You hear a lot about sharing your opinion for money, but what exactly does that mean? Usually, the term refers to online surveys for money (which we will talk about below), but there are several other ways you can get paid for your opinion, too. This article will discuss some of those ideas and give you a few resources that can help you get started.
Why Does Your Opinion Matter?
When organizations and corporations want to test out new products, advertisements, or services, they don’t just make decisions based on the primary stakeholders’ thoughts. Instead, they want to know what the public has to say. After all, it is YOU that will be purchasing the new flavor of cereal or the latest car model.
Your opinions matter very much. The information you can provide to market researchers is far more valuable than any data gleaned from a top executive or a financial expert. In the end, regular people like you help influence brands and shape what products and services will hit the market next.
In this next section, we’ll talk about how you can cash in on market research and get paid for sharing your opinion.
1. Join Focus Groups
Focus groups are also similar to paid online surveys, and they have the same goals. The people who run focus groups are trying to gather data to help companies improve products or create new ones, predict profitability and trends, and make decisions.
Unlike paid surveys, the participants participate in a small group (usually four to ten people) to discuss and give their opinions on a particular product or idea. The groups occur in person at a specific location or online via a video meeting.
Focus groups are a great way to make money for your opinion since they typically pay more than surveys. However, you likely won’t be able to participate as consistently. And if the group is not online, you will also need to be located close enough to show up.
Focus groups can pay anywhere between $30 to $150 or more for your participation, but finding them can also be challenging. You can check your local classifieds and newspapers, and there are a couple of helpful sites that list current focus groups by state:
2. Take Paid Online Surveys
The fastest and easiest way to get paid for your opinion is to earn money from surveys. With this method, you don’t need any special skills or experience—just a computer, tablet, or smartphone, and an internet connection.
You’ll want to find a legit survey site since there are quite a few scam sites out there. To do this, look for sites with excellent user reviews and a good reputation. For example, Branded Surveys has an “Excellent” rating and over 45,000 user reviews on Trustpilot.
Once you find the site you want to work with, you can sign up and start making money within a few minutes. You’ll want to get off on the right foot by answering each survey carefully, honestly, and thoughtfully. This will ensure that you get credit for the surveys you complete and that you will keep receiving future survey opportunities.
The great thing about getting paid to take surveys is that you can do them anytime you want, day or night. Plus, you can also complete them wherever you happen to be. So whether you are on a lunch break at work or between classes at school, you can be making a little extra cash.
When it comes time to cash out your earnings, you will typically have a few choices. For example, with Branded Surveys, you can choose between Paypal, direct deposit, or select from dozens of gift cards, including Amazon.
Another benefit of online surveys is they are not just a one-time gig. You can keep taking surveys consistently week after week and ensure you always have some spare money in your pocket!
3. Be a Product Review Writer
When you consider purchasing a new product, chances are you search for online reviews first. Whether you are looking for a new TV, a pair of winter boots, or the perfect coffeemaker, there is almost always an article out there to guide you in your new purchase. But did you ever wonder where all that information comes from? Content writers, of course!
Plenty of online publishers are looking for good writers with expertise and experience in specific niches to help create online reviews. So, if you want to share your opinion through words and get paid for it, this is an excellent side gig.
The trick, of course, is to find the companies that are hiring. If you have minimal experience, you can check out websites like Textbroker or Freelancer. Although the pay is typically on the low side at these sites, they are a great place to start gaining experience writing product reviews and other content.
As you gain more experience, you can scour job boards like Flexjobs and Problogger. Be sure to save all your work into an online portfolio. The more experience you have as a writer, the more you can make.
4. Become a Review Blogger
You can also skip the middleman and start your own blog or product review site. While this is more of a long-haul project, it can pay off quite well if you are successful. Of course, sharing your opinion for money via a blog or website is a bit more involved than freelancing as a writer, but it’s definitely doable!
Earning from a review site involves making money as an affiliate (where you get a commission for the products you review) or selling display ads. Jon Dykstra of Fat Stacks teaches people how to create niche websites for a living. If you want to establish a review site, he recommends these steps:
Choose a niche where you will enjoy reviewing the products.
Pick a name for your new website and purchase a domain
Launch your site
Start writing and publishing your reviews
Learn how to optimize your site to attract as much traffic as possible
5. Review Music and Fashion
If you’re a music fan, you can head over to slicethepie. It’s a little like a paid survey site, but in this case, you’re giving your opinion on record labels, artists, clothing, commercials, and other topics. The reviews are then given to the musicians, fashion designers, etc., to have some honest feedback on their work.
The pay for this site is not great. According to current users, you will earn anywhere between 2 to 20 cents per review. However, if you like new music and this idea appeals to you, a little compensation is better than nothing.
6. Become a YouTube Influencer
This idea for making money online for your opinion is slightly different from the others on our list. It can take quite a bit of time to get established on the platform, but the financial rewards can be significant when you do.
There are a couple of ways to go about it, but both involve starting a channel first. If you already have a channel that covers something of interest to you, great! If not, you need to create one. For example, let’s say you are interested in cooking soups, and you would like to start a channel where you offer recipes and tutorials all about soup.
Commit to providing regular, high-quality content on your soup-cooking channel and begin to amass followers. Once you have reached a specific number of subscribers, you can start working with brands as an influencer. This means that you would promote that brand on your channel in exchange for a certain amount of money.
So in the soup niche, for example, you may be approached by a company that makes spices. You would then feature and discuss the spices in your videos. Then, as you get bigger, you may be approached by even more food brands who want you to highlight their products.
Another way to make money offering your opinion on YouTube is by creating a channel that focuses strictly on product reviews. Again, you’ll want to narrow it down to a specific niche and start attracting subscribers. Once you have at least 1000 subscribers, you can apply to the YouTube Partner Program, which offers multiple ways to earn through your review channel.
7. Help Test UX Design For Websites
Have you ever landed on a webpage that was clunky, difficult to use, or slow? Chances are, you decided to leave and find your information elsewhere. User experience, or UX, is a vital part of marketing and online business. It involves how people interact with websites and how easy they are to navigate, find what you need, make purchases, or interact with.
Whether you are using a laptop, desktop, or mobile phone, the ease with which you can get around a site is more important than most people realize. In fact, UX design is an entire field in itself.
One way that businesses determine what is working on their websites (and what needs to change) is to enlist everyday users in evaluating different aspects of the site. And in some cases, those users can even get paid for it.
User Testing is an online platform that does just that. They connect users with brands that are trying to develop the best UX design for their sites. In exchange, participants can earn a little extra cash for their time. How much? According to their website, User Testing pays for the following activities:
5-minute test: $4
20-minute test: $10
Live interviews: $30-$120
You’ll need to apply to the platform and be approved, and you should not expect to make a regular income from this source. There will be times that UX evaluations are few and far between. However, when they are available, the compensation is pretty decent.