Banks Online – Top Ten

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Banking online only of interest?

It can be a real challenge in today’s world to figure out which bank to use. Things keep changing in the banking industry and what made sense yesterday, might not today. One thing that many are finding useful, however, is online only banks. An online bank gives you 24-hour banking from your computer, tablet or smartphone. In many cases you’ll get better interest rates on savings accounts as well as some checking accounts. Some online banks offer a ton of services, while others have less so it pays to shop around to find the one with the services you deem important. For example, some offer checking and savings accounts while others only offer savings. Some offer loans, while others do not. Be sure to look at all the information offered when making your decision – their fees, balance requirements and other regulations they may have in place. Some of these have regular brick-and-mortar locations as well, but most do not. The following are placed in order of their Alexa traffic count rating.


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1. USAA:

Global Alexa Rating: 1,177

USAA offers a full set of services and banking offerings including checking accounts, savings accounts, credit cards, auto loans, personal loans, youth banking, college products, home equity products, home mortgages and more. The downside of USAA is that beginning May, 2013 their online banking services are available only for those serving or who have served in the US military and their families. As USAA is among the best online banks, it is a great choice for those that qualify. USAA began in 1922 with 25 Army officers who offered to insure each other’s vehicles when no one else would. Today, their tiny organization has grown into a respected institution offering a full range of financial products to millions of members.




2. Capital One 360:

Global Alexa Rating: 2,006

Capital One 360 offers 360 Checking, MONEY which is teen checking, 360 Savings, Kids Savings, CDs, investing accounts, home loans, retirement accounts and business accounts. The 360 Checking is fee-free, online and mobile checking that works around your schedule and goes where you go. There are no hidden fees including no overdraft fees (you just pay a little interest on the amount you “borrowed”) or minimums as you earn interest on your everyday money. There are 38,000 fee-free Allpoint ATMs and 2,000 Capital One ATMs. You receive a free MasterCard debit card for purchases. 360 Checking is a checking account without the paper. You can do everything – pay bills, mail a paper check, make a secure deposit directly into someone’s account, transfer money – securely online at And with your 360 Checking Debit Card, you can access cash at ATMs worldwide or make purchases anywhere MasterCard® is accepted. You’ll even receive all communications from them electronically. You won’t automatically receive checks to write, but you can order your first checkbook of 50 checks for free. After that, a checkbook will cost $5.00. If you prefer to pay electronically, you’ll still be able to make payments online or use your debit card for purchases. Their current interest rates are shown on the website.




3. Ally:

Global Alexa Rating: 5,274

Ally doesn’t have expensive physical locations, which makes it easier for them to offer competitive rates, no hidden fees, 24/7 live customer care, and no ATM fees at any ATM nationwide. When you choose Ally, you can bank by phone, chat, or using your computer or mobile device. And you have the freedom to monitor and move your money anytime, anywhere. There is no minimum balance to open account. You can make deposits with Ally eCheck Deposit, online transfers or free postage-paid envelopes. They offer checking accounts that pay interest, money market accounts, savings & CDS and IRAs. They also do auto financing. They offer a variety of CDs including a high yield CD, no penalty CD and a ‘raise your rate’ CD. Ally Financial Inc. was founded in 1919 as the General Motors Acceptance Corporation (GMAC), a provider of financing to automotive customers. Since then, the business has expanded to include insurance, direct banking and commercial finance. In 2012 they exceeding 1 million customer accounts.




4. Flagstar Bank:

Global Alexa Rating: 13,852

Flagstar’s online banking offers visibility and control over your finances. Take advantage of our easy-to-use budgeting tools — all designed to put money back into your pocket. They offer: Review all of your accounts, balances, recent and pending transactions in one location; receive money through your bank account — the Purchase Rewards program ties directly into your debit card; easily budget and track expenses and review past spending with FinanceWorks™; prepare for tax season with Intuit’s® Tax Watch program (available throughout the year) and TurboTax® Online Banking (available December 15-April 16); and receive alert reminders and recurring payment options so you never miss a payment. Powered by Intuit®, FinanceWorks™ is an online financial management tool that helps you track your financial relationships at more than 16,000 other financial institutions in the United States — all from one location. If you have accounts with any of the participating financial institutions and creditors, you can add them to your personalized page and track your spending by category, set spending goals and alerts, and budget and track your expenses. Simply search for the financial institution in the search box and a wizard will help walk you through the process. They offer absolutely free access at more than 55,000 Flagstar, Allpoint, and Presto! ATMs worldwide. They do have some branch locations in Michigan but are predominantly an online bank service.




5. Simple Finance Technology Corp.:

Global Alexa Rating: 19,661

Simple offers a bank account that has all the tools you need to manage your money built right in. The funds in your Simple account are held by their partner bank, The Bancorp Bank, Member FDIC. Simple provides everything else, including the Simple Visa® Card, their powerful iOS and Android apps, a beautifully designed web interface, and customer support that really cares. Simple’s about making managing your personal finances effortless. They adamantly believe that making smart spending and saving choices should be easy, and often even fun. All the tools you need to manage your money are built right into your account, where they’re most effective. They are not fans of unnecessary fees at Simple. They’re not part of their profit structure or philosophy. That means they don’t charge overdraft fees, bounced check fees, or monthly account maintenance fees. They don’t offer tiered service, since they think all of their customers deserve the best. Although they’re passionate about minimizing fees, there are a few services they offer that are too expensive for them to cover entirely. A few examples: they charge a $2 International ATM Cash Withdrawal Fee, and an $8 Treasurer’s Check Fee. There’s also a $1 fee for Over the Counter Cash Withdrawal. In short, they’re not entirely fee free, but the fees they charge are few and far between, there’s a real reason they charge them, and they’ll tell you about them up front. Direct deposit is the easiest way to fund your account. You can also transfer funds in electronically from an account at another institution, or deposit a check by taking a photo of it with our mobile app. They can also accept deposits by mail. Cash is a bit trickier, but still possible. The easiest way to get cash into Simple is to get a money order at any USPS, or a local grocery or convenience store, and deposit it with the mobile app.




