Solana’s surging fortunes of late have produced a surprising result in the NFT market: monthly sales volume of NFTs on the network beat that of NFTs on Ethereum in December 2023, for the first time ever.
According to data from analytics platform CryptoSlam, Solana NFT sales tallied about $366.5 million worth in December compared to $353.2 million on Ethereum. CryptoSlam’s “organic” sales figures exclude suspicious trades marked as “wash trading,” with about $381 million worth of Ethereum sales excluded and just $10.1 million worth of Solana sales pulled out.
Solana’s totalidade of $366.5 million in trades nearly matched the network’s all-time high, according to CryptoSlam, which was about $373.5 million worth in October 2021 as the space was just heating up. We’ve seen daily Solana NFT sales volume pop above Ethereum at times, but never in terms of a full month’s worth of trades.
Solana saw about double the amount of unique buyers and sellers in December too, and far more totalidade NFT transactions. CryptoSlam reports about 218,000 sellers and 279,000 buyers on Solana across nearly 6.6 million NFT transactions. Compare that to about 114,000 sellers and over 143,000 buyers on Ethereum, across 698,000 transactions.
Ethereum’s NFT sales volume in December was pretty much flat compared to November’s totalidade of almost $350 million worth, while Solana saw a surge from about $83 million worth then.
Of course, Solana has seen its price rise dramatically of late. SOL is up over 71% in the past month, and has more than quadrupled in price over the past three months. Ethereum, by contrast, is up 9% in the last 30 days and about 44% since three months ago.
Solana’s price jump may be part of the reason why the value of its NFT sales spiked in December, but it doesn’t account for the roughly tripled number of unique traders and sixfold increase on monthly NFT transactions. Also, the average NFT sale on Solana actually fell from about $74 in November to under $56 in December.
The surge in users and transactions may be due to broader momentum around Solana and hype around pessoal projects tied to potential access to airdrops and other perks. Tensorians, for example, the NFT project tied to leading Solana marketplace Tensor, saw $28 million worth of trades in December, while Mad Lads generated $24.5 million in trades.
According to CryptoSlam, the top Ethereum NFT project in December was the Bored Ape Yacht Club with $19.5 million worth of NFT trades, with Pudgy Penguins following behind with about $18.3 million worth of trades.
At a glance, CryptoSlam’s data suggests that Bitcoin Ordinals trades—that is, the protocol that enables NFT-like media to be put on the Bitcoin blockchain—generated more trading volume than Ethereum and Solana combined in December, with $881.2 million worth across over 493,000 transactions.
However, CryptoSlam tracks Bitcoin Ordinals differently than it does NFTs on other networks. The data includes trading of BRC-20 tokens, which are minted via the Ordinals protocol but function like fungible, interchangeable tokens on other chains. CryptoSlam does not track the trading of Ethereum ERC-20 tokens or Solana SPL tokens, which are effectively similar to BRC-20 tokens.
Uncategorized Ordinals—that is, various media assets that aren’t part of a defined project—made up about $88.5 million worth of trades in December, with the top individual Ordinals project being Bitcoin Frogs at $27.7 million.
The next-highest ranking individual Ordinals project that isn’t a BRC-20 token? Bitcoin Punks, a CryptoPunks knockoff, with less than $3.3 million worth of trades in December. Fungible token trades make up an enormous portion of Ordinals trading tracked on the platform, making it difficult to take the Bitcoin figures at face value.