The idea of decentralized finance, also known as DeFi, is a revolutionary one. It seeks to make society financially inclusive without the need for any intermediaries to facilitate transactions. While Ethereum is the first preference for developing Decentralized Finance (DeFi) takes the decentralized concept of blockchain and applies it to the world of finance. Build... protocols, PancakeSwap, a Binance-backed protocol, has emerged as a competitor. In this article, we will discuss PancakeSwap in detail. We will examine its potential to topple market leaders like UniSwap and SushiSwap.
What is PancakeSwap?
PancakeSwap is a decentralized exchange built on the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) instead of Ethereum. It enables its users to swap BEP-20 standard tokens easily.
The original idea of DeFi and DEX was to decentralize world finances. Crypto experts imagined a system in which there would be no need for centralized exchanges as well. UniSwap and SushiSwap emerged as the market leaders. But there was a skewing trend with most of the DApps being developed on the Ethereum blockchain. This overdependence on the Ethereum network created challenges such as slow transaction speeds and high gas fees.
Focusing heavily on performance, Binance introduced BSC in September 2020. PancakeSwap followed soon after and has become a contender for the top spot with its excellent features.
How Does PancakeSwap Work?
As mentioned above, PancakeSwap is a decentralized exchange that runs on Binance Smart Chain. It works on the automated market maker (AMM) model instead of the traditional market model, in which there is a seller and a buyer. In the AMM model, traders trade digital assets using permissionless liquidity pools.
People deposit their funds in these liquidity pools. They receive an LP (liquidity provider) token in return. They also receive a fee for making their assets available for lending. On the other side, people who want to use this liquidity pay a fee to the DeFi platform. This fee is later distributed among people who have contributed to the pool. Out of this pool, a nominal amount is kept in the PancakeSwap treasury to maintain the platform.
The AMM model lets you earn by creating liquidity for the pool. The more you contribute, the more you get in return. You can trade LP tokens for profits. In addition, they can be farmed in another type of liquidity pool to earn PancakeSwap’s native BEP-20 tokens known as CAKE. That’s not all: there’s another type of pool that is more rewarding than the others. These are called SYRUP pools. People can stake their CAKE tokens to earn even more rewards from the SYRUP pools.
The History of PancakeSwap
PancakeSwap launched on September 20, 2020, days after the launch of BSC. PancakeSwap is currently the 3rd largest AMM platform behind UniSwap and SushiSwap. Among the AMM solutions developed on BSC, however, it stands at the top of the competition. It has garnered massive popularity within a relatively short span, resulting in speculation regarding the future of the DeFi market leaders.
Its native token, CAKE, had a launch price of around $1.37 at its inception, dropping to $0.25 after a short while. After that, CAKE kept hovering around half a dollar until mid-January 2021, crossing the $1 mark on January 24. In February, it rallied to almost 20 dollars — that is, 40 times the price at which it began the year. It saw its highest mark reaching just under $44 on April 30, making it one of the most profitable crypto investments of 2021. Since then, it has dropped due to various market drivers and is currently hovering in the range of $15 to $20.
What Can You Do on PancakeSwap?
The first thing you need to do on the PancakeSwap platform is to add liquidity to the pool. People invest in the liquidity pools and collect a fee and CAKE (LP tokens) in exchange. These are all BEP-20 standard tokens. Investors use these tokens in various ways to earn profits on the PancakeSwap.
- Trading: PancakeSwap is an exchange, even though it is a decentralized one, and the most basic function it supports is trading in BEP-20 tokens. Hence, the LP tokens that you earned by adding liquidity can be traded for other BEP tokens of your choice. It is very similar to crypto trading. PancakeSwap is built for speed and security, helping it to provide a smooth trading experience.
- Farming: The most profitable way to earn on PancakeSwap is yield farming, which can provide users with large returns. The LP token rewards earned previously can be farmed in the PancakeSwap platform, which provides a way to collect its own governance coin called CAKE. As this is a sort of investment, you end up locking in your money for getting rewards in return. The nomenclature used here obviously resembles farming terminology. While investing and waiting for your CAKE rewards is called farming, reaping your rewards is known as harvesting. The volume and time of the asset invested are directly proportional to the returns one gets. Navigate to the Farms tab on the sidebar to start farming.
- Staking: Not everyone trading in cryptocurrencies is an expert who can trade LP tokens and earn a profit. For the newcomers to this field, staking emerges as the best option. With PancakeSwap, you can stake CAKE coins in the SYRUP pools to earn even more rewards. The best part is that these rewards are no longer in the form of CAKE coins only. There are a few other BEP token options as well. Once you decide to cash in the rewards, you have to harvest the crop. Staking might sound similar to farming, but in crypto staking, you end up locking in your investment for a fixed time. That is not so in the case of yield farming. Staking is a lot simpler for beginners, as you don’t need to do everything on your own. Once you have staked your CAKE, you can relax and earn a passive income.
