Investing today doesn’t mean sitting at your computer in front of a complex platform. Investing can mean trading while sitting at the doctor’s office or while on your lunch break at work all from your phone.
The two most commonly compared online brokerage firms are Webull vs Robinhood. While they have many similarities, there are vast differences too. We review both platforms below to help you decide.
Robinhood was one of the first online stock brokers to offer zero commission trades. While many platforms have since followed in their footsteps, Robinhood remains a fan favorite for many reasons, but mostly its user-friendly interface.
What Is Robinhood?
Robinhood is a simple, yet sleek online broker. It doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles, but it’s perfect for new investors or even experienced investors looking for a simple self-directed platform. You don’t have to worry about getting overwhelmed or not understanding what you’re doing with Robinhood. It’s the perfect option for investors just starting in their new adventure.
How Does Robinhood Work?
Robinhood is only accessible through its mobile app, it doesn’t have an online platform. It doesn’t require a minimum balance and offers many trading options including stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrency. If you’re looking for an online broker with robust reporting and analysis, Robinhood isn’t it, but Webull may be the better option.
Webull is a direct competitor of Robinhood. They, too, offer zero commission trades, but its platform is much more robust. New investors may consider Webull overwhelming, but experienced investors looking for plenty of analysis, research, and features love its advanced trading platform.
What Is Webull?
Webull is an online broker, but it’s anything but sleek. As its name suggests, it’s a bull in the running, trying to take brokers like Robinhood down with it. Webull stands out with its robust charting and research tools, making it a good option for more experienced investors.
How Does Webull Work?
Like Robinhood, Webull is a mobile-based broker, but they also have a desktop app. Webull doesn’t require a minimum balance and trades stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrency.
Check out our complete Webull review to get more information and create an account!
Robinhood vs Webull
When comparing Webull vs Robinhood, you’ll find many similar features and then features that set one another apart. While Robinhood has been around a lot longer (Webull has only been around for a few years), they both offer features for specific investor types.
Platforms and Tools
The right online broker is the one that provides the platform and tools that you understand and can use easily. For some investors this means a simple, user-friendly platform. For others, it means a robust platform with advanced charting and technical analysis.
Robinhood is 100% mobile. It has a simple interface that offers trading tools most beginners can use right away with little help. Because of its simplicity, Robinhood doesn’t have any complex charting, which makes it great for beginners who just want the basics. Investors who want stock research, market data, and reporting in the same app as they use to invest will be disappointed, though.
Webull has both a desktop and mobile app. You can toggle between the two always seeing your trades in real-time. It is a great option for advanced traders. Webull offers advanced charting options, a community forum, and trading competitions. They have research and analyses available in the app and desktop platform, so you don’t have to toggle between third-party apps to get the information you need for your trading strategies. Active investors like this option because they can make investment decisions quickly without losing precious time and of course they like the advanced trading platform.
Commission and Fees
Commissions and brokerage fees should be an important part of your decision because they take away from your earnings. This is one area Webull vs Robinhood are equal, except for margin trading.
Robinhood prides themselves on their $0 fee structure. They don’t charge account fees, or commissions, but you’ll pay FINRA and SEC fees, as you would with almost any stock broker. You can borrow on margin at Robinhood, but there’s a $5 monthly fee for the first $1,000 borrowed. If you borrow more than $1,000, you’ll pay 5% of the assets under management.
Webull also doesn’t charge any commissions or management fees. You’ll pay the standard FINRA and SEC fees, like Robinhood. You’ll also pay wire fees ($8 for deposits and $25 for withdrawals).
Webull also offers margin trading but their fees are 6.99% of assets under management no matter how much (or little) you borrow in your margin account.
If we only had a crystal ball to tell you which platform would perform better, right? Like any platform, it depends on the market and how you invest. Both platforms offer slightly different investment options, but neither one stands out as the ‘better performer.’
Trading stocks, ETFs, options, and crypto is easy for investors on Robinhood. Beginners often do best with ETFs since they are already diversified and are less risky, but Robinhood also offers other options as well.
