So, now that you know that stocks are the key to long-run riches, the next step is finding the best ones you can ride all the way to retirement. With help from the advisors at our flagship Motley Fool Stock Advisor service, we've unearthed three stocks that show the different investing methods you can use to put together the perfect portfolio.
Many investors remember Internet stocks as the main cause of them becoming a lot poorer from 2000 to 2002. With the end of the tech boom, a lot of companies disappeared -- and plenty of shareholders lost their shirts.
At the time, one company seemed like it wouldn't fare much better than its peers. The company couldn't have had a simpler business model: selling things to people who wanted to buy them. It had some success in making a name for itself in one of the hottest metropolitan areas of the late 1990s, but its biggest asset was the true business visionary it had at the helm.
Nevertheless, that visionary seemed to do nothing but break well-established rules in an attempt to pull his company toward profitability. It allowed its customers to badmouth the company -- on its own website! It expanded its service from a niche market to give its users access to nearly everything they could possibly want. It even opened the door to third-party sellers who wanted to compete with the company.
But that company not only survived the plunge but thrived because of it. And through all this, the company has defied expectations to become the colossus in Internet retail, with a model that competitors have furiously (and mostly fruitlessly) tried to emulate.
The company, of course, is Amazon.com, and it has rewarded those shareholders who saw its potential during the darkest days of the Internet bust. From single-digit prices, the company has delivered gains of thousands of percentage points. Yet even with that success, it has managed to hold onto the ingredients that helped it grow from a fledging start-up to its current status atop the retail world.
Now, Amazon has moved forward with another huge innovation. The world has seen just how big an impact a new electronic device can have on customers. Apple has turned its iPhone and iPad products into must-have gadgets largely by cultivat