- NFTs: NFT stands for Non-fungible tokens. Following its gamification approach, PancakeSwap makes it possible for users to win special NFTs, which can then be used for trading and staking. However, some people prefer to simply collect these NFTs. Binance has developed a specific protocol that helps to generate NFTs in a far easier manner than before.
- Lottery: This is another way of earning money on PancakeSwap. The platform runs four lotteries a day, with each lottery session running for six hours. The fee to participate is 10 CAKE coins. If you win, you can even receive an NFT as a reward.
- Initial Farm Offerings (IFOs): To participate in initial farm offerings, you need to use LP tokens from any supported pool in order to receive access to the sale of newly launched tokens.
The Benefits of Using PancakeSwap
PancakeSwap entered the market to address the limitations of Ethereum-based platforms. To that end, PancakeSwap comes with many built-in features that provide it an edge over its competition.
Following are some of the well-known advantages of using PancakeSwap.
● Interconnectivity: The PancakeSwap developers knew that Ethereum dominates the DeFi space, and anyone using PancakeSwap for the first time would appreciate some compatibility between the two technologies. Hence, PancakeSwap developers created it with an eye toward interconnectivity. Thus, it supports many popular wallets, including MetaMask, which stores and manages both BEP-20 and ERC-20 standard tokens. PancakeSwap has listed many Ethereum-based coins on its exchange as well. It provides easy migration for people switching back and forth between the two blockchains.
● Ease of Use: PancakeSwap’s user interface has been designed to be clean and simple. It is effortless to navigate and use, even for beginners. Its impeccable performance gives a top-notch trading experience. There is never too much for you to handle, and you won’t ever be walking out because it got overwhelming.
● Numerous Options to Earn: PancakeSwap’s users can benefit from various tools and strategies. You can farm, stake or participate in NFTs and lotteries to earn a profit. With so many options at your disposal, potential profits are just around the corner.
● Fast: PancakeSwap provides for quicker transactions because of BSC’s sophistication. Hence, traders rarely lose out on any trading opportunity due to performance issues. They can be more proactive in responding to any trading stimuli, earning profits by staying ahead of the game.
● Cheap Transactions: With the overcrowding on the Ethereum network, its transaction fee has gone as high as $20 per transaction at times. PancakeSwap provides a much cheaper transaction option, with an average cost of around $0.08. This price differential has been one of the main reasons for its increased popularity.
● Privacy: You do not need to provide any government-approved identifications to PancakeSwap, as it respects your privacy.
How Does PancakeSwap Make Money?
The liquidity pools operational in decentralized exchanges are for trading purposes. On PancakeSwap, traders using liquidity from these pools pay a fee of 0.20%. From this amount, 0.17% goes to its treasury. This money helps in the maintenance and upgrades of the platform.
The Purpose of PancakeSwap Tokens (CAKE)
CAKE is the BEP-20 standard native PancakeSwap token (also called the governance token or utility token). PancakeSwap generates CAKE to reward people who contribute to the liquidity pools through various methods. CAKE can either be further pooled into SYRUP pools or traded on the exchange.
How to Swap Tokens on PancakeSwap
Connect a BEP-20 supported wallet to your PancakeSwap account to get started. The first step to swapping tokens is to own some. To get LP tokens on PancakeSwap, you need to invest your digital assets in their liquidity pools. Choose the Liquidity option in the Trade tab and click the Add Liquidity button to start adding liquidity. Once you have done that, you get some LP tokens against the assets you have invested.
To start swapping your tokens, click the exchange button on the Trade tab in the sidebar. Choose the token pair that you want to trade. One of these is the token you own, while the other is the one you want to buy. Select and proceed with the exchange.
Is PancakeSwap Safe?
The world of blockchain is as full of risks as rewards. There’s no sure guarantee of safety here. Just like any other DeFi protocol, PancakeSwap also comes with certain risks. With its advanced BSC architecture, PancakeSwap has given as much attention to its security as to its performance. However, there is always a chance of things going sideways. Thus, people should invest only what they can afford to lose.
The Bottom Line
The world is evolving. People are constantly concerned about having more privacy and control. The increasing demand for decentralization tells us that DeFi is here to stay — and grow. DApps are already generating plenty of revenues, creating passive income streams for millions of people around the globe. The DeFi revolution might have started with Ethereum, but it’s sure not to be the end. And PancakeSwap may well play a big part in that.
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