A Webull trader can invest in stocks, options, ETFs, and crypto which is similar to Robinhood. Because they offer more robust charting and technical analyses, investors often take more risks with Webull, which may make it look like they perform better.
Robinhood and Webull offer the same investment options, so this one is a tie.
Just like Robinhood was the pioneer in zero commission trading, they were also one of the first brokers to allow options and crypto trading. Today, though, they aren’t the only, but they still do it well. They used to have a waiting list for cryptocurrency trading, but today anyone can trade it.
Up until recently, Robinhood had the lead as they were the only broker offering crypto and options trading, but Webull has since added both trade options too, so Webull offers stocks, options, ETFs, and crypto just like Robinhood. With the more robust reporting, Webull is a better option for experienced investors making complicated stock trades.
The fact that both Robinhood and Webull offer online stocks and options trading is unique in and of itself especially since Robinhood is aimed at novice investors.
Robinhood offers options and multi-leg strategies. You are a bit on your own creating the strategies, but there are plenty of opportunities if you want to try your hand at selling and buying puts and calls.
You’ll have to do your own research, but Robinhood does offer basic educational opportunities if you want to learn a little bit.
Options trading is new on Webull and is a bit more limited. Webull traders can make Level I and Level II options trades, but not Level III. Webull also offers advanced trading options like short selling and day trading. For a robust platform, Webull’s options trades are a bit simplistic, especially for experienced investors.
Customer support, via phone is essential when you’re investing. There’s something reassuring about hearing someone’s voice rather than searching answers provided by a computer.
This is one area Robinhood falls short. They have no phone support. They provide a robust FAQ section and access to email support, but no phone support. You’re best bet is to search their FAQ and articles to find your answers as email response can take a few days.
Webull, like Robinhood, has a great FAQ and article section, but they go above and beyond, offering email and phone support. They definitely take the cake on the support side of things as getting answers to your questions immediately is imperative.
Anytime you’re dealing with money, security is paramount. There is always a risk of fraud or hackers especially online, but Robinhood and Webull have you covered.
Robinhood offers two-factor authentication, which is important when you combine a mobile app with your finances. They carry SIPC insurance, and they use bank-level security, never storing your account numbers on their site.
Webull takes security just as seriously. They too have SIPC insurance and use bank-level security. You can set passwords both to get into your account and to make trades, making it harder for hackers to get into your account.
Robinhood Pros and Cons
- User-friendly – Robinhood is simple, making it great for beginners. It’s easy to get started buying and selling investments right away with little hand-holding or tutorials.
- Mobile trading app – You can trade stocks on-the-go with the mobile app which has all the features of a standard online broker.
- Fractional shares – You can buy less than a full share if you don’t have enough to buy an entire share. This makes it easy for beginners to start investing.
- Interest on cash – You can earn interest on your un-invested cash because Robinhood moves your cash to one of their FDIC insured partner banks.
- Debit card – Robinhood provides a debit card that you can use to draw funds from your cash account.
- Trade many assets – Robinhood, despite its bare-bones platform, trades many investments including stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrency.
- Basic platform – There aren’t any standout features on Robinhood. You won’t find any features on here that other trading platforms with more robust features include.
- No retirement account – You may only open an individual taxable account, no retirement accounts.
- Available securities – Mutual funds and bonds are not available to be traded on the platform.
- Lacking customer service – With no phone option, you could wait days for an answer and may not even get the right answer if they misunderstand your email.
Webull Pros and Cons
- Retirement accounts – Webull offers taxable and retirement accounts.
- Robust reporting – Get all the research and reporting you need right in Webull so you don’t have to flip over to third-parties.
- Technical analysis – If you are an experienced investor or want to learn to be one, Webull offers the most technical research and reporting.
- Extended trading hours – You can trade outside of normal trading hours (4 AM – 9:30 AM) and (4PM – 8PM).
- Phone support – If you don’t find your answer online in their database, you can email or call Webull.
- Commission free trading – Experienced investors usually pay high commission for more robust platforms, but Webull trades for $0 commissions.
- Complex platform – The interface can be overwhelming even for experienced investors.
