In my years as a stock market mentor and financial training specialist, I have seen a lot of reasons why people might be “afraid” to start investing. But the first and foremost reason didn’t really have to do with their investing strategy. An investing strategy does require time to either learn or put together, but it is totally doable.
Still, the people I met had attended the seminars and had read the books and had a great plan on paper. But they couldn’t bring themselves to do anything about it.
If you’ve been thinking of investing…
but somehow never got around to it
What trips people up most of the time is the small practicalities, the nitty-gritty details of how you go about doing it. These people had all they needed to go ahead and get started. And still they didn’t invest. Why?
Often, they thought that they would have to pay a lot of money in stockbroker costs. And they vaguely knew that they could buy and sell shares themselves online, and not have to pay a broker, but they were afraid something would go wrong. People often told me that they were afraid of pressing the wrong button and ending up owing thousands! They weren’t sure what to do and when their hard earned savings were at stake, they didn’t want to make a mistake.
Once you have an investing plan in place, implementing it by buying stocks online is very easy… when you know how to do it, of course. I learned to do that very early on and it has saved me an absolute fortune. However, there is a widespread misconception that it is difficult. But the truth is, if you can send an e-mail, you can easily learn how to buy and sell online.
How to dramatically reduce your costs
with an online broker
Let’s start at the start. You have to use a broker. There isn’t any other way. I have often been asked “Do I buy and sell myself or use a broker to do it?” However, what they actually mean is “Do you use an online or traditional broker?” If I use an online facility, I effectively put through the trade myself, but I still need to use the online broker’s services.
If you use a traditional broker, the larger the amount of money that’s traded, the more enormous the transaction costs will be. I have seen trades cost tens of thousands of euros, and there’s no need for that whatsoever, unless you really value the customer service and personal relationship with a traditional broker who will take care of everything for you over the phone.
Personally I don’t need that: if I put through the trade or the broker puts through the trade, the shares are still the same, so I prefer to use the immensely cheaper route of online trading.
The step-by-step guide to buying shares online
But if it’s as simple as I say, why don’t more people do it? Because it is slightly technical if you don’t have anybody to guide you through the first few trades. People are afraid that they might make a mistake, buy the wrong share or the wrong amount of the share, etc. Yes, you have to know where to click because several things could go wrong, but it’s very simple to put some checks and balances in place to make sure that they don’t.
In short, you just need to set up an account and fund it, as you would any other financial account. Next, you need to get the specific ticker code of the stock that you want to buy. Next, you calculate the number of shares that you would like to buy, taking into account commissions and stamp duty. Finally, you decide if you want to buy at the market price or wait for the price to fall to a certain level. You check if everything is as you want it to be on the order and submit it. That’s it.
The difference between knowing this information and implementing it competently is literally a matter of minutes: just the time to watch the video suite I recorded to guide you through online trading. I highlight every single pitfall and little detail, and show you how you can ensure that nothing goes wrong by following a checklist. In the video I use the FXCM interface, but I have trained people to use many different online brokers and they’re broadly the same.
And how about selling?
The process of selling is identical, except that you need to click the button to choose “sell” as opposed to “buy”.
Let me introduce…
In my years of mentoring, the same questions would come up, again and again. So I recorded a suite of videos to answer all of them, once and for all:
1. Where do I start?
2. How do I set up an account?
3. Do I have a paper trail?
4. How can I make sure I’m buying the right share? (Answer: use the share’s unique ticker code and you can’t go wrong)
5. Which kind of order do I place? A limit order or a market order? What are they?
6. I’ve clicked the button, how do I know everything is right?
7. How can I check X, Y or Z?
8. How do the dividends come in?
9. How do I sell a share and get my money out?
10. If there is a problem, where can I find the contact details of customer support?
I have received very positive feedback from numerous people who used the e-Learning suite. This is what a user wrote to me:
“I have just watched/listened to your videos. They are very informative and not overly long. I found them most informative. It would have saved me an enormous amount of fumbling around had these been available two months ago. Well done.”
The videos are completely free and you can watch them as often as you like.
If you are considering investing in the market, always be aware that every euro or pound that you spend on costs, is a euro or pound that eats into your returns or compounds your loss. Ensure to manage your costs as effectively and efficiently as possible. In fact, investing an hour in looking through this online trading module will deliver long-lasting, tangible results in time and money saved.
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