Best Investing Websites, Companies & Brokers

Written By Jeff Hindenach
Last updated September 24, 2021

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September 23, 2021

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

Online investing is one of the most strategic things you can do with your money if you want to increase your savings. While there is no single choice for the best online investment website, there are a variety of financial tools available to help you in your decision making. It’s important to be aware of your options — plenty of online brokers, trading platforms, and investing websites would love to have you choose them. Regardless of whether you’re looking to use online investing companies for the first time or you’ve been trading options for a long time, there are interactive brokers out there that can help you make smart financial decisions.

Here is a breakdown of some of the top investing websites. Below, we’ve split these services into either best robo-advisors or best online brokers. Read on to learn more.

Best Online Investment Companies

  • Stash: Best Overall Investing App
  • Acorns: Best Hand-Off Investing App
  • Betterment: Best Robo-Advisor
  • Blooom: Best Investing Site for 401(k)
  • WealthSimple: Best for Beginners
  • Chase’s You Invest: Best Brokerage Site
  • M1 Finance: Best New Investing Tool
  • Public: Best Investing Site for Stock Trading
  • Personal Capital: Best for Large Investments
  • Coinbase: Best for Cryptocurrency

Stash is one of the new app-only options for investing, along with its competitor Acorns, and is the better of the two. It makes the process easy, even for someone who has never done it before. The concept of the Stash app is that it takes money you are not using by rounding up transactions in your bank accounts to the nearest dollar and using the change to make small investments for you. It’s investing without any of the work, making it the best app for investing beginners.

Stash Investing

Stash website

Stash Investing image
  • Best for: App for beginners. If you like the idea of investing but don’t want to think about it, Stash is a good investment site for you.
  • Price: Stash charges from $1-$9 per month to manage your account, which is a little higher than its competitor Acorns. You only need $5 to open an account, which is great for beginners who don’t have a lot of money to invest.
  • Features: A nice feature of Stash is that it collects your “spare change” from your purchases by rounding them all up to the nearest dollar and collecting the change into an account. Once that account hits $5, Stash invests that money into your investment account. It also offers a debit card that rewards you with purchases of fractional shares for your account.
  • Fractional shares: Since Stash deals in transactions that are usually quite small, most of its activity deals in fractional shares. The good news is that you don’t have to be an expert, or even know what fractional shares are, to use Stash. The app does all the work for you.
  • Customer service: Stash does not offer human advisors to help you with any investing questions you may have, but it has a dedicated customer service team that you can contact via phone, email or chat.

Acorns is a great online investing company for anyone who wants to invest but doesn’t want to have to think about it. The app allows you to take your extra change and invest it. It will automatically use small sums from your bank account or credit cards to help fund your account, so you won’t notice much of a difference but will be squirreling away money for your retirement. It is easy to use and takes very little time to set up; perfect for those who want to use an online investing site but don’t want to spend too much time doing so.

Acorns Review

Acorns website

Acorns Review image
  • Best For: Automatic investing, people new to investing and those looking to increase their savings but not necessarily make a great deal of money. You can sign up for Acorns here.
  • Price: Depending on the services, Acorns costs $1, $2 or $3 monthly.
  • Features: You link credit cards and bank accounts to the Acorns app, and it automatically invests small sums of money on occasion. You can choose from among five portfolios, each with a different risk-reward ratio.
  • Other Highlights: The platform will rebalance your portfolio as needed and reinvest your dividends. Plus, Acorns lets you turn off the automatic investing function and make manual investments if you prefer.
  • Customer Service: Acorns doesn’t employ financial advisers, but its staff will answer your questions via phone, email or live chat.

With an easy-to-use online investment platform, Chase’s You Invest offers a lower price tag and educational resources that help first-time investors make strategic, informed decisions.

Chase’s You Invest Review

Chase’s You Invest Review image
  • Best For: Self investing. Chase’s You Invest is great for people who want to take control of their own investing.
  • Price: You Invest offers $0 per stock trade, which is the cheapest we’ve seen.
  • Features: Features: Chase’s You Invest is your typical investment website, but with a more reasonable price. You can trade stocks, or you can invest in either a Traditional IRA or a Roth IRA to help with your retirement. At this time, You Invest doesn’t have any automated options, but the company is on hand to help with any trading or other questions you might have.
  • Customer Service: Backed by the financial powerhouse of Chase J.P Morgan, You Invest provides a robust customer service suite to help you with all your needs.

