The digital age has opened up countless avenues to earn money online. A quick search will reveal myriad methods promising cash rewards, from freelance work to eCommerce and even blogging. However, a convenient and straightforward method often appearing in these searches is taking online surveys.
But it begs the question, can you actually make money taking online surveys? In this blog post, we’ll delve into the viability of online surveys as a way to earn some extra cash and explore ten trusted platforms.
The Truth About Online Surveys
Online surveys are a method businesses use to gather data about consumer habits, preferences, and perceptions. They are willing to pay for this valuable data, and that’s where you come in. But how much can you realistically make?
Well, online surveys won’t make you a millionaire and won’t replace a full-time income. However, they can serve as a means to earn a bit of extra cash or gift cards in your spare time. Earnings typically vary based on the length and complexity of the survey and the platform used.
Top 10 Platforms for Paid Surveys
Swagbucks, a leading platform in the realm of paid online surveys, has attracted millions of users worldwide, including a substantial user base in the United States. Offering a diverse range of money-making opportunities, Swagbucks has grown in popularity due to its flexibility, rewarding system, and overall user experience.
How it works
Swagbucks operates on a points system, where users earn “Swagbucks” (SB) – the platform’s digital currency – for performing various activities. These activities include taking surveys, watching videos, playing games, online shopping, and even using the Swagbucks search engine.
Signing up for Swagbucks is straightforward and free. Upon creating an account, U.S. users can start earning SB immediately. Sometimes, Swagbucks also offers a sign-up bonus as an extra incentive.
- Taking Surveys: Swagbucks offers numerous surveys daily across various topics. The number of SB you can earn from each survey varies, depending on its length and complexity.
- Watching Videos: You can earn SB by watching curated video playlists on various topics. While this might not be the quickest way to earn SB, it’s easy to use in your downtime.
- Playing Games: Swagbucks provides a variety of games you can play to earn SB. Some of these are free, while others require a small investment.
- Online Shopping: If you shop online, you can earn SB by making purchases at partner stores through the Swagbucks website or by using SwagButton, a browser extension.
- Using the Swagbucks Search Engine: You can earn SB by simply using Swagbucks’ search engine for your regular web searches.
Once you’ve accumulated a sufficient amount of SB, you can redeem them for a variety of rewards. Swagbucks offers a range of redemption options, including gift cards for popular retailers like Amazon, Walmart, and iTunes, or cash payments through PayPal.
Swagbucks presents a multi-faceted approach to earning money online. Integrating it into your daily routine, like making it your primary search engine or taking surveys while watching TV, allows you to accumulate SB and convert them into valuable rewards over time.
Survey Junkie is one of the premier survey platforms for people looking to earn extra cash online. With its straightforward interface and a strong reputation for fairness and transparency, it has become a favorite among U.S residents for making money through online surveys.
How It Works
Survey Junkie operates on a points system. Users earn points by completing surveys, and these points can be converted into cash or gift cards.
Signing up with Survey Junkie is a simple, free process. Once you provide your details and answer some demographic questions, you’re ready to start taking surveys. The platform uses this demographic information to match you with relevant surveys.
- Taking Surveys: Once you’ve signed up, you can start taking surveys. The number of points you earn per survey varies depending on the length and complexity of the survey. The platform clearly states the number of points you will earn and the estimated completion time before you start a survey, so you can decide if it’s worth your time.
- Profile Surveys: Survey Junkie also offers profile surveys, which are small surveys that help the platform understand you better. While they pay less than regular surveys, they increase your chances of being matched with higher-paying surveys in the future.
- Product Testing: Occasionally, you may get opportunities to test products. Product testing assignments usually pay more than regular surveys.
- Focus Groups: From time to time, Survey Junkie provides opportunities to participate in focus groups. Like product testing, focus groups typically pay more than regular surveys but also require more time and effort.
Once you’ve earned a minimum of 1,000 points (equivalent to $10), you can redeem your points for cash via PayPal or e-Giftcards. The e-Giftcards option includes popular retailers such as Amazon and Target.
Survey Junkie offers a user-friendly platform for making money by taking online surveys. While it won’t make you rich, it can provide a steady stream of small earnings that can add up over time.
