Once upon a time there was a company who claimed to know all……

It’s no more.

No brand, company or any service provider can be sure what is best for their future growth if they don’t stay in close touch with their audience or customers. In making decisions that have far-reaching impacts, the general public opinion matters.  

Surveys are carried out with the customary purpose of collecting information from related respondents. The questions are directed towards administrative, commercial, scientific or economic topics. Do you need paper and a pen for that? NO!

Technology has made it possible for survey designers to distribute them through digital means. Online Surveys can also be distributed to a large audience because now computers, tablets and mobile phones are accessible to many.

So now with less wasted paper you could gather more data to analyze. On-screen surveys also require lower administrative and set-up investments. They are definitely faster: JUST A CLICK and you can deliver the questionnaire to a million people.

Paid Online Surveys: You Had The Opportunity All Along!

Did you just come across the news of getting paid from online surveys? Well, the offer is not new. Service providers rely a lot on customer’s feedback. They are in a money-making business where the bottom line is: you can’t sell what the users don’t want to buy.

The idea of survey has been around even before the internet itself. The approaches, however, were conventional: telephones, snail mail, gathering customers for a review, etc,. When companies realized the downsides of these methods, they quickly worked out another answer: Digitizing the survey process.

Contacting customers through telephones mostly had one of the two outcomes: a long call with minimal response or a simple hang-up altogether. Both of these meant a complete waste of time and money. Sending out paper surveys added incredible amount to household waste.

Bonjour online surveys! The option was easier, both for the surveyor, and the respondent. When the digital platform proved to be very helpful for gathering information, the companies started making it more interesting by offering rewards for customer’s response. Money, cash back offers, gift cards and what not!

Quitting your day job for a hustle-free paid online survey? Think Again.

It’s time to get off the unicorn you were riding to the rich wonderland. If you are REALLY lucky, filling out online surveys might get you handful pocket money. However, this will still be much less than lowest-wage day job.

DISCLAIMER: There really ISN’T any such thing as easy money.

Responding to online surveys takes time, sometimes more than the surveyors claims. You will be asked to provide your basic information and most often than not, answer questions before you can even qualify for taking the survey. That’s right, you might spend 10 minutes and don’t earn a penny.

“But we do get money when we have qualified for the survey”; sadly, it’s still a No. Most websites only pay out when you have reached a threshold amount.

You get the money at $25, every 10 points=$1, but every survey gets you 5 points only. Now you can sit here and do the math or get that Uber to your day job.

If you aim at making plentiful money, you should be willing to treat the option of taking surveys seriously. They won’t be just a side-hustle after all. You will need to put in more than just office breaks and lazy Sundays. In case you only have 10 minutes to spend on a side activity, consider some better option.

After the reality check, if you have made up your mind for being part of a survey, here are some tips that you should keep in mind while taking part in an online survey.

The DOs and DON’Ts Of an Online Survey

DO make an email account just for the purpose of carrying out surveys. If you are using many sites, your registered ID might be flooded with links and invites to take different survey. Creating a separate account will save your personal ID from getting crammed.

DO set time aside for such surveys. If you want to earn a handsome amount, only taking a couple of surveys in a week will not be enough. Identify the time it takes to attempt a survey and plan a schedule that allows you to spend convenient time online for this purpose.

DO remember to make use of web Auto-complete function. Every web browser offers the facility of auto-completion. This means that some of your basic information that you have repeatedly entered on different sites (email id, user name, telephone number etc.) will be filled out automatically.

DON’T have high expectations. It is very important to realize that you might not be earning a lot right away. Like any other job, it will take some time for you to build credibility. Therefore, take all good opportunities that come your way, even if the reward does not seem to be attractive.

DON’T give out sensitive information. There is a lot going on in the digital world. It sometimes becomes difficult to steer clear of culprits. As a golden rule, remember that any authentic website will not ask you to give out undue personal or sensitive material.

DON’T respond to the survey halfheartedly. Everybody loves to make money. Filling out surveys online quickly and with least interest might get you points but it will also be dishonest. Surveys are sent out with the purpose of collecting genuine reviews from the public. Ensure that you are putting forward an honest review.

DON’T completely rely on what the website says. If they claim this would make you rich, don’t fall for it. It’s always healthy to dig into user’s review. You can also ask the existing members if the site is actually helpful.

What You Need to Carry Out a Successful Online Survey?

Asking the right questions 

You cannot expect to gather the precise data you need if you go around asking all the wrong questions. The exact goal behind your survey should be clear before you start its design. How keenly the questions cover your aim is critical for the success of the survey.

It is also important that the practice does not only collect the required data but also suggest ways to make improvements. For example, where a good survey might ask if the users “like” a new product, a better survey will focus on finding out “what changes” the public wants to see in that product.

Targeting the right audience

The next step is to ask the right questions from the right people. These could be customers, employees or even the consumers not yet using the company’s services.

