Investing can seem overwhelming when you’re just starting out. Thankfully, there are some excellent online resources you can turn to for education and research, as well as brokers that are built for novice investors.
So, what are the best investment websites for beginners? In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at some of the top investment websites beginners can use to get their portfolio off the ground.
The Importance Of Investing
Investing your money, whether in stocks and bonds, another asset, a business, or something else, is key to growing wealth over time. By investing, you put your money to work to generate additional returns over time.
Investing is essential for virtually major financial goal. Saving for retirement, for example, involves investing to build a nest egg that you can use for expenses after you stop working and your income drops. You can also invest to build funds for buying a home or putting your kids through college, or to pay for smaller things like family vacations.
Your investing goals will play a major role in determining what style of investing is right for you. If you’re investing for retirement, for example, you may want to focus on assets that offer long-term growth in exchange for moderate risk right now. On the other hand, if you’re investing for a more immediate goal like buying a home, you may prefer a lower risk investment so that your time horizon for a home purchase isn’t impacted by the market.
Keep in mind that you can have multiple investing goals, and they may overlap. Some beginner investors prefer to create a separate portfolio for each goal. Others build a single, highly diversified portfolio that reflects each of your goals in its blend of investments.
Tips For Beginner Investors
First-time investors have a lot to learn, and some aspects of investing only come with experience. But as you’re getting started with investing, keep these four tips in mind to set yourself up for success:
One of the biggest mistakes that beginner investors make is to try to time the market. Instead of buying and selling frequently, most beginners are better served by buying and holding. This not only requires less work on your part, but it also yields stronger returns in many cases.
Stick To Funds
It’s tempting to invest in individual stocks or news-generating new assets like Bitcoin. But the majority of your investment should be in funds such as ETFs (exchange-traded funds). Funds give you more diversification, so you’re protected against a drop in the value of any single company.
Minimize Your Costs
The investing world is rife with fees, such as commissions charged by your broker and management fees charged by funds. While you may not be able to avoid fees entirely, you’ll benefit in the long term if you minimize them as much as possible. When investing in ETFs and mutual funds, look for annual fees under 0.25%. If you’re find a fund that’s more expensive than that, look for cheaper alternatives that have a similar composition.
Ask for Help
While you’re learning about investing, don’t be afraid to ask for help. You can turn to friends and family with more investment experience, or work with a financial advisor to get professional assistance. You might also find that using an automated investment platform is easier than navigating investing on your own.
The Best Investment Websites For Beginners
However you plan to invest, you’re going to need resources to lean on for education, research, and building a portfolio. There are tons of websites for beginner investors, which can be just as overwhelming as it is helpful. Here, we’ve put together a list of the best sites you can use to jumpstart your investing journey.
Best For Learning: Investopedia And YouTube
If you’re interested in learning more about investing basics, terminology, and strategies, Investopedia and YouTube are two of the best places to begin.
Investopedia is an online encyclopedia for investors, offering beginner-friendly articles on everything from stocks, funds, and investing accounts to fundamental analysis, portfolio assessment, and risk management. It also offers in-depth reviews of stock brokers and financial services for investors, plus a market simulator where you can try out investing strategies in a risk-free environment.
YouTube, as you might expect, is filled with videos for beginner investors. If you’re a visual learner, it’s hard to beat the video format. Many of the investing channels on YouTube feature helpful animations that illustrate market topics and break complex processes down into component parts. Investopedia has a YouTube channel, which is a great place to start.
Best For Basic Research: Yahoo! Finance
Yahoo! Finance is an incredibly robust platform for researching stocks and ETFs. You can get an overview of any company at a glance, including whether it has been given a buy or sell rating by market analysts. If you want to dive into a detailed fundamental analysis, Yahoo! Finance also has an immense database of financial data. Almost all of Yahoo! Finance’s research is free to access, although you can unlock metrics like fair value with a Premium subscription ($34.99 per month).
Best For Stock Picks: The Motley Fool Stock Advisor
If you plan to build a stock portfolio on your own, a subscription to The Motley Fool’s Stock Advisor is essential. This stock picking service has an average rate of return of over 438%, which beats the performance of many hedge funds. Despite this success, the service only costs $99 per year (discounted from $199/year).
Stock Advisor includes two stock picks per month, both of which are heavily researched and come with a detailed explanation of why the companies are worth buying. The service focuses on high-growth stocks, many of which are in the tech sector, and encourages investors to hold picks for several years or more. Check out Motley Fool Stock Advisor if you are looking for stock picks.
Best For Auto-Investing: Acorns
Would you rather invest in a pre-made portfolio and have it managed for you than go through the trouble of building your own portfolio? Then consider an auto-investing platform (also known as a robo-advisor) like Acorns. Acorns allows you to choose from 5 ready-made portfolios, which are managed on your behalf so that they remain balanced over time. All of the portfolios invest in ETFs and give you exposure to a mix of stocks and bonds.
Another plus to Acorns is that it’s packed with features to help you stow away money for investment. You can set up recurring transfers from your bank to your investment account, for example, or link your debit card to transfer money to your account every time you make a purchase. Check out Acorns if you want to invest on auto-pilot.
Best Broker: Robinhood Or Webull
If you’re planning to buy individual stocks or ETFs, you’ll need a broker. Two excellent options for beginners are Robinhood and Webull. Both platforms are native to mobile devices, allow you to buy fractional shares of popular companies, and offer commission-free investing.
Robinhood stands out for its community and discovery algorithm, which can help you find new stocks to research. It’s somewhat light on research and analysis tools, but the ease of buying and selling stocks with this broker is a huge plus for beginners.
Webull has more robust research and charting tools to help you analyze your investments. It also supports IRA accounts, which is a major benefit if you’re investing for retirement.
Conclusion: Investment Websites For Beginners
Investing can seem complicated when you’re just getting started. With these websites for new investors, you can get the information and tools you need to build a portfolio and put your money to work.