InboxDollars is an established platform in the world of paid online activities, serving as a great way to earn a little extra money during spare moments. For U.S. residents interested in such an opportunity, let’s take a closer look at InboxDollars and how it works.
How It Works
InboxDollars provides a range of online activities that users can participate in to earn real cash rewards. Unlike many other platforms, InboxDollars does not operate on a points system; users earn actual dollars for their activities, providing a straightforward understanding of your earnings.
Getting started with InboxDollars is free and easy. Simply provide your email address, create a password, and fill out a brief demographic survey to tailor your experience. As a bonus, InboxDollars offers a $5 sign-up bonus to new U.S. users.
- Taking Surveys: As with other platforms, you can earn money by completing online surveys on InboxDollars. The payout varies based on the length and complexity of the survey.
- Reading Emails: InboxDollars also offers the unique feature of paying users to read emails. These “PaidEmails” feature offers from InboxDollars’ partners, and you’ll earn a small amount of money for each email you open and confirm.
- Online Shopping: Like many similar platforms, InboxDollars offers cash back for online shopping at hundreds of partner retailers, providing a great way to earn money on purchases you were already planning to make.
- Playing Games: Inbox Dollars offers a variety of online games where you can earn money as you play. These include arcade games, card games, and even popular game show games.
To sum up, Inbox Dollars offers a diversified platform for U.S. residents looking to make some extra cash online. With a range of money-making activities and a straightforward cash reward system, it’s a valid choice for those wanting to turn their free time into earnings.
Vindale Research stands out in the landscape of online survey platforms due to its high-paying surveys and commitment to dealing in cash instead of points. It’s an attractive option for U.S. residents looking to make a little extra money online. Here’s a detailed look at how Vindale Research operates.
How It Works
Vindale Research follows a more traditional market research approach, providing comprehensive surveys on a wide variety of subjects. The platform pays in cash, eliminating the need to convert points into dollars. The potential earnings for each survey are displayed upfront, so you know exactly what to expect.
Creating an account on Vindale Research is straightforward and free of charge. Upon signing up, you’ll have to fill out a demographic questionnaire, which helps the platform match you with suitable surveys. Additionally, Vindale offers a $1 bonus just for signing up.
- Taking Surveys: Earning money through Vindale Research primarily involves taking online surveys. The platform offers a wide range of surveys on topics like cars, politics, or popular products. The pay for each survey can range anywhere from $0.50 to $50, depending on the length and complexity.
- Product Testing: From time to time, Vindale Research offers opportunities for product testing. You’ll receive a product to test at home, and then you’ll complete a survey about the product. These opportunities are infrequent but pay more than typical surveys.
- Referral Program: Vindale Research offers one of the highest-paying referral programs in the survey industry. You can earn $5 for every friend that signs up for Vindale Research using your referral link and completes a survey.
Vindale Research’s payment threshold is set at $50, which is relatively high compared to other survey platforms. However, the higher pay rate for individual surveys makes reaching this threshold achievable.
Payments are made through PayPal, which adds to the convenience factor. In conclusion, Vindale Research is a highly reputable platform for U.S. residents looking to earn money by taking online surveys.
MyPoints has been around since 1996, making it one of the oldest online rewards programs. It provides various ways for U.S. residents to earn money online, ranging from shopping and watching videos to taking surveys. Here’s a closer look at how MyPoints works.
How It Works
Like many other similar platforms, MyPoints works on a points system. Users earn points for completing various activities and can later exchange these points for cash, travel miles, or gift cards.
Signing up for MyPoints is free and straightforward. Just provide your email address, create a password, and complete a short profile to get started. MyPoints even offers a sign-up bonus to sweeten the deal.
- Taking Surveys: Surveys are a key way to earn points on MyPoints. The platform offers a variety of surveys, and the points you earn per survey depend on its length and complexity.
- Shopping Online: You can earn points by shopping at over 2,000 top retailers through MyPoints. You’ll earn a certain number of points per dollar spent, which varies by retailer.
- Watching Videos: MyPoints offers curated video playlists on various topics. While watching videos isn’t the fastest way to earn points, it’s easy to use during downtime.
- Reading Emails: Known as ‘Bonus Mail’, My Points will occasionally send emails containing special offers. You’ll earn a few points by simply clicking on the email to read the offer.
