Online trading remains hot, accounting for nearly 59.3% of industry revenue. As millennials make up an increasingly large percentage of the investor market, trading platforms will need to meet their expectations, if the growth of online trading is going to continue. While trading institutions depend on competitively low price-per-trade costs and discounted monthly fees to attract customers, trends in trading platform development technology will help drive growth in this market.
Whether we are talking about a trading platform for brokers or for traders, fintechs that can offer cutting-edge trading software development solutions will find lucrative opportunities in the online trading market.
Here, we will look at 5 of the hottest trends in online trading platform technology.
Advanced Charting Tools
Online traders love numbers, especially when they represent growing investment dollars. What they do not love is having to sort through columns of digits in order to get the information they want. While traders always want the option to view raw data if they want to, the default method of presentation for modern platforms must be charts and graphs.
While charts and graphs have been used by traders for decades, advances in technology make them more useful and more intuitive than ever. Even mobile devices now have the processing power onboard to deliver the fast, high-resolution graphics needed for e-trading software.
Online trading platforms, today, do more than offer users a choice between pie charts and bar graphs — a lot more. They include customizable charting tools that provide intuitive and highly interactive charting features, including the following:
- quick snapshots of the user’s account information
- real-time market analyses
- flexible customization options
- time-based and trade-based (tick chart) options
- ability to export charts and graphs to other applications
- customizable alerts
- automated trades incorporated into charting tools
- ability to submit orders directly from charts
Charting engines must accommodate the full range of popular charting styles, such as 3D Candlesticks, Kagi, Three Line Break, Renko, Point & Figure, Candlevolume, Heikin Ashi Candlesticks, Darvas Boxes, and others.
Financial software developers with the capability to innovate in this space have two options: they can develop online trading platforms with advanced charting features built in, or they can develop integratable charting solutions that can be incorporated into other platforms. Either way, the market is open for those who can help traders interact with the market through advanced charting features.
Long gone are the days of one-size-fits-all products. Customers no longer accept this approach when making a fast-food purchase, and they no longer accept it when trading stocks online.
User expectation of online trading platforms include a level of flexibility and customization not possible till now. However, developers would do well to take a customer-centric approach when adding customization features to their platform. The goal of customization, after all, is to improve the platform’s ease of use, not to make it harder to use. Only the customization options that make sense for the target user should be included, and no customization choice should be more than a few clicks away.
Platforms that are gaining market share seem to have a few things in common. Among them are customization features that include the following:
- customizable layouts that can be saved and recalled later
- multiple-monitor detection and support
- workspace zoom in & zoom out
- easy selection of data providers
- customizable menus
- drag and drop workspaces
- HTML5 support for platform and browser neutrality
Well-designed platforms will support the new trader and the pro equally. The new trader should be able to make simple customizations to the platform layout, and the pro should be able to customize alerts and indicators with equal ease.
Super Fast Transactions
One of the most-powerful benefits that advances in technology offer online trading is speed. Most online trading companies make continuous strives toward improving the speed of order routing and execution. Fast, low-latency trading platforms not only avoid taxing the user’s patience, they avoid costing them money. In the world of modern gigabit networks, time is, indeed, money.
Every second in an e-trade transaction can cost a trader thousands of dollars. And latency issues can affect both data feeds and presentation, and order execution. Common sources of latency include market, or exchange servers; brokerage servers; internet connectivity; and client hardware and software. While each of those systems inherently exhibits a certain amount of latency, it is the job of the developer to ensure that the platform is not the source of undue delay.
Fintechs wishing to penetrate this market must not only be aware of the common sources latency can be introduced into the user experience. They must make sure their platform developers stay on the very cusp of technological advances that can benefit platform speed.
Mobile and Cloud-Based Functionality
The image of online traders sipping a cup of Espresso at their desktop PC, while carefully contemplating their next transaction, is no longer the reality. Traders, today, trade on the go. Not only must online trading platforms be fast, they must be mobile. Leading online trading platforms do not merely accommodate mobile devices, they are optimized for them. Without taking anything away from the desktop user — yes, they are still a few around, all top-rated online trading platforms take an intuitive approach to mobile compatibility. That is, they adjust the layout to not just accommodate the particular mobile device, but to also reflect the customization settings and preferences of the user. If a trader switched from the desktop to their smartphone, they should not need to create a new set of rules for how they will interact with the platform.
Mobile functionality, like most other platform features, is best facilitated by cloud-based technology, with minimal requirements for downloaded software of apps. When mobile apps are necessary, they should incorporate security features fitting for a financial service.
Research Tools That Use Big Data
Good research tools not only help traders to identify trends and spot opportunities that best suit their investment objectives, but they also empower them to make their own trading decisions. The more powerful and user-friendly market research tools are, the better chance a trader can make money in the market without the need for paying broker commissions.
While online trading companies have always incorporated a diverse range of research tools into their platforms, the emergence of big data has literally supercharged investors’ ability to predict the market. Whether an investor is interested in stocks, options, mutual funds, or exchange traded funds (EFTs), big data can make the difference between profits and losses.
What makes big data the new holy grail of investing is its ability to gather and process enormous amounts of information. Unlike traditional market research tools, those powered by big data do not rely solely on historical analysis and conventional market factors to predict market trends. Instead, they also access and analyze news stories, social media feeds, and even weather conditions to provide predictive analysis.
Platforms that incorporate big data into their data analytics engines are rapidly becoming the norm rather than the exception. Fintechs that can leverage the power of big data to empower their online trading platform research features will take market share for the foreseeable future.
How Ignite Can Help?
Stock trading involves risks, but so does software development. Just as you sometimes need an expert to help develop your investment strategy, you may need a technology partner to develop your software applications. Ignite wants to be that partner.
We specialize in providing technology solutions to a wide range of industries. With six R&D labs across Europe. we have the capability to assist with your custom trading software development project. Whether you wish to target forex traders or the stocks, bonds, and mutual funds markets, we have the technology and talent to develop your platform, software application, or mobile app.
Developing custom software for trading firms is not a job for new players. It takes a development service with years of experience to meet the challenges head-on without missing a step. If you are ready for a partner who knows the way, why not contact us today for a no-cost consultation?