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Traditional investing sites like E*Trade and Fidelity are giving way to a new internet investment option that is more flexible and not weighed down by the traditional rules. M1 Finance is the best of that new world of investing. First off, it offers practically no fees when it comes to either trading or automated portfolios. Second, it offers flexibility in trading with options like fractional shares, which give you the option to invest in smaller amounts of money. (Check out our reviews of the best fractional shares investing sites to learn more.) These options, coupled with its sleek app and website that make investing easy, make it our top pick for investing.

M1 Finance Investing

M1 Finance website

M1 Finance Investing image
  • Best for: Overall investing. With minimal fees and options such as fractional trading, M1 Finance is an option for the future, leaving traditional online investing companies like E*Trade in the dust.
  • Price: Like many new tech-focused investing companies, M1 Finance offers commission-free trading. It also does not charge an advisory fee for robo-advisor portfolios, which puts it above other popular robo-advisors like Betterment. It does charge a fee if your account is under $20 or if you have had no trading activity within 90 days.
  • Features: M1 Finance utilizes “pie” investing, which presents you with a recommended pie that divides up your investment options, and you can adjust the pie however you wish. It allows you to have complete control over your investments and invest in companies that you believe in.
  • Fractional shares: M1 Finance offers fractional shares, which allows you to invest in partial shares, making it easier to invest for less.
  • Customer service: In order to get ahold of M1, you will need to go through a dedicated phone number or email service.

Betterment is one of the best investment sites and financial advisor platforms. It has no minimum deposit requirement and features tons of great research tools to help users save, develop retirement plans and reduce taxes. The management fee is 0.25 percent annually, which is pretty low compared to other automated financial advisor.

Betterment Review

Betterment website

Betterment Review image
  • Best For: Automated Investing. Betterment is the lazy man’s best friend and is also great for anyone just starting out since it automates trading for you. All you do is fund your account and answer questions about the types of investments you want, and Betterment will do all the heavy lifting for you. You can sign up for Betterment here.
  • Price: The benefit of Betterment is there are no complicated fees, just a percentage charged depending on how much you’ve invested. It’s 0.25 percent annually, no minimum required. For the premium service you must invest at least $100,000, the fee for this is 0.40 percent annually.
  • Features: Since Betterment is an automated service, it doesn’t offer a lot of options when it comes to investing. Its main platform invests in both stock and bond ETFs to create your portfolio. You can also set up various forms of IRAs through Betterment, which will then tailor your investments based on your goals.
  • Other highlights: You can currently get a year of free management, all dependent on the amount you invest. If you invest between $15,000-$999,999 you’ll receive one month for free, If you invest, $100,000-$249,000 you’ll receive 6 months of free management, and if you invest anything over $250,000 you will get an entire year of free management. 
  • Customer Service: Since Betterment does all the heavy lifting for you, of course there are going to be questions, which Betterment is more than capable of answering. You can also get financial planning advice via Betterment.

Public is one of the new crops of online investment companies that offer commission-free trading. Unlike sites like M1 Finance, it does not provide automated portfolio investing, just stock trading, but its stock trading options give it an edge in that category. Like its competitors, Public offers fractional shares, which allows you to invest in companies for less money. It also offers live investing options, which M1 Finance does not. Here is everything you need to know about Public.

Public Invest

Public website

Public Invest image
  • Best for: Commission-free investing.
  • Price: Public offers commission-free investing, which a lot of new investing options are offering. There are, of course, other fees that you need to watch out for, including broker-assisted phone trades at $30, domestic wire transfers at $30 and paper statements at $35.
  • Investments: If you are looking a flexible brokerage account, Public is a good option. It offers trading for stocks and ETFs, but is limited when it comes to over-the-counter trading and retirement accounts like IRAs. If you are looking for a brokerage-specific investing option though, Public is a good choice.
  • Features: Public allows you to connect with friends and thought leaders to get insights on hot companies, how people are investing and other industry news.
  • Fractional shares: Public is one of the new companies that is now offering fractional shares, which can allow you to invest for as little as $1.
  • Offers: Public is now offering a 2.5% interest on the first $10,000 in your cash account.
  • Customer service: If you need to get ahold of Public, you can contact them via email or chat on its website.

