Advertiser Disclosure
Fortunly's Guide

The Best Online Savings Accounts

By
I. Mitic

August 19,2021


Maybe you’re new to the workforce, struggling to pay rent and wondering where your paycheck went. Maybe you’re responsible for building the rainy-day fund for your family. Whatever the case may be, a savings account is more than a useful investment - it’s essential, especially if there’s an option to make your money grow.

Let’s take a look at the rates for the best online savings accounts and find the one that is perfect for you.

Show More...

12 Best Online Savings Accounts of 2021

Logo
Axos Bank Savings Account
APY
0.61%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$250
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
CIT Bank Savings Account
APY
0.40%-0.50%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$100
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Vio Bank Savings Account
APY
0.57%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$100
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Varo Savings Account
APY
0.20%-3.00%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$0.01
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Popular Direct Ultimate Savings Account
APY
0.45%
MONTHLY FEES
Balance-dependent
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$5,000
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
MySavingsDirect Savings Account
APY
0.25%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$0
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
HSBC Direct Online Savings Account
APY
0.15%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$1
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
CitiBank Accelerate Savings Account
APY
0.50%
MONTHLY FEES
Balance-dependent
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$0
ATM FEES
$2.50
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Ally Bank Online Savings Account
APY
0.50%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$0
ATM FEES
None at Allpoint ATMs
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Barclays Online Savings Account
APY
0.40%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$0
ATM FEES
$2.50 at non-Barclays ATMs
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Discover Bank Online Savings Account
APY
0.40%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$0
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Logo
Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account
APY
0.50%
MONTHLY FEES
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT
$1
ATM FEES
None
Learn More
Offer details
Evaluation Criteria

How We Rate the Best Savings Accounts of 2021

Our researchers have sifted through the market to identify which online savings accounts deserve your attention. Before we present our findings, let’s go through the fundamentals of our ranking system. Here are the criteria you should evaluate when choosing an online savings account.

Annual Percentage Yield

The annual percentage yield is the amount of money you earn through interest over the course of one year. APY is based on the interest rate and how often the interest compounds. This makes it a crucial factor in determining how beneficial a savings account will be for your funds.   

While America’s current average APY is about 0.1%, some of the best online savings accounts pay 2% or more, enabling your money to grow faster. 

The rates of high-interest saving accounts are typically not fixed, but variable. That may not make much difference if your balance is low. If you plan to deposit a larger amount and see it grow, then this becomes a key factor.

Compound Interest

Believed to have originated in Mesopotamia in the earliest days of human civilization, compound interest is best explained as “interest on interest.” It allows your balance to grow faster, as interest payments are made based on the cumulative sum over time, instead of on the principal amount.

Depending on the bank, the type of account, and the amount you deposit, your interest can be compounded monthly, quarterly, yearly or daily.

Our motto: The best online high interest savings account options are the ones that compound interest as often as possible.

Minimum Balance

Your minimum balance is the smallest amount you need to deposit in order to open and maintain your high-interest savings account. It can also refer to the minimum amount that needs to be in the account at all times in order to earn interest. In some cases, going below the minimum balance can lead to unpleasant service fees. 

To receive any sort of real benefits from high-yield savings accounts, you need to deposit a certain minimum amount. Some banks allow you to open an account with a $0 balance. Others insist you deposit as much as $10,000 on the day you open the account.  

While it's clear that the more you deposit, the higher your earnings will be, our criteria for finding the top online choices for savings is based on a balance between a reasonable minimum balance and attractive benefits. 

Service Fee

It’s time to discuss fees imposed by online savings account options. Traditional brick-and-mortar banks have high maintenance expenses, many of which they cover through a complex system of fees. Online-only banks generally pay fewer employees and certainly spend less on rent. This gives them the freedom to charge lower fees and offer better interest rates.

Therefore, online banks can afford to spare you the service fees for monthly maintenance and similar expenses that come with a traditional savings account. We’re not saying that online banks are without service fees, but they often exclude monthly maintenance from their basic plans and generally charge less than their brick-and-mortar counterparts. 

User Experience & Support

Before you decide which is the best high-interest online savings account for you, we advise you to get familiar with what online savings accounts have in common.

For example, most accounts don’t include an ATM card, as the unwritten rule among online banks is to keep you away from your savings as much as legally possible. While this might be annoying, in most cases you’ll be glad you kept your savings safe from impulsive spending sprees.

This applies to checks as well. If you wish to have more access to your savings account, you might want to consider a money market account, which allows you to write checks from your account.