6. Sallie Mae Bank:

Global Alexa Rating: 7,164

Established in 2005 and an affiliate of Sallie Mae, Inc., Sallie Mae Bank provides education loans and savings products to students and their families. To that end, they offer a Money Market FDIC-insured banking service. And with no monthly maintenance fees and interest rates that aren’t tied to your balance, you can keep your money growing for the future. Their rate is 11x the national average and you can perform check writing directly from your account. There are no minimum balance requirements and no monthly fees. They do not have tiered interest rates. Interest is compounded daily and paid monthly. They allow a maximum of six withdrawals per month and electronic transfers are free. They also offer a high-yield savings account and CDs.  CDs require a $2,500 minimum deposit. You can also set up 529 savings plans for a number of states.




7. Barclays:

Global Alexa Rating: 61,953

Barclay offers only online savings products. With current rates that are among the top in the nation, Barclays gives you one of the best savings accounts for helping your money grow. These aren’t promotional rates. Online savings has no hidden fees, no minimum balance to open and no need to change banks. You can even link directly to any existing US bank account you already have and add or change accounts at any time. Another type of account is their Dream Account. Dreams are nice – but turning them into reality is even better. And with Barclays Dream Account, you can. The Dream Account is a savings account that has all the award-winning benefits of their Online Savings Account – including an Annual Percentage Yield (APY) that’s currently 11X more than the national average, no hidden fees and no minimum balance to open. So what makes the Dream Account different? It’s specifically designed to reward you for smart savings choices, like making consecutive monthly deposits and not withdrawing funds for a period of time. So dream big, save up – and reap the rewards. Deposit up to a maximum of $1,000 of savings each month into the account and every time you make consecutive deposits for 6 months, they’ll give you a 2.5% bonus on the total interest you earned over that time. If you make no withdrawals during that six months you earn another 2.5% bonus. All accounts offered are outlined on the website as to interest rate and APY.




8. EverBank:

Global Alexa Rating: 72,548

With origins dating back to the early 1960s, innovation, service and discipline are at the center of everything we EverBank does. And today they stand tall as one of the nation’s strongest and healthiest banks. From their headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida, they’re changing the way people view banking. EverBank offers savings and checking features, as well as options for investing in foreign currency and precious metals. You can use their online and mobile banking from nearly anywhere on the globe. EverBank, has been driven to chart their own unique history—and to steer clear of traditional banking protocols. This forward-looking approach has led to the creation of wildly unique client opportunities and a record of steady and consistent growth through the years. And today, as they continue to strive for new ways to evolve their business and client offerings even more, they invite you on this retrospective of growth and accomplishment.




9. FNBO Direct:

Global Alexa Rating: 153,071

First National Bank Omaha (FNBO) is a subsidiary of First National of Nebraska, a multi-state holding company located in the heart of downtown Omaha, with a strong banking heritage that dates back over 150 years. For a century and a half, First National Bank has set the standard for outstanding customer service coupled with quality financial products and a history of innovation. When it opened in 1857, it was a local bank that served only Omaha and the surrounding communities. Today, First National of Nebraska is the largest privately owned banking company in the United States with more than 6.6 million customers across the country.

Today they have locations in Nebraska, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota and Texas, $17 billion in managed assets and nearly 5,000 employees. They have been listed on the Forbes Best Banks list for 3 years in a row: 2012, 2013 and 2014. They offer online checking, online savings, CD accounts and ExtraEarnings Visa. Their online checking has some really nice features including free debit card fraud monitoring, free incoming wires, free stop payments, no monthly service fees, one overdraft forgiveness every 12 months, free online bill pay and account alerts, free enrollment in MyDeals and free person-to-person payments with Popmoney.




10. Bank of Internet USA:

Global Alexa Rating: 197,655

Bank of Internet USA offers a number of personal banking options including rewards checking, high interest checking, high yield savings, money market savings, CDs and business banking. They also offer mortgages including refinancing and home equity loans. Bank products and services are offered by Bank of Internet USA, a division of BofI Federal Bank. Bank of Internet USA and other BofI Federal accounts are not separately insured by the FDIC. Imagine a bank so convenient it has a branch in your home. And your office. And anywhere you have your cell phone. That’s the ease and convenience Bank of Internet USA brings to your everyday banking needs. And since they don’t have the high overhead of a physical branch network to pay for, they’re more affordable, too. You get the convenience and the savings. Their rewards checking comes with unlimited ATM reimbursements, free bill pay, free cash-back purchase rewards and free FinanceWorks money management software. There are no monthly maintenance fees, no minimum monthly balance requirements and no overdraft or non-sufficient funds fees.

Online banking is a great time saver, not to mention saving money on gas because you don’t have to run to the bank to make deposits. Whether you use online banking for checking, savings or both, you will be glad to see that free accounts are still around, even though most banks are getting rid of these types of accounts. If your bank’s fees are eating into your nest egg, or their interest rate on savings is paltry, perhaps it is time to look into online banking.



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