When you’re ready to cash out, My Points offers various options. You can exchange your points for cash via PayPal, for gift cards to popular retailers, or for travel miles on United MileagePlus. The conversion rate varies depending on the reward option you choose.
Pinecone Research is a leading name in the online survey space, renowned for its high-paying surveys and product testing opportunities. It’s a preferred choice for U.S residents looking for a reliable and rewarding online survey platform. Let’s dive deeper into how Pinecone Research works.
How It Works
Pinecone Research primarily focuses on product research, gathering consumer opinion through surveys about potential new products. This focus means that being a member of Pinecone Research can be quite interesting as you get to see and influence products before they hit the market.
Unlike other platforms, you can’t just sign up at the Pinecone Research website. Membership is invite-only, which makes it a bit exclusive. The best way to join is to find a signup link, which can often be found on other survey sites or via an internet search. The signup process includes filling out a detailed demographic profile so Pinecone can match you with relevant surveys.
- Taking Surveys: Once you become a member, you’ll receive survey invitations via email. Each survey typically pays around $3, which is higher than most other survey sites. The payment is also flat-rate, meaning it doesn’t vary based on the length or complexity of the survey.
- Product Testing: In addition to paid surveys, Pinecone Research offers opportunities for product testing. They’ll mail you a product to test and then complete a survey about. Product testing pays even more than surveys, typically around $6, and you also get to keep the product.
Pinecone Research is that there’s no minimum cash out amount. You can get paid via PayPal, check, or choose from various gift cards. Payments are typically processed quickly, usually within 3-5 business days.
Pinecone Research offers U.S. residents an exclusive and highly rewarding platform for making money online through surveys and product testing. While finding a signup link may take a little effort, the potential rewards make it well worth the effort.
LifePoints is a widely recognized online survey platform used by millions across the globe. For U.S. residents seeking to monetize their spare time through online surveys, LifePoints offers a reliable and rewarding option. Let’s delve deeper into the workings of LifePoints.
How It Works
Life Points conducts surveys on a multitude of topics ranging from consumer goods to travel, enabling companies to gain insights for their market research. The platform operates on a points system, with users earning Life Points for survey completion, which can later be redeemed for various rewards.
The sign-up process on LifePoints is free and straightforward. You provide your email, create a password, and answer a few demographic questions. The latter helps LifePoints match you with relevant surveys.
Earning Life Points
- Taking Surveys: LifePoints offers a multitude of surveys daily. The points you earn for a survey depend on its length and complexity, but each survey’s estimated completion time and reward are provided upfront.
- Mini-polls and Diaries: Occasionally, LifePoints offers mini-polls on their site or asks users to keep a ‘diary’ of specific habits or behaviors for more points. These activities provide a fun and engaging way to earn extra points.
- Testing Products: At times, you may get a chance to test products and earn points. Though these opportunities are not as regular, they offer a higher point reward.
Once you accumulate enough LifePoints, you can redeem them for various rewards. The options include cash via PayPal, e-gift cards for retailers like Amazon and Starbucks, or charity donations. The minimum balance required for redemption depends on the chosen reward.
In conclusion, Life Points provides U.S. residents with a platform to share their opinions and earn rewards. Its user-friendly interface and many surveys and reward options make it a lucrative choice for those interested in making money online.
Toluna Influencers is part of the larger Toluna Group, a leading market research company. It offers a unique blend of survey-taking and social networking, making it an engaging way for U.S. residents to earn money online. Here’s a detailed look at how Toluna Influencers works.
How It Works
Toluna operates on a points system, with users earning points for completing surveys and other activities. These points can later be exchanged for cash or gift cards. The platform also has a social element, allowing users to create and participate in polls and discussions with other members.
Joining Toluna Influencers is free and easy. You need to provide your email address, create a password, and fill out a basic profile. Toluna even gives you a sign-up bonus of 500 points.
- Taking Surveys: Toluna offers a wide range of surveys, and the points you earn depend on the survey’s length and complexity. Toluna provides an estimated completion time for each survey, so you’ll know what to expect.
- Creating Content: Toluna encourages users to create their own polls and opinion topics, for which you can also earn points. It’s an engaging way to interact with the community and earn points simultaneously.
