By Richard Laycock
Crypto is big news. From applause touting the technology to skeptics reveling in the recent market downturn, everyone has something to say about crypto. And one of the hottest topics in the crypto space is the relatively recent explosion of non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
However, even with all this media attention, the adoption of cryptocurrency and NFTs is quite slow in the United States. About one in 10 people in the US say they own crypto, with just 2.8% saying they have purchased an NFT.
Almost last in line
Finder surveyed over 28,000 internet users in 20 countries in September 2020 and found that the 2.8% NFT adoption rate in the US lags well behind all but two other countries: the UK (2.5%) and Japan (2.2%). The adoption rate in the United States is about a quarter of the global adoption rate of 11.6%.
A further 3.9% of respondents said they plan to buy an NFT in the future. While these future buyers would increase US adoption to around 7%, this pushes the US adoption rate ahead of only the UK and Japan.
What is holding back the adoption of NFTs in the US is likely twofold. The first reason is that low adoption has a lot to do with awareness. Just under a third (29.4%) of respondents in the United States said they know what an NFT is.
Finder’s survey also found a very strong correlation between NFT awareness rates and NFT ownership. For example, awareness in Japan sits at around 10% and deservedly ranks last in terms of adoption (2.2%). Compare that to the Philippines, which has one of the highest awareness rates at around 51% and the highest adoption rate (32%).
The culprit: Americans’ view of crypto
The second reason adoption may be lagging in the US has to do with how Americans view investing in the crypto world in general. In another Finder survey, we asked respondents from 27 countries if they thought cryptocurrency was a good investment.
Responses were pretty split, but the majority (55%) said they didn’t consider crypto a good investment. Looking at the global results, we can explain why most Americans either don’t invest in crypto or are skeptical about investing their hard-earned money in crypto – and by extension NFTs.
Financial situation and adoption of the NFT
Among the sample of countries examined for our study, the wealthiest countries (in terms of per capita income) are vastly less likely to view crypto as a sound investment. If we divide countries by sentiment into those with more positive views on crypto and those with more negative views, around 69% of those in the top 14 countries with a positive view of crypto say they think crypto cryptography is a good investment. This is more than double the rate of those in the last 13, where only 30% consider crypto a good investment.
Interestingly, countries in the bottom half have an average per capita income of $40,907, which is nearly 10 times the average income ($4,515) of those in the most crypto-positive countries.
The United States may be among the last countries to adopt widespread use of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), but as awareness and societal participation grows, the United States can be expected to make rapid progress in Queue. Already in 2022, top brands such as Gucci, Samsung and Lamborghini have dipped their toes into the NFT market. It’s only a matter of time before the smaller brands join us.
The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.