In the frenetic world of investing, it's important you find a broker you can trust. Investors spent $1.8 billion in trading fees with certain online brokers each year. Finding the right one not only ensures you receive sound financial advice, you don't overpay for it either. One of the most effective ways to find the best stockbrokers is to compare them based on reputation, customer experience and their fee structures. The aim of this comparison feature will help you in this regard.
A Method to Size up the Best Online Brokerage Firms
A great way to begin is to analyze your financial situation and determine your investing goals. As part of this, here are some things to be mindful of:
- What's your investment strategy? Do you tend to err more on the conservative side or do you want to let it roll and try riskier investments?
- How important is to have access to help anytime you need it?
- Do you plan to do your own research and if so, how important is it for the brokerage to offer intuitive tools you can access to conduct it?
These questions can help you pinpoint your investment strategies, service preferences and how much of a role you want in shaping your investment portfolio. For example, if you want research tools and account management options you can access on the go then finding the best online brokerage account will be best for you, since many of those providers offer these features.
Investors spent $1.8 billion in trading fees with certain online brokers each year.
Meanwhile, if you want a mix of in-person customer service and web tools to use, then you can compare multiple agencies to find the best brokerage accounts for you. To begin, find several companies you want to compare. Next, using our comparison tool on the best stock brokers, you can size up how some of the top providers relate to their competitors in the tools they provide, the service they offer and the fees structures they set up. This can help you pinpoint which company will provide you with your investment preferences such as the best online brokerage account.
Best Online Brokerage - Does the Online Broker Make It Easy?
Along with this comparison tool, it's important to examine brokerages based on the tools they offer you. For instance, if buying stocks is something you want to have access to, then it's important to weigh the following factors when considering a provider:
- How easy is it to buy stock using its platform?
- Do they offer instructional tools on how to buy stocks online?
- What educational resources do they have that can aid you in buying stock?
- If you are buying stocks online, does it offer help where you have access to a representative if you have any questions?
- Lastly, how have other customers who buy stock online with this provider rate their experiences?
These questions can help you identify whether this is the provider for you.
Finding the Best Online Stock Broker
Along with buying stocks online, it's important the provider you go with offers flexibility in its offerings. For example, if you want the best online trading experience, how does the company support this?
As part of this, if you are looking for the best stock trading site to go with, tools will only be part of the equation. The most important aspect is the service component. The best online broker is going to deliver sound financial advice -to the best of their knowledge- that aligns most with your financial goals. Moreover, he or she will be there to help you when you need it.
When looking for the best online brokers, comparing several -both online and traditional options- is going to be an excellent way to go. Here are some factors to consider when doing so:
Reputation - What expertise does the broker have? To illustrate, along with certification, how does the broker measure up relative to customers' expectations? Often times, you can find this by reading reviews of online brokers to pinpoint if there are reoccurring issues that arise such as high fees charged, poor service responsive times or even just an unwillingness to address issues. If you notice these things regularly when reading customers' reviews, then it's indicative of a systematic problem. Meanwhile, the same can apply on the other end of the spectrum. The best stock broker charges affordable fees and lives up to them by providing the best service they can.
Fee structure - Depending on your investment strategy and the brokerage, your fees will vary. At the same time, it's important to compare several brokerages to see what their fee/commission structure is. Often times this will alert you to a broker that charges more affordable rates than other clients provide.
Planning - When you speak with an online broker via the phone, how interested are they in you? Do they work with you to determine your short term and long term goals? Do they recommend investments based on your financial goals? Lastly, do they offer this consultation for free? It's important that you feel comfortable before selecting a brokerage. Therefore, the ones that take the most time to learn more about your financial situation and investment tendencies will be the ones to consider, because they show they are listening to you.
Onboarding - Every broker will be happy to have you on as a client, but once you sign the papers they should be willing to extend exceptional service through onboarding and beyond. Onboarding is when a client helps a customer become acclimated to the services and products it provides. It extends more to just handing out a brochure. It's providing educational tools you can access via its website or mobile app as well as having the support in place that in the event you need to reach out to them, you can.