How To Build a Trading Platform. 5 Things To Know Before You Start a Stock Market App Like E-Trade
Investors, brokers, and other active participants of the stock market have already been using the latest achievements of the web and mobile technologies in their practice. A good solution is the E-Trade application, a worthy example of stock market app development. And E-Trade is by no means the only one of its kind. Moreover, there is no perfect trading app yet. Maybe you'll be able to create it? If you're willing to make it a try, just follow the guidelines of our article which explains how to build a trading platform like E-Trade (or a better one). We’ve made our best to compartmentalize the issue thoroughly and sort out all the details that matter.
What is a trading app?
In general, it's all quite clear: applications and websites are designed to make life easier for a modern person whatever he is doing at the moment. And smart entrepreneurs, instead of resisting such a trend, decided to use its benefits to increase their business efficiency. Among other things, brokerage companies have started wondering how to build an automated trading system. And most of them succeeded.
They were right in their desire to develop a trading platform because it allows having things under control the whole time. Traders and investors can conduct all sorts of transactions in the stock market when they want to. Of course, these new great opportunities have increased people’s interest in the stock market area… which has become an extra advantage.
What is it, after all?
Simply put, a stock market web application (and a mobile one too) is aimed both at those who are interested in attractive companies for long-term investment and at those who want to make a short-term deal.
Trading platform types
There are different ways to classify trading platforms, but we decided to offer the easiest option and divide them into 2 main groups.
#1. Traditional-oriented type
Here we talk about traditional, time-tested assets such as ETFs, currencies, stocks, precious metals, and much more. That is, these 1st types of platforms allow users to make the listed well-known investments.
The traditional-oriented group is the most demanded because participants in the trading market prefer to deal with assets that they do understand.
And by the by, your custom trading software doesn't have to be limited to just one asset.
The second case is more specific and concerns cryptocurrency. We believe everyone has heard of such names as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, etc. So, this type of trading platforms is focused on managing these assets: selling or buying them, as well as conducting all kinds of transactions, etc.
Also, don’t forget about 2 options to exchange cryptocurrency assets: centralized, with the participation of brokers, and decentralized. The 2d one works according to the p2p model.
As you see, there are various types of trading digital programs but the best option is a full-fledged mobile or online platform able to become a loyal assistant even to beginners and help them successfully participate in the investment business. In our article, we're going to explain to you how to make a stock market app of this very sort... but first, let’s pay attention to your competitors!
If you want the stock trading software development to lead to the best results, you should pay attention to the E-Trade app we've already mentioned.
It is one of the most successful applications, which has been pleasing users for several decades. It allows investors and traders to easily interact with the stock market. Later, discussing the app's features, we'll tell in more detail what exactly E-Trade offers. In the meantime, let's just say that this is the optimal mobile solution with an advanced functionality fitting for placing trades, updating quotes, tracking the latest stock market information, etc. And all of the above is possible in real-time.
But E-Trade is not the only competitor of yours. We advise you to study others too, it’s your best chance to achieve the maximum result and find a way to develop a trading platform of the highest quality level.
Robinhood is a free trading platform that allows compiling personal lists of financial credit documents and security papers, getting real-time information about quotations, and trading shares of companies without having to pay for the transaction. Robinhood’s monetization comes at the expense of accumulated interest from the accounts of its users.
eToro is an excellent crowdsourcing platform helping users not only to communicate with well-known traders but also to monitor their transactions (and copy them). This is an original idea of stock market app development, one must admit.
The eToro database contains information about several million people from different countries around the world, and any user can carefully examine their portfolios, risk indicators, revenues, transaction history, etc. The application is especially useful to those who want to learn and earn simultaneously.
The Yahoo company seems to have covered all areas of life and business: news, sports, politics, finance... Yes, the last one is true, since this famous brand concluded that it's time to figure out how to create a stock market website and application.
Yahoo Finance allows real-time tracking of stock quotes of companies of interest, learning the latest market news, comparing securities, monitoring investment portfolios of other users, etc.
