whereas for the buyer, it will be a more difficult decision, especially if they pay 15%, as in the Foundation and SuperRare marketplaces.
- Subscription. This is a more complicated and rare monetization model according to which the platform profits from users' monthly payments to access the platform and trade tokens. It is challenging to implement it successfully since the platform must offer something unique that will attract users. Typically, these are exceptional products and functions that no one on the market will provide but you.
- Freemium. This model assumes that you will provide the core functionality of your NFT platform for free, but you will induce users to pay for premium features. For example, you can limit that you can only create five tokens per month for free, but if the user wants to generate more, they have to pay you a fee.
- Listing fee. According to this model, you will charge a fee for listing an intel on your platform. Furthermore, the user must pay regardless of whether they sold the NFT or not.
Step 4: Define the marketplace functions
Knowing your target niche and monetization model, you must decide which functions to implement on your platform. You will find the functions necessary for any platform in the following list.
Showcase. This is your shop’s screen that users will frequently see and use; therefore, it must be appealing and informative. Furthermore, the showcase must be intuitive so that users understand at first glance what their actions are. Also, it is preferred that the design and navigation within the showcase of your NFT marketplace are familiar to the user. In other words, the showcase shall be likewise to Amazon, eBay, or other popular stores.
An example of an intuitive, convenient, and beautiful showcase by Rarible
Integrations with wallets. Since the blockchain records all NFT transactions, creating, selling, and buying tokens require cryptocurrency wallets. Hence, when creating an NFT marketplace on Polygon, you must integrate with popular crypto wallets like Metamask, TrustWallet, and MathWallet. Furthermore, you can incorporate Enjin, AlphaWallet, Coinbase, PillarWallet, and Binance Chain Wallet. These applications are less popular, yet the client base is still significant.
Minting NFTs. Another critical function for any NFT marketplace is creating new tokens on the platform. As we develop a platform on Polygon, we have a significant advantage since minting non-fungible tokens on this blockchain is free. The other functions are identical to other platforms.
The results of the survey on which wallet users keep their NFTs. Source
Publishing items. Usually, after an NFT is coined, it is not immediately listed on the marketplace. For this purpose, the seller should make some simple actions: make a description of the lot, choose the method of sale (at a fixed price or through auction), set the price, specify an acceptable payment method and in the end, specify the period of bidding. Next, as a rule, the lot must pass the verification of compliance with the site rules, and it will be listed only after that.
The algorithm for creating an NFT on the OpenSea
Smart search engine. Typically, the NFT platform has dozens or even hundreds of thousands of lots that are categorized and tagged. To find the right lot, the user has either to view all or to use a search system and apply numerous filters, categories, tags, and search by the naming, author, keywords, etc.
Ratings and feedback. This is not a necessary function, yet considering that users are used to viewing other people’s reactions, it is an essential one. Feedback will help to build trust in the website and prevent fraudulent and unethical behavior. Furthermore, it will help if your platform allows users to tag famous authors, like on Facebook, YouTube, and other social networks.
The rating of the hottest NFTs on the OpenSea trading platform
Auction system. People are used to selling items of their creativity online through auctions, whether a knitted cap, a Warcraft-inspired ax, or an NFT. So when developing your NFT marketplace on Polygon (MATIC), you should implement such functionality. This will help authors sell their NFTs for the highest price and make bidding for buyers more interesting.
Notifications. These can be the usual notifications about sales, funds received into the account, app updates, or messages from the support service. But don't stop here. Your site can also notify users about new offers from favorite artists, changes in the price of selected items, or hot deals.
NFT Royalty. This function allows the authors/sellers to receive fees after the resale of their product. It is not ethical from the buyer's point of view, yet it is common in the NFT market; therefore, it’s worth implementing this function on your trading platform.
Support. It involves complex informational and technical support via text or video guides and communication through phone or video chat.
Step 5: Design an appealing interface
If you know the platform's functionality, you can initiate designing the user interface. As we mentioned, it must be beautiful, intuitive, and familiar. Furthermore, the design must be clean and not show odd texts, images, or other elements.
Here is the NFT marketplace front-end technology stack:
- Programming languages for web: Angular.JS, React.JS, and Vue.JS.
- Programming languages for mobile: Java, Kotlin for Android, and Swift for iOS.
- Architecture: MVVM for Android and MVC, MVP, MVVM, and VIPER for iOS.
- IDE: Android Studio and Xcode for iOS.
- SDK: Android SDK and iOS SDK.
Step 6: Develop smart contracts
Smart contracts will include the cooperation logic of your NFT marketplace and Polygon. These will be responsible for coining and trading NFTs on your platform. The developers will use Solidity, Move, and Vyper programming languages to create smart contracts on Polygon.
Step 7: Develop the server part
The server part of your platform will employ smart contracts and services that will store and process massive data volumes, API for interaction with other services, etc.
The technological stack for the back-end of the NFT marketplace:
- Frameworks: Spring, Symfony, Flask.
- Programming languages: Java, PHP, Python.
- Databases SQL: MySQL, PostgreSQL, MariaDB, MS SQL, Oracle.
- Databases NoSQL: MongoDB, Kassandra, DynamoDB.
- Search engines: Apache Solr, Elasticsearch.
- DevOps: GitLab CI, TeamCity, GoCD Jenkins, WS CodeBuild, Terraform.
- Cache: Redis, Memcached.
Step 8: Test your product
The testing process should begin almost as soon as the first lines of code for your marketplace are written so that bugs can be identified and eliminated in time rather than accumulating. Such testing should include standard functionality, usability, security, etc., and a thorough check of the smart contract. It is highly desirable that independent auditors also verify smart contracts.
Step 9: Launch your NFT marketplace
After testing and fixing all critical bugs and issues, the platform can enter the market. Yet, do not relax since it is the end of creating the NFT marketplace but not the end of developing it. After the launch, you will have to enhance and sophisticate its functionality and security.
The cost of creating an NFT marketplace on Polygon