Zerodha vs 5Paisa Platforms, Brokerages & Support side by side comparison. Discount brokerages have become all the rage with the surge in internet penetration (18% growth annually!) in India in the late 2010s.

Discount brokerages are businesses that offer executive trading platforms to investors. However, they do not have any robust advisory services as such.

It means that when it comes to formal research and planning services, investors are on their own.

As the name describes best, discount brokerages provide their investment services at a discounted rate – which is very low brokerage when compared to what Full-Service brokerages charge in India.

Zerodha and 5Paisa are the biggest names in discount broking, boasting customer bases of 980,000 and 150,000, respectively. That adds up to well over a million people combined!

If you’re in the market and are looking for a discount brokerage that best suits your needs, the chances are high that you pick one of these two behemoths.

This article highlights all the details and weighs out the pros and cons to help you choose between the two stockbroking platforms.

Zerodha vs 5Paisa Background

Zerodha is the company that is known as the instigator of the discount broking revolution in India.

Zerodha introduced the concept of discount broking in 2010. The first of its kind, Zerodha is the fastest growing discount broker and has been crowned as the best on multiple occasions.

They made bold moves right from the start – introducing a flat-fee based trading experience.

At Rs. 20 per trade, modern investors found this to be an extraordinarily great deal – since it was fixed at Rs 20 per trade, regardless of the volume of the trade.

Another revolutionary move that Zerodha made was making delivery trades free. It enabled new investors to enter the market without any limits.

Undoubtedly, Zerodha changed the whole scene for up-and-coming traders.

5Paisa was founded in 2000 when its parent company India Infoline (IIFL) decided to move into the business of brokerage services.

Therefore, 5Paisa was originally a Full-Service brokerage

However, India Infoline rebranded 5Paisa is a discount broker in early 2016, and the parent company continued as an integrated financial services company.

IIFL offers mainly Non-Banking services – Housing Finance, Wealth and Asset Management, Financial Product Distribution and the like.

Whereas, the 5Paisa website proffers additional options for investment in Insurances and even a dedicated ‘education’ section, making it a hybrid discount brokerage of sorts.

5Paisa has made much progress by leaps and bounds ever since and has even been awarded prestigious awards.

With Zerodha being the revolutionary, and 5Paisa being backed up by one of the largest conglomerates, their backgrounds set them up to compete for market share.

In a market where only user experience for the price matters – it can be difficult for investors to choose one without thinking twice.

Zerodha vs 5Paisa Account Types:

Zerodha:

Zerodha offers two accounts:

  • Trading account
  • Demat account

The trading account enables the user to purchase and sell off stocks, futures, options, and commodities.

Whereas, the Demat account is used to purchase mutual fund units, and even make SIP investments.

Switching between the two is as easy as choosing your account type on their simple interface.

NRIs can trade via Zerodha by opening an exclusive NRI account. Linking their NRE/NRO account to their Zerodha Demat account does this.

Note that intraday trading is not allowed for NRIs since the Indian Government prohibits it. You can read more about the difference in charges in the ‘Brokerage Charges’ section below.

5Paisa:

5Paisa gives you the option to open a 2-in-1 account (Trading + Demat) or a Mutual Funds account.

The idea is straightforward. You have the freedom to invest in both mutual fund units and stocks with the 2-in-1 account.

If you’re interested in investing in mutual funds only, then the separate mutual fund account will suffice.

It is simple to open accounts with either of the brokerages. All you need to do is enter all your details. Then, supply them with your mobile number, which is linked to your Aadhaar number.

No other documents are needed in this straightforward process, and you’ll be up and running in no time.

It is important to note that these discount brokers do not offer options to invest IPOs, OFSs, or FPOs.  

Zerodha vs 5Paisa Charges:

This section of the article goes over the pricing of both the companies in detail.

Opening Charges:

ZERODHA
TRADING A/C OPENING CHARGES Rs. 300 (one-time charge)
TRADING A/C MAINTENANCE CHARGES  NIL
DEMAT A/C OPENING CHARGES Rs. 100 (one-time fee)
DEMAT A/C MAINTENANCE CHARGES Rs. 300 annually
5PAISA
TRADING A/C OPENING CHARGES Rs. 650 (one time charge)
TRADING A/C MAINTENANCE CHARGES NIL
DEMAT A/C OPENING CHARGES NIL
DEMAT A/C MAINTENANCE CHARGES Rs. 400 annually

At the time of writing (August 2019), 5Paisa is offering the opening of accounts – both all-in-one and mutual fund accounts for free.

Zerodha and 5Paisa Brokerage Charges:

Here are shortened tables depicting the brokerage charges of both companies.

