Robinhood's best-in-class Investment Factsheet
For our latest research, Behind Login explored the ‘Investment Factsheet' features across 5 major investment apps globally.
Investment factsheets lack a universally recognised feature name, but in this context reference the feature that hosts all the investment/stock information including price charts, performance stats, investment information and news etc.
Factsheets are a fundamental feature to any investment platform, enabling users to understand and analyse an opportunity pre-investment, identify trading signals and opportunities to trade, track investment performance whilst held in a portfolio or in a watchlist and monitor investment performance after exit. From our research, Factsheets are in the top 3 most visited features within investing apps and regarded as highly important by users.
We conducted our study on a range of market players, selected for their brand reputation, market positioning & App Store ratings, providing us with a diverse view of how factsheets have been designed across the landscape.
Our analysis reviewed:
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL)
In line with the Behind Login approach, this research study works with real, high frequency users of each investment app to understand the user experience, interface and features of the app based on real users accounts and preferences. We also explore the met & unmet needs of users and identify areas for innovation that these apps could exploit to stay ahead in the market.
For this blog we’ve picked our favourite app from the study to demonstrate the best-in-class ‘Investment Factsheet' feature from across the industry, with the Robinhood App.
This blog provides a Company Overview, a Factsheet Summary and Functionality Overview and Key Analysis & Recommendations for brands looking to compete in the market. All of our analysis, in line with our report formats, is support by visual and video content including our SuperUser profile, feature walkthroughs and interactive journey maps.
Robinhood launched in 2015 in the US and has grown rapidly ever since. The company had 14 million users at the end of 2021 and continues to expand. Robinhood explored entering the UK market in early 2020 but made a U-turn amid the Covid-19 pandemic and have postponed the launch indefinitely.
The Robinhood proposition is significantly weighted towards regular trading rather than longer term ‘buy and hold’ style investment strategies, which shifts its competition dynamic in the UK away from the big investment houses like Hargreaves Lansdown (HL) and more towards mobile-first/mobile-only apps like Trading 212 and Freetrade.
The platform hosts equities, various passive and exchange traded funds & Crypto-currencies, but no managed funds.
The Robinhood factsheet is the best we’ve seen, with a clean User Experience (UX), abundant investment information, strong personalisation and a number of tools and features to promote and encourage discovery of new investments.
The theme of a ‘personalised factsheet’ really shines through with Robinhood, as reflected in the various user specific content that it shows throughout.
There is a significant amount of investment information, such as ‘The Greeks’, ‘Stats’ and ‘Earnings’ which are more suited to advanced investors, but are presented in a clear interface, enabling the app to cater for various investor abilities, and serving as a ‘one stop shop’ for investment information and decision making.
The factsheets have different designs and UI between shares and cryptocurrencies, but other than that are the same for all different equity types.
Share chart - no ‘full screen’ charts, but detailed charting, across different time horizons, with candlestick function and trading volumes
Your Position - very detailed personalised information on your position, history, open orders & recurring investments
Financial information - detailed and well visualised financial information to make informed investment decisions.
Related lists & ‘People also own' - Robinhood created lists and groupings which encourage discovery of other investments
About - brief company information and overview
Definition of terms - a full list of simple, user-friendly definitions of investment terms
CRYPTO ONLY ‘News’ - News articles related to the crypto in question
CRYPTO ONLY ‘Volatility’ - a view of different volatility levels the stock is deemed (by Robinhood itself)
ROBINHOOD FACTSHEET WALK-THROUGH
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00:10 - Add to lists
00:20 & 05:18 - Share chart (and volumes)
01:08 - Your Position & Options
01:26 - (Your) Recurring investments
02:20 - Financial information
03:04 - Related lists
03:20 - People also own
03:29 - (Your) History
03:36 - About
04:10 - Definition of investment terms
Broadly the cryptocurrency factsheet has the same UX, with different UI and stripped back data on the asset itself, with the addition of a ‘News’ & ‘Volatility’ section
These recommendations are based on investing apps looking to bolster and evolve their UX to compete within the market. With the reduction of barriers to build investing propositions, front end UX is where brands can really differentiate and win in the market and here's how we would do it.
The Performance charts provide a simple interface without very detailed chart manipulation functionality. From all our research, this depth of functionality strikes the right balance of complexity and simplicity, covering most investor use cases, including a candlestick feature.
We would recommend providing a similar level of functionality to investment apps, rather than overcomplicating charts with detailed modelling tools and risking confusing users (as well as incurring development and maintenance costs). We would also encourage including analytics and mechanisms for user feedback to understand the demand/value of providing more detailed performance charts in the future.
Your position shows personalised information based on the users holdings in great detail, including references prices paid, units held, total % of the entire portfolio, existing open positions (calls & puts) of the user, recurring investments and more.
Pulling in all user specific investment information creates a simple and effective way to convey complex information, in a scalable way. We would encourage apps to adopt this model with actions & information grouped around the investment, rather than grouped by action.
The Stats and Company info provide basic information about the equity (cited as an area for improvement by our SuperUser), but also have an ‘expected vs actual’ earning report shown with a clear user interface. The Stats also include definitions for each line item which are great educational items to improve user knowledge.
Many of our SuperUsers cite visual interface functionality as desirable when reviewing factsheet Stats & data, preferring to have less information provided in an intuitive, easy to understand way. Robinhood have effectively done that with the ‘expected vs actual’ earning report and the Stat definitions and we would encourage investment apps to consider what lessons can be learnt from this.
Lists and People also own are great features that provide simple tools for further investment discovery, showing users similar equities that might be of interest to them. This provides a way for users to discover new investments, educational content to help navigate the stock market and a cross selling opportunity for Robinhood as users build out their portfolios.
We would encourage investing apps to explore intuitive groupings like this, but ensure clear KPIs are in place, focusing more on investor education rather than cross selling, in line with FCAs Consumer Duty regulation to promote good customer outcomes.
Crypto factsheets are differentiated through an alternate user interface which creates an element of delight and makes the change in equity type very obvious for the user. These factsheets also include two additional data points, News and Volatility, highlighting any related news to that crypto and the volatility levels, both important additions in the volatile, fast moving crypto market.
Across most of the apps we analysed we saw the some basic differentiation between equity types through different interfaces and functionality. Robinhood stand out here by making this differentiation obvious through a different UI and colour pattern. This new view encourages the the user to explore the feature in more detail (and thus discovering the News and Volatility features).
We would encourage these recommendations to be used as one data point in a wider product discovery phase. Throughout the Product Development Life Cycle it is also crucial to ensure that user needs are understood, technical limitations are met and business objectives are considered, to build an effective digital product strategy.
ROBINHOOD SUPERUSER PROFILE
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Experience: 2.5 years investing
Usage: Uses daily for a quick check (1-2 mins) and infrequent longer sessions (20-30 mins)
Holdings: Mix of stocks and cryptocurrency
Accounts: General investing account only but saving as if pension
Investment Goals: A mix of long term and short term. Short term stuff to make some quick money and longer term as a version of savings.
Brand perception: Perceives Robinhood as an execution-only app/business and not bothered by the way it operates outside of the app and his engagement with it. 'Likely’ to recommend Robinhood to a novice or intermediate level investor, but less so for 'experienced’ investors.
Typical behaviours: 95% review / check, and 5% doing transactions on the app. Checks it in the morning to see changes and updates, and then throughout the day depending on different needs and situations.
ROBINHOOD INTERACTIVE FACTSHEET JOURNEY MAP
To access the full market study, analysing all the app investment factsheets, with supporting information and Behind Login's set of key recommendations to maintain and grow competitive advantage in the market, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.