Using the right mode for the survey

After the target audience has been defined, a mode of survey distribution needs to be selected wisely. This mode should ensure that the survey reaches maximum users. Email linking, websites or social platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc.) can be employed.

Pre-Testing Questionnaires: It is often possible that some question included in the survey carry dual meaning making it tricky for the audience to answer it correctly.

 Take this example of a survey question: Have you visited XYZ brand?

  1. YES
  2. NO

Now, a customer who has visited only once might be inclined towards responding with a YES. However, their opinion in further questions about service quality, environment etc. might not be genuine based on a single visit only. A better approach is to focus on inquiring how often the respondent has visited the brand.

A draft survey is often carried out with limited sample audience before making it available to entire audience.

Make Money While You Make a Contribution

They are many websites that pay in exchange of completing an online survey. They mostly just require a simple email registration. The surveys can be accessed via mail or internal links. Policies ensure that your personal information is concealed throughout the process.

Money is transferred to member’s account upon completion of the task. The credit can be redeemed via PayPal or other online payment services. If you have prepared your mind about making a little money and a contribution to the digital world, here is a list of sites you can access right away:

Swagbucks

  • $10 Sign-Up Bonus
  • $2-$3.50 /survey
  • Earn $30.00/month
Sign Up Now!

The website remains in limelight for actually paying with“SWAG”. Upon completion of a survey on Swagbucks, you can redeem a wide-range of gift cards to use on Amazon or with number of other online retailers. The SBs or Swagbucks can also be turned and used in form of cash.

InboxDollars

Imagine the cash you could be making if you are getting $5 just with a signup. InboxDollars caters for both: good cash and easy use. It requires email in addition to basic information (education, health, locality etc.).

It only offers cash in return of the services, which is catchier for the audience. The website claims to have paid over $57 million to its respondents.

Survey Junkie

A reality check? You don’t get rich making money from surveys. Sad, true and exactly what Survey Junkie will remind you before you get going with the work.

The site’s transparent platform offers $10 for every 1000 points which can be cashed out via PayPal.

Springboard Panel

The Panel does not offer high fee for completing survey. However, when you have earned enough ($50), you can cash your reward in form of Amazon gift card or a bank deposit.

MyPoints

MyPoints has definitely earned points for its reliability. Online payments are a shady business. MyPoints has been up and running since 1996 with more than 10 million registered members presently. It has given out approximately $236 million in the past 13 years.

Harris Poll Online

The website is owned by the Nielson Group. It works in collaboration with iTunes, Starbucks, Amazon and ESPN. You are mostly asked to fill out surveys regarding some household brands. The service is credited through rewards from the aforementioned companies.

CashCrate

The CashCrate has attracted large number of visitors since it pays for more than just surveys. Online games web searches and variety of other activities are credited by the website. However, you need to fulfill their minimum $20 threshold to earn cash payment. Otherwise, you will be paid with just a gift card.

Vindale Research

They talk cash, in literal sense. Vindale Research does not employ point system: you simple obtain cash on completing every survey. Vindale has the reputation of being more generous than any other sites. It offers up to $50 for many surveys. The rewards depend on the complexity of the survey and how long it might take to finish.

MintVine

MintVine has realized it well that nothing catches the eye more than visual impressions. Its homepage carries a lot of graphics to captivate the audience. It also gives a pictorial demonstration of how a survey should be filled out. You will be paid in cash when you gather at least $10.

Toluna

This website works in collaboration with Redbox, Target, Gap and many other well-known companies. It offers their gift cards as a reward for signing up and taking part in surveys. However, it strictly follows the point system. The reward can only be obtained if you have earned points equal to the lowest threshold.

Survey Club

The good side? Money. The downside? Get ready to receive mails from a long list of survey sites. Survey Club acts as a bridge between respondents and sites. It will basically link you to other websites looking for opinions. The pay-out is also marginally lower than others.

Opinion Outpost

As a member of Opinion Outpost you maybe asked to fill out surveys on a wide variety of fields. These can include appliances, medicine, sports, food, politics and what not. Every survey carries specific points. Opinion post has a simple business: 10 points=$1.

VIP Voice

The website has not attracted many users so far due to their unconventional rewarding system. They don’t work on cash or point system. VIP Voice only offers the members to enter into auctions. This means that even with enough points, the members might not be able to win anything.

OneOpinion

Typically following the point system, OneOpinion counts 1000 points equivalent to $1. You can cash out the reward in form of PayPal payment or gift card once you have earned $25.

Take home message

One thing is for sure: Companies actually do pay for the surveys. However, the tiny amount of money should not be confused with a short route to greatness. Don’t end up relying on this option for everyday needs, you will be disappointed.

Also, remember to prioritize your privacy above everything else. Some surveyors ‘politely’ ask for disclosure of rather sensitive information. They might also be willing to pay you some money for that. Be careful! Falling for the extra money is the pit you want to avoid at all costs.

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