StockTwits is another example of an untypical stock market application development. In fact, this is Twitter for stock analysts. In addition to allowing users to find out what others think about certain security papers, StockTwits helps investors to keep abreast of all that is happening on the exchange market and be aware of the fate of the shares they are interested in.
NetDania Forex is a program with a huge range of useful features including the ability to interact with currency and equity markets, monitor the exchange rate in real-time, build online charts, and much more. Besides, the service allows working with international and local calendars of economic events.
Now, when we've studied a number of your competitors, it's time to explore another important issue, which interests everyone who is going to figure out how to make a stock market app for Android and iOS. We’re talking, of course, about the effective functionality of your future application.
Stock market apps: key features
Check-in. The authorization process should be as simple as possible and, most importantly, secure (when it comes to finances, the issue of data security is especially relevant). Ideally, you must offer several registration options (for example, through social networks, phone numbers, email). Modern applications should also support the Touch ID system (E-Trade supports it, and you are interested to develop a trading platform of the same sort, aren't you?).
A user page needed to manage personal data. The information contained herein should be updatable and editable.
Placing trades on stocks or mutual funds with the possibility to view and edit the data you need. The feature is a key one - give it the most attention while creating your custom trading software.
Payments and transactions. The feature is useful for executing orders and involves the possibility to monitor and manage flow-of-funds.
Newsfeed. You can be surprised, but this is an important part of the stock market app development. The matter is that the stock market is very sensitive to any event (both local and global ones). Say, if a popular restaurant brand has been caught doing wrong, there are chances of a fall in its stocks, and it is reasonable to buy them while they are still cheap. In fact, the news should be collected from a variety of sources including financial analysis reports, expert opinions, etc. The feature notifies users about the news of the trading industry, exchange rates, and other things in real-time, allowing participants in the market to remain on alert.
List of updatable portfolios of the stock market. A user should have the ability to track them in real-time (and filter the output), as well as monitor his positions.
Deposits. The feature offers an easy way to check the status of the deposit - without any effort and at any time. Don’t forget to implement it if you’re willing to understand how to build a trading system with a fair chance to be in high demand.
Quote monitoring. Users should be able to see all the quote updates in real-time mode.
Search. Make life easier for users by allowing them to look for the information they need through a convenient search engine.
Analytics. Participants of the stock market will appreciate the opportunity to observe the statistics and analyze the results of transactions, trades, etc. A good decision is to offer them different kinds of performance charts and reports.
Sorting and filtering systems won't be superfluous either. They’ll help users to better navigate in your stock market web or mobile application and output data in a user-friendly format.
Push notification. And, of course, don’t forget about the notification system. It’s the best way to keep in touch with the user.
Okay, we’ve successfully dealt with the feature list. It remains to find out how to turn this functionality into a working program, in other words, how to build an automated trading system.
How to make a trading platform according to E-Trade example
The process of stock market application development is a complicated one, but we suggest that you pay attention to 5 things in order to simplify it as much as possible.
#1. Mobile site VS Mobile application
If you’d like to limit yourself to creating a mobile application, then you don’t need this item and can safely move on to the next one. However, in order to understand how to create a stock market website, you should decide how it will interact with users' smartphones. There are 2 options, and each has its pros and cons.
Mobile site. The mobile version of the site adapts to each screen of mobile phones. Its important advantage is the fact that there is no need to create a new resource for different platforms since it works equally well on all mobile devices.
Full-fledged mobile application. The application has a lot of useful features, which can not be fully implemented when creating a mobile site. Also, the app involves customers in the process of interaction more effectively.
Of course, an application is a much more modern solution, and we advise you to choose it instead of a mobile site.
#2. Choosing the best platform
Now you need to decide which platform your application will run on. E-Trade is compatible with all operating systems, and we think you should follow this lead and think about how to make a stock market app in Android and iOS (both of them).
Of course, if you have to save money, start small: do research to understand which devices your customers use most often and create an applicationб compatible with the most popular platform.
