In the vibrant realm of NFTs, we had the privilege of sitting down with Ken, a distinguished member of the DexKit community, to delve into his profound insights and experiences. A seasoned individual with a rich background in data analysis and web development, Ken’s journey into the NFT space unfolded unexpectedly, catalyzed by a gaming contest three years ago. What transpired next was a fascinating exploration into the world of digital assets.
In this unaltered interview, Ken candidly shares his personal background, the genesis of his NFT ventures, and his encounter with DexKit. From the initial discovery of DexKit through an intriguing Discord promo to the challenges faced and overcome, Ken provides an unfiltered narrative. He sheds light on the features that stood out for him in DexKit, the nuances of its Marketplace tool, and the uniqueness of this platform in the vast landscape of NFT solutions.
Ken’s openness extends to discussing challenges faced, offering constructive feedback, and even envisioning improvements for the future. As a creator utilizing DexKit, his perspective on the platform’s strengths, drawbacks, and distinctive qualities in comparison to others in the NFT space offers valuable insights for both seasoned and aspiring creators.
We present this interview as a genuine and unadulterated conversation with Ken, providing a raw and unfiltered glimpse into his experiences with DexKit. We express our sincere gratitude to Ken for his transparency and the valuable time he dedicated to sharing his journey.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your hobbies? How did you get started in the world of NFTs?
I got started in NFTs about 3 years ago, when a game I was playing offered NFTs on the WAX chain as a prize in a contest. Curiously, this got me to Discord too. Because I had to join there to participate. After holding those NFTs for a little while, it occurred to me that I could sell one. So I put one up for sale. Much to my surprise, it sold for 75 WAX. Which at the time was worth some $65 USD! Holy crap! This, believe it or not, is what seeded my entire endeavor with NFTs.
Just prior to the time this was going on, I had this idea to put up a storefront of my own, where I would offer something to people for really cheap. My thinking was if I could get a few 1,000 people to buy something for less than $1, I’d make out pretty good. I even had an idea for what to sell. I would create characters of the original set of Web Safe Colors, and make them available for sale.
What I didn’t have was any way at all to do monetary transactions. I couldn’t take credit cards, and wow is that a lot of work to write an entire storefront.
Then NFTs came along. And I discovered that I could create my own collection. And it didn’t cost anything. And all transactions are handled by an infrastructure that was complete, in place, and being used! It literally answered my entire problem in one fell swoop.
So I created a collection of the 256 Web Safe Colors, minted them all and started selling. That is the super short version of events. I’m trying to not annoy your readers with the actual long-form version.
How did you first come across DexKit products, and what made you choose them for your NFT projects?
The story I tell above was only the very beginning and how I got started in this ecosystem. After a year or so, and many ups and downs using the WAX chain, I discovered OpenSea. I had been looking for another system to use, and after doing a bunch of research, that is where I settled. I collected a whole lot of stuff. Learned the ins and outs of how people use that system, and all the chains it supports. I then created a couple of my own collections. 4 of them, as it turns out now. Including a Polygon Matic version of the Web Safe Colors.
I came across DexKit because of a promo they left on a Discord server. Proof that advertising actually works!!
So I came in and looked at what they were offering. and it looked interesting. It looked like something worth trying. And so I did. This was in the very beginning. I’m pretty sure I was one of the first users to start working with it. And there were a LOT of kinks in the system. Getting started took a little while. The folks on the back-end were very helpful. We more or less worked together to get my first site up and running.
At that point, there was still one lingering problem. The system was only made to support posting NFTs of a particular schema. One that MY collections did not use.
So there was a bit of a delay while they added support that allowed me to sell stuff I created.
As a creator, what specific features or tools in DexKit have been the most helpful to you in your NFT journey?
I can only speak of one tool. The Marketplace. To be honest, that is the only one I’ve ever used. The reason I was interested in the Marketplace was that it offered me the ability to create my OWN site, that I could design and build. I could use my OWN domain. It’s mine. No middleman. And they were offering to host the entire thing for free.
With this, I am able to put specific NFTs up for sale, using any number of different tokens on the Polygon chain, and the sales are handled right there. And this system supports selling NFTs that I already minted on OpenSea.
I am aware that their software offers the means of selling from other chains and other systems. But I want to keep my stuff in one place – for me that place is OpenSea. And this is the perfect solution for that.
After some trial and error, I found a good layout that works very well, and is flexible enough to create some excellent layouts to showcase items. This includes other pages that are not sales pages, but more informational. The CMS it uses may have a few limitations, but it is very versatile.
As a good bonus, some months ago I had suggested the ability to clone layouts, which the owners were kind enough to deliver. That is an awesome time saver in the CMS.
One of the greatest parts of those Custom Layouts is the ability to drop in my own HTML. Which, if you happen to be a coder like myself, is very convenient. It means that I can create my own modules that are not available already.
Have you faced any challenges along the way while using DexKit, and how did you overcome them?
There have been a few. There are still errors in the admin area. While I was typing this, I popped over to the admin area to test one error… It’s still there. If you try to add an item to the Featured Items section, it crashes the app with no way to recover. I’ve known about this for a while, and just haven’t complained. Because I rather prefer to use the Custom Page editor anyway. That allows for MUCH more flexibility in design and there are no errors.