The best online high-yield savings accounts usually rely on the automated clearing house method of transferring funds. ACH is a highly trusted electronic payment system commonly used to transfer funds from one bank account to another. However, since online savings accounts are considered deposit accounts by the Federal Reserve, they are subjected to Regulation D, which limits the number of transactions of all types to six per month. 

After this limit has been met, the bank decides whether to charge you a fee for every additional transaction or to simply prohibit you from making more transactions on your online savings accounts until the next cycle. 

Transferring your money to a checking account is the simplest and the most common method of withdrawing funds from a savings account. Be advised, this transaction can in some cases take up to five business days.   

Online-only banks provide online-only customer service, so be prepared to chat your way out of an issue instead of resolving problems face-to-face. That is why the quality of the website or mobile app is a significant factor in rating the best savings accounts online. If a website is intuitive and easy to navigate, it will certainly influence the way you manage your funds. So be sure to check the virtual experience a bank has to offer before you deposit your money.  

Check for bonuses too. Sometimes an online bank can provide you with a new account bonus or a premium-tier interest rate. These benefits are usually earned by making regular deposits, opening other types of accounts at the same bank, or keeping your funds above a defined threshold.

Quick Breakdown

12 Best Online Savings Accounts for 2021

Online Savings Accounts: Reviews

Axos Bank Savings Account Review
Axos Bank Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.61%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$250
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Axos Bank opened its doors on July 4, 2000. This day was chosen for three reasons. Firstly, it was meant to show that the online bank can be accessed by customers even during bank holidays. It was also the birthday of the founder’s daughter, and finally the date symbolized a celebration of the bank’s independence from traditional forms of banking. This California-based company’s high rate savings account options are a perfect choice for customers who wish to do most of their banking online.

APY

Axos’s high-yield savings account comes with a 0.61% interest rate. It remains the same regardless of your balance. Coupled with daily compounding, this is a solid option for those who want to use their cash to earn interest.  

Minimum Deposit/Balance

To open an account, you need a deposit of at least $250. This may seem like a hefty amount, but you should look at it as an investment. Considering that there’s no minimum balance, this can act like a one-time payment.

Service Fees

Axos Bank provides an online savings account with top high-yield rates, and there are no service fees. Another upside to entrusting Axos with your funds is that you can get your ATM card for free, and any card replacements won’t cost you a penny. Aside from the slightly more expensive wire transfer fees, Axos’s services are reasonably priced.

User Experience & Support

Axos offers an efficient mobile app that enables you to customize your dashboard. SSL encryption, two-factor authentication, automatic logout, and other safety measures have been implemented to keep your information secure on this app. 

In addition to offering one of the best online savings account options, Axos also has an excellent online banking site for those who want to avoid any hassles when opening their account. The entire process takes less than 15 minutes, and all you need is a valid ID and your Social Security number.

If you’re unable to find what you’re looking for in the FAQ or the How To Videos section, you can turn to Evo. You’ll find the icon for this virtual financial assistant at the bottom right corner of your screen. Of course, if you prefer to talk to an actual person, Axos’s customer support agents are available 24/7. We value quality customer support, and that’s exactly what Axos delivers: impressive savings account interest rates and the best online banking experience on the market.

Reasons to open an account:

  • ATM card
  • High APY
  • Easy sign-up
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Secure mobile app
+ Show more
Read Full Review
CIT Bank Savings Account Review
CIT Bank Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.40%-0.50%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$100
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A-

Some of the best online bank savings account options can be found at CIT Bank. The company was formed in 2000 as a Utah-based subsidiary of CIT Group, a substantial financial services company. It started as a business loan company before diverting into online banking in 2011 and launching online savings accounts the following year. Since then it has grown in stature and reputation as one of the premier online saving accounts providers. 

APY

The annual percentage yield that you receive on your CIT savings account varies according to the type of account. 

  • The Savings Connect Base Tier account gives you a 0.42% APY. This is not the market’s best interest rate for online savings accounts, but it is on the generous side.
  • CIT Bank’s Savings Connect Upper Tier offers an APY of 0.50% which applies if you make a qualifying deposit of at least $200 and link your Savings Connect account with a Qualifying eChecking account.
  • If you opt for the Savings Builder account, you’ll receive a 0.40% APY; there are no additional conditions that you need to fulfill. 

Considering all of these account options, it’s safe to say that CIT offers some of the highest savings account interest rates.

Minimum Deposit/Balance

All three of CIT Bank’s online savings accounts impose minimum deposits. The Savings Connect Base Tier requires a $100 initial deposit, while the Savings Connect Upper Tier comes with a $200 deposit requirement. With a Savings Builder account, the initial deposit of $100 or more must be accompanied by monthly deposits of at least $100 or a minimum balance of $25,000.

