Online Surveys for Money Reviews
Looking for the highest-paying legit surveys for money? As someone that has been an active participant in paid surveys for over 6-years, I’ve had my fair share of ups and downs (and have even been the victim of a scam or two). I put together this comprehensive guide to help you quickly find the best panels on the internet.
The 5 Best Survey Panels
First up on our list of well-paying online paid surveys is My Survey.
This site is older and more established than most of the others out there.
In fact, they were originally known as NFO and began collecting consumer opinions over 50-years ago. Even better, this site has outstanding payouts and interesting surveys. They specialize in product testing and online focus groups.
Want to learn more? You can check out my recent MySurvey.com review.
InboxDollars.com is a brand new entry in the Survey Spencer list. Due to the fact that this site actually pays in cash (instead of nearly-useless points or rewards) they cracked the top 5 for the first time this week (and their $5 sign up bonus doesn’t hurt either). Worth a look.
VIP Voice (formerly NPD Online Research) has been conducting market research since 1967. Their age is a huge asset as they’re able to provide survey panelists with surveys that no other site has. Actually, I just posted a VIP Voice Review in case you’re interested in learning more.
This tried-and-true panel rounds out the top 5. Because their surveys tend to pay well above the industry average, I recommend adding Opinion Outpost to your list of “go-to” survey sites.
Because they pay on-time (and in cash), I’ve recently bumped Vindale from #6 to the #5 spot in my survey panel rankings. Definitely worth joining (it’s free).
Here’s the criteria that I used to rank each panel:
- The most important factor that I used to judge each survey panel was their rewards relative to other survey sites. Or put another way, how much they pay in terms of rewards points and cash! As this is what drives people to take surveys in the first place I wanted to make sure that this is where I put my emphasis.
- Next, I judged the quality of the panel in terms of customer support and how well they treated their members. If their customer service team was prompt and respectful I gave them a thumb’s up! On the other hand, ignored emails and hard-to-find contact information was also taken into consideration.
- Finally, I noted how often they emailed me about survey opportunities on a regular basis. Sure, it’s nice to have high-paying survey opportunities…but it doesn’t do much good if they only come around once every two-weeks.
How Paid Online Surveys Work
When most people hear about paid surveys, one of the first questions that comes to their mind is: “Why would anyone pay me just to tick off boxes on my PC?”. That’s a good question as (admittedly), taking online surveys for money is pretty easy and doesn’t seem like a normal way to make money online.
However, it’s important to understand that businesses spend $18.7 billion worldwide on market research every single year. While not all of this goes towards survey-based research, a fair amount of it does.
These businesses know full well that people aren’t going to take time out of their busy schedule in order to help some market research company. Therefore they have to give them an incentive, whether it be cash, sweepstakes entries or redeemable rewards points.
Secrets to Success
If you want to succeed with paid surveys you need to be able to do two things very, very well: avoid scams and maximize your payment per hour.
Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to separate legit online surveys for money sites from potential scams…once you know what to look for.
Here’s how to do it:
Let’s say you’re searching the internet for free online surveys for money and come across a paid survey panel that you haven’t heard of before.
How can you possibly know whether or not to trust the site?
Before you take your first survey for money or hand over contact information, check for reviews on trusted sites like Wikipedia. While not as thorough as I’d like it to be, their entry on paid surveys generally contains reputable advice and insights.
Also, you want to check if the site is registered with organizations like the BBB. This will tell you if they’re a legitimate enterprise that people have positive experiences with…or a shady site that rips people off.
You may also want to find out if the panel is officially accredited by the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research, the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, or the Council of American Survey Research Organizations.
These reputable organizations give their stamp of approval to panels with a long-standing reputation of excellence. Any panel you see endorsed by any (or all) of these groups should be considered trustworthy.
How to Maximize Your Earnings
Because each survey you complete only pays up to $25 (and averages at about $.50-$1) you need to be very productive if you plan to earn a significant amount of money from them.
One thing that’s helped me a lot is to set time aside just for filling out surveys. It’s very easy to get distracted by instant messages and text messages, especially when a survey isn’t interesting to you.
But if you can eliminate these distractions you’ll likely find that you fill out surveys for money faster and more thoroughly. Another incentive to keep you focused is that if you do a consistently good job, you may find that you get invited to fun, high-paying surveys such as product testing and online focus groups.
Join as Many (Legit) Survey Panels As You Can
If you’re serious about earning extra money from paid surveys, you need to keep this fact in mind:
“The more survey panels you join, the more money you’ll make”
In other words, you need to join every reputable survey panel you can.
While it’s possible to make decent money from a single online surveys for cash panel, no one website is going to become your personal cash cow, no matter how well they happen to pay.
Because most panels target specific demographics, you may only qualify for 4-5 surveys per week per site. The number of panels you choose to join depends on how much you’re interested in making and how much time you have on your hands.
For some, this means 4-5 panels. But for people that are genuinely crazy about online surveys for money (like me!), you may want to join 20-30. The downside of joining this many panels you’ll need to stay organized, which means keeping track of your panel information in a spreadsheet and dedicating a special email address for survey panel-related correspondence.
You’ll also have to be quick in order to get access to the highest-paying surveys. I can say from years of first-hand experience that many high-paying survey invitations open their doors for a very limited amount of time. As you may expect, people rush towards the opportunity as soon as the invitation is sent out. If you’re late, you’re out of luck.
I recommend linking your primary survey email with a smartphone so you’re notified of invitations even if you aren’t near your computer. Some panels even allow you to take surveys on your mobile device!
Another nifty trick I’ve picked up over the last few months is to follow your top panels on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. Sometimes they send out news, contest information and exclusive surveys for money to their social media followers instead of via email.
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