Charting Software:
TradingView Beginner’s Guide 2018

Most new traders don’t know the importance of good charting software.

But we are here to help!

TradingView provides a clear and easy to understand platform that enables you to trade better.

In this TradingView beginner’s guide we will go over the basics and give you some great tips and tricks! We recommend you open TradingView on a second screen so you can follow along while you read.

Chapter 1:
An Overview of TradingView

Before we dive into the specifics, let’s take a look at TradingView as a whole and what you can get out of it!

What Is TradingView?

TradingView is one of today’s leading browser-based charting platforms. Having access to charting software that is not limited in its capabilities can be difficult to find. Brokers will often have their own charting software that is clunky, difficult to use, and provides severely limited customisation options.

TradingView specialises in providing a charting experience that goes above and beyond the charts offered by brokers. TradingView is unfortunately not free but for serious traders looking for ways to improve, the investment is more than worth it.

You can get the pro version for as little as $9.95 per month if you sign up for two years. TradingView also has an app for iPhone users, but in this guide we will be showing you how to use the browser version of TradingView.

Why Should You Use TradingView?

Many brokers make more money when traders lose. That’s a fact. From their point of view, there’s no real incentive to providing traders with charts that have a lot of tools and great functionality. Why would they spend money on developing a tool that would ultimately result in the broker making less money? Of course, not all brokers operate this way, but some do.

Charting platforms, on the other hand, make money by providing you with good charts. Their whole purpose is to give traders as many tools as they can think of. The better the charts they provide, the more money that charting platform will make.

In the end, it really just comes down to making money. Brokers want to make money, so they want traders to make a lot of mistakes. Charting platforms make money by solving the lack of functionality in tools that brokers provide.

You as a trader obviously want to make money too. If you want to make money through trading, you need to be sure that you’re making informed decisions. You don’t want to make mistakes. Therefore, you should be using a charting platform.

TradingView offers some of the best tools and functionality we have come across. In this guide, we will show you some tools that we haven’t seen anywhere else. For both these reasons, we believe TradingView is one of the best charting platforms out there.

What Will You Learn?

In this TradingView Guide, we will teach you:

  • How to create an account with TradingView.
  • How to navigate TradingView.
  • How to personalise and set-up your charts with TradingView.
  • How to change time frames and save your chart layouts.
  • How to create and save different watchlists.
  • Where to find the most popular tools.
  • How to connect your broker account with TradingView (if your broker allows this).
  • Chapter 2:
    First Steps

    First things first, let’s look at creating an account! If you already have an account, feel free to skip to the next section where we will show you the different accounts and what they offer.

    How To Create a TradingView Account

    To create an account you can simply follow this link and click “join for for free” in the top right corner. Follow the instructions and that’s it, you’re done! You have successfully created a free account with TradingView.

    The free account gives you access to the following features:

    • Access to the charts.
    • 3 indicators per chart.
    • 1 saved chart layout.
    • 1 indicator template.
    • 1 enhanced watchlist.
    • 1 indicator on indicator.

    Unfortunately, using the free account means you will see the occasional ad. They can be a bit annoying, but they’re not too intrusive. With a paid account you won’t see any adverts.

    You can continue using the free account for this guide, but if you are planning on using TradingView as your charting platform, you are most likely going to want to upgrade to a paid account.

    If you’re not sure about paying for TradingView, we highly recommend utilising the free trial. You’ll have access to all the tools and it should give you plenty of time to get a feel for the software.

    Just remember – the trial will end after a month and you will then be charged for whatever trial you signed up for.

    Luckily for you, TradingView will persuade you to sign up near the end of the trial by offering you a discount. If you want to cancel, go to the billing tab in your profile. Here you’ll see all the subscriptions you have with TradingView and how to cancel them.

    Different Account Types

    TradingView offers 4 types of Accounts (listed in order of cost):

    1. Free account.
    2. Pro account.
    3. Pro+ account.
    4. Premium account.

    If you follow this link and scroll down a little, you can see a comparison of what all the different paid accounts (and the free account) have to offer. This is also the page where you can sign up for the free trial. Remember, the trial will automatically update to a subscription when it ends!

    At, we use the pro account because it offers everything we need for our strategy. We recommend traders upgrade to the pro version as we’ve found this to be the best value package. At the end of the day, you will know best if you would benefit from the added features.

