Finding the perfect stock is every investor's dream, but too many people spin their wheels instead of simply diving in. And that delay can be costly.

The biggest determinant of your long-term financial success is not timing the market, it's time in the market. The sooner you get started, the sooner your money starts working for you. Here's a look at the magic behind compound interest ... and what it can mean for you.

Tmf Compound Interest Infographic Final Larger

This infographic was put together by Eryn Ratcliffe, one of The Motley Fool's awesome interns during the summer of 2016. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.