Personal Capital is the perfect investment site for those who prefer to have a lot of guidance and feedback on their individual stocks and more. You’ll have dedicated human financial advisors who can help you. It’s a good choice for high-net-worth investors and those looking for free financial management tools. Investing options include individual accounts, taxable accounts (joint and trust), traditional IRAs, Roth and SEP IRAs.

Personal Capital Review

Personal Capital website

Personal Capital Review image
  • Best For: Wealthy investors. High-value investors get the comprehensive services available through Personal Capital at a reasonable price. You can sign up for Personal Capital here.
  • Price: Annual advisory fees range from 0.49 percent to 0.89 percent, depending on the account balance.
  • Features: Accounts with a minimum of $200,000 enjoy the hands-on service of two account managers, while all account holders can use the available personal finance tools and account teams to manage their accounts.
  • Customer Service: Available through email or via phone. Personal Capital also has members-only contact methods, avoiding the clutter of a public line.

Cryptocurrency is relatively new in the investing world, even though cryptocurrencies have been around for over a decade. Most people don’t necessarily trust cryptocurrency since it is not widely used, but it can be a very effective way of trading. While there are many cryptocurrency apps available, Coinbase is not only the biggest but also the best when it comes to crypto trading. It offers not only an exchange, but a brokerage and a secure wallet to store your currency.

Coinbase Review

Coinbase website

Coinbase Review image
  • Best for: Overall cryptocurrency needs.
  • Price: Coinbase charges hefty fees compared to some of its competitors, which you can do when you are the #1 name in cryptocurrency options. A bank transfer will run you 1.49% of your payment. If you want to use a debit or credit card, it will cost you 3.99% of your payment.
  • Options: Coinbase offers three services to use: a brokerage, cryptocurrency exchange and a wallet. The brokerage allows you to purchase your Bitcoins. The exchange allows you to trade Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies. The wallet holds your currency in a secure environment to keep it safe. Most exchanges and brokerage sites are not as secure as a cryptocurrency wallet.
  • Pros: Coinbase is the biggest Bitcoin brokerage currently available. Its interface is very easy to use and especially designed for beginners to cryptocurrency. It also offers higher buy limits than its competitors.
  • Cons: Since Coinbase is so popular, it can charge more for its services, which it does. It also only allows two methods of payment, while competitors offer more options.

Though Wealthsimple features many of the items found commonly with other robo advisors, it distinguishes itself from the rest of the competition in several ways. First, Wealthsimple offers socially responsible investment portfolios for customers who want to feel good about where their money is invested. It also offers transparency when it comes to pricing, which is a great feature. It also is one of the highest-rated robo advisors when it comes to actual investment practices.

Wealthsimple Review

Wealthsimple website

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  • Best for: Wealthsimple is best for investors with at least $100,000 to invest, beginning investors with less than $5,000 to invest, people who want their investment choices to align with their values, and people who value human interaction. You can sign up for Wealthsimple here.
  • Price: Wealthsimple charges an account management fee between 0.4 and 0.5 percent annually, depending on whether you have a Basic account with a balance of less than $100,000, or a Black account. Neither account is charged trading, account transfer or rebalancing fees. Wealthsimple charges only an investment management fee, though managers of the funds you invest in will likely charge a fee that annualizes to about 0.2 percent.
  • Features: All Wealthsimple accounts feature automatic portfolio rebalancing, dividend reinvesting, automatic deposits, live financial advice from experts and tax-loss harvesting. Wealthsimple Black accounts, for investors with more than $100,000, also provide financial planning sessions and VIP airline lounge access in more than 400 cities around the world.
  • Customer Service: The Wealthsimple Relationship Management team can answer questions regarding opening and funding accounts, your application, investment portfolio or financial plan, and they’ll connect you with a Portfolio Manager through a scheduled call when they cannot answer your question. Customer service is available by phone, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, and by email.