    Chapter 3:
    Tips & Charts

    TradingView has a lot to offer. In this chapter we are going to take you through the main chart area and give you some handy tips and tricks.

    Overview of Charts

    Before we take a look at the charts, here’s a quick tip:

    You can undo almost anything you do on your chart by using the ctrl+z / cmd+z shortcut.

    You can also use the undo arrow on the top toolbar. So if you change something and you realise you a) have no idea what you changed or b) don’t like what you just did, don’t worry, you can instantly undo it!

    In the image above we have labelled the main sections of the TradingView charting platform for you. We’ll be going into more detail for each of these sections later on.

    1. This is the top toolbar where you can find things like timeframes, your account settings, layouts etc.
    2. This left side will be your most used section on TradingView. It houses all the tools you can place on your chart.
    3. This is the main chart area where you’ll be applying all your indicators and tools.
    4. Here you can find your currency pairs and watchlists, as well as some handy tools such as alerts, an economic calendar, and some social tools.
    5. The bottom toolbar is mostly used for notes and testing. It is also where you go to connect your broker account with TradingView, enabling you to enter trades straight from TradingView (if your broker allows this).

    Main Chart Area

    Quick tip! You can use ctrl+c / cmd+c (copy) and ctrl+v / cmd+v (paste)! This comes in very handy when you’re placing things like Support and Resistance areas.

    Whew, if you’ve never used TradingView before, you’re probably seeing a lot of things you don’t like right now. Maybe you hate green candles, or you want a grid. It’s very easy to customise it all.

    Simply right-click in the main area and click on ‘Properties’. This will open up a new window where you can change everything. Here you’ll find things like the price line. Some people like seeing where current price is, whilst others are fine with just having it highlighted on the axis. Simply tick or untick the box next to ‘Price Line’.

    You can also switch from a light theme to a dark theme under the ‘Events & Alerts’ tab. We highly recommend setting some time aside to personalise your charts. It’s always nicer to look at something you actually like!

    If you would like to start with a clean slate and have no indicators or drawing tools on the chart, TradingView makes it very easy to delete everything.

    You can right-click on the main chart area, go to ‘Remove’ and then select ‘All Indicators And Drawing Tools’. This will delete literally everything besides your candles. You can also choose to only remove the indicators, or only remove the drawing tools.

    So, if you ever feel like testing out every single tool, or adding a bunch of indicators to your chart just to see what it looks like, you can easily delete them all! There’s also a button for it on the right hand side.

    This right-click menu holds a lot of features that will come in handy for you. One of those features is the ‘Reset Chart’ feature. If you’ve been messing around with the size of your chart or the period of time you’ve been looking at, you can click ‘Reset Chart’ to go back to the default size as well as the current open candle.

    Another handy feature in the right-click menu is the ‘Add Alert’ feature. This will allow you to add an alert at the exact price point where you right-clicked to begin with. It will open up a new window, where you can then change all the options to your liking. You can still change the value if you want!

    As you can see in the image above, TradingView can send you alerts via e-mail or via SMS. Unfortunately, if you want to get an SMS alert, you need to upgrade to the premium account. Once you’re done, simply click “create” et voila! You’ve got an alert set up.

    Right-clicking also allows you to add the pair you’re looking at to your watchlist. Very quick and easy!

    If you’re going to be using TradingView for cryptotrading, it’s important that you enable the log scale on TradingView. You can do this from the right-click menu, by going to price scale and then clicking on ‘Log Scale’.

    Log Scale in the righ-click menu for TradingView’s chart

    You can also find it at the bottom of your chart. We’ll explain why you should do this in a more advanced TradingView guide.

    There’s obviously way more features in that right-click menu, but if we were to go over every single thing, we’d be here for a whole week. For now, we’ll stick to the ones you’ll find most useful.

    Chapter 4:
    Top Toolbar

    The top toolbar of TradingView has quite a few useful tools. There’s also a couple that you won’t need. In this guide, we’ll only be showing you the essentials.

    To make it easier for you, here’s an image with all the buttons numbered:

    First things first, you probably want to change the bars on your chart. Click the button we have highlighted as number two in the above picture. Most of you will only use this button once to switch from the default bar graphs to whatever your preference is. We prefer Japanese candlesticks, the second option.

    You can find the time frames to the left. We’ve marked these as one in the picture. If you’re using the free version of TradingView, you will not be able to customise these time frames. This will be similar to charting with a broker – frustrating, we know. Luckily, the provided time frames should be a good enough base for you to work from.