Service Fees

There are no account opening or maintenance fees. However, outgoing wire transfers cost $10 if you have less than $25,000 in your savings account. You will also pay transaction fees if you go over the federal limit of six transactions per month. The lack of fees, accompanied by some of the best online bank rates for savings accounts, makes CIT Bank look better and better.

User Experience & Support

CIT is a branchless bank with no person-to-person customer service and no ATMs. You can open an account with ease online. As an internet-based bank, it has a highly functional website that’s as easy to use as any of the best online bank savings accounts. There is also a CIT Bank app for mobile users. 

The quality of customer service that you receive depends on your preferences. Since there are no bank branches, the personal touch that many people enjoy is not available. Still, you can speak to a customer representative Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. or Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time. There is, unfortunately, no customer via live chat. A phone call or email message is the best way to resolve any issues that you may have. 

Reasons to open an account:

  • Three savings account options
  • Easily accessible website
  • Low minimum deposits
  • No service or maintenance fees
  • Interest is compounded daily
+ Show more
Vio Bank High Yield Savings Account Review
Vio Bank High Yield Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.57%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$100
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Established in 2018, Vio Bank is one of the fastest growing online banks in the country. Founded as the national online division of MidFirst Bank, it was automatically insured by FDIC, which has covered MidFirst since 1934. Thanks to the FDIC, your Vio Bank savings account is insured to up to $250,000. 

APY

Vio Bank’s High Yield online savings account offers an average yield of 0.57%, which applies to all balances, regardless of the amount. In terms of APY, Vio Bank is the best high-yield savings account on this list. With Vio, your interest is set to compound daily, which is the fastest option to make your money grow. 

Minimum Deposit/Balance

To open a Vio Bank savings account, you’ll need at least $100. Considering the APY, that makes Vio the best-balanced savings account with low minimum requirements on this list.   

Service Fees

Vio Bank doesn’t charge a monthly maintenance fee. However, if you leave your account unattended for more than 12 months, be prepared for a $5 dormant account fee. To avoid your account being labeled “dormant,” be sure to deposit or withdraw funds at least once a year. If you don’t, the debt could wipe out the interest you’ve earned.

Like all the top savings accounts we mention in this article, Vio Bank’s options are subject to Regulation D of federal banking law, which means you get just six free withdrawals per month. Each additional withdrawal will cost you $10.

User Experience & Support

Vio’s website is easy to navigate and the mobile app lets you check, transfer, and deposit funds. Opening an account is a fairly simple task. Vio supports the Automated Clearing House (ACH) electronic payments system, which is used for transferring funds to your regular bank account.

Since the Vio Bank savings account doesn’t include a debit card, be prepared to use ACH extensively. While this might be an issue when it comes to withdrawing cash, remember that the best high-yield savings accounts are made to save your money while it grows and help you reach your savings goals. 

Reasons to open an account:

  • Highest online savings rates
  • Interest compounded daily
  • Low minimum balance requirements
  • User-friendly website and app
  • No monthly service fee
  • FDIC insured
+ Show more
Varo Savings Account Review
Varo Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.20%-3.00%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$0.01
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Varo is an online-only brand that gives customers complete control of their accounts via a mobile app. Varo was founded in 2015, and since then it has established itself as one of the best online banks for savings, featuring advanced services, competitive interest rates, and attractive bonuses. Despite being fairly young compared to other companies on this list, Varo has quickly garnered credibility and earned an FDIC insurance certificate.

APY

Varo’s savings account offers a 0.20% APY with interest compounding daily. The bank also offers a premium-tier option that boosts the APY to 3.00%. To earn this rate and qualify for what can easily be described as the best online savings account bonus, you need to fulfill three requirements on a monthly basis. These include direct deposits of at least $1,000, making at least five qualifying Varo Bank Visa® Debit Card purchases, and keeping your daily savings balance under $5,000. Although this might not be a fit for everyone’s lifestyle and budget, the account can certainly grow your savings by an impressive rate.

Minimum Deposit/Balance

You can open the account with a minimum deposit of $0.01. Also, there is no minimum requirement regarding balance. There is, however, a maximum limit of $5,000. If you exceed the limit, you lose your premium-tier rate and go back to the standard 0.20% APY. 

Service Fee

In addition to offering some of the best rates for online savings accounts, Varo also has an extremely lenient policy regarding fees. The online savings account is excluded from monthly fees, overdraft fees, foreign transaction fees, incoming and outgoing transfer fees, and ATM fees. 

