A cryptocurrency exchange is an online platform exchange where individuals can trade one cryptocurrency for another cryptocurrency. For example, physical exchanges, like stock exchange and currency exchange (at airport or bank). It's important to note that are different styles of cryptocurrency exchanges; will be described as following:
"Traditional" Cryptocurrency exchanges: These type of exchanges are like the traditional stock exchanges where buyers and sellers trade based on the current market price of cryptocurrencies. Also, on these trading platforms there is generally a fee for each transaction. Some of these types of exchanges deal only in cryptocurrency, others allow users to trade fiat currencies like the U.S. dollar for cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, and XRP. Coinbase is an example of this type of exchange. Click here for a step by step tutorial on buying bitcoin with Coinbase.
Direct Trading Platforms: Direct Trading platforms offer direct peer-to-peer trading between buyers and sellers, but don’t use an exchange platform like Coinbase does. Direct trading platforms are available for users who can not legally buy and sell cryptocurrencies from traditional platforms. This solution is hardly ever the best one, but it can be the only solution in some regions where trading is limited to direct trading. It would be wise to do some research before picking your independent sellers, who are using trusted platforms and dealing with other highly rated users too.
Cryptocurrency Funds:Funds generally are pools of professionally managed cryptocurrency assets which allows the public to buy and hold cryptocurrency via the funds. One such fund is GBTC. Using a fund you can invest in cryptocurrency without having to purchase or store it directly.