    If you are paying for TradingView, you’re one of the lucky ones! You can click the right-hand arrow to change your time frames.

    You’ll notice that when you hover over the different time frames, there’s a star to the right. Clicking the star will highlight it, which means you’ve set that time frame as a favourite. It will be put at the top of your chart, giving you quick and easy access. This will come in handy when you’re doing your analysis. Being able to go through all the different time frames quickly will help you understand what price is doing.

    Here’s a handy little trick for you Pro users, you can simply type a number and this will pop up:

    It will default to minutes, but you can change this by typing ‘d’ for day, ‘w’ for week, and ‘m’ for month after you chose the number you want. For example, if you want to look at the two day time frame, simply type 2d and press enter. This will come in handy when you want to look at a time frame that isn’t one of your favourites and isn’t included in the list.

    The next useful button is the indicator button. We’ve highlighted this button as number three.

    This contains a list of all the indicators used in trading. It’s huge! There’s a built-in list to the right. If you want to look for a specific indicator, you can! Simply type the name of the indicator and all the indicators with that name will pop up. Feel free to mess around and add a few indicators to your chart. You can easily undo this with the ctrl-z (cmd+z on mac) shortcut!

    To the right of the indicator button, you’ll find the templates button (number four) and the alert button (number five).

    The alert button is one of those buttons we think you might use. The name kind of gives it away: this is the button you click to create an alert. It is easier, however, to right-click on the main chart window at the price level for the alert.

    You might remember this from the previous chapter. If you’d rather use the button, you will have to enter the required information yourself. Right-clicking will save you some time and effort, but ultimately it is up to you which one you prefer!

    Finally, we have the top right of the toolbar. The first button that looks like a square (number six) is actually the layout for your main window.

    This function is only available to paying members, but don’t worry! This is more of a quality of life function than a necessity.

    When you click this button, you will see that you can divide the window into different sections. This will allow you to compare different currency or crypto pairs.
    Pro users can compare two pairs, Pro+ users can compare four pairs, and Premium users can compare eight pairs.

    The next button on the list is arguably the most useful button. See the little cloud with ‘Unnamed’ next to it (number seven)? Can you guess what this means? If you guessed this is some kind of cloud-saving feature, you are correct!

    This button allows you to save your chart layouts. With layouts, TradingView doesn’t just mean the pair layouts. Any customisation you have done to your chart can be saved with this feature. Indicators, drawing tools, favourites, you name it.

    Your charts actually save automatically, even when you close your browser. This button allows you to have multiple layouts for different purposes.

    For example, you might want a specific layout for trading cryptocurrencies and a different layout for trading fiat currencies. Again, the amount of layouts you can save depends on your payment plan. You can check how many you can save here.

    If you click on ‘Load Chart Layout’ in the drop down menu, you will see all the layouts you can easily switch between. It’s always a good idea to save at least one layout, just in case anything strange happens to your charts. We haven’t experienced anything like that just yet, but better safe than sorry!

    The last two buttons are your standard ‘Properties’ (number eight) and ‘Fullscreen’ (number nine) buttons. Properties opens up a window with all sorts of customisation options, and the full screen button will put your chart into full screen. To get out of full screen, simply press escape.

    You made it, we’ve gone through the top toolbar! Are you ready for the next one? Keep on reading to see what the right toolbar has to offer you!

    Chapter 5:
    Right Toolbar

    The right hand toolbar has a lot of functions that you won’t need to use as a beginner on TradingView. We will take a look at the functions we believe are the most useful.

    You will be using the right hand side of TradingView quite often. Before we get into it, you can resize the ‘Details’ and ‘Headlines’ boxes to your preference.

    If you don’t want to see these boxes at all, you can drag them down to the bottom and they won’t show you any information at all.

    As you might have guessed, the details box contains some information about the pair you are looking at. The headlines box will show you news related to the pair. Keep in mind that this is not the most reliable or quickest way to find out about news.

    Above these two boxes, you will find the watchlist. This is where you will manage the pairs you want to trade or keep an eye on.

    The watchlist can be customised in a couple of ways. You can click and drag to rearrange the pairs, resize the width, as well as remove and add any pairs you want. You can remove pairs by hovering over them and clicking on the ‘x’ that appears on the right.

