NFTs (Non-fungible Tokens) have had their fair share of critics and loyalists, but no matter what category you fit into, it’s clear they are to stay, at least for the foreseeable future. With NFTs’ growth in popularity comes an overwhelming need to learn how to navigate the market. Educating yourself on the ins and outs of the NFT game can prove lucrative, as well as prevent you from missing out on opportunities or making mistakes.

The most common reason an NFT is not listed as “for sale” is because the owner, whether that be you or another seller, may still be in “accepting offers” mode. However, there are other possibilities for an NFT not being appropriately listed.

Luckily, there are solutions that pertain to each possibility. Looking at the various reasons and their resolutions will help you better understand your listing and the listing of other sellers.

Why are NFTs Not Listed For Sale?

The process of creating a listing is entirely dependent on the platform you have chosen to sell your NFTs. However, there are some similarities across platforms regarding how you sell your NFT. There are also some restrictions when it comes to listing your NFTs as “for sale.”

Here is a list of possible reasons an NFT may not be listed as “for sale:”

  • Accepting Offers Only
  • Not Selling the NFT
  • Proper Listing Procedure
  • Reserved NFTs

Delving into each of these prospects will help narrow down the reason an NFT has been listed but does not show it’s “for sale.”

Kamp Geisha 1.0 NFT
Kamp Geisha 1.0 For Sale on Rarible

Accepting Offers Only

Every platform for selling NFTs has different criteria for how they format listing an NFT. Sometimes that could mean that an NFT or collection of NFTs could be on the platform, but the owner has not listed them for sale because they prefer potential buyers to make an offer.

Making an offer is similar to an auction, except that an auction typically has an end date, at which point the sale goes to the highest bidder. 

There could be several reasons an owner is only entertaining offers instead of listing the NFT for sale. They may be unwilling to part with it unless the right price is met. Or they could be unsure of what the list price should be, so they are allowing the buyers to dictate the value.

Not Selling the NFT

Another reason the NFT or collection of NFTs could be on the platform, visible to the public, but not for sale, is simply that the owner does not wish to sell it.

It does sound a little counterproductive that a creator would take the time to create and upload an NFT and not want to sell it, but it does happen. 

They could still be in the process of building a collection and want to wait until it’s complete to place them for sale. Aside from a collection, the creator could be dissatisfied with an NFT they listed and is still figuring out how they would like to redesign it to their liking.

Sometimes creators will reverse their decision to sell the NFT entirely and destroy it. Destroying NFTs is also used by collectors when a collection has been oversaturated. Decreasing the amount of NFTs in the collection increases the rarity and potential value.

for sale
Gutter Pigeons for sale on OpenSea

Proper Listing Procedure

Though it seems unlikely that a seller would have missed a step in the listing process, it is possible. Depending on the platform you are listing your NFT on, something missing from the listing could prevent it from getting approved for sale by the platform. Some platforms have a multi-step process for listing NFTs.

OpenSea is a prime example of the multi-step process. It’s not just clicking “Sell” and then selecting a price for the NFT. If you are a first-time seller on their platform, you have to initialize your wallet before they approve your listing.

Also, consider that apart from the listing procedure, there could be some criteria on the platform that you have not met that prevents you from listing your uploaded NFTs for sale.

Reserved NFTs

Since you can view NFTs that are not listed for sale, you can also see NFTs that you may not realize are being sold privately. Private sales may not be the case for all NFT platforms, but some allow you to enter the buyer’s address into the listing. 

Private sales might be due to an established relationship between the seller and a buyer. The buyer could have contacted the seller privately and inquired about any NFTs that were not already for sale in their collection, and they uploaded the NFT strictly to sell to that specific buyer. They could have also contacted the seller for a specially commissioned NFT.

Other Reasons an NFT is Not Listed For Sale

If you are wondering why your NFT is not showing as listed “for sale,” your best bet is to look at the FAQs of the platform you’re using and see if they can offer any information on possible causes and resolutions.

If you can’t find anything within the help questions, you can contact them directly and inquire. 

A great example of an NFT platform that did this is Nifty Gateway. They offered three valid reasons for an NFT not to be listed for sale and what to do in those scenarios.

  • The individual was not an authorized seller, and they provided information on how to become one.
  • The individual became an authorized seller only after winning a drawing of an NFT, in which case they just needed to wait 48 hours before they could sell. 
  • The individual used a new form of payment to purchase the NFT they are trying to sell, in which case they will need to wait 48 hours before they could sell.


NFTs do not show as being for sale for several reasons; several have been laid out in this article. As a seller, if this is something you’re experiencing yourself, the best practice is to defer to your NFT platform for answers once you’ve checked your listing for any missing information or mistakes.

If you see an NFT you want but is not listed for sale, make an offer or contact the seller and ask them why the NFT is not listed for sale. Either way, you should find an answer.

Also, if you are looking for answers, this website probably has them. Check out these popular articles to see what I’m talking about:

  1. 7 Reasons Why Everyone Seems to Hate NFTs
  2. How To Sell NFTs Without Gas Fees (or less) | Complete Guide
  3. Can NFTs Have Multiple Owners? The Facts Explained


Nifty Gateway