A new tutorial webcast added to the public site Podcasts page introduces the firm's new Scottrade Online Community. Interestingly, we did not find any other mention of the community throughout the public or private site.As with all Scottrade podcasts, the video can be viewed with iTunes, QuickTime or Windows Media Player. The community site has been available to ScottradeELITE clients since April, but the webcast is the first sign that the firm is promoting the community on the website to all Scottrade clients.
Scottrade's new community helps clients come together and exchange ideas regarding Scottrade products and services. The community resembles social networking features on TradeKing and Zecco (Corporate Insight's June 2008 e-Monitor Report provides a detailed analysis of TradeKing and Zecco) as it provides features such as private messaging, blogs, discussion forums and user groups. Scottrade's community, however, does not allow clients to share real trading activity and is only open to clients. TradeKing and Zecco allow users to share trading information and non-clients can sign up as registered users. Scottrade's community site also includes sections to upload and share photos, videos and other files (e.g. PowerPoint, Excel), and answer survey questions.
Overall, Scottrade's Online Community is a simple, valuable social networking site that should allow for greater communication between Scottrade and its clients. It will be interesting to see if and when the firm takes the next step and integrates the community within its trading site like TradeKing and Zecco.Scottrade's Online Community is a simple, valuable social networking site that should allow for greater communication between Scottrade and its clients.