The only other challenge is that I’m still not making a lot of sales. It is very difficult to promote my Marketplaces. I suspect that many users are wary of connecting their wallets and making purchases. I am not sure what anyone can do about that. Perhaps there needs to be some emphasis put on how safe and trustworthy the Marketplaces are.
And let’s be clear. THEY ARE safe and secure.
I use the Marketplace myself for more than just maintaining the storefront. I use it for swapping tokens too. And that is an awesome feature!
One other suggestion is this… The ability to manage files on the server that SEO services look for. Robots.txt and sitemap.xml. There is currently no way to see the files on the root of the server, as everything is run on a CMS. The ability to create and manage those files would be a great help in making the site easier to find by search engines.
Are there any specific DexKit features or improvements you'd like to see in the future?
I have already submitted a few things. And many of the changes I suggested worked well.
What I have seen as the biggest drawback is that you need to manage the site 2 different ways. That is, you can create the pages, and manage the NFTs you have for sale, and all the rest, from the admin area. But in order to actually put things up for sale, you need to connect to the live site as a user, and create sales there. And you have to do that one by one.
Note: OpenSea now has the ability to create a list of things to put up for sale, and do them all in a batch. A feature like that would be great.
This is fine as long as you are working with only one account with one set of NFTs. But one of my Marketplaces has stuff for sale from a few different collections owned by different wallets. So in order to manage the sales, I need to make sure the right wallet is active for any given item. Which gets a little difficult.
It’s not impossible to work with. But it is kind of clunky. And, really, I’m not sure what would work better. Because in the end, you are not able to sell an item that you do not own. So it makes sense that you need to manage sales from the storefront.
Another oddity about this (a good oddity) is that if you come across a DexKit marketplace that is selling an NFT that you happen to own, you can put it up for sale yourself. On their site. That is very much by design. And that is how I am able to sell different things all in one place.
In what ways do you think DexKit stands out from other similar products or platforms in the NFT space?
I’m not even sure that there is another system like this one, or that even compares. Every other marketplace I’ve ever seen is more like OpenSea or Rareable, where you are using their site and their domain to make sales. This is the only one I’ve ever seen that allows you to create your site on your OWN top level domain, with no restrictions. Actually, if you need to, you can use a subdomain too. Which I did. Of my 3 marketplaces, 2 of them run on subdomains. Which is super convenient because that way I don’t need to buy yet another domain. The nature of subdomains is that one site does not interfere with the main site.
What advice would you give to other creators who are just starting their NFT journey and considering using DexKit?
Have patience. Read the screen. Know what you’re doing. Read up on how this technology works. Read up on what people like and dislike about NFTs. If you are planning on making your own collection, come up with a new and original idea. Don’t rehash something that has already been done. Definitely don’t steal someone else’s artwork either.
Also, don’t use one of those tutorials that shows you how to “create 10,000 random NFTs.” They will be worth nothing because there is nothing original, creative, or of any value to something like that. The market is already saturated with stuff like that. If you want to be noticed, create something that is new and unseen. In short, personal.
These are just some things to keep in mind. I’m no expert. I’m making this up as I go along just like everyone else is.
How do you see the future of NFTs evolving, and how do you think DexKit will continue to play a role in that evolution?
I really wish I had an answer for this. But alas, my crystal ball is in the shop, and I am unable to make reliable predictions about any of this. Of course that’s a joke. This ecosystem is so volatile that even a crystal ball won’t be helpful with predictions.
In the short time that NFTs have been in existence, the market and usage has spread further and wider, and in more directions and ways, than anyone could have predicted.
This goes back to the initial start of the blockchain itself, when there were only a few coins. No one predicted that people would start using the blockchain for NFTs. And suddenly it happened. And it has now snowballed in so many different ways. NFTs are used for everything from collecting, to flipping, to holding, to staking, to games, to 1000 other things.
People use NFTs to promote projects that have a larger project behind them. Musicians use NFTs to release new music. People use NFTs to promote their own token that they use to trade as currency on exchanges. Then they allow people to stake those NFTs to earn new tokens.
DexKit and their Marketplace fits into this because it is a great way for ANY of those sorts of projects to have their own landing page, on their own domain, to promote their project, as well as make sales. No matter what else happens on the internet, people are still going to need a web site. And the DexKit Marketplace is a great way for people to get that part done – at no cost.
Lastly, is there anything else you'd like to share with our readers about your experience with DexKit or your passion for NFTs?
Here I will list all of my marketplaces and what they are used for:
This one was created specifically to promote my AI Generate Artwork collection.
This one is not safe for work.
My landing page that links all of these projects together.
This is one that has a variety of stuff from all sorts of collections. It’s really more of a sandbox where I can test things.
As we conclude this unfiltered dialogue with Ken, we extend our heartfelt appreciation for his openness and willingness to share his journey in the NFT space. DexKit remains grateful to have passionate and dedicated individuals like Ken within its community, contributing to the dynamic and ever-evolving landscape of NFTs. We encourage readers to explore Ken’s various marketplaces, each a unique expression of his creativity within the NFT realm.
Thank you, Ken, for your valuable insights and the authenticity you brought to this conversation. May your journey in the NFT space continue to be filled with creativity, success, and boundless possibilities.