ZERODHA
SEGMENT CHARGES
EQUITY (DELIVERY) NIL (UNLIMITED)
EQUITY (INTRADAY) Rs. 20 per trade/ 0.01% (whichever is lower)
EQUITY (FUTURES) Rs. 20 per trade/ 0.01% (whichever is lower)
EQUITY (OPTIONS) Rs. 20 per trade/ 0.01% (whichever is lower)
CURRENCY (FUTURES) Rs. 20 per trade/ 0.01% (whichever is lower)
CURRENCY (OPTIONS) Rs. 20 per trade/ 0.01% (whichever is lower)
COMMODITIES Rs. 20 per trade/ 0.01% (whichever is lower)
5PAISA
SEGMENT CHARGES
EQUITY (DELIVERY) Rs. 10 per trade
EQUITY (INTRADAY) Rs. 10 per trade
EQUITY (FUTURES) Rs. 10 per trade
EQUITY (OPTIONS) Rs. 10 per trade
CURRENCY (FUTURES) Rs. 10 per trade
CURRENCY (OPTIONS) Rs. 10 per trade
COMMODITIES Rs. 10 per trade

Additionally, NRI traders have different opening and maintenance fees. The brokerage charges stay the same for 5Paisa.

However, both account opening charges and brokerage charges stay are higher for NRIs that opt for Zerodha.

ZERODHA CHARGES FOR NRIs
A/C OPENING CHARGES (TRADING+DEMAT) Rs. 500 (one time)
BROKERAGE (FUTURES AND OPTIONS) Rs. 100 per order
BROKERAGE (EQUITY) Rs. 200 / 0.1% per order (whichever is lower)

The fees are higher when compared to 5Paisa, but very less in comparison to a Full-Service broker.

The relatively low fees are one of the advantages of having a Demat account with a discount broker.

Zerodha vs 5Paisa Additional Charges:

STT, Transaction Charges, GST and SEBI Charges are specified below.

Note that these charges apply to Indian residents and NRIs alike.

ZERODHA
SEBI GST TRANSACTION CHARGES STT/CTT
EQUITY (DELIVERY) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.00325% BSE:0.003% 0.01% (both buy and sell)
EQUITY (INTRADAY) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.00325% BSE:0.003% 0.025% (both buy and sell)
EQUITY (FUTURES) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.0019% BSE:0.003% 0.01% (both buy and sell)
EQUITY (OPTIONS) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.05% BSE:0.003% (both charged on basis of premium) 0.05% (both buy and sell)
       
CURRENCY (FUTURES) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.0009% BSE:0.00022% NIL
CURRENCY (OPTIONS) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.0007% BSE:0.001% NIL
       
COMMODITIES (FUTURES) AGRI: Rs. 1 per Crore NON-AGRI: Rs. 10 per crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) GROUP A: 0.0026% GROUP B: PEPPER:0.00005% CASTORSEED: 0.0005% RBDPMOLEIN:0.001% 0.01% (on sell side)
COMMODITIES (OPTIONS) Rs. 10 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NIL 0.05% (on sell side)
5PAISA
SEBI GST TRANSACTION CHARGES STT/CTT
EQUITY (DELIVERY) Rs. 15 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.00325%   0.01% (both buy and sell)
EQUITY (INTRADAY) Rs. 15 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.00325%   0.025% (both buy and sell)
EQUITY (FUTURES) Rs. 15 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.0019%   0.01% (both buy and sell)
EQUITY (OPTIONS) Rs. 15 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.05% (charged based on premium) 0.017% (both buy and sell)
       
CURRENCY (FUTURES) Rs. 15 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.0021%   NIL
CURRENCY (OPTIONS) Rs. 15 per Crore 18% (on brokerage + transaction charges) NSE:0.051%   NIL

Stamp duty is charged as per the state mentioned in the address. If the correspondent’s address is out of India, stamp duty as per Karnataka is charged (for Zerodha). As for 5Paisa, 0.01% of the order or a maximum of Rs. 50 is charged.

Optional Charges:

Zerodha has some hidden fees, which are induced when you use their optional services:

  • Call and trade feature is a paid-for service, for which they charge Rs. 20 extra per call.
  • Rs. 20 is charged additionally for every MIS/BO/CO order that the investor does not square off.
  • If you opt to receive contracts via physical mail, the investor is charged Rs. 20 per contract, plus courier charges.
  • SMS alerts are charged Rs. 1 for Equity, Futures, and Options. Whereas Currency trade alerts are charged Rs. 0.5.

Zerodha has pricier brokerage fees but has a low account opening charge. If you’re an active trader, then you have to consider paying double the brokerage when compared to 5Paisa.

5Paisa’s high account opening charges seem to be a premium needed to be paid for the low brokerage charges in the long run.

Zerodha offers no Insurance either, and no educational section as such (check!).

5Paisa comes out on top when it comes to the value provided for the price.

Nonetheless, Zerodha seems to offer a premium trading experience, more so than 5Paisa.

It is because of its versatile and robust portfolio of trading platforms.

Zerodha vs 5Paisa Trading Platforms:

Both companies have very distinct ideas about what the best trading experience is.

