Information is readily available to anyone with an computer or mobile phone. People trust what they read online and often take action on the information. When it comes to investing, the stakes are higher and one should consider a more thoughtful approach than a simple Google search.
More and more Information is readily available to everyone via the internet, but is it good information? This commercial sums it up perfectly.
How NOT to Invest
I recently did some research using Google’s Keyword Planner to better understand what investors are looking up online. The results were a troubling realization about how many people are sourcing their investment ideas.
There’s nothing wrong with searching these terms, however, one should take what they read with a grain of salt. If successful investing was as easy as a Google search, we’d all be Warren Buffett. Instead, the harsh reality is that most “Average Investors” struggle to keep up inflation let alone the stock market.
Our society is based on instant gratification; we’re accustomed to getting what we want with a tap of our finger. On the other hand, successful investing requires discipline and patience. Even then it isn’t easy. There are thousands of professional money managers who work tirelessly to earn a good return for their investors. Even they fail to beat the market 80% of the time.
Stop looking for short cuts. Googling “Best Penny Stock to Invest in for the Next 30 minutes” is not going to reveal the next big thing and enable you to retire tomorrow. I’m sorry, the truth hurts. Instead, understand that building wealth is a process. It takes countless small decisions that, over time, stack the odds of success in your favor.
If you must Google, Google this Instead
If you want your first step to be Google, then search “Fiduciary Advisor”. It’s searched just once for every 25 times someone searches “Best Stock to Invest in Right Now”. If you are not familiar, a Fiduciary Advisor is someone who is obligated to do what is in your best interest. That seems logical and should be the industry standard, but unfortunately, it is not.
A non-fiduciary advisor does not have to recommend what’s actually best for you. As long as their recommendations are “suitable”, they have leeway to pick a product(s) that provides them with the most compensation. This includes the majority of financial advisors, insurance agents, money managers, and investment firms.
This doesn’t mean that working with a non-fiduciary advisor is bad. Most of them are great people who care about their clients and truly want to do what’s in their best interest. However, you may want to do some due diligence on their recommendations.
A Fiduciary Advisor will work with you to identify your long-term goals, and will recommend a strategy to help you get there. It doesn’t mean they are always right, but they do not have the conflicts of interest that can put your best interests behind those of a commission sales person.