- High margin fees – Webull charges 6.99% of assets under management on margin accounts.
- Technology based – If you’re not into fundamental and technical analysis, Webull may feel like a foreign language.
Robinhood vs Webull Customer Reviews
Customers love Robinhood’s simple platform as it’s easy for beginners, but many don’t like the lack of customer service via the phone. Some customers claim issues with accessing their money too.
Webull customers love the robust reporting options and their paper trading option, which allows you to try trading with real numbers but virtual money. Like Robinhood, most customers report having issues claiming their cash.
Why Choose Robinhood?
If you’re new to investing and want to learn how to trade, Robinhood is your best choice. It’s simple interface and vast investment options make it a stand-out for beginners.
Whether you’re investing for the first time, or you want to dabble in other investments for the first time, like options or cryptocurrency, Robinhood offers investors an easy solution to their investment needs.
As long as you are looking to open an account (taxable, not retirement) and don’t need robust reporting, research or advanced order types, Robinhood offers free trading that makes it simple and affordable.
We recommend it for beginners and/or part-time investors who aren’t going to watch their investments often, but want the ability to trade when they feel like it.
Why Choose Webull?
If you’re an active trader or want a more technical experience, Webull is the top online platform for you. Its interface is anything but simple, and its reporting is robust for investors who want a more technical analysis of their investments.
Webull gives you a chance to ‘try the market out’ with its free trade simulator and is great for active traders who not only watch their investments but make trades frequently. With the $0 commission structure, active traders can save quite a bit of money. Webull offers investors access to technical indicators and fundamental analysis tools to help you take control of your financial future.
Robinhood vs Webull FAQ
Is Robinhood or Webull Better for Beginners?
Robinhood is best for beginners, hands down. Its interface is self-explanatory and you don’t need an account minimum to start stock trading. You can even buy fractional shares, which means you can finally invest in Apple or Amazon despite their high stock prices.
Does Robinhood or Webull Have Better Prices?
Robinhood and Webull tie on pricing. Neither platform charges commission fees or an account management fee. If you are an experienced investor with at least $2,000 in your trading account, you may borrow on margin, which Robinhood offers better pricing.
They charge $5 a month when you borrow $1,000 or less. Once you borrow more than $1,000 they charge 5% of assets under management versus Webull’s 6.99% of assets under management no matter how much you borrow.
Does Robinhood or Webull Have A Better Selection Of Investment Options?
Up until recently we would have said Robinhood has the better selection of investment options, but today they are equal. Webull recently stepped up its game and now offers the same investment choices as Robinhood which include stocks, options, ETFs, and cryptocurrency.
Does Robinhood or Webull Have A Better Trading Platform?
The better trading platform depends on how you like online trading. First, is a mobile trading app okay with you? Next, are you looking for a simple, user-friendly platform?
If so, Robinhood is the better trading platform. Its platform is strictly mobile and its interface simplistic or even bare-bones.
If you want something more robust, with more technical features and even paper trading, Webull is the better platform.
It comes down to what you want out of a platform when choosing the ‘best platform’ for you.
Which Broker Offers Banking?
Robinhood offers ‘banking’ but even that’s limited. While you get a debit card to use on your cash balance, Robinhood itself doesn’t do the banking. They work with FDIC partner banks who do the banking for you.
Which Is Better: Robinhood or Webull?
Webull vs Robinhood is a common debate, but the best online brokerage company comes down to what you want out of the platform. If simple features and a mobile trading app is your idea of a great broker, then Robinhood is the right choice. If you’re more experienced and want technical features, Webull is the way to go. But, if you want an IRA versus a brokerage account, Webull is your only option between the two. The bottom line is that no matter which option you choose, the pricing is equal and affordable.
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Samantha uses her BS in Finance and MBA to help others control their finances through budgeting, saving, investing, side hustles, and travel hacking. Due to following the FIRE Movement’s principles, she was able to quit her high-stress job in the financial services industry in July 2019 to pursue her side hustles. She is now a full-time entrepreneur, freelancing coach, and blogger.