Best Investing Apps For Beginners

Now more than ever, people of all ages are looking to start investing. But when you are just starting out, it can be stressful to figure out all that you need to know and how to navigate this new realm.

Thankfully, we are also in the era of mobile apps. And because of that, we have the necessary information we need at our fingertips. With a tap and a swipe, we can download a program to our phones to guide us through the investment process, teaching us what we need to know as we go.

But what are the best stock trading apps for beginners? Continue reading below to find out.

What Do I Need To Know?

Before you start the process of finding the best app for beginner investors, there are a few key terms that you should become familiar with for your search. 

Active Investing: 

An approach to investing that requires a lot of monitoring and frequent trades and changes. At times this is done by an investment portfolio manager but can also be done as an individual. 

Passive Investing:

With passive investing, you make the initial decisions about your portfolio and stock choices and then turn to a hands-off method. Instead of meticulously monitoring the status of your investments, you take a wait-and-see approach to the outcome.

IPO Investing:

When you partake in IPO investing, you are buying into a previously private company that has recently moved with a mutual fund to go public and offer shares of its company for sale to potential investors. 

Automated Investing:

This approach to investing configures your age and demographic criteria into an algorithm, creating an investment plan that fits your current life situation. Once this information is computed, the investor will determine a set amount of money to deposit regularly towards the predetermined sources.

Retirement Accounts:

These accounts can take the form of many different types. Often these are Traditional, Roth, and IRA. You can take either an active or passive approach to invest in these accounts, both of which work to set aside an appropriate amount of money for retirement.


Cryptocurrency is exploding in popularity worldwide, and it pops up in news and magazine headlines every day, as well as in half of the social media posts you come across in the past few years.

Crypto is a digital currency that does not exist in physical form. A record of your cryptocurrency coin amounts is stored in an online ledger where you can exchange it like physical currency.

Options Trading:

When you participate in options trading, you secure stocks outside typical investment strategies and products by utilizing a trade contract based on items rather than money. At times this can be through an underlying asset, such as other stocks. 

Fractional Shares:

If you want to purchase shares in a company, but you don’t have the financial means to buy one total share, you can invest in fractional shares. Doing this allows you to obtain a portion of a share in the companies that you choose. With this route, you can dictate the monetary amount you are willing to put towards your investment instead of the set cost of a total share.

Mutual Fund:

When you take the money of many investors and pool them into one significant investment, you get a mutual fund. There are many different variations of a mutual fund that have slight nuances between them all, including money market funds, specialty funds, balanced funds, among others.


Short for exchange-traded funds, an ETF is a stock that is traded throughout the day. It is similar to mutual funds, except that you buy or sell at the end of the day with its landed price with a mutual fund. ETFs are exchanged throughout the day.


Using ADRs is a way to secure foreign investments nationally. With ADRs, you can invest in foreign companies without the rigamarole of legal complexities that are typically associated with the process.

Dividend Reinvestment:

When you take part in dividend reinvestment, you take your earnings from past cycles and reinvest them into current cycles for better gains in the future.


The cost to utilize the services that investment companies provide. Many apps listed in this guide have zero commission for most products and services. 

Are Some Apps Better For Investing Than Others?

Each app has its own set of characteristics that developers and the company behind it have decided on during planning. The best app will depend on your specific situation and what you hope to accomplish with your investments.

Some things to pay attention to as you research the best investing apps for beginners are:

  • Cost – is there a start-up fee or commission rate? Does the app require a membership cost?
  • Reviews – how have current and past customers rated the app? Is it accredited?
  • Customer Service – how easy is it to get in touch with support?
  • Ease of Use – is the application challenging to navigate, or is it user-friendly?
  • Affiliations – are there certain banks or stocks that the app pushes due to professional agreements between the two parties?

It is best to take these questions with you as you read through the apps available for beginners. Having this information at the forefront of your mind will help you make the best decision for yourself and your future.


SoFi (Social Financing) offers more than just investing for those wanting to learn more about finance in general. On their website, they provide an arsenal of informational resources on a variety of topics, including:

  • Investing
  • Personal Loans
  • Student Loan Refinancing
  • Money
  • Home Loans
  • Credit Cards
  • Private Student Loans
  • Insurance
  • Credit Scores
  • Budgeting
  • Auto Loan Refinancing

With all of this information in one spot, SoFi is a hub for investing beginners and those new to the independent finance world. You can acquire stocks with no commission, meaning that you pay nothing to start your investment process. 