User Experience & Support

Varo relies exclusively on its Android and iOS mobile apps, keeping them up-to-date, functional and very user-friendly. Although it is a mobile-only bank, Varo has a deal with Allpoint and its network of more than 55,000 fee-free cash machines all over the country. If you're looking for an online checking and savings account all in one, this makes Varo a strong competitor. 

Another nice touch that makes Varo one of the best online banks is the option to round up every transaction to the nearest dollar and have that money deposited into your savings account, a feature called “Save Your Change.” Advanced options include “Save Your Pay,” which lets you select a percentage of each paycheck to be added to your savings balance. All in all, Varo certainly is among the highest-APY savings account providers.

Reasons to open an account:

  • High competitive interest rates
  • Interest compounded daily
  • No deposit and balance requirements
  • Almost no fees
  • Premium-tier APY and bonuses
  • Great mobile app
  • 55,000 ATMs
  • FDIC insured
+ Show more
Popular Direct Ultimate Savings Account Review
Popular Direct Ultimate Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.45%
MONTHLY FEES:
$4 if your balance drops below $500
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$5,000
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Popular Direct is the online-only division of Popular Bank, which has been around for 122 years and is vouched for by the FDIC. Popular’s online accounts offer some of the best interest rates on deposit accounts available anywhere. The company has two account types: a high yield online savings account and certificates of deposit.

APY

Popular Direct offers a 0.45% APY, providing some of the highest online savings rates out there. However, the minimum deposit is quite high as well: $5,000. Like most of the competition, Popular Direct compounds interest daily, which can be lucrative as long as you are ready to meet the minimum deposit requirement. 

Minimum Deposit/Balance

Popular demands a $5,000 minimum deposit for opening an account, highest on our list. Once you’ve opened the account, your minimum balance must be above $500 to remain within the charge-free limit.  

While this might not be the perfect account for a moderate-budget user, it’s still one of the best high-interest online savings accounts.

Service Fees

Nominally, the bank doesn’t charge a monthly account maintenance fee. However, if your balance drops to $500 or below and stays that way for one business day, you will be charged $4 at the end of the month.  

If you close your account within the first 180 days, you will be charged a $25 penalty. If you leave the account inactive, there’s a $5 monthly dormancy fee. In accordance with Regulation D, you are limited to six withdrawals per month. Exceed that limit and you’ll be charged a $5 “excessive withdrawal fee.” Overall, if you hold large savings in cash and want to make it grow fast, this may be the best and safest online savings account on our list. 

User Experience & Support

Popular Direct lets customers deposit money online or via a mobile app. The app lets you deposit a check as late as 8 p.m. eastern time, which can come in handy if you’re too busy to do it during working hours. Once deposited, the funds usually become available within one to two business days. Like most online savings accounts, it does not include an ATM card. Nor will you be able to deposit cash directly. You can establish automatic transfers with your brick-and-mortar bank if you wish to nurture your online savings account with a steady diet of cash.

Reasons to open an account:

  • One of the highest annual percentage yields
  • Interest compounded daily
  • Quality website and mobile app
  • 24/7 customer service
+ Show more
My Savings Direct Savings Account Review
My Savings Direct Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.25%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$0
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Founded as a division of Emigrant Bank, MySavingsDirect is backed by one of the oldest banks in the country with more than $6 billion in assets. MySavingsDirect accounts are insured by the FDIC, which means that the first $250,000 is covered by the Federal Reserve. 

APY

MySavingsDirect High-Interest Savings Account’s APY is 0.25%. If you’re looking for the best interest rates for savings and minimal account maintenance hassles, you should certainly check it out. Interest is compounded daily and credited to your account monthly.     

Minimum Deposit/Balance

Among the most striking features of this account is the $0 minimum balance. MySavingsDirect allows you to open a savings account without a deposit and charges no fees in case your account is empty. 

Service Fees

The bank doesn’t charge monthly maintenance fees. If you’re looking for a “no strings attached” option, this may be one of the best free online savings accounts for you. Much like all other savings account providers on our list, MySavingsDirect complies with Regulation D, limiting the number of withdrawals to six per month. Keep in mind that you’ll face a $15 per withdrawal if you go over this limit.

User Experience & Support

While this online bank’s website design is old-fashioned, the site is clear and easy to navigate. The account lacks a mobile banking app, however. Also, keeping in mind that MySavingDirect offers one of the best online interest savings accounts in terms of APY, minimum balance, and fees, the protocol for depositing and withdrawing funds can be a bit tiresome.  

