In the startup world, money is at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Everyone is on a shoestring budget, watching every penny they spend, and looking for every possible opportunity to save. It’s because of this mindset that Robinhood caught my eye. Robinhood is a stock trading app created by Vladimir Tenev and Baiju Bhatt which aims to eliminate trade fees, and in truth, they already have.
Trading on Robinhood is incredibly easy, their app is simple and color-coded to give vital information at a glance, and a trade only takes three taps and a couple of seconds to complete. The app is currently only available on IPhone, but the company says that they will try and roll out an Android-compatible version and a desktop version later this year. As the app boasts, there really are zero commission fees on any of your trades, which means if you have one stock that goes up one penny, you have that penny, and you don’t have to pay upwards of seven dollars to trade for it.
What does this mean for startup entrepreneurs? Why would this apply to any of us? The answer is something most have already realized; savings. Down the road, after an entrepreneur has gotten a base version of his or her product up and running, they might have picked up a few dollars to turn around and invest in stocks. This option gives to benefits. The first is that entrepreneurs could invest with less risk, which is great. The second benefit is that Robinhood would give entrepreneurs a bit of hands-on experience with investing, which is always a good thing, as it teaches a person the basics from the other side of the glass.
Closer to home, however, I think that a lot of businesses can take a huge deal of inspiration out of what Robinhood has done. This app has solved a problem that many people have had for years, they’ve done so in an easy-to-access way, and they’ve managed to maintain a very homegrown and comfortable feel about the company the entire time. A lot of startups could possibly take these ideas and make them their own. Making sure customers feel connected to the company and solving their problems in a direct and non-sneaky way is a surefire plan to strengthen relations with your clients.
Robinhood, however, is an app that I wholeheartedly recommend. I’ve been using it for a few months now, and I’ve really enjoyed it. It helps to learn the basics of investing, it enables entrepreneurs to save money, and it allows a much larger audience to explore an area that is usually inaccessible to them.