SoFi has several options for investments on its platform. Not only can you choose to trade stocks, but you can dabble in other areas as well, including:

  • IPO Investing
  • Active Investing
  • Automated Investing
  • Retirement Accounts
  • Crypto
  • Fractional Shares
  • ETF’s

As for reviews, SoFi has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). This high rating means that they have received a minimal amount of customer complaints and that any negative issues have been resolved promptly. A top rating from the BBB means that the business oversight organization does not see any behaviors that would lead to a red flag for consumers. 

If, as a customer, you find yourself struggling with your investments or you don’t know what route to take next, you have access to real-time customer support in the form of live chat and phone assistance. 

Once you create your account with SoFi, you will be able to log in and receive support seven days a week. With easy access to knowledgeable agents, you never have to feel like you are alone. The company provides its employees with the proper training to help them navigate this area of life that can be stressful for some.

The SoFi investing app offers more than just the ability to start and manage your investments. On the application, you can merge all of your financial information into one spot to get the updated status of all your accounts with one simple step. 

When you are in the application, you can see what gains and losses you have made with your investments and make changes to your portfolio. You can view pending transactions in your bank accounts and also see loan balances. 

Right from the app screen, you can choose to buy more stocks or trade. It is free to trade stocks and ETFs on SoFi, and you can even refer friends and colleagues to the platform to start their investing journey. 

When you log into the app, the screen will immediately present you with your balances and investment status. However, the rest of the home screen is a bit cluttered with advertisements and financial articles. One of the benefits of the information within the app is that you can research almost any stock currently on the market. 

If you need assistance while in the app, you can access support from the main page. From there, you can communicate with SoFi staff members on whatever obstacle you are facing. 

Things We Like:

  • No commission for trades
  • Easy to access customer support
  • High ratings from current and past customers

Things We Don’t:

  • Cluttered app home screen makes it difficult to navigate

M1 Finance

With their self-proclaimed “super app,” M1 Finance lets you do everything for your investments, including spending, right from their platform. You can start the process for free with no fees or commissions for trades.

Although your first year on the app allows you a free trial of their premium version, you will be required to pay a yearly fee of $125 for each following year of service if you stay with the premium option. 

M1 Finance offers more than just investments. They have various financial options available to help you set up your finances in the best way possible. Some of these choices include:

  • M1 Borrow 2% Loans
  • If, Then Smart Transfers
  • Custodial Accounts
  • Trade Windows – AM and PM
  • Checking Accounts
  • Cash Back on Debit Card Purchases
  • Virtual Check Sending

The foundation of M1 Finance is automation. Instead of having the ability to trade throughout the day, you can set up parameters that will then initiate trades automatically if the criteria are met. 

Therefore, if you set up your “if, then” parameters to the following:

“If the price of x stock goes to x amount, then sell.”

Then the M1 app will automatically initiate that action if it falls during one of the two designated trade windows. There is a trade window in the morning and one in the afternoon, giving two opportunities for the smart transfers to occur. 

M1 Finance offers the following investment options:

  • Active Investing
  • Automated Investing
  • Retirement Accounts
  • Dividend Reinvestment
  • Fractional Shares
  • ETF’s

Unfortunately, M1 Finance does not have accreditation with the BBB, and although it has a rating of A-, it has an average 1.5-star rating. Many of the complaints affiliated with the company come in the form of hidden fees and lack of customer support. Additionally, the app’s inner workings are confusing to some customers, who find themselves amidst specific settings and parameters without knowledge of doing so.

On the flip side, many have had positive experiences with the app and find it suitable for beginner use. Most other independent review sites score M1 Finance with an average 4-star rating and state that the app is easy to use and is exactly what they were looking for in an automated investing app. 

For those needing support for setting up their investments or have questions about their membership or app settings, you can fill out an online form, email, or call the company for a quick turnaround response during stock market business hours. Additionally, the website offers a live smart bot that will help you navigate any issues you have. 

The app has a similar layout to the SoFi application mentioned above and includes the following:

  • Portfolio Breakdown
  • Target Investment Goals
  • Purchase Prices
  • Specific Stock Information
  • Gains and Losses Breakdown
  • Color-Coded Graphing
  • Transaction History
  • Market History Graphs

Although some customers have issues with the settings portion of the app, many can do so without any problems. Additionally, you can access customer support through the app to get assistance during business hours. 

