eToro is a unique way to invest, leveraging the concept of social trading, which uses sentiment and idea generation from both industry experts and everyday individuals to gain insights into the markets. Based in Israel, Cyprus, and the U.K., eToro gives its clients access to a range of markets, including stocks and ETFs, currencies, commodities, and now cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. You can also trade contracts for difference (CFDs) and spreads.
In this walkthrough, we'll look at eToro's platform, using a Windows machine and Google Chrome, to see how social trading offers an innovative approach to financial markets.
Homepage - eToro’s proprietary web-based platform is a leader in social trading, which combines the analysis and opinions of experts and ordinary investors to aggregate trade ideas and help users gain insight into the markets.
Login - Log into eToro with your username and password. Before you decide to fund a live account, you can sign up for a free demo, complete with dummy funds to play with, and give the platform a test drive.
Guide - If you’d like some help navigating the platform, click on Guide for a quick tour of the site.
Deposit Funds - To put more money into your account, click Deposit Funds. You can make deposits in a number of ways, including a credit or debit card (shown here), bank transfer, or wire.
Withdraw Funds - Go to Withdraw Funds to transfer money to your external bank account. Withdrawal fees may apply.
Settings – General - You can update or modify your preferences using the Settings menu item. The General tab lets you choose your default language, sharing preference, and layout.
Settings – Account - Use the Account settings tab to update your password and personal information.
Settings – Trading - To change your trading currency, portfolio layout, enable one-click trading, and more, use the Trading tab under Settings.
Settings – Notifications - Would you like to receive push notifications at night? Do you want updates when your social posts are commented on or liked? Use Notifications to turn these messages on or off.
Settings – Privacy - If you want to keep your profile, trades, and portfolio hidden, go to Privacy.
Portfolio - Click the Portfolio link for an overview of your assets and the profit or loss associated with each. Click Buy or Sell to add to or close out a position. The gear-shaped settings icon to right of each portfolio item lets you write a social trading post or set a price alert.
History - View your past trading activity by clicking the History tab; it looks like clock hands with a counterclockwise arrow. This page chronicles your past buys and sells and includes the P&L generated on closed positions.
Orders - To check on your open orders, click on the Orders tab in the portfolio screen; it looks like two arrows going opposite directions. Here you’ll see limit or stop orders that have not yet been filled. Click the red X next to an order if you want to cancel it.
Platform - eToro uses a single-page web interface. Along the top is a search box. To the right there’s a small set of icons for writing a social trading post or sharing to social media, as well as eToro’s bull-shaped logo, which brings up a notification panel. The main menu runs vertically down the left side of the screen.
Menu - Click any of the icons in the main menu bar on the left side of the screen to load up the corresponding page in the main window. We’ll look at each of these menu items in turn.
My Watchlist - Use My Watchlist to monitor price quotes for markets you’re interested in – even if you don’t own them in your portfolio. You can create multiple watchlists to fit your various investing interests.
Trade Markets - To trade assets, click on Trade Markets in the main menu. On this page you’ll be able to browse through all available markets and read what other people are saying about them.
Crypto - You can browse tradable markets by asset class. eToro recently added CFD trading on popular cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum, and Ripple (XRP). . Select Crypto to access these markets.
ETFs - On this page you’ll have access to dozens of popular ETFs covering a range of asset classes and sectors.
Stocks - Here you can trade global stocks, which you can browse or sort by Industry or Exchange sector. Scroll through pre-sorted categories and click the View All link to see all available stocks of that type.
Indices - Passive index trading is made easy here with 12 popular global equity indices.
Commodities - You also can trade commodities like gold, silver, and crude oil to help diversify your portfolio and hedge against inflation.
Currencies - eToro began as a forex broker, and it sticks to its roots by offering close to 50 currency pairs to trade.
Order Ticket - When you’re ready to enter a trade, click on the Sell or Buy button for a given market. Use the dropdown menu on the top right of the ticket window to choose between Order, for a limit order, or Trade, for a market order, and select whether you want to buy or sell. Enter your order details in the appropriate boxes. You can also adjust your leverage and set a stop-loss.
News Feed - See what people in the market are talking about by scrolling through the News Feed. This is the first layer of social investing and gives you a stream of blog posts, shared links, trade ideas, and more. You can filter the feed to highlight posts made by popular users on the site, as well as restrict the feed to English. Click on a feed item to read the post. Click on a user’s avatar or name to bring up details about that person.
Feed - When you click on one of the markets that are available to trade, you’ll first be brought to the social media feed associated with that market. Posts written about it, or that mention it along with other tickers, will be included. You’ll also get an idea of how many users are following this market and a gauge of user sentiment.
Stats - Click over to the Stats tab for a summary of the market’s historical price performance, as well as an analytical description of the market you’re interested in.
Charts - The Charts tab will bring up a more interactive chart you can use to analyze past performance. Click the blue Trade button on the top right if you want to trade that market.
Copy People - The heart of social trading is seeing what other investors are doing and recommending. From industry experts and professional traders to novice platform users, you can learn what others think and follow their lead. You can filter and sort which people you see based on factors like geographic location, what they invest in, and how well they have performed in the market. You can then copy their strategies for yourself.
Copy People – Feed - Track a user’s social trading posts, likes, and comments from the Feed tab. You’ll also find a brief trader profile and see how many others are following and copying that person.
Copy People – Stats - Click on a person’s profile to bring up a more in-depth analysis of his or her investment strategy and market performance. The Stats tab gives you a breakdown of investment returns by month and by year. Click the plus-sign (+) button on the top right to add this person’s portfolio to your watchlist. Click on the Copy button to execute his or her current strategy.
Copy People – Portfolio - To see what particular users are currently holding in their portfolios, click on the pie chart icon. You can also see the historical trade activity by clicking where it says Portfolio and toggling to History.
Copy People – Chart - The Chart tab will show you visually how a person’s portfolio has performed over time.
Invest in CopyFunds - A new feature to eToro allows you to copy the investment startegies strategies of leading hedge funds, in any dollar amount.
Invest in CopyFunds – Learn More - For more detailed info on the CopyFunds concept and to decide if it’s right for you, click Learn More.
Invest in CopyFunds – Stats - Click on a CopyFunds fund profile to see how a particular fund has performed over time, by month and year.
Invest in CopyFunds – Portfolio - To see what a fund’s portfolio consists of by asset weight, click on the appropriate tab. Click on the plus-sign (+) icon on the top right to add it to your watchlist; the icon will turn into a check mark if it is already on one of your watchlists. Click on the blue Invest button to copy the fund’s portfolio.
Invest in CopyFunds – Chart - Visualize how a fund’s portfolio has performed over time with a historical chart.
Invest in Copyfunds – Invest - If you like what you see and want to buy, click the Invest button on the top right. Choose the dollar amount you plan to invest and set a stop-loss if you want to automatically close out if the value of your investment falls below a certain amount.
FAQ - If you need customer or technical support, or have questions about the eToro platform or social trading generally, click the Help link on the menu bar. This will take you to a series of frequently asked questions (FAQs), which might have the answers you’re looking for.
Blog - You can also find out more about the platform and its style of investing from its blog.
Contact Us - If you want to talk with a live person, head over to the Contact Us page.