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Insider Secrets on How to Make Money By Sharing Your Opinions On Online Surveys

Survey review executive shares his best tips and tricks for making $1000s — plus how to dodge scams


Like to be loud and proud about what you think on food, household products, makeup and more? Imagine if you could actually get paid to speak your mind. Great news! You can do online surveys for money, all in the name of market research. As far as side gigs go, online surveys are a fun, empowering and low-commitment way to share your opinion and earn extra cash. No matter where you live or what your background is, companies need feedback from people like you to shape their products, services and advertising. Not only can you help influence today’s biggest brands, but you can also make easy money in your idle time. Best of all, there’s no upfront costs involved — it’s free to sign up for most online survey platforms.

(Click through to see a wide range of ways to make money working from home.)

While online surveys won’t exactly replace your day job, a huge perk is that you can start earning extra income anytime and anywhere, says Dave Riggs of the survey-review site One of the key benefits of online surveys is the sheer flexibility. You could be lounging in your PJs, sipping on some tea and voilà, you’re making money! Read on for the best way to find, set-up for and fill out surveys for money — and how three real-life women made a bundle doing it!

The best practices for surveys for money

Just visit survey websites (we list 6 scam-free ones below) and fill out your profile. (Note: Riggs says you should never pay to sign up — there are plenty of fee-free sites.) It’s important to complete each profile thoroughly since marketers use the forms to determine if
you’re a good match for their surveys — the more information you provide, the more likely you’ll get picked! Also important: Update your profiles every six months or so. Had a baby? Moved? Bought a new car, iPad or laptop? All those changes could qualify you for more surveys! Insider tip: set up a new e-mail address just for surveys, which makes it easier to spot each survey request and max out your earnings potential! 

Surveys for money: Getting to grips with the vast world online

Riggs suggests accepting the first five or so survey requests you receive from a company, no matter how little they pay or how long they take. This lets the company know you’re serious about participating, which will put you on track to get additional surveys that pay more.

Also, pick a time when you know you can focus on completing the survey properly, he adds. If you start answering questions and get interrupted or lose track of the time — oops! — the survey (and all the work you already did) can time out, giving you no chance to reenter or collect money for your effort. That also means not whizzing through: Some companies will shut you out of a survey (and not pay you) if they determine you haven’t given each question its proper due.

“First and foremost, be honest,” recommends Riggs. “If survey providers notice a discrepancy in your responses, you’ll receive fewer surveys. But if you’re an active user who provides detailed responses, you’ll be rewarded by getting more survey opportunities—and more free samples, too!” 

The key to success is to find surveys that strike the balance between the time spent and money earned. While longer surveys pay more, they often require specific qualifications, since companies need insights from particular target demographics. Don’t be frustrated if you don’t fit the bill — with so many platform options, there’s always another opportunity around the corner.

How to avoid online survey for money scams

While online surveys are a great way to pad your wallet, it’s important to be cautious of scams. Phony surveys can give scammers access to personal information, so be wary of opportunities that sound too good to be true (i.e. offering outsized or instant rewards for answering just a few questions). You’ll also want to steer clear of surveys with a high time requirement and low payout, says Riggs.

To verify that a company is legitimate, check review sites such as Google, Trustpilot, or the Better Business Bureau. It’s also a good idea to check the website’s privacy policy to find out exactly what is happening with the information you’re providing. And always trust your instincts — if the survey is requesting information that feels too personal or intrusive, it’s best to simply exit the form and close out your browser.

6 free online survey for money platforms

Ready to profit from sharing your opinion? Signing up for a few different options is a practical way to maximize your earning potential. Read on for some of the best online survey platforms to start making money today!

1. Legit online surveys for money: Swagbucks

Surveys for money: Happy Caucasian Businesswoman Sitting at a cafe

Thanks to its user-friendly interface and tens of thousands of survey topics to choose from, Swagbucks is one of the most popular platforms. It currently has over 20 million active members, and it’s free and easy to sign up. 

With Swagbucks, you can choose to cash out your earnings or to earn rewards that you can redeem for gift cards. In addition to taking surveys, Swagbucks also offers other fun ways to earn, like watching videos, trying free products, shopping online, and more.

2. Best online surveys for money: Branded Surveys

With a 4.1 rating on Trustpilot, Branded Surveys is a trusted website where over three million users earn cash and rewards for sharing their opinion. Branded Surveys has paid out over $44 million dollars to their community for taking simple surveys with Fortune 500 companies like Walmart, Apple and more.

Want to get in on the action? It takes only a few minutes to create a profile. After answering basic questions about yourself, you’ll get matched with survey options that generally range from five to 15 minutes. You can earn up to $5 per survey for sharing your feedback, and you’ll get paid within 48 hours of your payout being processed.

3. Free online surveys for money: InboxDollars

You can earn your first $5 on InboxDollars just for signing up! This platform will pay you from $0.50 to upwards of $20 for taking surveys for their brand partners. Plus, there’s opportunities to earn more from watching short video clips, reading emails and playing games.