Swell Investing is being marketed as the best investing site for millennials. It not only takes a super-simple approach to investment, but it also allows you to invest in companies that are doing good for the world. It is run by Pacific Life Insurance Company, so it has a long history in the financial world, which is always good for piece of mind. Swell’s mobile platform makes it easy to invest with the swipe of finger and to even set up weekly or monthly deposits into your accounts. You can set up an account for only $50, and while the 0.75% annual fee may seem steep, its because Swell only works with a select group of do-gooder investments, which makes its job more difficult than your normal robo advisor.

Swell Investing Review

Swell Investing Review image
  • Best for: Individuals wanting to do good. Swell Investing takes a different approach to online investing, gearing its portfolio offerings toward stocks that could potentially create positive change for the world. Investors who have a small amount of investment money and have an interest in combining social missions with their investment choices may find Swell Investing worth a serious look.
  • Price: When comparing Swell Investing with other online, robo advisor trading platforms, Swell’s low initial deposit, no price per trade charge and low annual fee are attractive features. Swell’s minimum investment requirement is one of the lowest at $500, and every portfolio pays 0.75 percent per year in service fees.
  • Features: Swell Investing is an online, robo advisor platform, meaning there is little human intervention in the portfolio management process. Swell buys and sell stocks on your behalf, based on a survey to determine which impact investing portfolio theme most interests you and using automated investing that has a base in fiduciary standards (Swell must act in your best interest).
  • Customer Service: As an online platform, Swell Investing uses email as its main mode of communication. There is no live customer service department to contact or direct link on their website, but the company does offer an email address and a promise that if email correspondence can’t resolve your problem, or you can’t find an answer to your question in their FAQ Support Center site, they will be in touch.

Because there are many robo advisors handling individual accounts and IRAs, Blooom made the decision to focus on 401(k)s and 403(b)s that are company-sponsored. By using robo advisor technology, Blooom is able to optimize your returns while working in conjunction with your company’s retirement plan. The best part about Blooom is its straight-forward pricing. You pay $10 a month no matter how large your investment is, and there are no extra fees or changing rates like other robo advisors. There is also no minimum investment requirement, so you can sign up no matter what you have saved in your 401(k).

Blooom Review

Blooom website

Blooom Review image
  • Best For: 401(k) management. Blooom is best for people who want to improve the performance of their 401(k) accounts without paying a financial adviser.
  • Price: Blooom charges a flat rate of $10 per month no matter how much money you have in your retirement portfolio.
  • Features: Blooom includes several noteworthy features, including 401(k) audits, 256-bit encryption, 24/7 virus scans, regular account reviews and educational tools that will help you make wiser investment choices.
  • Customer Service: You can contact Blooom’s customer services via live chat or email. The team at Blooom usually responds within a few hours during business hours. If you reach out to them at night, you may have to wait until the next morning for an answer to your question.

Commission costs at Ally Invest are $4.95, and it offers a lot of value for that low price tag. Ally Invest has a $0 account minimum and is a great option for active traders and options trading. It isn’t as mainstream as some of its competitors, but it’s building a healthy reputation for the quality and breadth of its offerings. Investing options include stocks and options, ETFs, IRAs, mutual funds, bonds, forex and International Stock Exchange.

Ally Invest Review

Ally Invest Review image
  • Best for: Beginners. Ally Invest makes investing easy and offers a lot of education around the process, so you can make the best decisions when it comes to your money.
  • Price: There are no advisory fees for managed account.
  • Features: Ally Invest offers all the typical investing options, including stocks, options, ETFs, IRAs, mutual funds, bonds, forex and trading on the International Stock Exchange.
  • Other highlights: Ally Invest sets aside a “cash buffer” which is about 30% of your investment, so if the markets suddenly crash, you have cash in the account that is safe from wild fluctuations. It also offers an easy-to-use platform and a mobile app, which are benefits for beginners.
  • Customer service: Ally Invest offers customer service both for technical issues and when you have questions about trading. It has brokers on hand to help with any of your investment questions.

