Acorns Vs. Robinhood Differences – Which Is Better For Your Investments?

Investors have long sought to maximize their returns on investments. In the modern world, there are a multitude of platforms available for investors to use in order to achieve their financial goals. Two popular investment options that exist today include Acorns and Robinhood. This paper seeks to examine the differences between these two platforms and determine which one is better suited for an investor’s portfolio.

The first platform, Acorns, was founded in 2012 with the mission of making investing easier and more accessible by providing automated savings plans based upon users’ daily purchases. It also provides access to portfolios tailored specifically for individual investors, offering diversified investments across multiple asset classes such as stocks, bonds, exchange traded funds (ETFs), and real estate investment trusts (REITs).

Robinhood was established in 2013 with a different approach: democratizing finance by allowing anyone access to commission-free stock trading via its mobile app. Additionally, it offers fractional shares so that even those with limited capital can invest in single stocks or ETFs without needing large amounts of money upfront.

This paper will analyze how each platform operates and compare them side by side in order to assess which option may be preferable when considering factors such as cost, risk levels, accessibility and customer service support. By exploring both Acorns and Robinhood’s features and benefits, readers should gain insight into which platform is better suited for their particular needs when building a portfolio.


Overview Of Acorns And Robinhood

Acorns and Robinhood both offer online investing services. Acorns is a micro-investing app that enables users to invest spare change from everyday purchases into diversified portfolios of stocks, bonds, and ETFs. The investment fees are low compared to those associated with traditional brokerage accounts. On the other hand, Robinhood provides commission-free trading for stocks and cryptocurrency investments. It also offers fractional shares for customers who wish to buy smaller amounts than usual of particular assets.

Both companies have smartphone apps which enable investors to access their accounts quickly and easily from any location. Both platforms provide educational content on topics such as investing basics, portfolio management strategies, tax considerations, and more. In addition, they each offer customer support options including an FAQ page, email contact form, or phone number depending on the type of account chosen by the user.


Investment Options

When it comes to investment options, the differences between Acorns and Robinhood become more evident. The primary difference is in fees: Robinhood has no trading commissions while Acorns charges a $1 monthly fee on accounts with balances of less than $5,000. For those with account balances over $5,000, there are no additional fees for either platform.

In terms of actual investments available, both platforms offer stocks, ETFs (exchange traded funds), bonds, mutual funds and cryptocurrency. However, Robinhood offers fractional share investing whereas Acorns does not. This allows investors access to stocks that may be too expensive to buy an entire share at once; instead they can purchase fractions of shares at any price level desired.

Additionally, for their Investing service specifically, Acorns provides “Smart Portfolios” which is a feature allowing automated asset allocation based on one’s risk tolerance profile. In comparison, Robinhood currently doesn’t have such a portfolio building system although they do provide educational resources to aid users in understanding how to create portfolios themselves.

Overall, when deciding which platform works best for your individual needs as an investor you should assess the fees associated with each option as well as what type of investments are available through them and whether or not fractional shares are offered so you can diversify your holdings accordingly.


Fees And Commission Rates

When comparing acorns vs. Robinhood in terms of fees and commission rates, both platforms are competitively priced with zero-dollar commissions for stock trades on U.S.-based exchanges. Acorns charges a minimum annual fee of $1 per month or 0.25% of the account balance each year for accounts under $5,000; however, this increases to 0.50% annually for higher balances over $5,000. In comparison, Robinhood does not have an annual fee but instead provides premium services such as margin trading that come with additional costs depending on user preferences.

Both platforms offer access to fractional shares and no-fee mutual funds and ETFs, although there may be other associated expenses related to these investments such as administrative fees and underlying expense ratios which can vary from fund to fund or ETF to ETF. Therefore, investors should carefully review all applicable fees before investing in either platform if they want to get the best value out of their investments.


User Experience

Both Acorns and Robinhood are online trading platforms that offer users a variety of options for investing their money. When it comes to user experience, there are a few key differences between the two services. First, Acorns has an extensive library of educational materials which can help new investors get up to speed quickly. In addition, its mobile app is very intuitive and easy to use.

On the other hand, Robinhood offers free stock trades with no minimum balance requirements or fees. This makes it attractive to those who want to trade on a budget or don’t have enough funds to open an account elsewhere. Finally, both services provide customer support teams available via phone or email; however, Robinhood’s team appears more knowledgeable when it comes to complex questions about trading.

Overall, each service excels in different areas of user experience so it is important for prospective investors to research both before deciding which one is best for them. It all comes down to personal preference when choosing which platform suits your individual needs: cost-effectiveness versus ease-of-use?


Education Resources

When comparing Acorns and Robinhood, one of the key differences is in the education resources they provide. Both platforms offer educational tools to help users better understand their investments. However, there are some significant distinctions between them:

  1. Acorns provides more comprehensive educational content that is tailored to beginner investors. It offers a variety of interactive quizzes and videos to help new investors get started with investing.
  2. Robinhood does not offer as much educational material for beginners; however, it provides up-to-date market news and analysis from its partners such as Bloomberg and CNBC.
  3. Acorns has an extensive library of articles about different investment strategies and concepts so users can learn more about the world of finance before making a decision on how to invest their money.
  4. Robinhood also includes helpful information on various topics related to investing but focuses mostly on stock trading rather than long-term financial planning.

In terms of what platform is best for your investments, both Acorns and Robinhood have advantages depending on individual needs. For those just starting out in investing or who want detailed guidance along the way, Acorns may be the right choice due to its robust educational materials and support services offered at no extra cost beyond regular account fees.

Those who prefer to take a hands-on approach without additional assistance might find Robinhood’s low fees and streamlined interface appealing instead. Ultimately, understanding available options will enable you to make an informed decision when selecting a platform to use for your investments.


Customer Service

When it comes to customer service, there are a few differences between Acorns and Robinhood. Both companies offer 24/7 access to their support team via phone or email. However, Acorns provides more personalized assistance with its “Capitol Hill” feature which offers one-on-one guidance from investment advisors for an additional fee.

Acorns  Robinhood 
Customer Service 24/7 Access + “Capital Hill” Support available for an extra fee 24/7 Access
Live Chat No Yes
Support Portal Yes Yes

In addition, Robinhood also offers live chat support as well as a comprehensive online help center where users can find answers to frequently asked questions about the platform. This is something that Acorns does not provide at this time. Therefore, when considering customer service, Robinhood may be the better choice if you need quick answers to your inquiries.



The decision on which investment platform is best for an individual investor will depend greatly on the needs of that person. Acorns and Robinhood both offer a variety of investment options, but their fees, commission rates, user experience, education resources and customer service vary slightly. It is important to weigh each of these factors before selecting one over the other.

When it comes to costs and fees associated with investments, Acorns offers unlimited free stock trades in certain portfolios while Robinhood charges no commissions at all. In terms of user experience, Acorns has a more comprehensive approach when it comes to tax optimization and retirement planning whereas Robinhood takes a simpler route by allowing users to buy stocks without thinking about future goals or taxes.

On the educational side, Acorns provides detailed tutorials while Robinhood offers basic information only. Finally, Acorns’ customer service team is available around the clock compared to Robinhood’s limited hours of support.

Overall, investors should consider their own financial objectives as well as their comfort level with technology when deciding between Acorns and Robinhood. Both platforms have pros and cons that may be better suited for different types of investors so making sure you are aware of all your options can help you make an informed decision that works best for you.

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