Personal Finance is one of the top segments that draws online advertising dollars, and in this series, we will evaluate the category against the Web 3.0 framework.
MsMoney estimates that in the first quarter of 2006 financial websites experienced a 500% jump in traffic. Personal finance websites are gaining momentum with the penetration of broadband, need for financial advice, ease of use, convenience, improved security and increased awareness of online services.
61 percent of the Internet users use the internet to research stocks or check their bank accounts and around 73 percent of the Internet users’ research sources for investments, mortgages and insurance, online. High quality content (financial calculators, mortgage rates, stock information, research reports) is the key driver of growth for the Personal Finance websites.
The important personal finance categories are Banking, Credit Cards & Loans, Debt Management, Retirement (401-k), Estate Planning, Insurance, Tax Planning, Stocks, Bonds & Mutual Funds, Research, Financial Calculators, Financial Planning, Career & Work, Budgeting, Payment Services, Mortgage and Real Estate.
Banking online is the most common activity in the online personal finance category and almost all banks provide online banking services. The advent and popularity of online trading and major websites (Yahoo! Finance, Google Finance, ETrade, etc) providing detailed financial information and portfolio tracking facilities for Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds, Insurance and Research are allowing investors to manage their investments online, with a number of great tools.
According to comScore Media Metrix, traffic from Universities to personal finance websites in 2006 was around 5.4 million and 70 percent of the young adults are interested in financial websites, which is a major growth driver.
Retirement, Tax Planning and Estate Planning are content intensive and there are niche websites like, retirementplanninggoldenyears, retireearlyhomepage and retirementplanner (Retirement), taxanalysts, fairmark and turbotax (Tax Planning), rushforth and nafep (Estate Planning), which are dedicated to each segment of personal finance. For example, information and advice on 401K plans for Retirement are available on all websites but websites like, 401khelpcenter and 401k are specially designed to deal with 401K plans only.
Following is a list of the popular personal finance websites and their Alexa rankings.
Personal Finance Blogs
Personal finance blogs are in, and if Technorati is to be believed, there are more than 5,000 blogs dedicated to personal finance, providing financial information, money management, investing tips and advice. Some of these blogs are by well known personal finance professionals. Websites like, pfblogs, Make Love, Not Debt and AllFinancialMatters have been getting rave reviews and attracting significant eyeballs and unique visitors. Websites like Budgeting Babe and Boston Gal’s Open Wallet are popular blogs dedicated to women’s personal finance issues. [Context]