TradeStation is known for its pro tools, so of course it is our pick for the best online investment site for experienced traders. TradeStations OptionsStation Pro platform provides experienced traders with all the tools that the pro traders use, making it easy and intuitive to either do day trading or make long-term investments. Experience and sophistication, of course, come at a price. While TradeStation’s $5 per trade fee is either on-par or lower than other trading sites, it does charge a lot more for broker-assisted trades ($50) and has a high minimum investment at $5,000.

TradeStation Review

TradeStation website

TradeStation Review image
  • Best for: Serious traders. TradeStation is a top-of-the-line choice for those who are serious about investing, such as advanced traders, active stock traders, and stock, options and future traders. It is a favorite platform for frequent traders and international traders.
  • Price: The minimum investment of $5,000 is a deterrent for some investors. But for those who are serious and willing to put their money where their mouth is, the initial investment opens a top-notch trading platform with a set per-trade fee of $5.00 for most transactions.
  • Features: TradeStation is geared toward the experienced trader who wants to trade in high volumes. It is a popular platform for investors whose trading includes a diverse range of products, such as futures, stocks, forex and options.
  • Customer Service: Support is available via email or telephone, and those manning the customer service desk are quick to deal with problems or concerns you need addressed. Unfortunately, customer support is not available 24/7; customer service is available Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

TD Ameritrade has a wide selection of investments and makes a good choice for every kind of investor. You can invest in mutual funds or use the high-tech investing platform for more sophisticated trades, and there is no minimum balance requirement. It also provides extensive free research to help you make educated decisions. Investing options include stocks and options, ETFs, IRAs, mutual funds, bonds, forex and International Stock Exchange.

TD Ameritrade Review

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  • Best For: Investing options. TD Ameritrade is a well-known online brokerage firm that offers a wide range of investment options, from preferred stocks to college saving plans.
  • Price: TD Ameritrade has fairly straight-forward pricing, starting at $9.99 per online stock trade.
  • Features: TD Ameritrade is especially popular for its accessibility and user-friendly model, making it particularly attractive to first-time investors. With its one-on-one support system, which is monitored by licensed brokers, it’s also popular with consumers who are interested in investing money but would prefer to be guided by a professional with expertise in trading.
  • Customer Service: TD Ameritrade is one of the only online investing service that also offers physical offices you can go to if you need in-person help with your investments.


Wealthfront offers free, automated investment management and financial planning for the first $10,000 invested. It’s a useful service for small balances and offers tax-efficient features like Direct Indexing management of 529 college savings plans, something none of its competitors offer.


FutureAdvisor is a robo-advisor that offers some free services, such as a comprehensive retirement planning analysis. It charges 0.50 percent as a management fee and necessitates a balance of $10,000 or more. It also offers access to a team of financial advisors.

Personal Capital

Personal Capital offers more one-on-one advisement for investors. Its investing site uses computer algorithms, but human financial advisors are paired with each client to help you make your choices. The costs are a little higher as a result — fees range from 0.49 to 0.89 percent per year depending on the size of your account. It’s great for large investments and hands-off investing.

Motif Investing

Motif is a great way to invest in ideas without huge hassle or expense. Groups of up to 30 securities are put together by a staff member — there are nearly 100 motifs to choose from and you can trade them for just $9.95 each, quite low fees for that kind of transaction.


OptionsHouse is perfect for active traders because of the low stock trading commissions ($4.95) and lack of penalty fees. It’s free to open and maintain an account, and OptionsHouse offers professional-grade stock analysis research and excellent trading tools. However, it’s not the best for mutual fund and exchange-traded fund investors.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade’s trade costs are on the high side ($9.99), but it offers first-class trading platforms that seasoned traders love. It also provides a variety of no-transaction-fee mutual funds and commission-free ETFs. There’s no account minimum, and TD Ameritrade offers free research and data, which can be very helpful.

Charles Schwab

Charles Schwab is a top pick for many reasons. The firm offers full-service treatment if you live close to one of its branches — there are 300 across the country. Online, you can find a lot of educational resources and great mobile trading platforms and tools.


OptionsXpress is a perfect discount broker for investors who aren’t solely focused on stock trading. It provides a selection of investment products, including bonds, ETFs and mutual funds. The cost is $3.50 per contract per side, but you can save money if you’re a high-volume trader.

