Five years from now, where will the NFT market really be?

A study by the UK-based market research firm Juniper Research recently analyzed the trajectory of the non-fungible token (NFT) market over the next five years. It has predicted that the number of global NFT transactions will hit the 40 million-mark by 2027.

In fact, in a recently published whitepaper titled ‘NFTs – Seizing the Metaverse Opportunity,’ Juniper Research also commented on the possible future of NFTs, with a focus on Metaverse-related NFTs.

Metaverse to be the main catalyst for the growth of NFTs

The study suggested that the global number of NFT transactions will rise from 24 million in 2022 to 40 million by 2027. A major reason for this growth will be the increasing adoption of the Metaverse by brands for boosting their digital presence.

It also observed that among all the NFT segments, Metaverse-linked NFTs will grow the fastest over the next five years. These NFTs will note an increase in transactions from 600,000 in 2022 to 9.8 million by 2027.

The NFT industry gained momentum with the release of the Ethereum-based game CryptoKitties in 2017 in which new digital cats could be produced in the form of NFTs. By October 2018, the players had bred 1 million cats with a volume of 3.2 million transactions, reported VentureBeat.

This year, the Italian haute couture brand Gucci launched its ambitious NFT project, highlighting the next 100 years of the enterprise. Titled ‘The Next 100 Years of Gucci,’ the NFT collection manifests the extraordinary leap of faith other industries such as fashion, music, arts etc. are taking in adopting NFTs and Metaverse for future growth.

NFTs have been introduced in the digital real estate business also within the Metaverse. Decentraland, Polka City and SuperWorld are some of the many Metaverse platforms where one can buy virtual real estates through NFTs. In fact, analysts have suggested that similar blockchain-based smart contracts can be used for real-life deeds of inheritance and property also.

Only recently, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted a photograph on Instagram that will soon be converted to an NFT. He added that the team will be expanding digital collectible NFTs to 100 more countries on Instagram, with new integrations with Coinbase and Dapper.

As the Metaverse forges its way ahead, its use cases are bound to multiply across diverse sectors such as online dating, virtual dating, gaming, shopping, travel and work collaboration. Its growth will be driven by the ease of transportation and connection between digital worlds. In such scenarios, the presence of NFTs would be required to establish the proof of ownership and a means of transaction.

What others have to say

Different market analysts predict different trajectories regarding the future of the NFT market. 

Dublin-based market research firm Research and Markets predicted in April 2022 that the NFT market is poised to grow by $147.24 billion during 2022-2026, progressing at a CAGR of 35.27%.

According to a study by MarketsandMarkets, the global NFT market is expected to grow from $3 billion in 2022 to $13.6 billion by 2027, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 35.0%. The Asia-Pacific region will grow with the highest CAGR during the forecast period, it added.

Curiously, the Juniper Research study also emphasized the need for B2C companies to market NFTs to a young consumer demographic whose needs are also constantly changing. Regulators also need to work with the blockchain industry so as to standardize processes.