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A Beginner’s Guide to Micro-Investing (and My 5 Favorite Apps)

Micro-investing is a strategy that is designed to invest small amounts of money into an investment account on autopilot, so you don't have to think about it. Learn how it actually works and if it is a good idea.

Best Overall
Acorns icon
Editor's Rating    5/5

Invest your spare change, switch to the auto-investing checking account and save for retirement with Acorns. They are my #1 recommended micro-investing app.

Best for Beginners
Stash app logo
Editor's Rating    4.5/5

Stash app aims to make the process of selecting investments quick and easy for beginners. Invest with as little as $5. Get the only debit card that earns Stock-Back rewards.

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Read our Advertising Disclosure.

Many people have the habit of spending all their income as it comes, as what they earn seems too small, and there’s nothing left for any other expense outside their budget.

Research shows that only 1 in 3 millennials have investments in the stock market, which proves that most people hardly invest. Micro-investing might be a great way to invest small amounts of money in shares and other forms of investment. 

Here’s how you can start micro-investing as a beginner:

  1. Choose a micro-investing platform.
  2. Diversify your portfolio.
  3. Make use of ETF funds.

Micro-investing is advisable for everybody and not only low-income earners. It allows you to have some extra funds for future use, and it also develops a positive saving habit.

So let’s get started, so you can start building your nest egg.

Summary of the Best Micro-Investing Apps

Comparison of Micro-Investment Apps

#1
Acorns icon

Our Partner

Invest your spare change, switch to the auto-investing checking account and save for retirement.

#2
Stash app logo

Our Partner

Stash app aims to make the process of selecting investments quick and easy for beginners. Invest with as little as $5.

#3
robinhood app logo

Our Partner

Robinhood is a free-trading app that's ideal for investors who want to trade stocks, options, exchange-traded funds and cryptocurrency without paying commissions or fees.

#4

Public.com is a commission-free stock investing app that allows you to invest in fractional shares of companies and connect with a community of like-minded investors.

#5
Blooom logo

Our Partner

Blooom is a robo-advisor that primary focuses on workplace retirement plans like 401(k)s.

1. Choose a Micro Investing Platform

Before you start micro-investing, you must decide on how you want to go about it. 

You can either save up enough money until you have enough to buy a large portion of stocks, or you can opt for any of the micro-investing platforms that have already been created to help micro-investing beginners.

These platforms automatically calculate your change from payments and left-overs from your transactions, and they accumulate this change to the nearest dollar to help you invest it in the stock market

These platforms have made it extremely easy for anybody to go into micro-investing, and they do the bulk of the work. However, there are several of these platforms, and while you can use more than one, there’s still the issue of choosing which one.

Before settling for any micro-investing platform, you should check their stats and other people’s reviews. 

When you sign up on the micro-investment platform, you’ll give essential and sensitive information like your debit and credit card details. The last thing you want is to provide these details to a scam platform. 

You can keep an eye out for some verified and well-known micro-investment platforms like Acorns, Stash, Robinhood, Public.com, and Blooom. These are just a few of the micro-investing media that are guaranteed. 

However, there are still several that you can look into if you don’t want to limit yourself to these. 

But it might be safer to use the ones listed above. As we go into this article, you’ll see more about each of these micro-investment platforms and how they operate. These platforms are also available as applications that you can download on your mobile device or laptop to easily monitor their activities.

Micro Investment Platforms

Micro investment platforms are built specifically for beginner investors who don’t have a lot of money. They have built-in apps that you can use every time you make a purchase, which will round up to the nearest dollar.

The extra change goes into an investment account. 

You can also make small investments through direct deposits that can add up over time. As the market does well, so do your investments.

Below are some of the top micro-investment apps that you can make use of as a beginner.

Acorns

Acorns is a micro-investment platform designed to make investments easy for you. This app does all the work for you, so all you have to do is download the application on your device or login into their website and sign up. 

To fully sign up for this investment platform, you need to pay a small fee, which varies depending on the type of subscription you want.

Acorns have three different subscriptions, which include:

Acorns Lite

Acorns Lite requires a monthly fee of $1 per month, and with this plan, you can enjoy different services. When you sign up for Acorns Lite, you can easily invest your spare change. 

You can also set recurring investments, which allows you to make investments in ETFs and more. It also gives you access to an automated investment account, which transfers any change from your transactions to an automatic investment. 

You can passively make money from your investments without lifting a finger.

Acorns Personal

Acorns Personal is another subscription that’s available to you, which charges a monthly fee of $3. With this subscription, you can enjoy all the benefits of the Acorns Lite subscription and more, like building a retirement plan or receiving substantial financial advice.

Acorns Family

Acorns Family charges a monthly fee of $5, which allows you to open micro-investment accounts for all your kids and even yourself. You also get to enjoy the services available from the Acorns Lite and Personal subscription on all the accounts opened under the Acorn Family Subscription.

It helps you make investment decisions based on your preference. 

You have a choice of which potential risk you’re willing to take so that you can invest your funds across the stock market based on the degree of the risk that you choose. With this investment platform, you are sure to get the best returns with minor losses. 

You can learn more about Acorns on their website.

Stash 

Stash is another micro-investment platform that has proven itself. It’s safe to use this platform as a beginner, and their services come at a very affordable rate.