Once you create your account and make your first deposit, funds won’t be available for transfer or withdrawal for five business days. All further transfers to an associated account are conducted via ACH, and may take two to four business days. While this might be inconvenient if you need emergency cash, saving accounts are intended to be places you put your money away and leave it. Although it’s one of the best high-yield online savings account options, MySavingsDirect account
doesn’t include an ATM card for the same purpose.   

Reasons to open an account:

  • Competitive interest rates
  • Interest compounded daily
  • $0 minimum balance
  • Almost no fees
  • FDIC insured
+ Show more
HSBC Direct Online Savings Account Review
HSBC Direct Online Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.15%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$1
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
C

HSBC Direct is the online division of the HSBC Bank, one of the largest financial institutions in the world. HSBC has more than $32 billion in assets. The online-only bank may not offer some of the best online savings account rates currently, however, it’s still a solid choice. HSBC also provides great options when it comes to checking accounts and CDs. The bank is FDIC-insured up to $250,000 per account.  

APY

The current annual percentage yield on HSBC Direct’s savings account ranks fairly low at 0.15%. HSBC compounds interest at a monthly rate, which makes it the only savings account on this list that isn’t compounded daily. Nonetheless, HSBC’s terms of use rank it as one of the best online savings accounts with monthly interest. 

Minimum Deposit/Balance

To open the account you need to deposit at least $1. After that, you can leave your account empty without worrying about dormancy fees or other penalties. Even at $0, your account remains at the highest-tier APY. 

Service Fees

Although there are no monthly service fees at HSBC Direct, some standard fees apply. For example, if you close your account within 180 days of opening it, you will be charged $25. 

User Experience & Support

HSBC has more than 200 branches in the US alone, but the bank’s Direct Online savings account is online-only. That means that you can’t open this high-yield savings account in a physical branch, and you must handle all your transactions online.

And although HSBC operates a large network of ATMs across the country, the Direct Online savings account doesn’t include an ATM card, so prepare for ACH transfers if you wish to dip into your savings. 

On the other hand, the mobile app lets you move cash between your HSBC savings and HSBC checkings account online, which makes it easy to manage your funds. So if you’re looking to combine a great checking account with one of the best online savings rates, HSBC has got you covered.

Reasons to open an account:

  • Lowest possible minimum deposit and balance
  • Interest earned even at $0 balance
  • Highly functional mobile app
  • A huge network of fee-free ATMs - if you have an HSBC checking account
  • FDIC insured
+ Show more
CitiBank Accelerate Savings Account Review
CitiBank Accelerate Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.50%
MONTHLY FEES:
$4.50 if your balance drops below $500
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$0
ATM FEES:
$2.50
BBB RATING:
N/A

Founded in 1812, CitiBank is one of New York’s oldest financial institutions. The bank's online-only savings account is, therefore, backed by more than two centuries’ worth of experience as well as an FDIC insurance certificate. 

APY

CitiBank offers an annual percentage yield of 0.50%, marking it as one of the best high-interest online savings accounts currently available. Interest is compounded daily. In addition to individual savings, CitiBank offers one of the best business online savings accounts for small businesses and startups. Be sure to check the CitiBusiness line of accounts if you own a small business.  

Minimum Deposit/Balance

You don’t have to make a deposit when opening a savings account at CitiBank. However, once you start saving, you’ll need to deposit at least $500 before you start earning interest. Also, this amount is the minimum balance you need to maintain in order to avoid a monthly service fee. 

Service Fees

The best online savings account with no fees is hard to find. Like most banks that require the customer to maintain a minimum balance, CitiBank charges a fee: $4.50 if you drop below $500. It is charged monthly until you repair your status. If you’re already a CitiBank user, you can avoid fees by maintaining an average monthly balance of $1,500 in eligible linked accounts. 

User Experience

CitiBank’s physical branches are tightly linked to the online division. This gives the bank an extra edge it needs to qualify among the best online savings accounts backed by a physical bank.

The main advantage is that if you decide to combine your savings account with a CitiBank checking account you will be granted fee-free access to more than 60,000 fee-free ATMs. CitiBank’s online and mobile features are simple to use and easy to navigate when transferring money from savings to checking.  

The bank is known for offering attractive bonuses if you choose to become a regular client. In addition to providing some of the best rates for savings accounts online, bonus points are added as you keep your account active and avoid dropping below the $500 minimum balance.

