Boring Money’s 2018 Online Investing Report is released today. We’ve set up test accounts, talked to novice investors and gathered customer reviews to emerge with a detailed picture of what’s going on. The question is: who are the preferred providers? Top Dogs of the investing universe? The winners when it comes to user experience, gathered from our 1200+ consumer reviews…and who are the losers with customers reporting there is work to be done?
In the Pink
Novice investors in our testing preferred Barclays Smart Investor, Fidelity, Nutmeg, True Potential and Wealthify. Our account testing identified Charles Stanley, evestor, Hargreaves Lansdown, Moneyfarm and Nutmeg as strong. Poor comms, jargon, difficulty in trading and weak UX were the key stumbling blocks.
The report is a hefty piece of research and it costs £5,800, so this year, we’ve made some visual representations of all the customer reviews collated on www.boringmoney.co.uk. This is not necessarily representative of our views but reports back on what real people, real users (including some of you!), say about their online investing experiences.
These data displays show not just the frequency of words and phrases used, but their contexts as well. Pink is positive, grey is negative, and the bigger the word the more often it occurred.
You can see at a glance what’s going on. Look closer and you can see precisely what customers do and don’t like about each online investment provider, and by how much (relatively).
Barclays Smart Investor and Interactive Investor still have some work to do. Our reviewers found their user experiences unfriendly, even hostile. Complex messaging damaged the perception quality in customer service. It all just seemed too complicated.
Barclays Smart Investor
Online investing is growing in size but not necessarily in customer numbers. In 2017, the assets managed by online investment providers went up 19% but the number of accounts stayed relatively static. The DIY online investing market was £204.6bn as at December 2017.
There were some other good news stories. We compared our new findings with results from our Customer Acquisition Report in July/August 2017 and in only six months, there has been a 10%-point increase in respondents saying they have a workplace pension. As well as the obvious positive that so many more people now have workplace pensions, it’s also significant that so many people are aware that they have one.
Today, only a fifth of the population report having no savings or investments to their names.
The rest of the breakdown is below:
It’s exciting for us to see the needle really start to move.
If you are interested in the entire report for a full, frank picture of what good looks like in the online investing space, have a look at what’s included on our Boring Money Business site, here. If you’d like to see our user ratings for all these providers, check out our Reviews here and our Best Buys for Robo advisers.