E*TRADE Financial Corporation (NASDAQ:ETFC) today announced results from the most recent wave of StreetWise, E*TRADE’s quarterly tracking study of experienced investors.
The majority of survey participants selected ease of use as both the biggest driver of satisfaction as well as the most important attribute of an online investing experience. To better understand what ease of use really means to the retail investor, E*TRADE asked not just what investors want from a digital experience, but how they want to feel when using it. And while results show that confidence and peace of mind are the most important feelings for investors of all ages, emotional drivers also shift across the generations:
Two out of three investors surveyed want to feel confident more than any other emotion when using an online investing tool.
More than half of investors surveyed are looking for peace of mind in their experience with online tools.
For Boomers, who are nearing retirement, confidence is even more valued, with about three out of four viewing it as the most important emotion.
Millennials are slightly less focused on confidence and peace of mind, with higher percentages also valuing enthusiasm, excitement, and joy than other age demographics.
“While gaming and social networking experiences may instill feelings of excitement and enthusiasm, investing money requires careful deliberation,” said Hiram Veciana, Vice President of the Web Channel at E*TRADE Financial. “It is no surprise that main street investors are looking for confidence as they make investing decisions online.”
Mr. Veciana offered the following insights on how to deliver confidence and peace of mind through digital tools:
Focus on the job at hand: Digital experiences need to purposefully help investors execute their core tasks. For instance, stock plan participants require a succinct summary of benefits and reminders on key actions for quick consumption. Consolidating tools with historical benefit metrics and upcoming educational events for participants that want to learn more is crucial.
Demystify investment choices: For newer investors, knowing which securities to trade and what strategies to deploy may be fraught with uncertainty. A well-designed trading experience with educational resources at critical moments may help investors work through the potential results of certain transactions. For instance, contextual education that uses plain language and explains risk-reward tradeoffs is critical for options trading.
Guide investors at every step of the way: Investors tend to seek validation of their investment ideas at each stage of an experience. It is essential that online trading platforms do their part by providing easy access to key information such as purchasing power, open orders, prior positions, and quotes that may further confirm an investor’s intuition, the moment before a trade is finally submitted.