Etherscan is one of the primary tools used by crypto researchers to investigate wallets, tokens, contracts, etc.
We put together a 101 guide on how to use Etherscan to help you DYOR
What is Etherscan?
Etherscan is a blockchain explorer for Ethereum.
i.e - a interface where you can view all the transfers and interactions happening on the Ethereum chain.
There's a LOT of information you can find on Etherscan... but only if you know how to look for it.
Exploring an Address
Found an interesting wallet and want to know which token or NFT it's holding, and where it's interacting?
BTW you can find some interesting wallets on our website 😜:
Now let's break down every section on the front page:
Transaction Hash: Also known as Transaction ID. Every transaction on the blockchain will have a unique tx id.
Transaction Method: For example - "Transfer", or "Approve"
Block Number: Gives you the block number in which your transaction was included.
Token (Transferred from): The address from which the token was transferred.
Token (Transferred to): The address to which the token was transferred.
Transaction Value: Gives the info about the value being sent.
Transaction Fees: Tells about the cost of gas paid
Exploring a Token or NFT
Want to look into a token?
- Go to @CoinMarketCap or @coingecko.
- Copy the token contract address and paste it into the search bar on @etherscan
Alternatively, you can go to etherscan.io/token/[CONTRACT_ADDRESS] or search for the token name in the etherscan search.
- Click on Token Tracker
And after clicking you will find a new dashboard with lots of information.
Let's break each section one by one.
The Token Tracker page has an overview and profiles summary section on top, which will show you some basic info like Supply, Market Cap, Address, Social Links, etc.
- Transfers: Shows you recent token transactions, similar to exploring a wallet address.
- Total token supply
- Total token holders
- How much % of the token an address is holding.
The "Holders" tab gives you a breakdown of the wallets holding the token.
...and other related information.
For example, we can see that this address "Binance 14" is holding ~1% of the $USDC supply ($500M).
And given that all transactions are from "Binance 14" to [other address], this is likely a Binance Address used for withdrawals.
- Dex Trades: All the info about DEX trades happening for this token.
- Contract: If the contract is verified you will be able to view the source code and interact with the contract.
Interacting with a Contract from Etherscan
Why might you want to interact with the smart contract directly?
This can be very useful in some cases:
- if a DeFi Dapp stops working
- Has a bug on the frontend that is preventing you from transacting.
- You want to test or use a deployed smart contract before the dapp is live.
You can call read functions from the contract here, which allows you to query different types of data stored on the chain.
balanceOf function on the $USDT token contract to check the balance of a specific wallet.
Most fungible tokens on the Ethereum chain are ERC20 standard, and NFTs are ERC721 or ERC1155. You can find more about these token standards here to understand what their functions do: ERC20: https://docs.openzeppelin.com/contracts/2.x/api/token/erc20 ERC721:
This allows you to interact with the smart contract directly and call "write" functions like
Etherscan provides a very simple interface to interact with the smart contract directly, instead of having to use the Dapp.
To use Write Contract you have to connect your web3 wallet.
This is because you are making changes to the state of the smart contract.
Here's an article showing you how:
Transfer tokens manually
Step by step instructions how to transfer tokens by using features provided by Etherscan and BlockScout
Etherscan Gas Tracker
If you were around for the 2021 bull run or if you have ever minted any popular NFT (like @OthersideMeta) you know the pain of paying a hefty gas fee.
Etherscan historical gas tracker is pretty useful to see trends and find the best times with cheaper gas.
Some additional resources to help you interact with Etherscan: