The tides are shifting in the NFT space of late. The high-value Ethereum NFT market has seen sinking trading volume the last couple weeks, but Solana NFTs are still growing—and over a 24-hour span from yesterday into this morning, the Solana network yielded more NFT volume than Ethereum’s.
Per data from CryptoSlam this morning, Solana NFT secondary market sales generated nearly $24.3 million in total during the previous 24 hours, while Ethereum sales added up to $24 million during the same span across all of the marketplaces it tracks.
It’s a modest difference between the platforms, but this is the first known instance of the smaller Solana market overtaking Ethereum in terms of dollar amount generated via sales during a 24-hour span. According to CryptoSlam, Solana NFT sales were up 436% over that 24-hour span compared to the previous window.
That’s largely due to the launch of Trippin’ Ape Tribe, a new Solana NFT profile picture project that launched on Magic Eden on Tuesday. It’s similar in style to Ethereum’s Mutant Ape Yacht Club, with 10,000 uniquely generated illustrations of apes marked by an array of surreal visual features. Secondary market sales for the project skyrocketed following Tuesday’s initial mint.
The Trippin’ Ape Tribe alone was responsible for over $14.5 million of that Solana total during that span, according to CryptoSlam. That made it the most popular project during that window, beating all other Ethereum and Solana projects by a wide margin—the runner-up was Ethereum’s Bored Ape Yacht Club at $3.5 million in sales.
Last month, Okay Bears became the first Solana project to lead that list—a feat that it has repeated again in the weeks since. Trippin’ Ape Tribe is the only other Solana NFT project to take the 24-hour throne above a slew of other Ethereum and Solana collections. As of this writing, a Trippin’ Ape Tribe NFT starts at 54 SOL ($2,600) on the Magic Eden marketplace.
An NFT serves as a proof of ownership to an item, and is often used for things like profile pictures, digital illustrations, sports collectibles, and video game items. The wider NFT market generated some $25 billion worth of trading volume in 2021 as the market caught fire, per data from DappRadar, and it's currently on pace to surpass that volume in 2022.
Solana’s move to overtake Ethereum in 24-hour NFT trading volume is the latest sign that the Solana market is picking up serious steam. The rise of Okay Bears was another key signal, with that collection now topping $100 million in secondary sales in less than a month.
Also, leading Solana NFT marketplace Magic Eden has overtaken the top Ethereum marketplace OpenSea in terms of weekly users and transactions. However, it’s worth noting that Solana’s transaction fees are a tiny fraction of Ethereum’s, making it much more affordable to do things like list and unlist NFTs, as well as bid on items.
A review of what’s going on for @MagicEden vs @Opensea:
Magic Eden has held on to its market share despite Opensea’s Solana NFT launch last month.
Not only that, but ME is now at comparable user numbers, *much* higher transaction frequency, and closing the gap in GMV with OS 👇 pic.twitter.com/Fn7PcfV8aD
— Li Jin (@ljin18) May 24, 2022
OpenSea recently added support for Solana NFTs, as well, but has yet to claim significant market share in that space. Magic Eden still produces the bulk of sales volume for the Solana market, and plans to lean into its Solana-native focus by letting buyers transact with the native tokens of NFT projects like DeGods and Aurory.
All that said, the Solana NFT market has encountered struggles of its own lately, including a rise in NFT minting bots—that is, automated programs that try to overwhelm NFT mints to buy up as many as possible. Such bots actually crashed the entire Solana network on April 30, leading to the creation of a new “bot tax” that charges a fee for “invalid” transaction attempts.
While Solana is showing numerous signs of growth, the Ethereum market remains much more valuable on the whole. Over the last seven days, CryptoSlam shows nearly $58 million in Solana NFT trading volume compared to almost $206 million for Ethereum. Over 30 days, the gap widens significantly to $333 million for Solana versus $3.15 billion for Ethereum.
The Ethereum NFT market was red hot at the end of April and beginning of May thanks to the launch of NFT land plots for Otherside, an upcoming metaverse game from the creators of the Bored Ape Yacht Club. The sale was widely criticized for its format but was still a smash—the NFTs have yielded over $1.2 billion in primary and secondary sales in less than a month.
However, the momentum in the Ethereum NFT space stalled as the crypto market crashed a couple weeks ago. OpenSea registered just $29 million in Ethereum trading volume on Monday, per data from Dune—compare that to an all-time record of $476 million on May 1.