In general, though, Zerodha’s platforms have a very modern and intuitive design. On the other hand, 5Paisa’s platforms supply a more traditional, flat trading experience.

Mobile

Zerodha has two account types and has two separate apps to operate the different account types.

On Mobile, Zerodha’s “Kite Mobile” supplies users holding trading accounts with a sleek and straightforward interface which makes it easy to make trades.

They also provide Demat account holders with “Coin Moblie” to invest in mutual funds on the go.

Meanwhile, 5Paisa’s trading app can be found on both the Android and Apple Store. The app has an old fashioned interface, which is surprisingly useful for trading.

Web Interfaces

Zerodha’s Kite 3.0 web interface is one of the best alternatives to the terminal that can be accessed without having to install any application.

Its modern interface makes it feel like a full-fledged desktop application, and all the functions that can be performed from the desktop app are built right into the website.

On the other hand, 5Paisa’s Trader Station offers all trading and investment options under one domain. The site has an integrated payment gateway, which makes instant transfers between banks pure.

Desktop

“Console” is Zerodha’s desktop trader terminal, which makes it’s users feel in control of their finances.

With the straightforward interface, all the information that an investor needs is displayed right at the beginning.

5Paisa’s installable desktop terminal application is designed with the needs of active traders in mind. It offers real-time data, and supplies advanced charts for intraday and historical stock prices.

Also, an array of keyboard shortcuts have been programmed to help investors monitor the market in real-time and place orders swiftly, with just the press of a few buttons.

Zerodha supplies its traders with a better interface across the board in terms of look, feel and responsiveness.

However, the 5Paisa alternative is just as effective, although it is a bit shabby looking. The interface is not up to the mark and does not suffice the needs of a modern investor in 2019.

User Support:

Zerodha, by all means, has better user support. They have a support library, think of it as a forum, that documents more than 600 answers to the most frequently asked questions.

The forum is open to all Zerodha users. Further, if an investor has a question to ask about a trade made by the investor, Zerodha has a help ticket system.

Their system makes the entire process of asking a question and having it answered both more comfortable and time-bound.

Coming to 5Paisa, they too have a forum and a support page. However, the support page only has a few dozen answers, most of which seem trivial.

The forum page is active, but there are barely any answers to all the questions asked by investors.

There are barely any details about the fees they will, and the 5Paisa page does a horrible job of providing a clear picture.

Zerodha has a clear upper-hand when it comes to proper customer support, and has an active and lively community. The documentation of their charges is clear as well, and if any details are missed, you can be sure that they’re provided them on the forum.

On 5Paisa, sending an email, or contacting them via phone is your best bet to solving any disputes or getting answers to questions.

Educational and Research Services:

Although most services do not provide any research or advisory by default, they do provide basic trading knowledge in the form of courses for FREE.

Both the companies have educational sections – Varsity and School, respectively.

Zerodha Varsity can be accessed right from their website, and they even have an app you can download on your phone. You do not need an account to access varsity, and they cover everything from the basics up to risk management trading.

5Paisa provides five distinct courses, which teach novice investors about everything from Equity Markets to Taxations.

Both companies supply excellent resources that educate and inform investors about the ins and outs seamlessly.

Also, both the companies supply value-added services, most of which are directed towards providing professional research to make investors more money.

Zerodha’s StockReports+ is an excellent, cheap tool that can be leveraged by investors of all temperaments to make significant investments.

5Paisa’s tools start at a whopping Rs. 4999 and go up to Rs. 8998 annually, excluding GST.

It is not meant for the average investor, and only serious, full-time traders leverage these high-priced tools.

Also Read: Zerodha Vs Upstox

Zerodha vs 5Paisa Pros and Cons:

Zerodha:

Pros:

  • Free equity delivery
  • A reasonable fee for the value
  • Excellent platforms
  • Formidable user support

Cons:

  • No monthly or yearly plan
  • No lifetime free AMC
  • No macOS or Linux support

5Paisa:

Pros:

  • Cheapest broker in India.
  • Versatile – can invest in insurance and mutual funds
  • Trustworthy – backed by IIFL

Cons:

  • Expensive research reports
  • Bad customer support
  • Customers complain about hidden costs
  • Mediocre platform design

Verdict:

Judging by the pros and cons, there are huge distinctions between the two company’s services.

Zerodha has a clearer vision of how they want to lead the company. They also do a great job connecting with their customers. Although pricier, in my opinion, if you don’t trade as often, the little extra brokerage is well worth the support they offer.

When it comes to 5Paisa, their services are much cheaper across the board. However, this platform is best suited for a trader who truly knows the ins and outs of the industry. Further, patience is required to learn to operate and execute exactly what you’re trying to accomplish.

Picking a brokerage is difficult because of the high number of options. With new firms offering better services popping up every other month, investors fail to realize that there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to trading.

Every investor has different needs and operates with different preferences.

Finding the right brokerage solution is much easier after all the parameters have been laid out.

Further Reading: Profitmart Detailed Analysis