Opening a balanced channel Lightning Network is a better foundation for lightning node success. A channel that is opened balanced has liquidity on both sides and the chance of successfully routing a transaction is doubled. This underutilized solution is more complex to setup, but you will know its possible when you see it.
If you open a channel “blindly”, i.e. with a channel that automatically accepts your request, assuming that you meet certain requirements, that channel has liquidity only on your side, not on the other node’s. So only if you are routing a transaction to or through the node on the other side of the channel will there be funds moving through your node.
However, opening a balanced channel means that there is liquidity on both sides of the channel and routing can begin in either direction, thus doubling the chances of routing transactions on the Lightning Network. Isn’t that we are all here for?
If you wait until you open a blind channel for routing to flow from you to the other side, there’s an inherent hurdle that needs to be overcome to start the engine. Here’s a great explanation of how to create a balanced channel on the Lightning Network.
And if you really love this model, our friend Zero Fee Routing started a GoFundMe prize for someone to make it even easier to open a balanced channel in LND. Check out the Twitter thread for more.