Things We Like:

  • No fees or commission for trades
  • Live smart bot on the website at all times for customer assistance
  • Detailed app reporting on investments

Things We Don’t:

  • Finding the correct settings within the app can be difficult


An app that has been around for some time is Robinhood. Many beginner investors have used the application for years to start their portfolios and manage them. One of the primary perks is the commission-free stock trading that they provide. 

When you use the Robinhood application and service, you have access to the following products:

  • Crypto
  • Robinhood Gold Investing
  • Fractional Shares
  • IPO Investing
  • ETFs
  • Options Trading

Not only is Robinhood a good option for those just starting in the investment world, but it also has features that are helpful to those who are more advanced in the field. With Robinhood, you can trade furiously or take a passive approach. Additionally, you do not have to commit to one method when setting up your investments. 

Robinhood also offers cash management services outside of investment strategies and products that you can manage and track through their app. Having all of your financial data in one spot makes it easier to analyze where your money is coming and going. 

Robinhood is free to make trades. However, they do offer a Gold program for higher levels of investing. This type of program isn’t necessary for a beginner, but it is nice to know that it exists if you get to that level.

It is important to note that Robinhood is not BBB accredited and has a rating of F. There is a notice for all consumers at the top of the company’s BBB profile that explicitly states the following:

“​​On June 30, 2021, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) fined Robinhood Financial LLC (no: 2020066971201) $57 million and ordered the company to pay approximately $12.6 million in restitution. Without either admitting or denying the charges, FINRA’s investigation found that at certain periods going back to 2016, Robinhood negligently communicated false and misleading information concerning critical issues to its customers, approved thousands of customers for option trading who either did not satisfy the company’s eligibility criteria or whose accounts were red flagged (indicating options trading may not have been appropriate for them), failed to reasonably supervise its technology which led to problems with accepting and executing customer orders, outages and system failures causing customer losses as well as failing to report thousands of customer complaints that it was required to report.”

Because you want to choose a company and app with high customer reviews, it is essential to pay attention to details such as this. However, it is also necessary to look at the whole picture. Due to the attention that Robinhood received from the Gamestop situation in early 2021, their business has been under intense scrutiny. 

Although the investigations have found some issues within the Robinhood framework and business structure, many customers still appreciate the beginner-level app and its accessibility to those just starting out.

The Robinhood app is top-rated, and reviews state that it is relatively streamlined and easy to use. Some of the features include:

  • Updated Trend Graphs
  • Block Style Format
  • Condensed Information
  • Transaction History
  • Watchlist Gallery
  • Balances
  • Interest Earned

Users love that the layout isn’t overly cluttered and doesn’t offer too much information to make what you see overwhelming. Instead, Robinhood provides the necessary information to manage your portfolio and make sound decisions for trades without overloading your screen and brain. 

Once you become a member, you have access to customer support through the Robinhood website and app. With this functionality, you can message back and forth with an advisor to get the answers you need with fast turnaround times. 

Things We Like:

  • The detail the app provides
  • Various options for investment strategies
  • The cash management addition to the app

Things We Don’t:

  • The negative reviews associated with the company


Another beginner-style application on the market comes from Webull. Like the others that we list above, Webull has zero fees and commissions for trades. Additionally, they often run promotions where you receive free stock upon creating an account.

What sets the Webull mobile app apart from the others is the ability to use voice commands to control your investments. You can replicate the emotions and actions that you see portrayed on TV and yell out “buy!” “sell!” Although you are talking to your phone and not a group of people, it’s still a nice perk to have.

Webull offers a variety of investment products for you to choose from, some of which include:

  • ADRs
  • Brokerage Accounts
  • Retirement Accounts
  • Crypto
  • Fractional Shares
  • ETF’s
  • Options Investing

Like Robinhood, Webull has excellent reviews – until you get to the BBB website. Although Webull doesn’t have any alerts at the top of their BBB profile, they do have a rating of F and 1-star. Most of the complaints revolve around fees and confusion about the terms and conditions. 

Like the situation with Robinhood, it is essential to take the situation as a whole. It is not common for people to take to the BBB to sing a company’s praises. Typically, individuals find their way to the BBB website to complain about the service or goods they purchased. 