- Product Testing: Toluna occasionally offers opportunities to test and provide product feedback. It’s a great way to try new products and earn extra points.
When you’ve earned enough points, you can redeem them for cash via PayPal or for gift cards from popular retailers like Amazon. The minimum payout threshold is 30,000 points, equivalent to $10.
Toluna Influencers offers an engaging and multifaceted platform for U.S. residents to earn money online. The blend of surveys, social interaction, and product testing makes it an attractive choice for those wanting to earn money while sharing their opinions.
OneOpinion is a popular survey site that rewards its members for their opinions. It’s a preferred choice for U.S. residents who want to earn money online by sharing their thoughts on products and services. Let’s dive deeper into how OneOpinion works.
How It Works
OneOpinion operates on a points system, where users earn points for each completed survey. Once a certain number of points are accumulated, they can be redeemed for cash or gift cards.
Signing up for OneOpinion is completely free. You must provide basic information like your name, email, and demographic data. After signing up, you can start taking surveys immediately.
- Taking Surveys: The main way to earn points on OneOpinion is by taking surveys. The surveys cover a wide range of topics, and you’ll receive an email invitation when a survey that matches your profile becomes available. The number of points you earn per survey depends on its length and complexity.
- Product Testing: Occasionally, OneOpinion offers opportunities for product testing. These opportunities are rarer than surveys but can provide a more substantial number of points. If you are chosen to test a product, it will be mailed to you, and you will be asked to provide feedback after using it.
Once you reach 25,000 points (equivalent to $25), you can redeem your points for cash via PayPal or for gift cards from various retailers, including Amazon and Visa. One significant benefit of One Opinion is that you’ll still receive points for your time if you disqualify from a survey.
To conclude, One Opinion offers U.S. residents a straightforward and rewarding platform through surveys and product testing to earn money online. Its user-friendly interface, diverse survey topics, and fair compensation policies make it a viable option for those looking to monetize their free time.
YouGov is a global research firm and survey site known for its data contributions to news media, governments, and businesses. It allows U.S. residents to earn money online by voicing their opinions on various topics. Here’s a more in-depth look at how YouGov works.
How It Works
YouGov operates using a points system, rewarding participants with points for each completed survey. These points can be accumulated and later exchanged for various rewards.
Creating an account with YouGov is simple and free. You’ll be required to provide your email address and basic demographic information. After you’ve signed up, YouGov offers a welcome survey, which gives you your first points.
- Taking Surveys: The primary way to earn points with YouGov is by participating in their surveys. Surveys cover an extensive range of topics, from politics to shopping habits. The amount of points you receive depends on the survey’s length and complexity.
- YouGov Pulse: YouGov Pulse is an app that runs in the background of your device and tracks your browsing habits anonymously. It provides an additional way to earn points, and the data collected helps businesses understand internet trends and patterns.
- Referrals: YouGov has a referral program. You receive bonus points for every person you refer who completes 4 surveys.
Once you’ve earned a certain number of points, you can redeem them for various rewards. These include bank transfers, gift cards to popular retailers like Amazon, and even charitable donations.
Overall, YouGov offers an appealing way for U.S. residents to earn money online by sharing their views. It’s a platform to earn rewards and an opportunity to contribute to research and data that influences decisions in the news media, public policy, and more.
Vindale Research is a well-established online survey site, operating since 2005, known for its high-paying surveys. For U.S. residents looking to earn money online, Vindale Research offers an attractive opportunity. Here’s an in-depth explanation of how Vindale Research operates.
How It Works
Unlike many other survey sites, Vindale Research operates on a cash system instead of points. This means you’ll see your rewards as dollar amounts, eliminating the need to convert points into cash or gift cards.
Signing up for Vindale Research is straightforward and free. You’ll need to provide your name, email, and demographic information. After registration, you can start taking surveys that match your profile.
- Taking Surveys: The primary way to earn money with Vindale Research is by taking surveys. Survey topics are diverse, and the amount you earn depends on the survey length and complexity. Vindale Research is known for its high-paying surveys, with some paying as much as $50.
- Watching Videos and Giving Feedback: Vindale also offers paid videos. This involves watching promotional videos or adverts and then providing feedback. It’s a simple and engaging way to earn money.
