Page last updated: 05 August 2021

Online investing platforms

About online investing platforms

An online investing platform is a website or mobile application used to invest within the financial markets. Online platforms have made investing more accessible.  You can invest smaller amounts of money at relatively low cost and they’re easy to use. They can be an opportunity to learn about investing by doing it. 

One of the ways that some platforms allow you to invest small amounts is through fractionalised investing, which allows you to buy portions of shares instead of purchasing an entire share. This allows you to have access to more highly priced shares which you may normally not be able to afford. There are platforms which also allow you to buy full shares.

Many of us are familiar with platforms that allow us to invest in shares, bonds, exchange traded funds (ETF) and other managed funds. Some platforms also offer investments that are higher risk, including derivatives like options trading and cryptocurrency. Generally these types of investments are not suitable for the average investor and are best approached with caution. To find out more see Understanding the risks

Learn how to choose, use and understand the risks of online investing

How to choose an online investing platform

Is online investing right for you? Here are some things to think about if you decide that online investing is for you

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How to use an online investing platform

Investment goals are the first step to using investing platforms, then focus on products that will help you reach those goals.

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Understand the risks of online investing platforms

Online investing platforms make investing 'easy' but aren't exempt from their share of risks or scams.

Learn more


If you have investing FOMO, first consider the Five D’s of DIY investing

  1. Do your due diligence
  2. Drip feed your investments
  3. Diversify your portfolio
  4. Don't freak out if markets go down
  5. If in doubt, talk to a financial adviser


Learn more about the five D’s of DIY investing

Interesting facts from our investing platforms research

We commissioned research about online investing platforms to help us understand the type and profile of investors in retail platforms, and the associated risks and behaviours. We will use the findings to help prioritise future activities and messages to reach new investors. See the media release for an overview of the findings, or See the full research pack.

Our research records that 79% of investors who use online investment platforms, buy and hold for the long term.

Reseach says that 30% who used an online investing platform did so to avoid missing out.

After investing on an online investing platform, 80% of those researched felt more positive about investing.