How to Choose the Best Online Stocks Trading Platforms

There are many factors to consider when choosing an online stocks trading platform. You’ll want to compare Commissions and Fees, Social media features, and Investing themes, among other factors. Read on for some tips to choose an excellent online brokerage. It is essential to be protected from online fraud, so make sure that your brokerage is insured and regulated. You’ll also want to find a platform that offers encryption and customer support.


When you open an account with an online stock trading platform, you must pay fees that vary from one account to another. There are three main types of fees: account maintenance, trading, and other variable fees. We’ve listed the average fees for 15 of the most popular online brokerages below. Typically, you’ll be charged a base trade fee and a variable fee for each transaction you make. Some brokerages have volume discounts, which can lower your costs. Tradestation, for example, offers a fee-per-share model.

Another option is Robinhood, a new online stock broker that doesn’t require a minimum balance or account minimum. It offers low commissions on exchange-traded funds and stocks, and a simple, intuitive trading platform. However, it’s not for everyone. For example, it’s best for beginning investors because of its ease of use, but experienced traders may find it hard to navigate. Fees for online stock trading platforms can also be prohibitive.


The commissions charged by full-service brokerages are a large part of the profit made by these companies. The amount of commission charged varies by brokerage and service and investors should carefully examine the commission structure to determine what their costs will be. The commissions may apply to every transaction, including purchases and sales, if an order is filled or modified, and even if it expires. Limit orders may also be subject to a fee, which is reflected on a pro-rated basis.

While trading commissions can reduce trading costs, investors should also look for platforms that are completely free of these fees. Even platforms that used to charge trade commissions are still required to make a profit, so zero-commission brokers are a good choice for investors. Many commission-free platforms like MetaTrader 5 are becoming more popular with active traders because they offer commission-free trading. However, there are some important differences between zero-commission brokers and traditional brokers.

Social media features

One of the key requirements for social media features in online stocks trading platforms is that users should be able to search for and follow stocks. The platform should also enable users to receive personalized push notifications, such as when a new company is about to run its IPO or a popular stock is performing well. Some platforms also have features that allow users to be followed by other leaders. Adding other features, however, will only add to the complexity and cost of the platform. In addition to the above, the platform should also offer a news feed section to stay informed about social trading.

Traders and investors are everywhere on Twitter, so it makes sense that these platforms would have a lot of information about a stock’s performance. Twitter users can easily search for the stock they’re interested in by typing its ticker symbol, such as $AAPL, into a search box on Yahoo Finance. To follow other traders, however, it’s not necessary to blindly follow their tweets; it’s often best to use your own technical analysis skills.

Investing themes

Themes in Online stocks trading are an excellent way to invest in a specific sector or industry. These investments will provide you with a pre-defined portfolio of stocks based on an investment theme or strategy. An example of a theme would be the cyber security industry, which would include companies specializing in cybersecurity. Themes are also offered by ETFs and financial service providers. Popular themes include Northern Trust’s Natural Resource ETF and BlackRock’s Commodity Chemicals ETF.

Thematic investing uses research to identify trends and groups companies by theme. The tools and themes can range across sectors, so you can select the ones that match your personal preferences. You can invest in themes such as cybersecurity, space economy, and genomics. The themes are available on thematic exchange traded funds, and there are many thematic stock lists to help you start investing thematically. For more information, visit our thematic section to learn more about the themes and stock lists.

Brokerage firms that offer online trading

As a growing number of investors turn to the internet to make their investments, the need for a good brokerage firm has never been greater. In our annual survey of nine brokerage firms, we found that five firms offer something for every investor. The first three firms are Charles Schwab, TD Ameritrade, and Firstrade, while J.P. Morgan Self-Directed Investing is another competitor. However, each firm offers something unique and may not be the best choice for everyone.

To open an account with an online brokerage firm, you must first sign up for an account with them. This process will take approximately 10 minutes. Most firms ask for a number of personal details, such as your Social Security number, state ID card, and driver’s license. The information you provide is used to verify your identity through a database check. Once you’ve registered, you’ll be able to make trades and monitor your account activity.


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