When you compare the BBB information to other review platforms with feedback on Webull, they are vastly different. Many reviews praise the platform and the success they have had on it. Reading customer reviews is crucial before you dive into an account with them. However, you have to consider the whole story as well. 

Besides the addition of voice commands, the Webull app has several other promising features, including:

  • Detailed Trend Graphs
  • Transaction History
  • Portfolio Changes
  • Stock Information
  • Extended Trade Times
  • Analyst Reviews
  • Real-Time Monitoring
  • Smart Alerts
  • Financial Calendars
  • News Stream
  • Virtual Trading

Webull not only offers easy access to customer support information on their website and desktop application but makes it central in location on the mobile app as well. Additionally, they have an arsenal of resources available on their website for topics ranging from tax liability to technical assistance.

What We Like:

  • Voice control directions for the app
  • Analyst review access on the app
  • Desktop app access

What We Don’t:

  • BBB complaints in regards to the company

Additional Investment Apps for Consideration

Although they were not included in the listing above, these apps are also beginner-friendly and easy to use.

  • Etrade Investing App
  • Ameritrade
  • Acorns
  • Stockpile
  • Fidelity 2021
  • Public
  • Betterment
  • Ally

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Investing is a topic with a lot of information to wade through. For those just starting, there are many questions on your mind about the process and selection of different stocks and companies. These questions and answers below will help you clear up some of the concerns you may have. 

Q: What is the best online stock broker?

A: This will vary from person to person based on their personal situation. The best route is to research the different brokers out there and see which lines up best with your interests and motives. 

Q: How do I make money from investing?

A: There are many different paths to success with investing. Some available plans allow you to withdraw earnings as they come in, whereas others keep them for reinvestment. To get the most out of your investment, you should consult a Robo app. The algorithms that they provide will take all of your personal demographics and criteria, along with your end goals, and create a customized plan to get you there.

Q: Can I lose money when investing?

A: The short answer is yes, you can lose money when investing. Although you can make stock selections that are low risk, there is always some level of risk involved when you take part in the stock market. With ever-changing economic conditions throughout the world, there can be situations that are out of our control that affect our investments. 

Q: Is the money that I use to trade on investment apps insured?

A: Yes. Most apps are insured by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) up to a certain amount. Most commonly, these insurances are up to $250,000 for cash-based investments and $500,000 for others. All of the apps and companies that we list in this guide are members of the SIPC. You can view the complete membership list on their website. 

Q: Can you use investment apps to trade stocks?

A: Yes, most apps have the technological advantage of being able to trade stocks from your mobile device. However, some apps will only permit trading during certain times of the day, whereas others will allow you to do so without a time limit.

Q: Which are better – individual stocks or ETFs?

A: Each type has its place in the investment world. Which is better will depend on your personal situation. What works best for one individual or family may not be the best option for the next. To find out which route will be most beneficial for you, it is best to speak with a financial advisor or use a Robo app to get a customized plan based on your criteria, demographics, and goals. 

Q: Are some apps better for investing than others?

A: They can be. However, it will come down to the different features that each app has in its framework. For beginners, having an app that is easy to navigate and is user-friendly will be a better fit for investing than apps that are confusing and complex. Additionally, apps that charge a commission rate or fee for trades can be less beneficial for investing. The money that the investor pays in fees is better suited for investing than for fee payment. 

Q: I don’t have a lot of money to invest. Is it even worth it?

A: Yes. Even investing a small amount of money can make a difference in the grand scheme of things. A slight return is still a return and is more money than what you started with. 

Q: What should I invest in 2021?

A: After taking your current expenses into account, you should invest what you can comfortably accommodate. As previously stated, even a small amount is better than nothing at all. 


Investing is on the rise more than ever before. With the help of mobile apps, the younger generation is moving into the investment arena in extremely high numbers.

But are all the apps for investing good for beginners? With all the intricacies and nuances that investing contains, is it wise to get your start on a mobile app instead of a finance insider?

The good news is that many of the investing apps available out there are great for beginning investors. With the high level of customer support, low fee cost, and easy-to-navigate infrastructure, many can get their start in responsible investing with their phones. It’s easier than it has ever been before!

This comprehensive guide lists several of the best investing apps for beginners. Take a look and try a few out to get started on the stock market today!