Between the time you start investing and stop investing (which could be never), the one thing you’ll probably want to do is track it.
 
Whatever platform you use – whether an app, broker of the fund – they will have its own way of tracking its performance.
 
Some platforms make it easy, but some get confusing.
 
Tracking DIFM
 
DIFM tools and platforms present a more helpful way for you to understand your performance After all you are getting them to do the work for you.
 
Apps like Raiz, Spaceship or robo advisors like Stockspot will give you a summary screen where you can track the past behaviour and performance of your investment.

 
Here is what you might see on your Stockspot account.

The longer you hold your investment, the better idea you have of how volatile the stock market is.
 
There’s no doubt you’ll be hopping on even every day to see what the latest is but early on you'll likely be up and down in mood along with the prices, depending on the volatility.
 
It’s not until a few months of consistently contributing that you start to see a trend emerge.

Here is how performance looks on Raiz.

You’ll notice that even with the ups and downs of a daily basis there is a slow tilt in the overall value of your investment.
 
This could be up, up a lot or even down.
 
Remember, the more focused you are with your investments (like holding just one stock) the more risk there is involved.
 
Tracking DIY investments 
 
Online brokers on the other hand present as more trading platform than a performance tracker.
 
What they’ll likely show is how your stocks or ETFs are performing within the trading day or since you initially bought them. 
 
For example, you might login and see you are up $100 for the day but see that your stock has returned you $500 overall since you bought it.

Here is what the SelfWealth broker dashboard looks like. 
 
This is helpful to know, but there are better ways to track your performance. 
 
It’s useful to do as it can help you make clearer decisions down the track when looking to buy more or sell your investments. 
 
Personally, I don’t like using brokers as a way to track my DIY investments as there are some great tools that can do this.
 
How can you track your performance?
 
With Sharesight
 
Consider this an investment aggregator.
 
It’s a tool you can use to watch the performance of all your investments together, no matter where the investing was done.
 


You might put your online broker trades in, your crypto, your cash, your investing apps trades in.
 
What it will do is combine the totals and the performance (as its connected to live stock prices) so that you see an all-in-one dashboard.
 
This is great because you can then select different time frames to see returns, see what the overall growth and dividends are for each investment.
 
There is a free option for those with 10 investments or less, so a nice tool to use from day 1.
 
With a spreadsheet
 
Some people want to do it their way, and I get that.
 
You can write down what you bought, when, how much they are worth each day and do some pretty graphs if you like.
 
I’ve found that there is life outside manually updating spreadsheets. These days there are tools like Sharesight that can help you skip the manual work but if its your thing to stick to Spreadsheets then no worries.