Best Online Bank of 2017: Ally Bank

Ally Bank offers the best online banking experience and customer service.

Ally Bank has some of the best bank accounts, making it the Best Online Bank of 2017 in GOBankingRates’ Best Banks study. Ally pulled ahead of the other finalists with a variety of high-quality products, low costs and excellent customer service.

Ally offers customers great benefits such as no checking account maintenance fee, high savings and CD yields, and ample customer service and mobile banking access. Ally is a three-time winner of the Best Online Bank award, taking the top spot as the best online bank of 2016 and 2015 as well.

What Makes Ally Bank the Top Online Bank of 2017

To identify the Best Online Bank of 2017, GOBankingRates surveyed features of the top 28 online banks offering savings accounts, checking accounts and CD accounts nationally within the U.S. The study examined and evaluated financial products and terms in order to recognize the best online bank based on the services they provide to their customers.

Ally Bank earned its top ranking because of its superior deposit products, such as its online checking account and online savings account; strong customer support; and excellent online and mobile banking apps.

Free Interest Checking and High-Yield Savings Products

Ally Bank’s deposit accounts are consistently among the best online bank accounts. Ally Bank wasn’t just the best online bank of 2017 but also earned recognition among the best banks in the U.S. for various bank account types included in the study: Ally Bank’s free online checking account is one of the best checking accounts of 2017. Its online savings account was one of the finalists for best savings account of 2017, and its CD account also ranked among the top 10.

See: 10 Best Checking Accounts of 2017

With low fees and high interest rates, Ally Bank offers depositors ways to grow their funds faster without worrying about fees:

  • Free interest checking: Ally Bank’s free checking carries no monthly maintenance fee, one of the key factors that make it such a great online account.
  • Online savings account: The 1.60% APY offered on Ally Bank’s Online Savings account is among the best offered in internet banking, which helped it stand out in the Best Online Banks and Best Savings Accounts categories. This savings account also does not have a monthly maintenance fee.
  • High-rate CDs: Ally’s CDs are top earners, such as giving account holders a competitive 2.10% APY on a 12-month CD. Ally Bank also sets no deposit minimums to open a CD.

Ally Bank’s savings account 1.60% APY is equal to or better than many best savings account rates provided by other online banks in contention. Ally Bank also offers a variety of financial products in addition to traditional savings, checking and CD accounts, such as:

  • IRA Raise Your Rate CD: Get a competitive APY for a four-year term IRA CD account.
  • IRA High Yield CD: Get a competitive APY with a minimum deposit of $25,000 in this five-year IRA CD account.
  • Personal and business auto loans: Ally offers both personal vehicle financing and business vehicle financing, as well as RV financing.

Online and Mobile Banking Tools

Another reason why Ally Bank is the best online bank of 2017 is the bank’s impressive selection of internet banking tools, which feature some of the most user-friendly interfaces and convenient methods for users to open bank accounts online, access their accounts, manage their money and complete transactions. Account holders can securely monitor their online accounts, review bank statements, pay bills and more.

Smartphone users can easily access their Ally accounts via the online bank’s mobile apps for iOS and Android. The Ally Bank app includes many of the same functions offered through online banking, including making transfers and payments.

Ally also offers additional services for banking online such as the free Ally eCheck Deposit tool to remotely deposit checks. Plus, Ally makes transferring money between people easy with Popmoney, which enables you to send and receive money using a mobile phone number or an email address.

App Review: Ally Mobile Banking Offers Easy and Complete Account Management

24/7 Phone Support, Live Online Chat and More

Although with online banking you won’t have traditional bank branches to visit, the best internet banks make up for it with customer support available anytime, anywhere, including a 24/7 hotline to help banking customers at all times. Like most online banks, Ally has a mobile app, but it also has live chat in which you can talk to a customer service representative online — a feature that many other top online banks do not have.

Another area where Ally Bank really shines is with its Wallet Wise online banking courses. You can learn the essentials of budgeting, banking and investing, credit, and auto financing in an easy-to-use, progressive format. With all of these features at Ally Bank, you’re not only getting the best online banking rates but also a bank that teaches you how to improve your finances.

Up Next: Best Banks 2017 Editors’ Picks

Methodology: To determine its Best Online Banks ranking, GOBankingRates examined 28 online-only banks that offer products nationally according to the GOBankingRates and FDIC databases, excluding online products offered by institutions with a physical, retail banking presence. No asset threshold was consulted for online-only banks.

Criteria for ranking: GOBankingRates scored each online-only bank from most to least favorable on the following factors: (1) checking account fee, (2) savings account annual percentage yield, (3) 12-month certificate of deposit APY and (4) BauerFinancial Star Rating for overall financial strength. Banks were then scored according to whether they offered the following services, all of which contributed to a single weighting: (5) 24/7 customer service available by phone, (6) live chat service via website with a person, (7) mobile app and (8) remote check deposit. Banks were ranked according to their overall score.

Data was compiled from and verified against BauerFinancial and the individual institutions’ websites between Oct. 11 and Oct. 26, 2016, however Ally Bank rates are accurate as of today. Rates, terms and conditions are subject to change at the discretion of the individual financial institutions.

GOBankingRates is a personal finance and consumer interest rate website owned by ConsumerTrack, Inc., an online marketing company serving top-tier banks, credit unions, and other financial services organizations. Some banks mentioned in the Best Banks of 2017 survey are clients of ConsumerTrack, Inc., which serves more than 100 national, local and online financial institutions. Rankings are completely objective, and no institution, client or otherwise, paid for inclusion or specific placement.