So, you have decided to invest online and start trading. That’s great but now you have to make one of the most important decisions that can really determine if you will be a successful trader or not: you have to pick the best online trading company.
This is hard as the competition is huge and there are many online trading companies available. Add to that every trader has a different type of style which means that there is not an online broker that is the best to everyone. You would need to be very selective and look at the several criteria to figure out which online broker best fits your needs.
To help the online traders to make the right decision we have published a comprehensive guide of all the best online trading companies in the UK which have been scored against common and most important criteria. Our experts have been working as online stock trader for more than 15 years and have great experience: they have tested every single online broker to find out exactly what are the pros and cons of each of them. Make the most of the list as it will be the best starting point for you:
Choosing the Best Online Trading Company
- Trading Costs – online brokers are businesses and as such they need income. Most online brokers do charge a flat rate to buy and sell but others will just take a commission out of the spread. Both methods have their own pros and cons and ultimately it will depend from the type of trades you will do which one is the best. Regardless which one you will pick just make sure that you are comfortable with all the costs you will be charged as some brokers might hide some costs which will all effect your bottom line negatively.
- Trading Tools – it is very important that the online broker is able to offer you trading platforms that are up there with the best in the industry. Ultimately the trading platform is the tool that you will need in order to be successful and if the platform doesn’t work well is like going to do a Formula 1 race with an average car. You would need to have access to a fully featured desktop-based platform and also to a web-based trading platform which will be handy when you are on the go. The trading platform has to have also the necessary functionalities to help you make quick and efficient technical analysis.
- Investment Products – Are you planning to trade only a type of financial instrument or you are going to trade different things like CFDs, options, forex, stocks and so on. Generally an online trading company should give you lots of options and the more financial assets you can trade the better.
- Mobile Trading – With the smartphones and tablets it has become really easy to manage your online trading on the go. As a customer you want that the online broker will give you the opportunity to do that successfully. This means that the trading platforms has to be fully compatible with mobile devices and also performance of those mobile platforms must be as good as the web versions.
- Customer Service – you will need to count on the online trading company support from time to time. It is very important to have access to 24/7 support as issues might happen suddenly and you don’t want to lose opportunities just to wait for customer service to get back to you. Having access to a well prepared customer support can make the difference in resolving every problem fast and efficient with minimal impact on your trading activities.
- Stock Analysis – doing fundamental research is very important to your long term success. You will need to have access to the latest market news and also company information so that you can do the ‘home work’ faster and efficiently.
- Account Security – This is mostly standard nowadays as online trading companies are heavily regulated which means that they have to have some top security measures in place to defend sensitive data from third parties. Every online trading companies should be well equipped with SSL encryption and client data should be stored only in secure servers.
- Order Execution – executing orders efficiently it is paramount for an online trading company. Most online traders can’t tell the difference between quality execution and poor execution and this factor alone can undermine your chances of success in online trading. Make sure to take the time to do enough training so that you will be able to understand and test how good the online trading company you are considering are executing orders.
Online Trading Companies Should Offer The Best Trading Tools
If you want to trade online successfully you will need to have the best possible trading tools available. Those will give you an edge over the competition so it is very important that when you are selecting an online trading company that you consider what they are offering. Most trading platforms nowadays are not only web-based and desktop based but are increasingly becoming mobile based as well. You would need to get continuous access to advances charting, options tools, screeners, hotkeys, watch lists and many more advanced functionalities. We understand at the beginning having lots of tools to deal with might feel overwhelming but as you progress in your trading career you will appreciate the benefit of the most advanced features.
With the experience we have learned that it is not just the trading tools that can determine a best online trading company from an average one. You will need to also look at design, depth, speed and overall execution to ensure you are getting the ultimate trading experience that will enhance your chances of being a profitable online trader.