    To add a pair, start typing in the ‘Add Symbol’ box to the top right. If you type in BTC for bitcoin a long list of available bitcoin pairs will pop up. Too long, really!

    You can make this list shorter by choosing the right market. For bitcoin, this is obviously cryptocurrencies. If you’re looking for fiat currencies, select the forex tab. For stocks, click on stocks. Pretty easy!

    Another thing to be aware of when choosing your pairs is who the provider of this data is. If you look at the image below, you can see we are trying to add BTCUSD to our watchlist.

    To the far right of all these options there are different company names: Bitfinex, Bitstamp, Coinbase, etc. This tells you who is providing the date for the charts.

    When adding pairs to your TradingView watchlist, it is always best to find your broker’s data. Unfortunately, not all brokers’ data are available. If you can’t find your broker in the list, we recommend you stick with the same broker for all your pairs. You can always choose a popular broker or do a quick google to see who provides the most accurate data.

    The right toolbar also has an option to save watchlists. If you click on the small button to the right of the ‘Add Symbol’ box, you will find options to create, save, and load a watchlist.

    This menu also has your saved watchlists at the bottom for quick and easy switching. Here at, we have a crypto list, a forex list and a commodities list.

    The watchlist section is one of those tools Tradingview provides that you will not find with your broker. These tools allow you to organise your charting in a way that improves your efficiency and the quality of your analysis. This is why you need to use a charting platform that is separate from your broker.

    The next buttons we are going to take a look at are the three buttons to the right of the watchlist.

    The top button is simply your watchlist button. The button underneath it is a list of the current alerts you have set. You can also set alerts from this section, but as mentioned before, it is easier to use the right-click menu.

    The second to last button we want to discuss is the calendar one. You can find it three buttons below the alert button.

    This is an economic calendar that lists upcoming events. It’s pretty useful, though there are better economic calendars out there. It provides a great snapshot of the day’s events, which are essential for day-trading.

    The very last button for this right hand side is the help button.

    If you ever want to contact support or you want to check the shortcuts, this is where you go.

    With that, we are done looking at the right hand side! Phew, what a journey! Next up we’ll go through the left toolbar, which is going to be very important for your charting.

    Chapter 6:
    Left Toolbar

    As mentioned before, the left hand side is going to be important. Here you’ll find all the drawing tools. There’s quite a few buttons here, but in this guide we’ll be covering the essentials.

    All the tools can be added to your favourites toolbar. Simply hover over the tool you want to add and click on the star. If you don’t have the favourite toolbar up you can find it in the right-click menu. Go down to ‘Drawing Tools’ and click ‘Favorite Drawings Toolbar’.

    The very first button is your profile button. Here is where you go to change your profile settings. You probably won’t use this very much, but it is useful to know where it is.

    Below the profile button is the cross hair button. This allows you to change your mouse cursor to a dot, an arrow or a cross hair – whichever one you like the best.

    Next, below the cross hair button, is where you’ll find all the ‘line’ tools. Things like trend lines, vertical lines, as well as the horizontal lines and parallel channels.

    The horizontal line does exactly what the name suggests – it places a horizontal line on your chart. The ‘Parallel Channel’ and the ‘Flat Top/Bottom’ tools allow you to place a highlighted channel on your chart. If you need to place more than one, remember you can use the ctrl-c ctrl-v shortcut. This will save you quite some time when putting down trend lines or support/resistance areas.

    The next few buttons are all buttons that place indicators on your chart or that allow you to draw on your chart and put down shapes. The button with the pitchfork, for instance, has a bunch of different Fibonacci tools for you to explore. Feel free to have a look through each of these!

    The next tools we want to talk about are our favourite on TradingView. We’ve highlighted the button in the image below so it’s easy for you to find:

    This button gives you access to the ‘Long Position’ and ‘Short Position’. These tools are amazing.

    It lets you place your stop loss, entry, and take profit onto your chart with a great visual overlay. On top of that, it will tell you the amount of pips your stop loss and take profit cover, as well as your risk-to-reward ratio (RR).

    With this tool, you don’t need to waste time on calculating your RR – it is right there in front of you. Isn’t that great? Once you’ve placed it down, you can double click on it to open up a window with all the information regarding the trade.

    This tool will save you so much time! As a trader, you know that time equals money. As far as we are aware, TradingView is the only charting platform that provides this tool. Brokers will certainly not offer this!

