The digital advice space saw the launch of several new products within the past year as firms push to diversify revenue streams and provide a one-stop shop for digital financial services. Corporate Insight’s Digital Advice Audit assesses the offerings from major players and uses a grading framework to rate firms in their efforts to innovate the field:

  • In July 2019, JPMorgan Chase launched You Invest Portfolios, a roboadvice product. Like the previously released You Invest Trade, You Invest Portfolios integrates directly into the existing bank and card secure site, which features a redesigned dashboard that better incorporates all aspects of the client’s finances.
  • In September, Vanguard announced the pilot program for its new pure-digital roboadvisor, Vanguard Digital Advisor (VDA). The program, currently available by invitation only, can manage both retail and defined-contribution account types.
  • The same month, Ally Invest launched a new “freemium” digital advice offering, which includes 90 days of commission-free self-directed trading, more than 500 commission-free ETFs and new “cash-enhanced” Managed Portfolios with zero advisory fees and an entry point of $100.

 

Many brokerages introduced hybrid robo advisors to an already saturated market. The popularity of the products is understandable as firms continue to look for innovative value-adds to distinguish themselves.

 

Digital advice firms continue to excel at the prospect experience, offering strong public site marketing and investor questionnaires to capture new users and encourage existing clients to consolidate assets with the firm. Almost half of firms earn an Excellent score in this category of our Digital Advice Audit, while 88% earn at least a Good. Fidelity in particular stands out in this category for offering a dedicated microsite that promotes Fidelity Go, its pure robo offering.

That being said, digital advice firms lag behind in terms of mobile capabilities, a category in which no firm earns an Excellent grade. Scores suffer due to a lack of holistic portfolio analysis and poor design and navigation. Optimally, firms would provide a separate app or main navigation section dedicated to the digital advice experience. Schwab provides a commendable mobile experience with its dedicated Intelligent Portfolios app, which features thorough account information and goal tracking capabilities that closely mirror the desktop experience. Additionally, the mobile platform features cash management capabilities, including check deposits and external account transfers.

 

Learn more about the Digital Advice Audit and discover how your own investor and prospect digital experience stacks up against the competition in the race to instill investor loyalty amid market uncertainty.