Stash has three different subscriptions, which include:

Stash Beginner

If you opt for the Stash beginner subscription, you’ll be paying a service fee as low as $1 each month. With this subscription, you can enjoy investment opportunities with as low as $5 starting capital. 

Also, you get stock in prominent brands anytime you use their debit card. 

With this subscription, Stash gives you comprehensive advice on saving with your current financial power, along with portfolio recommendations.

Stash Growth

Stash Growth is another subscription, and it goes at a rate of $3 per month. With this subscription, you enjoy everything available in the Stash Beginner package. 

Also, you get to enjoy some extra services such as their Smart Portfolio, Retirement Portfolio, and Tax benefits for retirement Investing.

Stash+

The third subscription is the Stash+. With this subscription, all the services from the Stash Beginner subscription and the Stash Growth Subscription are readily available to you, as well as some extra assistance that doesn’t come with the first two levels. 

With Stash+, you can open micro-investment accounts for your kids. 

You also get to enjoy some additional services like Exclusive Stock-Back card bonuses, 2x stock with the stock-back card, and $10k life insurance sponsored by Avibra. You’ll also receive top-class financial advice from experts. 

You can learn more about Stash and how they operate on their website.

Robinhood

This investment platform is one of the most down-to-earth platforms for micro-investing. It’s a free platform that allows you to invest in different stock brands, and they don’t charge you anything for their services. 

This platform also allows you to purchase stock on credit, but it isn’t available if you’re just starting, so don’t worry about it. 

The primary purpose this platform serves is to allow you to buy stocks at meager prices. I won’t advise you to use this platform as a beginner because it doesn’t provide sufficient guidance or financial advice. 

You can learn more about them here.

There are several other micro-investment platforms that you can make use of as a beginner. However, the first three are highly recommended, and they have great reviews. 

You can go ahead and research other platforms, but whatever app you decide to use, ensure they are 100% legitimate and secure. This is to prevent your bank details and further personal details from getting hacked.

2. Diversify Your Portfolio

Investment Diversification

One of the main reasons why people give up on investments is because they can’t deal with losses sometimes, due to not having a diversified portfolio. What is a diversified portfolio?

It simply means that you don’t put all your money in one or two places. 

You could put your money in government bonds, mutual funds, and company stocks. And within these categories are several different categories of investment opportunities that will spread out your investment so you don’t have as many losses. 

Irrespective of what type of investment you’re involved in, there’s always the risk of experiencing a loss. Many people don’t seem to realize this before they go ahead to make investments, and when they finally experience a loss, they’re devastated.

So let’s take a closer look at a multiple-account strategy that might help you diversify your portfolio and minimize your losses.

Multiple Account Strategy

The principle of the multiple account strategy is to prevent you from putting all your eggs in one basket. One great way to minimize your loss is being active on more than one micro-investing platform. 

Apart from increasing your investments, being on more than one platform allows you to further diversify your portfolio to allow you to spread your investment better. In the event of a loss on one account, there’s a high chance that you’re making more profit on the other account. 

When registering on these platforms, ensure you pick different forms of investment; don’t invest in the same thing twice, it defeats the purpose of opening multiple accounts.

You’ll Experience Fewer Losses

Although most micro-investment platforms have safeguards that try to cut down potential losses, the stock market can be unpredictable sometimes, and unforeseen losses eventually pop up.

Don’t give up on your micro-investments just because of a loss. Keep at it, and with time you’ll see growth in your portfolio.

3. Make Use of ETF's

As a micro-investor that’s new to the game, this option is very advisable. 

ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) consist of multiple investments including bonds, stocks, and more. When registering on the micro-investment platform of your choice, ensure you look out for this option.

You’ll be asked to choose what type of investments you want and an ETF should be included in the options.

The main purpose of an ETF is to spread your investment capital over a wide range of investments so that in the event of a loss, it’ll be minimal. 

You can also research other platforms to use if you don’t want to use the micro-investing sites.

Micro-investment is something that everybody can be a part of, as nobody is too young or too old, too rich or too broke to start. You can even join a micro-investment platform for your kids and help them make investments towards their future.

Starting Micro Investing for Beginners

Micro-Investing

Investing isn’t a habit that many find easy to start. However, once you start, you’ll see that several advantages come with it. Even if you don’t have a lot of funds, you can still make some investments, and that’s the whole point of micro-investing.

If you want your loose change and leftovers to start making money for you, there are a few things you need to do, and I’ll show you now.

Micro-investing is an excellent habit to cultivate, because not only does it leave you with funds for future use, but it also prepares you for more significant investment opportunities. You’ve seen what you need to do to start micro-investing and investing in general. 

You need to prepare your wallet and then pick a good micro-investment platform.

Wrapping Up

You can start micro-investing on your own by accumulating the spare change and little money left over from your transactions and investing it in the stock market. Or you can employ micro-investing apps that readily collect the difference from your transactions and help you make investments without added stress. 

Just remember to diversify your portfolio and spread your money across several investment opportunities. Otherwise, you might lose everything you worked hard to obtain when one section of the market goes under.

Acorns

Acorns’ spare-change savings tool and its cash-back rewards program make investing easy. But the management fee on small accounts is steep.

Acorns logo

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