Default trade set to basic

If you default to nothing then you have user choice. If you default to 4pm then someone wanting an instant trade should see it go into their queued orders and can remedy it almost instantly.

The flip side is that if you mean for it to go at 4pm as a free trade and it goes as an instant trade then you have no chance to change it.


Just did an instant by accident and arrived here. When is “not the near future”?

I mean, it’s been a number of months since this topic started…

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Hi all! Just to give you a bit more context, this is a legacy of our original design that we need to fix. The reason we haven’t changed this to Basic Orders already is that if we default to Basic Orders then some people won’t discover that Instant Orders are an option.

We’re hearing the feedback here and we think there could be a better design that surfaces both options.

The reason why we haven’t made this a priority is that very few people report placing instant orders by mistake. We have discussed changing the design though and when we’re launching fractional shares, we’ll dive into how we can make these order options more visible as we’ll be making other changes to this screen then too.


Why not have separate buttons on the confirm screen, one to buy now and one to buy at 4pm?

Not sure how best to word it so it’s clear one button costs an extra quid though


Hi Jani, thanks for your reply giving the context behind why the system currently works as it does.

I don’t know if you’ve seen it (as you don’t refer to it) but there is another topic where a poll as been posted asking how many times people have accidentally placed an instant order when they didn’t mean to.

At time of writing, 35% of respondants have done so at least once. This is over a third and seems very high, especially considering that so far the majority of Freetrade users should be relatively savvy about these things, being early adopters (and investors). This is a group of people who are almost primed to blame themselves for getting something wrong and to not bother contacting support.

I strongly suspect that, following a wider roll-out, people who are not so strongly predisposed to support Freetrade will be much quicker to complain. And, to extrapolate from the poll, having a third of your customers complaining (or being in a position to complain) would be pretty huge.

The tl;dr for the above would be, at this point in Freetrade’s journey, lack of complaints isn’t the best of defences.

I’ve thought about this a lot since I got caught out, and it seems to me that there are, broadly speaking, three points of view.

  1. Freetrade, who want to make the instant option visible.
  2. Normal users, who expect a trade on Freetrade to be, well, free.
  3. Power users, who want their order to be instant and instant.

I think there is a way of acceptably satisfying all three sides, if it’s possible to built it in the app:

  • For a user’s first ever trade, don’t default to instant. And don’t default to free, either. Make them choose. If they don’t choose and try to continue, have another screen in the flow where you explicitly ask them if they want to queue a free transfer or pay for an instant transfer.
  • On this screen, also have a “remember my preference” option.
  • (Also allow this to be toggled later through going to the user profile)

This satisfied all three parties to most degrees:

  1. By forcing a choice, Freetrade make both the free and paid for options visible.
  2. Normal users cannot mistakenly pay more than they intended to if they move through the flow too quickly - as can and does happen at current.
  3. Power users have a slight delay on their very first trade, granted. But after than they have the default they want and they’re not disadvantaged.

That’s the possible way I see of making everyone happy, more or less. It does disadvantage power users slightly on their first order, but this to me would be more acceptable than taking money from people who don’t intend to spend it. And also, from my point of view, even the power-est of power users should be account for learning how a new system works the first time around and not be expecting it to be 100% instant right from the off.


Thanks a lot for your suggestions Nick :pray:

As always when it comes to new designs, the most important thing is that we understand everyone’s use cases for these features aka the problems that need to be solved & what we need to enable people to do.

Then when it comes to the design, we’ll also consider things like the data showing how people use the app, plus the design patterns & new functionality that’re on the way. We’ll create a better design as soon as we can.

And of course, if we see an increase in people reporting issues due to this current design then we’ll make changing it a higher priority.

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I’ve made the mistake a few times but I have not complained to Freetrade because the mistake was mine, not Freetrades. If other people are doing the same, then Freetrade may not have an accurate record of accidental clicks because of the lack of reporting of it. I like @HoldenCarver comment and idea on the issue.


Same here, I’ve experienced this a number of times now when buying stocks, you just click through and before you have checked it’s gone through as an instant order. Would be nice to make the choice more obvious and put basic as default.


I’ve yet to make the mistake but perhaps it’s because I’m applying the same rules I use when I’m online shopping, ie checking I haven’t been charged extra/delivery charges before I click ‘buy’!


I also made this mistake on my first trade. I feel like this is a really bad experience for a new person expecting free. I’d love to see some more hand holding on this. The options you get when you click Change are actually really helpful and intuitive, maybe just display them straight away instead of hidden behind the link/popup? For example:

Then the question of should basic or instant be the default is a little less impactful because it doesn’t feel like you’re trying to trick them. Starting on Instant, but explaining what that means, perhaps is even able to be interpreted as a gentle upsell of convenience.


You have £500k in your Freetrade account…!?



I was a bit miffed to find I’d used instant on my first trade. Had assumed the default would be Basic, as heavily featured in the advertising. Not going to make the mistake again, but it is a poor way to start.


Am I right in thinking this has been changed? Instant is no longer the default on my account

Outside of market hours the default changes as you cannot make an instant trade… In market hours i believe this still defaults to instant

Ah yeah :man_facepalming: Didn’t think of that

Correct me if I am wrong but this seems to be the top voted feature with 118 votes currently. Could the decision be made on the topic and the voting closed? Otherwise, it seems as if the discussion will go on forever.


Due to the popular demand from the community, we’ve allocated time to explore a redesign of that part. We want to make sure both options are discoverable, and we’ll do some testing of our exploration at a later point.


This really should change. Yes, I should have paid more attention but having just been stung by a charge I wasn’t expecting due to the default, I have to say it’s a really poor customer experience. It feels like an underhand way of duping people into paying a fee.


We hear you!

We’ve been exploring design to surface both Basic and Instant during market hours.

Engineering is very focused on the Christmas List currently, but something to get back to after then!


No worries. I’m only whining 'cause I got caught out. By the law of averages, it was going to happen sooner or later.

As an aside, I’ve given Freetrade a fair amount of stick for the pace of development in the past but even I’m uber impressed by the ambition of the Chrimbo list!