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What Are Memecoins And How Do They Work?

Last Updated April 10, 2024 9:42 AM
Onkar Singh
Last Updated April 10, 2024 9:42 AM

Key Takeaways

  • Memecoins are cryptocurrency variants inspired by internet memes and humor, leveraging social media buzz and online trends to gain traction.
  • Memecoins are characterized by their volatility, with values fluctuating based on online trends rather than conventional economic principles.
  • Buying and selling memecoins involves choosing a cryptocurrency exchange, registering, depositing funds, and executing trades.
  • While utility tokens serve practical purposes within blockchain ecosystems, memecoins primarily exist for entertainment and speculative investment.

Memecoins, Explained

Memecoins are a kind of cryptocurrency that are modeled after humorous dog photos and internet phenomena. These humorous digital assets gain traction by utilizing social media buzz and well-known online memes. 

Memecoins, in contrast to Bitcoin (BTC), are frequently made for amusement and are supported by online communities. Consider them as a less scary way for newcomers to learn about blockchain technology.

Memecoins are known for creating a lot of buzz; the more people that talk about them, the more their value may change. As a result, they are extremely risky investments with the potential for both hazardous crashes and rapid development. 

Certain memecoins, like Dogecoin (DOGE), have succeeded in finding a market, while others exit the market rapidly. Memecoins’ worth is more dependent on internet trends than practicality. However, one must take caution when using memecoins and be aware that they could be disappointed as much as amused.

How Do Memecoins Work

Memecoins function similarly to other cryptocurrencies like BTC and ETH, operating under the blockchain technological framework. However, rather than being based on conventional economic principles, their value is mostly determined by online trends and memes. 

Usually, the process of creating these digital assets is termed mining, in which users provide processing power to validate transactions on the blockchain network in exchange for the freshly created memecoins.

Memecoins can be purchased, sold, and exchanged on a number of cryptocurrency platforms and exchanges when they are created. The dynamics of supply and demand, which are impacted by social media and internet culture, define their worth. Memecoins frequently become well-known through online communities or viral memes, which increases their value as more individuals adopt the trend.

Memecoins are vulnerable to fluctuating value, unlike fiat currencies that are backed by governments or commodities that have intrinsic value. Their value is not backed by physical assets or reputable institutions, which makes them extremely risky investments. Memecoin success is highly dependent on the health of online communities and the enduring popularity of related memes.

Basically, memecoins function by utilizing the power of online culture to produce digital assets that are exchanged on decentralized networks and have a perceived worth. For investors, this presents both an allure and a risk because their value is subject to the vagaries of online trends.

Top 5 Memecoins By Market Capitalization

At the time of writing, the top five memecoins by market capitalization according to CoinMarketCap are Dogecoin (DOGE), Shiba Inu (SHIB), dogwifhat (WIF), Pepe (PEPE), and FLOKI (FLOKI).


The original and most well-known memecoin, Dogecoin boasts a massive, dedicated community. Its success is often tied to its playful branding and occasional support from figures like Elon Musk.


Inspired by Dogecoin, Shiba Inu markets itself as the “Dogecoin Killer.” It operates on the Ethereum blockchain and encompasses a growing ecosystem, including its ShibaSwap decentralized exchange.


dogwifhat is a newer memecoin, likely focusing on leveraging internet trends and communities. Information about this specific coin may be more limited compared to established projects.


Pepe is a memecoin likely based on the Pepe the Frog internet meme. Its appeal likely stems from the association with meme culture and potential for community-driven hype.


Named after Elon Musk’s dog, Floki Inu focuses on building utility, with plans for a gaming metaverse and NFT-related projects.

How to buy and sell memecoins 

There are a few processes involved in buying and selling memecoins. The first step involves deciding on a cryptocurrency exchange that supports the particular memecoin you want to buy or sell. After you’ve chosen an exchange, you’ll have to register and finish any verification requirements, such as presenting identification.

You will need to make a deposit into your exchange account after it has been set up. Depending on the exchange’s policies, you can usually accomplish this using bank transfers, credit/debit card payments, or other approved payment methods.

Once you have funds in your exchange account, you may go to the trading section and look up the memecoin you want to purchase. You can either place a limit order for a certain price or enter the desired amount and execute the buy at the going rate.

After obtaining memecoins, you have the option to move them to a private cryptocurrency wallet for increased security or keep them in your exchange wallet. Memcoins can be sold by simply repeating a similar procedure, choosing to sell on the exchange platform and entering the desired quantity.

It’s important to remember that the markets for cryptocurrencies can be unstable, so before purchasing or selling memecoins, it’s best to do some research and keep an eye on trends. For a seamless trading experience, you should also consider transaction costs and security precautions before transacting in cryptocurrencies.

Pros And Cons Of Memecoins 

Like any other digital asset or investment, memecoins have pros and cons of their own.