Reasons to open an account:

  • High APY
  • Interest compounded daily
  • ATM card lets you withdraw funds from your CitiBank checking account
  • 60,000 fee-free ATMs
  • FDIC insured
+ Show more
Ally Bank Online Savings Account Review
Ally Bank Online Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.50%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$0
ATM FEES:
None at Allpoint ATMs
BBB RATING:
N/A

Originally an offshoot of General Motors auto financing, Ally Bank has established itself as one of America’s most trustworthy online banks. With competitive interest rates and robust online services, Ally Bank is an FDIC-insured bank that is part of a financial empire that holds $179 billion in assets. With such strong backing, it comes as no surprise that Ally has some of the best interest rates for online savings accounts. 

APY

Ally Bank offers a 0.50% APY with interest compounded daily. Although it doesn’t feature the highest savings rates compared to other entries on this list, it has other traits that make it worth consideration.

Minimum Deposit/Balance

The Ally savings account doesn’t have a balance minimum, nor does it require a minimum deposit. You can open an account without any pressure and start depositing funds when you’re ready. 

Service Fees

Ally Bank excludes a monthly fee from its savings account, and since there are no minimum balance requirements, you’re safe from hidden fees that might stack up if you fail to keep enough cash in the account. This factor puts it on the list of best-rated online savings accounts. However, while the bank supports ACH transfers, it charges $20 per transaction. If you want to avoid the hefty fee, you can use Ally’s own free-of-charge equivalent to ACH, Ally eCheck Deposit. 

If you exceed your limit of six withdrawals per month, Ally Bank will charge you a $10 fee for each additional withdrawal in accordance with Regulation D of federal banking law. 

User Experience

Ally Bank is one of the most customer-friendly online banks. Its savings account has a mobile app that lets you access funds online and conduct transfers. Also, Ally offers interest even on its checking accounts. This makes Ally very attractive for clients, many of whom concur that the online bank has the best online savings and checking accounts to match.

The savings account doesn’t include a debit card. You can make remote check deposits with Ally eCheck Deposit from your mobile device as well as through online transfers, direct deposit, wire transfers, and checks by mail. Since Ally Bank has no physical branches, you won't be able to deposit cash directly into your account.

Reasons to open an account:

  • No minimum deposit or balance
  • Great mobile app
  • Dedicated customer service
  • Fee-free transactions with Ally eCheck Deposit
  • FDIC insured
+ Show more
Barclays Online Savings Account Review
Barclays Online Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.40%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$0
ATM FEES:
$2.50 for transaction at non-Barclays ATMs
BBB RATING:
A+

When it comes to the best online savings account interest rates, this provider is another top competitor. Barclays is an old company with roots stretching all the way back to 1690. When John Freame and Thomas Gould started their goldsmith banking business, they had no idea it would evolve into the multinational financial services giant that it is today. Its high savings rates and low fees make up for the fact that its US customers are restricted to online-only banking operations. 

APY

Among the APYs on our best online savings account list, Barclays’s may not have the highest one, but it’s still significantly better than what you’d get at most brick-and-mortar banks. Indeed, the 0.40% APY is still five times the national average. Also, your interest is compounded daily and credited to your account monthly. 

Minimum Deposit/Balance

There are no minimum balance or deposit requirements, which is especially convenient for those who are just starting to build their savings. However, you’ll need some funds on your account to earn interest.

Service Fees

Barclays offers top online banking services at a low cost or entirely free of charge. For starters, there’s no monthly maintenance or stop payment fee, and you won’t be billed for legal document processing or account research. However, you will be charged for the following:

  • Excessive transaction charge: 6 free, $5 for withdrawals or transfers
  • Official check: $5
  • Returned deposit items: $5 ($50 per business day limit)
  • Non-sufficient funds: $5 per item
  • Statement copy: $0.50 per statement
  • Express mail/rush delivery: $25

User Experience & Support

The bank offers a great savings account option for those who need a little more help putting money aside. Barclays’s saving assistant can help you set goals for yourself and calculate how long it’ll take you to reach them. The lack of an ATM card might actually be a good thing in this case, as it can prevent you from making unnecessary withdrawals. 

In case you do need to transfer or deposit money, Barclays has a mobile app that can also help you keep track of your funds. If you’re looking for the best online savings account with a mobile app that’s easy to use and has plenty of features, then Barclays is the way to go. Both the Android and iOS versions are highly rated on Google Play and the Apple App Store. 
 
Unfortunately, in-person assistance is unavailable, but Barclays’s customer support can be reached seven days a week between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. EST. Instead of going onto the website in search of phone numbers every time you need to contact customer support, you can make a call directly from the Barclays app. 

Overall, this is one of the top online savings accounts when it comes to customer experience. 

