I just recently started messing around with crypto, and I'm a little bit confused by the transaction fee structure.
I signed up with a basic Coinbase account and bought some tokens directly with USD from my bank. Some BTC, ETH, COMP and one or two others just to see how they worked. Wanted to try out a wallet too, so I created an Exodus.
Doing the transfer from Coinbase to Exodus was very straightforward, just copying and pasting the addresses, and while there may technically have been some transaction fee it was exceptionally low, because I barely noticed it, and it appeared to be near-instant (>5 minutes) for all of the tokens.
However once everything was settled in Exodus, and I wanted to make some test transfers and payments to other places all of a sudden the fees were much higher, as for the wait times, in a way that didn't make sense. - e.g for ~$15 of BTC the transactions fee was >$2 for just the normal speed, which I imagine is pretty slow (when I brought it up to the fastest speed the network fee was higher than the amount I was trying to send). When I changed it to just $5, the fee was still something like $1.86.
When I try to send $40 of ETH it told me the fee was going to be ~$7. When I turn that down to $4 of ETH it's still said the fee was $6.78. (For BTC it lets you adjust the speed, but for other tokens it does not appear to give.)
Just to make sure this wasn't some kind of fluke or a specific network condition overload I tried to do this intermittently over the course of the last year, attempting at various different times of the day and week (I was interested in crypto for about a week, and then I kind of forgot about it for a very long time until I saw the app the other day).
Maybe I'm missing something here really obvious, and if so please tell me I'm an idiot and let me know what it is, but if someone could give you a bit of an explanation on how all this works I would appreciate it.
If all transactions occur on the same Network how is it possible for my transfers out of Coinbase to the wallet to cost almost nothing, and be near instant, but other transfer fees seem to be astronomically high and slow?
If network fees are taken as a percentage of the transaction total, how is it possible for them to be higher than the amount you are trying to send? (Commensurately, if they are represented how is it possible to have the same fee to send X and 10X).
I "tested" - only by setting up, not transferring - some other wallets like Electrum, and on the face of it the fees appear to be noticeably lower. Is there some reason why Exodus is more expensive? Are they scamming people?
Is there are some better way to make transfers that I am unaware of?
How much do the speeds really matter - is paying for anything above normal meaningful, or just a way for your wallet to get money off of you?
Thanks in advance.