Cryptocurrency has become one of the most dominant finance alternatives in the world, even reeling in the likes of finance giant PayPal. All of these reinforce crypto's influence on today's financial landscape.

While there are many ways of buying, trading and selling crypto, there is an alternative way that aims to simplify and streamline the entire process. Crypto exchangers and crypto exchange monitors or are growing in popularity and for good reason.

Crypto exchangers are platforms where even a newbie to the market can exchange cryptocurrency. Although exchangers have KYC-procedures, for the most part exchanges take place without user verification, which is an additional bonus. However, there are gazillions of exchangers out there and there is a risk to come across a fraudulent one. To help with this problem, there are exchanger monitors, aggregators that list only those exchangers that have gone through a thorough check-up procedure. One of such exchanger monitors is BestChange, the market leader in the segment of cryptocurrency exchanges. The service operates from Russia, because in Eastern Europe there is a steady demand for exchanging e-currencies including cryptocurrencies.

History behind BestChange.com

BestChange exchanger monitor was launched over 13 years ago, on 19 June 2007 by a Russian 19 y.o. developer Pyotr Strugalsky. The date of launching makes them the same age as the Perfect Money payment system and older than all cryptocurrencies.

The exchanger monitor was first envisioned as a cryptocurrency exchanger itself. However, during the market analysis 15 years ago, the CEO of the monitor found a problem — at that time there already existed a large number of fraudulent exchangers. This discovery prompted him to create a website with selected trusted exchangers where users could find the best exchange rates. The inspiration came from very young services for exchange rate comparison, and the idea to create a better version of such service was quick to follow. 

Initially the website was located on domain name bestchange.ru, and in several years an English language version was launched on the domain bestchange.com. The creators named the project to show it is the best place to buy or sell cryptocurrency.

At the beginning a lot of efforts was spent on developing and bringing the service to the high quality, and lots of time was dedicated on promotion of the service. The initial investment was just $1,000 spent on basic marketing and SEO. Pyotr Strugalsky, the project’s CEO, at the start of the project managed the promotion himself. The project began to pay off in a year after launching.

From the very beginning the service had strong competitors, for example, popular at that time obmenniki.com. With time former leaders have left the market and BesChange has become the most popular among exiting projects thanks for the service convenience and proper marketing.

During the first year the website was visited by only a fraction of users and the project hardly yielded any returns, but with time the audience started to grow, investments began to pay-off and bring profit. The popularity of the service skyrocketed in 2016-2017 years amid cryptocurrency boom. Currently, the annual turnover totals $1 million.

The project was envisioned with ease of its usage in mind. All the user wishing to exchange currency needs to do is to select in the column on the left the currencies GIVE and GET (for example, Visa/MasterCard USD and Bitcoin (BTC), and the table with trusted exchangers will be displayed, with best rates on the top. Icons next to the exchanger show additional information, for instance, whether an exchanger requires verification.

The platform takes it upon themselves to perform due diligence checks of the exchangers’ reliability to ensure maximum safety for the users.

Position in the market, competition, and challenges

BestChange.com is the leader in their segment, drawing 70 per cent of users of all monitors. As it can be seen on www.similarweb.com, the website www.bestchange.ru holds 38 th position among financial websites in Russia, and the first place among similar platforms. On average, the company websites have around 8M visits per month. However, their competitors are not only other monitors but also websites helping cover the same demand: exchanges, p2p platforms, Telegram bots. All these platforms have their pros and contras. What makes BestChange stand out for a wide range of users is that they offer the most balanced solution from the viewpoint of safety, profitability, speed, and simplicity of exchanges.

Media to block the Russian domain bestchange.ru for mentioning of Bitcoin on the website.

Team comprises of 16 people, key positions include Advertising Managers, PR Managers, Promotion Managers. The company is being managed by 2 people.

The website on a constant basis fights against ddos-attacks, phishing copies of the website and attempts of the Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass 

Representatives of the company in one of their interviews said that such blockings provoke fraudulent activity. Indeed, in the Internet there are a lot of confirmations of their words: Youtube channels, forums and social networks are peppered with description of cases of phishing, when domain of the websites differ by several letters or have diacritic symbols under the letters. Judging by screenshots and videos threat actors even manage to somehow forge advertisements in search engines. The websites users have complained at are, as of the date of the publication, blocked by antivirus or totally removed by hosting providers, which shows the work of the service against fraudsters.

However, in open sources one can find information, that the website is in the constant battle not only against fraudsters, but also against Russian prosecutors. According to information in mass media (for example, HashTelepgraph, Cryptograph, Bitcoinmag, Cryptostart ), the website already three times has been blocked by the Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media. The representatives of the aggregator in their turn say that the website does not contain any information forbidden in the country. Due to the fact that all three blocking were lifted after appeal, the truth is on their side. Perhaps the situation will change in 2021 when a new law on digital assets will be launched in Russia, and this law can be interpreted in different ways. One should only wait when the law comes to force to make sure the service will be able to work in Russia.