On the plus side, memecoins can provide substantial returns on investment quickly, particularly during viral meme fads. A younger group of investors who are aware of online groups and trends may be drawn to them due to their affiliation with memes and internet culture. Additionally, memecoins give early adopters and producers a chance to profit from their fame and ingenuity.

Memecoins can have some serious risks, though. Because of their high level of speculation and susceptibility to erratic online trends, their value is subject to sharp price swings. Furthermore, memecoins have no inherent value and no underlying assets, therefore all of their value is derived from opinion and mood. This leaves them open to pump and dump scams and market manipulation.

Furthermore, because memecoins are decentralized, there may be security risks and a higher risk of fraud or hacking. Furthermore, the legitimacy and acceptability of memecoins in different jurisdictions may be impacted by legislative uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrencies.

Investors should be mindful of the significant risks and volatility linked to memecoins, even though they have the potential to yield large profits and entertainment value.

Differences Between Cryptocurrencies And Memecoins 

While memecoins and cryptocurrencies are both digital assets based on blockchain technology, their fundamental ideas and goals are very different.

Usually, the goal of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ether is to function as decentralized platforms for smart contract execution and decentralized applications (DApps), or as a store of wealth. A number of factors, including acceptance, utility, and technological improvements, frequently impact their worth. 

For example, Bitcoin attempts to be a substitute for fiat money and acts as a store of value similar to digital gold, while Ethereum uses smart contracts to enable programmable transactions. Memecoins are more valuable due to online trends and memes than they are to technological advancements or usefulness.

Memes’ popularity among online communities determines how they are made and traded, which makes their worth extremely speculative and unstable. Memecoins are not taken seriously as alternatives to fiat money; instead, they are frequently seen as novelty investments or forms of entertainment.

Memecoins are a distinct subset of cryptocurrencies that exist within the larger cryptocurrency ecosystem. While cryptocurrencies are aimed at revolutionizing finance and technology, memecoins thrive on internet culture and trends.

Memecoins Vs. Utility Tokens

Memecoins and utility tokens are two separate kinds of cryptocurrency that have diverse uses and roles in the ecosystem.

Memecoins are mostly based on Internet memes and trends; they are frequently not very useful outside of their connection to popular culture. Their worth varies according to the virality of memes and social media trends, and they function on the basis of community-driven humor and amusement. Rather than being utilized for useful reasons, memecoins are usually invested in speculatively or as a way to engage with online culture.

Utility tokens are digital currencies created to grant users access to particular goods or services inside an ecosystem built around blockchain technology. These tokens are digital assets that have intrinsic value and provide features like platform incentives, governance rights, and access to dApps. Utility tokens are designed to encourage users to interact with the services offered by the platform by facilitating transactions and interactions within their unique ecosystems.

Although memecoins derive their value and amusement from online memes, utility tokens function practically in blockchain ecosystems by granting access to services and encouraging involvement. Their stated use cases and underlying functionality within the larger cryptocurrency ecosystem set them apart.

The Future Of Memecoins 

Memecoins’ future is an odd mixture of promise and unpredictability. Although it is impossible to ignore their phenomenal rise in 2023 and the first part of 2024, its reliance on social media trends and excitement makes long-term success uncertain.

Memecoins have demonstrated their capacity to spark enthusiasm and draw fervent communities. Strong social support can lead to significant price increases, as demonstrated by Dogecoin and Shiba Inu. Furthermore, several memecoins are integrating practical uses. Initiatives such as BONK concentrate on bolstering particular blockchain environments, conceivably contributing more than just conjecture.

However, memecoins frequently have no intrinsic worth and are just based on public opinion. This tendency to follow trends can cause sharp fluctuations in price as well as possible crashes. 


Memecoins are expected to continue being a thriving, albeit volatile, part of the cryptocurrency market in the future. While some might become well-known through practical applications, others might go unnoticed. 

The challenge lies in distinguishing genuinely useful projects from mere memes. Memecoins, in any case, are a fascinating study in social influence and community-driven economics, and their continued existence in the dynamic crypto space is certain.


What is the point of memecoins?

Memecoins are a type of cryptocurrency inspired by internet memes and humor, leveraging social media trends and online culture to gain popularity and value.

How do memecoins differ from traditional cryptocurrencies?

Unlike traditional cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, memecoins derive their value primarily from online trends and memes rather than technological advancements or practical utility.

How can I buy and sell memecoins?

To buy or sell memecoins, you can use cryptocurrency exchanges that support the specific memecoin you’re interested in. Register, deposit funds, execute trades, and consider factors like market trends, transaction costs, and security precautions.

What are the risks associated with memecoins?

Memecoins are highly volatile and speculative investments, with values fluctuating based on online trends and community sentiment. They lack inherent value and are susceptible to sharp price swings, pump and dump scams, and market manipulation. Investors should exercise caution and conduct thorough research before investing in memecoins.

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