The markets can be a scary place for beginners. Some people think the share market is a good place to make some easy money fast. Nothing could be further from the truth. The stock market for beginners is a place fraught with short-term promises, but in reality making money takes two things: a good sense of money management and sound research.

Research the Share Market. Just as you wouldn’t start a business venture without finding out if it’s economically viable for the long term, so you shouldn’t start investing without first doing your background research. This research should include thoroughly researching the economic climate and the companies whose stock you’re interested in buying.

What’s your Trading Plan? Next you should figure out your trading plan. Will you be trading on a daily basis or will you make long term decisions? Day trading usually implies short term goals while long term investments signify goals such as retirement.

Read Economic and Financial Analysis Data.The stock market for beginners is a place full of financial and accounting information. To understand the numbers, you should subscribe to an online or print source for market data. The American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) is one such place that offers free booklets on the economy and financial markets.

Practice Investing. Another great way to learn about the stock market for beginners is to use a hands-on approach. These days you can use computer simulated software and pretend to trade without using actual money. Then when you get comfortable with the stock market you can jump in with real money and real investments. Check out Investopedia’s online stock market trading software for this purpose.

Follow the Advice of Successful Investors. You can also pick a mentor who’s successful in stock market investing, and learn from them by following their advice and tips. Most people choose the world’s most famous and successful investor, Warren Buffet, but you can choose anyone whose advice makes the most sense to you and is clear and logical to follow.

Pick a Broker. If you pick a full service brokerage firm you will get financial advice and tips for the price you pay. If you go with a discount brokerage, you’ll just get a stock broker who will buy and sell the stocks for you but offer no advice. Which would suit your needs better? Figure this out before you start investing.

Buy and Sell Stock Yourself. If you decide to buyer and sell stock yourself, you can use the services of a discount broker or even an online broker, so you can trade stock without even having to leave the comfort of your home.

Whichever approach you start with, just remember that the stock market for beginners is going to take time. Most probably you will lose a few in the beginning, but with practice and a better sense of how the market works, should hopefully see you become a successful investor!