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7 reasons why Sharesight is better than a spreadsheet

by Angela Thompson, Digital Marketing Manager, Sharesight

70% of our customers come to Sharesight having previously tracked their portfolio manually in a spreadsheet. We can’t blame them – until we built Sharesight, we did the same thing. So why is Sharesight a better portfolio tracking solution than laboriously tracking all those holdings, trades, and dividends in a spreadsheet? Here are the top 7 reasons:

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1. Get automatic updates

Sharesight adjusts your holdings data with daily price & currency fluctuations and automatically incorporates corporate actions such as dividends and share splits into your portfolio. This not only saves you the time spent manually updating a spreadsheet, but also reduces the chance of human error. Sharesight even lets you track dividend reinvestment plans (DRPs) by automatically calculating the impact of those reinvested dividends — something that can get quite tedious if you’ve got a few DRPs going.

2. Understand your true performance

Now and then, a new client reaches out asking why the performance figures they’re seeing in Sharesight is vastly different from their spreadsheet calculation (or what their broker is reporting). The reality is that tracking portfolio performance is difficult. (See our performance calculation methodology for more information – but don’t say we didn’t warn you!) With brokerage fees, capital gains, corporate actions and currency fluctuations automatically incorporated, not to mention in-depth performance reports, Sharesight makes it easy to understand how your individual holdings and overall portfolio are doing. This not only provides peace-of-mind, but it’s also the first step to making better investment decisions going forward.

3. Visualise your portfolio

Sharesight’s easy-to-read tables and charts allow you to easily visualise your portfolio. One such example is the Diversity Report, which lets you quickly assess how your holdings break down in terms of market, industry, country, etc. Furthermore, our Custom Groups feature makes it easy to organise your holdings according to your preferred asset allocation methodology. And if you’re looking for a completely new way to view your holdings, you can even connect your portfolio to Simply Wall St. to take advantage of their beautiful and colourful “snowflake” charts.

4. Save time and money at tax time

With your portfolio data in one place and powerful tax reports available in just a couple of clicks, Sharesight provides everything you need to figure out your obligations at tax time. This is especially useful if you work with an accountant as you’re able to share this data with them, rather than paying them to recreate your portfolio history. But why not take it a step further and share portfolio access directly with your accountant or financial advisor? You decide whether they have “read only” or full access, for one or multiple portfolios, and you can withdraw access at any time, making it a much more secure solution than emailing a sensitive spreadsheet back and forth. Not only does this give you much more control, it also puts you in a position to conduct forward-looking, tax planning discussions together – not just at tax-time, but throughout the year.

5. Get email alerts

Does your spreadsheet let you know if one of your holdings undergoes a major price change? Sharesight does, with optional email alerts that notify you if there’s a significant drop or hike in a holding’s price. And our popular weekly portfolio email provides a snapshot of how your investments have performed over the past week. Together, these email notifications ensure you always know how you’re tracking, even if you haven’t had the chance to login to your account lately.

6. Track your cash

Your portfolio isn’t the only thing you shouldn’t be tracking in a spreadsheet. If you’ve been tracking your cash balances in a spreadsheet rather than a dedicated application, you’ll appreciate the financial insights you’ll gain by connecting your portfolio to Xero. By categorising your bank transactions, reconciling your trade & dividend data, and tracking your cash balances alongside your investments, you’ll have a complete financial picture of how you’re doing – from anywhere, anytime.

7. Check your portfolio on the go

Our recently-released Sharesight mobile app is a great way to check your overall portfolio performance and individual holding data when you’re on the go. Available for both Android and Apple users, the Sharesight mobile app acts as a companion to the main Sharesight website. Once you’ve set up your holdings and trade data from your desktop, you can use the free mobile app to track the overall performance of your portfolio(s), as well as specific holding information, including capital gains, dividends and currency gains. Try doing that with a spreadsheet!