Merrill Edge

Merrill Edge definitely stands out because of its research offerings from BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research as well as Morningstar, S&P, Capital IQ and more. It’s a great choice for casual traders because of the competitive pricing and great customer service. It commissions at $6.95 per trade, and there’s no account minimum.

Ally Invest

Ally Invest is a great choice for fee-conscious investors. The trade commissions are low ($4.95), there is no account minimum, and you can qualify for $1,000 in commission-free trades depending on your deposit. However, it doesn’t offer ETFs or no-transaction-fee mutual funds.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade is an advanced trade architect platform with no account minimum. It offers a lot of free research and data, but it’s still best for advanced traders who have experience trading stocks, options or futures and commodities. Equity stock trading costs are $9.99, and transaction-fee mutual fund trades cost $49.99.


TradeStation has an ultra-advanced trading platform that used to be available only to brokers and institutional investors. Now it’s open to everyday investors, and it has super-sophisticated analysis software and other tools available. It’s perfect for very active stock market traders interested in options, futures and forex trading.


Robinhood is a free-trading app that saves you a lot of money on commissions. You can trade more than 5,000 stocks and ETFs without commissions or account minimums. It’s best for frequent stock or ETF traders as well as mobile traders. It offers real-time market data in addition to free trading.


If you are looking for a non-traditional approach to investing, you can try a crowdfunded investment service like RealtyShares. Without having to directly deal with a project, RealityShares allows you to invest in a portion of a real estate investment project with a minimum of $5,000. The investment minimum provides those with smaller incomes who are interested in real estate opportunities to participate at a lower cost. On the downside, your investment is not liquid which means that you will have to wait until the completion of the project and until it is sold before you’re able to receive a return on your investment. To learn more, read our RealityShares review.

It’s always a good idea to buy the stock of a great company, but it’s even better if you can buy it at a low price. There aren’t too many companies discounting the sales of their stock these days because the market is at such a high point, but there are still some decent stocks that online brokerage firms can help you buy.


The new administration’s plan to dismantle Obamacare and lower the corporate tax rate to 15 percent could mean that Pfizer will be a great investment option. The business tax rate would give Pfizer’s bottom line a big boost. It’s still risky depending on what happens in Congress surrounding these proposals, but the company’s tailwinds still probably make it a good investment.


Brookfield Property Partners stock was selling for about 70 cents on the dollar as the year came to a close. The company is selling selective assets within the core portfolio and is securing great value-affirming deals in retail and multi-family portfolios. Its plans to continue selling assets, buy other discounted assets or repurchase more of its discounted units stand to make it a strong choice.

USG Corp.

Infrastructure stocks are looking good on Wall Street this year, again due to the new administration. Many companies stand to gain, but USG has solid products, a solid growth plan and a valuation that make it a more secure choice and a long-term winner.

The Walt Disney Co.

You may have heard on social media about next year’s planned opening of Avatar Land at Walt Disney World. With that and a full year of results from Shanghai Disney Resort, WDW is shaping up to be a great stock choice. Disney also has a slate of new movies coming out this year. Shares are down for now, which makes it a good time to buy before these growth drivers take hold.


Verizon has recently been one of the cheapest stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Although it’s seen slow growth lately, it’s been able to continue growing its business and the FiOS product in a challenging market, and changes in the landscape might make Verizon the company to start investing in right now.

Trading and investing can be tricky for people who are just starting out, and beginners can greatly benefit from a broker that is willing to help out first-timers. It’s best to start simple — and online investing can be one of the best ways to begin.

Ally Invest

Ally Invest offers super-easy tools that are helpful to beginners. It’s known for excellent customer support and makes a great choice for first-time investors. You can take advantage of its options pricing calculator, profitability calculator, stocks and ETF screener, and more. It’s also one of the most affordable sites.


This is a great site for beginners who don’t want to do the decision making on which stocks and bonds to invest in. Wealthfront is a fully automated investment management and financial planning service. After you complete the risk assessment and review your recommended portfolio, you can open and fund an account. Once you’ve made the initial deposit, Wealthfront’s software automatically invests the money for you.