#3. The development process
Now that the preliminary issues have been settled, it's time to hunt down a question about stock trading software development. There are 3 key stages:
Mobile development. You’ll need the services of iOS and Android developers. iOS experts should be familiar with such programming languages as Swift or Objective C, and Android specialists must know Kotlin or Java. Of course, there are other options, we just gave possible examples.
Backend development. To develop a trading platform, you also need to hire a backend developer - a specialist who deals with server technologies: a database, architecture, software logic. To ensure that the server and databases are working correctly, the developer uses server programming languages and frameworks: Ruby, NodeJS, Python, Java, .Net, as well as MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracle, and MSSQL relative databases or even distributed databases like SingleStore (ex MemSQL) and DolphinDB to store linear and transactional data. It allows building such features as sign-in, transactions, alerts, and others of the sort.
But the experts we’ve named are not enough to fully implement your app idea and create the trading platform of your dream. Also, you need:
The PM (he’ll help you find common ground with stock market software developers);
QA engineers (they’ll test your application or site);
The designer, responsible for UI/UX
By the by, speaking of the trading system design… Let's dwell on the issue in more detail.
#4. Trading system design
The stock market is a specific area, one wrong move here can lead to failure. The following factors should be taken into account when designing interfaces:
You should start thinking about UI/UX at the stage of formulating ideas and requirements for the product.
It is important to perform usability testing because this is your only chance to make the product consistent with the original plan.
UI/UX should facilitate the process of stock market app development. Prototyping and similar tools offer technical support and help developers understand how users will interact with the app.
#5. Safety really matters
Finance is a very fine point when it comes to security. Alas, there is an issue of user discontent. For instance, many users don’t like to confirm authentication, the whole process tires and annoys them. You need to find a balance between safety and convenience, and we believe that security is still a priority.
Your users are unlikely to be happy if someone gets access to their assets due to the fact that you allowed yourself to be dictated by their unsmart desires during the stock market application development.
Legalities to consider
If you have been working in the brokerage market for a long time, then you're well-acquainted with the issue of legalities. However, there is still a chance that you're new to this business... and we decided to give you a couple of useful tips (just to be on the safe side!):
Firstly, remember: you'll have to get a license to work in all those countries with which you plan to cooperate (to be precise, where your stock market web application will be available).
Don't forget about the regulatory body, which is going to monitor your business (say, in the USA it is the Securities and Exchange Commission).
Do you want to build a reputation as a reliable partner? Follow the example of E-Trade, which we talk about a lot in our article. The company in question participates in special programs designed to protect the interests of investors (FINRA, SIPC, etc.).
The process of obtaining a license may be expensive, but this is not the most critical factor. More importantly, you’ll have to put up with a thorough review of all the data you provide.
How much does it cost to develop a trading platform?
We've explained to you how to make a stock market app, but how much will it cost? Let's see.
#1. Native app development
First, we have to discuss the process of creating applications. And we mean native apps (which are created for each platform, Android and iOS, separately).
As you know, the cost of a project directly depends on the amount of time spent on stock market app development. According to our calculations (based on practical experience), the estimates will be as follows:
Setup environment: 16-24 hours;
Mobile app design: 408-712 hours;
iOS development: 864-1632 hours;
Android development: 840-1616 hours;
Backend development: 488-840 hours;
Admin panel development: 96-192 hours;
Release & Production: 32-40 hours.
Total estimate: 2744-5056 hours (6-10 months).
#2. Website development
If we talk about creating a site, then the calculation will be slightly different:
Setup environment: 16-24 hours;
Trading system design: 428-739 hours;
Frontend development: 563-1213 hours;
Backend development: 484-824 hours;
Admin panel development: 96-156 hours;
Release & Production: 32-40 hours.
Total estimate: 1619-2996 hours (5-9 months).
Now all you need to do is find qualified stock market software developers who have a clue of how to build a trading platform and possess the necessary experience.
We hope to become your choice! Our Agilie team would be happy to develop your custom trading software, and we’ll make sure it meets your needs just perfectly. Take a look at our projects, if you need real proof of our competence.