    If you know of any other charting platform that has this tool, do let us know. We’d be very interested in checking out that platform!

    The ruler button is also a handy tool. It allows you to measure the amount of pips and days a certain area covered. The shortcut for this tool is very easy to remember: simply hold down left shift on your keyboard, then click and drag your mouse.

    All the way at the bottom of the left toolbar is the remove button. It looks like a bin so it’s very easy to remember what this one does. It has to option to remove all drawing tools, remove all indicators, or remove both drawing tools and indicators.

    This wraps up the essential buttons on the left toolbar. There are many buttons we didn’t cover and it might take awhile before you remember where every button is and what it does. It helps to favourite the important ones, and you can always right-click to find some of the same functions. We will be going into more detail on some of these buttons in a more advanced guide.

    Chapter 7:
    Bottom Toolbar

    This toolbar can seem overwhelming at first, but don’t worry! We will help you sort through the most beneficial aspects.

    The bottom toolbar gives you access to a lot of different information and data. Don’t worry, you can resize this area as well if you don’t really care about this information. However, there are some useful things on this toolbar.

    The first is the time zone, which you can find on the right side above the little camera icon. You can change the time zone to whatever zone you want it to be. It will automatically be set to wherever in the world you are. This is great for when you are travelling or if you have an account that is shared between multiple users and computers.

    Next to this you have ‘ext’, ‘%’, ‘log’, and ‘auto’. These are your axis options.

    We mentioned earlier that for cryptos you will want to use the log scale. This is where you can find the button for it, but as we mentioned earlier you can also find it in the right-click menu.

    The camera icon we mentioned before allows you to take a screenshot of your main window. It’s useful for logging your trades, data, or to show others your chart. It will generate an image URL for you right away, and it will also give you the option to save the image or tweet it.

    The ‘Publish Idea’ button is for TradingView’s social aspect, something we will be covering in a different article.

    Over on the left side we have a ‘Go to…’ button. This button is just a really quick way for you to jump to a certain date and/or time. Next to this button there are a few different lengths of time. This is a fast way for you to look at a pair for that specific time span.

    If you click on ‘All’, for example, it will show you the movement of price for the entire time that pair has been tradeable. Depending on which time span you chose, the time frame will also change. This will be handy for those of you who like to trade on bigger time frames, as it will allow you to check what price has done over a certain amount of time.

    The last two essential things you need to know about are the ‘Text Notes’ and ‘Trading Panel’. You can find these underneath the buttons we just saw.

    Text notes allow you to take some notes for pairs, as you probably already guessed.

    The trading panel is a bit more interesting. You can select ‘Paper Trading’ which is basically a demo account within TradingView! If you’ve selected this but want to connect your broker’s account, you will need to click on the cogwheel to the right and choose ‘Select Another Broker’.

    If you’re lucky, your broker allows you to take trades on TradingView without having to log in to your broker’s platform! Unfortunately, there aren’t that many brokers who are partnered with TradingView. Hopefully there will be more in the future!

    To link your accounts, simply click the broker you are with and provide the information TradingView requires. You might have to check your broker’s help section to find exactly what you need. For some, you simply need your login details, whereas for others you might need something called an API key.

    Chapter 8:
    Recap & Future Guides

    TradingView is a great charting platform. While we didn’t cover everything TradingView offers in this guide, you should now be able to use TradingView for your every day charting needs!

    If you are keen to get a bit more in depth with TradingView, we are working on a more advanced guide. You can sign up to our newsletter to receive an e-mail when we’ve published it.

    Here’s a quick list of things that are handy to remember:

    • Messed up and your chart looks all weird? Use ctrl+z or cmd+z to undo!
    • Want everything gone from your charts? Use the bin button!
    • You can easily zoom in and zoom out, by simply scrolling up or down.
    • You can save your chart layouts by clicking on the cloud button!
    • Make sure to star your favourite tools and timeframes.
    • Switch to ‘Log Scale’ for crypto trading!
    • Use the ‘Long Position’ and ‘Short Position’ tools to save yourself precious time.
    • Add alerts quickly by right-clicking at your cursor position!

    We were not paid by TradingView to write this post. We just think TradingView is great and want to share our knowledge with other traders. All TradingView links in this article are affiliate links. This means we will get a small commission if you decide to sign up to TradingView through one of our links. Don’t worry, it won’t cost you anything extra. This small commission will help us create more content!