There are a ton of paid survey sites out there. Many of them look like they were made in 1990 and shady as all get out.
How do you know if a company is legitimate or a scam? How do avoid the ones that keep asking you qualification questions, that look like survey questions, and DQ you? It’s hard.
You have to dig a little deeper and here at Wallet Hacks, we love digging. We dug deeper when we showed how market research and advance cashiers check scams work. We dug deeper when we learned how survey sites scam you by asking you to “pay to join” them.
So we’re going to dig into five survey sites that are legit. They will pay you (they’ve paid me and countless others), they’re backed by major market research corporations you’ll recognize, and they don’t play games.
Table of Contents
1. SurveyJunkie [BEST OPTION]
SurveyJunkie is the online survey arm of ActiveMeasure and they are a survey company that only does surveys – no points for answering emails, watching videos, or fulfilling offers you have to cancel.
They offer all kinds of market research surveys from those you complete in a few minutes online to those that involve a journal, a phone call, or testing out a product. You get to choose what you’re interested in so if you want a phone survey, you can take a phone survey (if you qualify).
They have a huge supply of surveys at any one time and they will pay you even if you do not qualify for a survey. There is a points system but it translates directly to cash, 100 points is worth $1 and you can cash out at $10. You can get cash via PayPal or opt for an e-GiftCard.
2. Swagbucks – $5 bonus
Swagbucks is probably one of the well-known reward sites today. Born out of an era of paid-to-surf sites and cashback portals, Swagbucks is different in that they have nearly every single way to earn money interacting on the internet.
You can get cashback through their shopping portal, you earn points for searching the web (Yahoo search), answering surveys, watching videos, playing games, printing coupons, fulfilling offers, installing their toolbar/extensions – you name it.
Surveys are just a small piece of the puzzle. The best part about the surveys is that the qualification questions are typically short, there to confirm you’re not breezing through it, and you can still earn points if you don’t qualify. You will not answer 30 questions and then get denied, with zero to show for it. As of May 2017, they’ve paid out $191.5 million. They give out 7,000 free gift cards every single day.
Run by Prodege LLC, Swagbucks is a sister company to some other familiar names, like MyPoints. Prodege has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and has been in business since 2005, so they are not a fly by night company. (read our Swagbucks review)
Did I mention they give you a $5 bonus from the start?
InboxDollars is a “competitor” to Swagbucks but you can sign up for both! The biggest difference is that with InboxDollars you earn cash directly – no need to wonder how many points turn into what. (we say competitor in quotes because they recently merged!)
You can earn cash by shopping online, watching videos, answering surveys, fulfilling offers, and clicking on links in emails (you don’t have to sign up for anything, but you earn more if you do). They tell you how much you earn per task and then pay you that amount. (here is a more detailed review of InboxDollars)
You won’t get rich doing these things but it’s legitimate and you’ll get paid in the end. For example, you get a penny for each email you click. You get a penny for a video stream. You can earn dollars for fulfilling offers but those aren’t nearly as quick as reading an email. They are upfront in what you get paid so you can decide if it’s worth it.
InboxDollars is run by CotterWeb Enterprises, which has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and they’ve been at this since 2012.
Pinecone Research is one of the oldest market research firms and one I used to do nearly two decades ago. Back then, they would mail you a paper check before each survey so that you had the money in your pocket before you completed it!
Nowadays they’ve streamlined their process so you get an electronic payment of $3 for each survey. The surveys are pretty quick and can lead to larger product tests that pay even more. They’re free to join, though they are only open for enrollment every so often, and one of the most straightforward in the business.
Here is our review of Pinecone Research if you’d like to learn more.
MyPoints has been around for two decades. For years, they operated solely as a cashback portal and were one of the biggest in the industry. If you shopped at stores through their portal, you earned points. Those points could be converted into gift cards.
While they started as a cashback portal, they’ve added so many new ways to earn since being acquired by Prodege (which makes them sisters with Swagbucks):
For a limited time, you can get a $5 bonus when you take $5 surveys.
It’s possible to take multiple surveys each day with LifePoints. As one of the largest online survey communities, there are many daily opportunities.
Most successful survey completions earn between 50 and 150 points and take up to 25 minutes. Gift card redemptions start at $5 (550 points) for digital Amazon gift cards. Cash via PayPal costs a bit more – $5 via PayPal costs 600 points.
You will need to pre-qualify for the full survey for answering a handful of screener questions. LifePoints award two reward points as compensation if you don’t pass the initial interview.
Survey topics mostly ask your opinion on certain consumer brands and online retailers. It’s also possible to watch and review commercials, share your shopping habits and rate your cellphone provider.
Some surveys award more points if you’re willing to participate in an extended focus study. You may keep a daily diary of your eating habits for 30 days, for instance.
Another example is using your webcam or phone camera to record your facial responses as you watch a TV ad.
It’s possible to win bonus points by entering giveaways. Some examples include guessing a winning soccer game score, a nation’s flag or commenting on a LifePoints social media post.
Unlike several other survey sites, LifePoints isn’t a “get-paid-to” site. If you only want to take surveys for points, this platform can be a good option.
You only need to be 14 years old to join LifePoints and receive 10 bonus points. Membership is open to many nations if you live outside the USA.
Best of luck!