Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Online Surveys

The first way that I found to make money online was survey sites.  Unfortunately I paid about $10 for a huge list of survey sites.  I didn't have to pay for this at all.  You can find these sites without paying anything, and I will tell you about the ones that I have found to be the best earning sites for me.  The list literally had thousands of sites for you to sign up for.  They ranged from surveys that offered sweepstakes entries for cash, or other items, to surveys that paid you points that you can "cash in" for gift cards to sites that actually paid cash.  The problem was that most of them didn't actually pay money, and that most of the rest of them were bad links.  

Keep in mind that these are surveys, and you may or may not fit into the same surveys that I do.  This is because the different surveys are looking for different types of people.  One survey may be looking for responses from 24-36 year old males with a full time job and at least one child age 3-6 with an income of $28,000-$54,000 a year.  As you can see, not everyone will fit the needs of this survey.  Don't be discouraged, there are many, many different surveys that you will see daily.  If you don't qualify for one, simply move on to another one.  

Always be honest when giving your responses.  Your answers are of course recorded for the company doing the research.  They will know if you keep changing your answers from survey to survey, and can ban you from doing future surveys.  For example, if you say that your income is $23,000 on one survey and then on the next say that it is $56,000 they will know.  Most people's income doesn't jump that quickly.

The best advice that I can give you before you start taking online surveys is to set up a new email address specifically for doing online surveys.  I did this when I first started simply to keep the surveys separate from my main email address.  I'm glad that I did.  You will receive a lot of email each week, and to be honest, quite a bit will be spam.  Most email providers offer you several different emails.  You can simply add another email address to this account or set up a new one somewhere else.  You can get a free email account from places such as Yahoo, GMail, etc.  As you start getting used to which email addresses send you actual surveys you can start to weed out the spam.  Most of the spam emails have an option at the bottom to "unsubscribe" from future mailings.  Simply open the email and click this link.  Some have already entered your email address for you, and others you will have to enter it yourself.  Do this and then click unsubscribe. 

Now, onto the sites that I use to make money taking free surveys online.  My best earning website has been Opinion Outpost.  I have been paid over $100 just for doing short, simple surveys at Opinion Outpost.  You simply go to the website, sign up and start taking surveys.  They will send you emails when there are surveys available, or you can just log into the site and go to the members area to find them.  When you complete a survey you are given points.  Once you accumulate enough you cash them in for money.  You need at least $5.00 to receive a check.  The point to dollar ratio is easy to calculate.  If a survey is worth 20 points that translates to $2.00.  You simply place a decimal after the first number to see what the survey is worth. 

The second best earning site for me has been American Consumer Opinion Panel (ACOP).  This website does not actually have surveys that you can go to the website and take. They instead only email you surveys. Some are "screener" surveys. These see if you qualify to take the main survey. They are usually only about 5-6 questions long. You will know how much the survey will pay before taking it. If you qualify and complete the survey they will send you a check for the amount of that survey. You will get a check every time you complete a survey with them, you cannot "save up" your money.  However, say the survey is for $9.00, that could be lunch for a day, all for a few minutes of your time.  I have made quite a bit of money doing their surveys. 

Other survey sites that I have used to earn money online with are:
  • Greenfield Online -Pay through PayPal after you reach at least $5.00.
  • Survey Spot -They have a lot of surveys for sweepstakes, however some do pay cash.  You can cash out after you have reached $5.00.
  • Survey Savvy -Not a great earner for me, but you may have far better results.
  • Valued Opinions -You earn money that you can redeem for gift cards.
  • Clear Voice Surveys -Here you also earn money that is redeemable for gift cards.
I have earned something from all of these sites.  For the sites where I earn gift cards (that I wouldn't normally want) I sell them on eBay.  This in turn gives me cash for the survey sites that pay using gift cards.  I have written an article on Info Barrel about how to make money selling gift cards on eBay.  You can find it here.  Of course you can always just list them in an auction starting at $0.99 and watch the bids start flying in.

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