Reasons to open an account:

  • Saving tools
  • High-rated mobile app
  • Low fees
  • No minimum balance or deposit requirements
+ Show more
Discover Bank Online Savings Account Review
Discover Bank Online Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.40%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$0
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Over the years, the Discover Bank has been rebranded several times. It wasn’t until August 2000 that it got its current name, and only four years after its acquisition by Discover Financial Services, the bank registered its one-millionth merchant. This is an indicator of the bank’s trustworthiness and efficiency. One of its many offers to potential customers is a first-rate online savings account.

APY

Amid the global economic downturn, Discover’s 0.40% APY qualifies as one of the market’s more generous online savings account rates. This translates into $60.12 of annual interest earnings if your savings amount to $15,000. There’s no need to worry about your interest either – it’s compounded daily and paid out monthly.

Minimum Deposit/Balance

This is the main advantage of Discover’s online savings account. You don’t need to make any deposits or pay any maintenance fees. In other words, there’s no minimum balance required for you to be able to enjoy the many benefits of a newly opened account.

Service Fees

Discover might just have the best online savings accounts with no fees. Its unparalleled characteristics are obvious as soon as you open an account on the Discover website. For example, you won’t be charged a single dollar if your funds are insufficient. That’s just one of many instances when you won’t have to worry about extra fees. This also applies to official bank checks and their expedited delivery. In case you wish to close your account, the bank won’t charge you a penny.

User Experience & Support

The best online savings account goes hand-in-hand with an exceptional, well-oiled mobile app, and we expected nothing less. Available on both the App Store and Google Play, Discover’s mobile app offers plenty of features. The one that caught our attention right away was the ability to deposit a check into your account by simply taking a photo of it with your device. And thanks to the no-fees policy, you won’t be charged for this service either.

After completing the application form on the website, you’ll get a notification email through which you are expected to confirm the process. That’s it. As you can see, Discover makes sure that opening a top online savings account is quick and straightforward.

Another positive aspect related to opening a Discover savings account is the bank’s customer support. The agents are friendly, helpful, and available to answer your questions 24/7 every day of the year via phone and email.

Reasons to open an account:

  • 24/7 phone and email support
  • No fees
  • Check depositing via mobile app
  • Interest is compounded daily
  • No minimum balance or deposit
+ Show more
Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account Review
Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account Review Logo Learn More

On Official Website

APY:
0.50%
MONTHLY FEES:
None
MINIMUM DEPOSIT:
$1
ATM FEES:
None
BBB RATING:
A+

Marcus by Goldman Sachs is a subsidiary of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc – a company ranked 62nd on the Forbes 500 list in 2020 and considered by some to be the one of the best banks for savings and other financial products in the USA. The Goldman Sachs Group has been in business since 1869, but it wasn’t until 2016 that it ventured into the world of virtual banking. The name Marcus by Goldman Sachs honors the two founders, Marcus Goldman and Samuel Sachs. 

APY

The average APY offered by traditional banks is around 0.1%. Therefore, a savings account with a 0.50% APY like Marcus offers is definitely noteworthy, especially when the interest you earn on your deposit is compounded daily.

Minimum Deposit/Balance

Even the best online savings account providers will usually demand a $100 minimum deposit, but not Marcus. If you want to open an online savings account and you aren’t able to make a deposit, Marcus is a good choice for you. Along with its non-existent minimum deposit, you’ll also appreciate that Marcus doesn’t obligate you to maintain any minimum balance for up to 60 days. 

To avoid any inconvenience, you can fund your account with as little as $1 for the sake of maintaining a positive balance.

Service Fees

The logic at Marcus is that you shouldn’t have to pay someone to save your own money. With that in mind, Marcus’s best no-fee savings account was created. You can forget about service charges or transaction fees for transfers after becoming this bank’s client. But although Marcus won’t charge you for these services, your external bank or third party might.

User Experience & Support

When we first visited marcus.com, we noticed that the same-day transfers feature was included in the Marcus savings account. The only drawback is the $100,000 limit, which most customers won’t have a problem with.

The superb website is matched by an equally efficient mobile app, downloadable on both iOS and Android devices. Many positive reviews on Google Play and the App Store praise its intuitive design.

Before wrapping up this part of our best online savings account review, we need to note that Marcus’s customer support team consists of savings specialists. They can be contacted by phone from Monday to Friday between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. ET and on weekends from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET.

Reasons to open an account:

  • Reputable parent company
  • Same-day transfers
  • No unexpected fees
+ Show more

Fortunly’s Guide To Online Savings and Deposit Accounts 

Online banks are becoming more attractive than their traditional brick-and-mortar counterparts, as they can afford to offer the best high-interest online savings account options while charging lower (and fewer) service fees. Also, every respectable online bank is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which covers $250,000 per account.

