It wont be a surprise to many, that more than 3 billion people worldwide use smartphones for a plethora of different activities. What started out as a humble voice communication device, has now become a necessity, allowing us to listen to music, make payments, communicate, amuse ourselves endlessly and more recently – invest.
The number of people using mobile solutions for investing and researching investing online, has prompted institutions and major markets to create and innovate mobile investment apps at a phenomenal rate. These tools are giving users the ability to access the history of a specific holding, charting tools, social media trading feedback, and overall market sentiment instantaneously. Thus, allowing new and experienced investors to make informed decisions quickly. As a result, the sometimes-harsh learning curve of investing has reduced dramatically.
It also means that investors are more informed today than ever. During lockdowns, people had time on their hands and spent some of that time getting to really understand the online platforms where they were invested. This has led to an greater understanding of cost and fee structures which previously investors may not have delved into too much, as long as the returns vaguely matched their expectations.
Technology promotes the ease of use & ease of access and puts investors in direct contact with their investments whether they have a financial advisor or not. As the industry evolves and investors have more time to learn about their investments, what does that mean for Financial Advisors? Will there always be a place for them? The answer quite simply is yes of course we need financial advisors, but what it means is that their role will change, as will the motivation for investors to use them. More crucially, the customer will start to take charge of the amount & method of paying for advice. This in turn will have an impact on how advisory businesses run, with the inevitable thinning out of many advisers who can’t make the transition. Those advisers still working in 5 years time will be better qualified and more valuable to their clients.