Thanks to opening, funding, and spending over 100 hours testing accounts with eight different robo-advisors
, we know our robos inside and out. For this review, we will compare Personal Capital vs Ally Invest Advisors to see which robo-advisor is better.
When it comes to financial advice and selecting an automated advisor, the total annual cost charged is significant. Most sites just look at the annual account management charge assessed. For an accurate comparison, however, you also have to take into consideration the annual management fees (expense ratios) charged by the ETF holdings themselves. We included both. Ally Invest Advisors received a rating of 4.00 stars over Personal Capital's 3.00 stars.
Features are also important to compare when selecting a robo-advisor. Some robos do a much better job than others with technology. Personal Capital offers tax-loss harvesting while Ally Invest Advisors does not. To make sure you ready for retirement and will have enough money saved, running a calculator is required. Personal Capital offers an advanced retirement calculator while Ally Invest Advisors does not. Setting financial goals and tracking them is also a feature customers desire. Both Personal Capital and Ally Invest Advisors offer goal tracking. Finally, syncing data from your other financial accounts (brokers, banks, etc) can open the door to deeper analysis of fees, holdings, and retirement planning. Personal Capital makes external accounts analysis available to clients, while Ally Invest Advisors does not.
Lastly, some customers want access to customer service via web friendly methods such as live chat as a compliment to the standard phone and email options. Ally Invest Advisors makes live chat support available to clients, while Personal Capital does not.
Overall, Personal Capital boasts 4.50 stars versus Ally Invest Advisors's 3.50 stars. And, as far as individual category awards go, both Personal Capital and Ally Invest Advisors found themselves without awards for Best in Class - Cost, Best in Class - Investment Approach, Best in Class - Platforms & Tools and Best in Class - Customer Service in 2017.