Banking has long been associated with the notion of safety. Since the birth of internet banking, however, physical branches are losing strength and becoming less lucrative. In order to stay competitive, the most powerful players in the traditional banking market already have their online-only spin-offs specialized in providing some of the best online savings account rates available. In fact, some of the online savings accounts on this list belong to banks that have been operational for more than a century.

They are right to explore online savings. Physical banks simply can’t afford to give clients high-yield interest rates, leaving their money vulnerable to inflation, which decreases purchasing power over time. In addition, high service fees can diminish savings as time goes by. Combined, these two factors can actually cause the client to lose money instead of saving it. You’d be better off hiding your money under the mattress.

By transferring banking into the virtual realm, online banks have managed to bypass a number of expenses, attracting more and more users with never-before-seen benefits.  

The best online bank for a savings account should be the one that lets your money grow at a faster rate than in a traditional savings account, that much is clear. However, bear in mind that the interest rates that online banks offer are not fixed; they vary over time.

What exactly is a high-yield savings account and how does it work? 

An online savings account is an interest-bearing bank account held at an online-based financial institution. Much like their physical counterparts, online banks find savings accounts useful in conducting day-to-day operations like lending. Online banks have fewer expenses, as their business is conducted on the internet.

So when it comes to repaying clients for money that was put at their disposal, they can afford to be more generous. However, even the best-interest savings accounts usually come with fine print regarding transactions.

For example, you can’t withdraw cash directly from your online savings account as you can with a brick-and-mortar bank. In order to withdraw cash, you will have to transfer an amount from your savings to your checking account first. The transfer may take several days to clear. 

If you wish to deposit money to your online savings account, you will have to mail a check to the bank’s office or transfer funds electronically from another account. This operation can take several days as well.

Like all deposit accounts, online savings accounts are limited to only six fee-free transactions per month by Regulation D of federal banking law. 

Some of the best online banks for savings also offer money market savings accounts and certificates of deposit along with regular and high-yield checking accounts.

Let’s take a look at those options.

Money market account

A money market account is essentially a hybrid between checking and savings accounts. While it usually comes with a debit card and the option to write checks, it still falls in the category of deposit accounts and is therefore subject to Regulation D. Every month, all transfers after the initial six are subjected to a fee ranging from $10 (Bank of America) to $15 (Ally Bank). 

MMAs offer great interest rates, with some of the best money market savings accounts fetching over 2% APY. 

Minimum deposits and balances are standard with MMAs, which can be a drawback. On the other hand, you generally get a debit card so you can get immediate access to your savings in case of emergency.

Certificate of deposit

With a CD, you deposit a fixed amount and leave it in the bank for a defined period. The CD is a type of federally insured savings account with a fixed interest rate and a fixed date of withdrawal. Whether you set the term to three months or three years, the deposit remains locked until the contract matures. If you wish to withdraw funds earlier, you will face a barrage of penalty fees.

Online banks that offer certificates of deposit usually have higher interest rates than their brick-and-mortar competitors. 

High-yield checking account

A high-yield checking account is just what it sounds like: a checking account that earns interest. Most checking accounts offer no interest at all, but online banks offer accounts that earn a bit.

High-yield online checking accounts typically require a minimum balance to start accruing interest, but some have no such requirement. Although they earn interest, checking accounts are not subject to the six-withdrawal monthly limit of Regulation D.

FAQ
What banks offer the best savings accounts in 2021? +

Varo Bank (up to 3.00 APY), Axos Bank (0.61% APY) and Vio Bank (0.57% APY) currently offer some the best online savings account interest rate options. 

Are online savings accounts insured? +

Yes. All the best high-yield savings accounts are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, an independent federal agency insuring deposits in US banks and thrifts in the event of bank failures. FDIC insurance covers the first $250,000 in case of bank failure. 

Where can I earn the most interest on my money? +

Varo Bank (up to 3.00 APY), Axos Bank (0.61% APY) and Vio Bank (0.57% APY) have the best interest rates among online savings accounts on our list.

Which is the best bank for savings account? +

It depends on the amount you wish to deposit. If your starting balance is around $100, you could try Vio Bank, as it offers the best rates for savings accounts online. If you wish to deposit a higher sum of let’s say $10,000, you could try Popular Direct, which also provides some of the highest rates for online savings accounts.  

What is a good interest rate on a savings account? +

Around 2% annual percentage yield. Rates on the best online savings account options usually revolve around this percentage. However, since the national average is 0.1% APY, every savings account at 1% or more is worth a look.

-->