Personal Capital

Personal Capital is an excellent investing site for those who want to invest a considerable sum of money. Its minimum investment policy is $25,000, and for that, it also provides a complete view of your portfolio and personalized services that make stock trading easy and profitable.

For most of us, the price savings offered through internet investing is the single biggest reason to switch from traditional brokerage firms. Even the most expensive investment site typically costs substantially less than a brokerage firm, even when making brokerage assisted purchases. Priced at only $43.95 for market trades, offers one of the least expensive rates. That fee remains the same, even with brokerage assistance. TradeKing also charges $4.95 plus $20 for brokerage assistance, versus TDAmeritrade’s price point of $9.99 plus $44.99 for brokerage assistance. offers the lowest rates, almost across the board, but they only have three options: Stocks, Options and Spreads.

Deals: is currently offering 60 commission-free trades when you sign up. TDAmeritrade is offering up to $600 when you open a new account. And TradeKing is offering $200 when you sign up.

Volatile markets and the uncertainty left over from the global financial crisis make it important for you to be able to invest in a variety of ways. The limited options available through may not work for the investment portfolio you are trying to build. With mutual funds, Forex, Futures and Fixed income investment options, TDAmeritrade has a package that suits almost any investor. TradeKing goes even further, offering bonds, international trades and margin purchases. TradeKing offers the largest range of potential investments, with clear up-front pricing on all of their products.

Lowest price and greatest diversity does not mean that a site will be your top pick. Easily managing your portfolio can be another big factor. You probably do not have time to sit for hours, poring over financial pages. Instead, you need quick access to your entire investment package and the ability to automate many decisions. Does your online investment site allow you to pre-set sale prices? Can you manage your portfolio from a mobile site? Do you receive notifications when the market shifts, suddenly? Can you call in at any time to discuss your account?

All three of these investment sites offer you control over your sales prices and mobile access, but they do not all offer the same types of customer service. When you are investing a large portion of your savings, it is a nerve-wracking experience. does offer a variety of contact methods, including telephone, live chat and email support, but it is not 24/7.

TDAmeritrade does not include live chat as a support method, but E*TRADE does, and they are both available all day, everyday in other ways. When you need to talk to someone about your investment account, 24-hour service can be a real advantage. Even a few hours can make a big difference to your investment package.

Ultimately, choosing the right best online investment company will be determined by the type and scope of investing you plan to tackle. If you are just looking for the cheapest option that also includes useful and solid tools, you should check out TD Ameritrade. If you are most interested in long-term, low-risk trades, may be the best choice. The lower fee structure is a bonus, and you will not need access to more volatile trading options. If you want a more diversified portfolio, TradeKing may be the best option. It has a wealth of trading options, quality customer service and a long-time reputation in the online trading industry. TDAmeritrade’s solid, middle-of-the-road options do not seem to measure up when combined with their higher fee structure. Take a look at this quick, side-by-side comparison to get more information, at a glance.

About the Author

Jeff Hindenach

Jeff Hindenach is the co-founder of Simple. Thrifty. Living. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. He has a long history of financial journalism, with a background writing for newspapers such as the San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Examiner, as well as writing on personal finance for The Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Insider, CNBC, Newsday and The Street. He believes in giving readers the tools they need to get out of debt.

  • Hello guys I am totally new to investing and know nothing about it. My wife and I are in the military and have 2 kiddos I have been told by co workers who invest that we have something on our side that helps which is time, we are both 23 years old we are not wealthy by any means but we are able to save money every month and have no overwhelming debt just a credit card we use for gas just to form some type of credit. we have decided we want to prepare for our future, not everyone gets to retire unfortunately, so we know we want to begin to invest but just do not know how or where to start was hoping someone could give us some insight or anything would be helpful and very appreciative!

  • Hey does anyone here know which one would be good for someone who doesn’t know anything about investing? I was going to go with etrade but after reading this I’m not sure which one to use. I really don’t know what I’m doing.

  • Sites like charles schwab and etrade are what people always use, but I wanted to do the research for myself, so I looked at a bunch of online investment sites and I finally decided on tradeking. I couldn’t be happier, it’s the best site, they have the lowest prices and they treat you like an actual person instead of a number.

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