4. Best online surveys for money: User Interviews

Surveys for money: Young smiling woman with bluetooth headphones having video call at home -

User Interviews is a recruiting platform that connects companies like Spotify, Pinterest, Adobe and more to willing research participants. Anyone over the age of 18 can create a free profile. Once you sign up, you can browse studies that interest you and throw your hat in the ring to be selected. You’ll have access to all of the details before you apply (i.e. exactly how much each study will take and how much it pays).

User Interviews adds around 2,500 new studies per month, with the average study paying $65. According to their website, the average participant qualifies for their first study within 24 hours of signing up.

5. Legit online surveys for money: Survey Junkie

Survey Junkie is yet another trusted website where you can share your opinions to earn rewards. Survey Junkie points can be redeemed for valuable rewards including cash through PayPal or bank transfer and gift cards for Amazon, Target, Walmart, Sephora, Starbucks, Visa, iTunes, etc.

According to their website, you can earn up to $40 monthly by taking three surveys per day. Not a bad way to kill idle time.

6. Best online surveys for money: Dscout

Businesswoman Filling Online Survey On Mobile Phone

Dscout pays more than 100,000 “scouts” to complete fun “missions” that help influence top brands. You can do the missions, which can pay up to $200, from anywhere. To create your scout account, download the dscout app on your smartphone. Then, you’ll be able to apply for the missions that interest you. The options include diary missions (completing multiple tasks over a series of days), live missions (one-on-one video sessions with researchers)or express missions (which let you earn rewards right away). Even better, Dscout pays promptly via PayPal.

Best online surveys for money success stories

1. Kelly Land: “I make $1,000 a month taking surveys!”

Kelly Land did surveys for money
Steven McBride Photography

When her kids were younger, 55-year-old Kelly Land needed a job that let her make her own schedule. While searching online, she ended up signing up at sites like, where she could earn points by taking a survey or watching a mock-up ad and answering questions.

“I’ve done surveys on cars, cat food and online shopping. They ask demographic questions, then ones like, ‘How often do you buy groceries?’ Answering surveys takes from 1 to 45 minutes,” she explains.

“There’s no investment to do these programs, and the sign-up process is typically simple, so it’s a great way to earn a decent supplemental income. I bring in anywhere from $225 a month to well over $1,000, and the money helps my family out in so many ways, from buying my son’s college textbooks to paying for summer camp for my daughter. There’s a steady flow of cash as the checks trickle in, plus some programs allow you to earn points that can be used to snag gift cards to Starbucks and other stores and restaurants.

“Sometimes I work in the early morning, and sometimes I work late into the night. I love being able to get up from my desk whenever I want. If I feel like it, I can even take a 30-minute walk. And after doing this for a while, it occurred to me that these days, everyone is struggling to make ends meet, so I started my own website,, where I post my secrets and offer tips on how to earn money online. I’m always updating the site to try to help others add cash to their bottom line.” — as told to Lorraine Sullivan

2. Linda Barron: I make up to $670 a month giving my opinion!”

Linda Barron

Several years ago, when her husband was deployed to Iraq, Linda Barron wasn’t working and wanted to pass the time and make some money. While searching Craigslist, she found opportunities for focus groups, and realized making money sharing her opinion would be the perfect gig. 

“I started with ones I found on craigslist, then signed up with market research companies to be notified of new focus groups,” says Barron. “I also use apps like MyPoints and Dscout and visit, a site that has legitimate and verified paid opportunities. Larger cities have more focus groups, and now that they’re all virtual, I can participate in more.”

“One of my favorite focus groups is mock juries, where I give my opinion about the case, and whether I think those on trial would be convicted or if they’re liable. I’ve also participated in focus groups about osteoporosis, hotels, football teams, the military, the environment and politics.”

“I get paid by check, PayPal, an Amazon gift card or an online debit card. I love giving my opinion and listening to others’ perspectives, and it’s so much fun! I participate in about four or five focus groups a week, and I usually do them during my lunch hour so it doesn’t interfere with my work. I make up to $670 a month — money that allows me to try new restaurants, shop online and save!” — as told to Julie Revelant

3. Monique Steffani:“I get paid up to $300 an hour to review products!”

Monique Steffani does surveys for money

Monique Steffani works full-time as a clinical educator at a hospital, but was looking to make extra money. When friends told her about, a company that pays you to answer questions for companies doing product development. “I immediately filled out an application, which included my education and area of expertise. The great thing about Maven is that you can consult for any of their industries, including healthcare, education and food, but don’t need a certain level of education or experience to make money.”

“Companies send information about a product and ask if I think it’s necessary or if it should be improved. They might also ask me about a process and how it’s used where I work. Pay varies based on the company and the amount of time the survey takes, but I make between $90 and $300 for about 45 minutes of work. If I refer someone who has more expertise than me on a topic, I get a referral bonus.”

“I love working for Maven, because I can do it from home on my own schedule. The money I make pays for new clothes, manicures or a day at the spa!” 

For more work from home jobs, click through the links below!

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