Investing your money in the stock market (or anywhere else!) can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be.

Congratulations on taking the first step...and coming to the right place!

The Motley Fool has been cutting through Wall Street jargon and giving people common-sense, actionable insights to create a nest egg and grow their money since we started on our mission over a quarter century ago.

Today, we’re going to walk you through our framework for making your money work for you, no matter where you are in your investing journey. We’ll quickly cover everything from the basics to some of today’s best stock ideas.

Investing Basics

We wrote our "13 Steps to Investing Foolishly" guide to get you up to speed on all the basics -- from compound interest to making sure you retire in style. Read it if you have questions about any of the following topics:

  • Determining the size of your emergency fund
  • How to open a brokerage account
  • 401k’s vs. IRA’s vs. non-retirement accounts
  • The percentage of your money to put in stocks (as opposed to bonds and other investments)
  • The pros and cons of indexing vs. buying individual stocks

Read on: 13 Steps to Investing Foolishly

How to Beat the Market

It’s fun to talk about picking stocks and beating the S&P 500, but how do you actually do it? There are many approaches that can work, yet four simple rules get you going in the right direction.

Read on: How to Beat the Market

Investing With $100, $500 or $1,000 per Month

Putting money into the market each and every month is a great way to invest. It helps make your investing automatic and allows you to dollar cost average into a market that goes up and down in an untimeable way.

Read on:

Top Stock Ideas

We believe that the best way to invest your money in stocks is to buy great companies and hold them for the long term. The best investments don't need you to check on them daily because they are solid companies with competitive advantages and strong leadership. Patience is the secret to investing and making money grow.

For some of our best stock ideas to consider, start with a list of 20 stocks we recently compiled. It includes two stocks that should be interesting for just about any investor, five stocks for beginning investors, eight dividend stocks, and five growth stocks.

Read on: 20 of the Top Stocks to Buy in 2019 (Including the 2 Every Investor Should Own)

Rising stock chart

Let's get your investments moving up and to the right! IMAGE SOURCE: GETTY IMAGES