- Referrals: Vindale Research has a referral program that pays $5 for every friend you refer who signs up and completes a survey.
- Reward Mail: You can opt to receive promotional emails, and you’ll get paid for opening and interacting with these emails.
Vindale Research has a high payout threshold compared to other survey sites – you need to earn $50 before you can request a payout. This may take a bit of time, but considering the high-paying surveys, it’s achievable. You can choose to be paid via PayPal or by check.
Ipsos i-Say is part of Ipsos, a global market research firm. It’s a favorite choice for U.S. residents wanting to earn money online by taking surveys. Let’s delve deeper into how Ipsos i-Say operates.
How It Works
Ipsos i-Say operates on a points system, with users earning points for each completed survey. These points can be accumulated and later redeemed for various rewards, including cash and gift cards.
Signing up for Ipsos i-Say is simple and free. You’ll need to provide your email address, create a password, and fill out a demographic profile to help match you with relevant surveys.
- Taking Surveys: The primary way to earn points on Ipsos i-Say is by taking surveys. These surveys cover a broad range of topics, from consumer products to current events. The number of points you earn per survey depends on the survey’s length and complexity.
- Referrals: Ipsos i-Say also offers a referral program. For each friend you refer who signs up and completes a survey, you earn a certain number of points.
- Contests and Polls: Occasionally, Ipsos i-Say runs contests or offers quick polls, providing additional ways to earn points.
Once you’ve earned enough points, you can redeem them for various rewards. Options include cash payouts via PayPal, e-gift cards from popular retailers, or donations to charity. The minimum payout threshold varies depending on the reward you choose.
Ipsos i-Say provides a straightforward and rewarding platform for U.S. residents to earn money online through surveys. Its user-friendly interface, wide variety of surveys, and flexible rewards options make it attractive for those looking to monetize their spare time.
Sure, here’s a table that summarizes the key points about each survey site:
|Site||Signing Up||Earning Opportunities||Cash Out Options|
|Swagbucks||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, web search, online shopping, watching videos, playing games||PayPal cash, e-gift cards|
|InboxDollars||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, reading emails, watching videos, online shopping, playing games||Check, e-gift cards, prepaid VISA|
|Survey Junkie||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, product testing||PayPal cash, bank transfer, e-gift cards|
|Pinecone Research||Free, but by invitation||Surveys, product testing||PayPal cash, e-gift cards, check|
|LifePoints||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, mini-polls, diaries, product testing||PayPal cash, e-gift cards, charity donations|
|Toluna Influencers||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, creating content, product testing||PayPal cash, e-gift cards|
|OneOpinion||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, product testing||PayPal cash, e-gift cards|
|YouGov||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, YouGov Pulse, referrals||Bank transfers, e-gift cards, charity donations|
|Vindale Research||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, watching videos and giving feedback, referrals, reward mail||PayPal cash, check|
|Ipsos i-Say||Free, email and basic info||Surveys, referrals, contests and polls||PayPal cash, e-gift cards, charity donations|
Remember, while these sites can provide a nice boost to your income, they’re not likely to replace a full-time job. But for a few extra dollars and a way to make your opinion heard, they’re certainly worth your time.
How much money can I realistically earn from taking online surveys?
The amount you can earn from taking online surveys varies widely depending on the survey site, the length and complexity of the surveys, and the amount of time you’re willing to dedicate. While some sites offer high-paying surveys of up to $50, these are rare. On average, expect to earn anywhere from $0.50 to $3 per survey. Remember, online surveys are best viewed as a way to make a bit of extra cash in your spare time, rather than a full-time income source.
Are online survey sites safe to use?
Do I have to pay taxes on the money I earn from online surveys?
In the United States, any income earned, including money from online surveys, is subject to income tax. Survey companies will send a 1099 form if you earn more than $600 in a year. Even if you don’t receive a 1099 form, it’s still your responsibility to report your earnings when you file your taxes.
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I am Hannah, an online entrepreneur based in New York, United States. As the founder of several successful niche websites, I got the expertise in areas such as making money online, blogging, YouTube, affiliate marketing, and more. Through this website and blog posts, I am trying to provide insightful and actionable tips to help aspiring entrepreneurs, find ways to make money online. Read more.