You’ve probably heard that you can earn cash, gift cards, and other rewards just for sharing your opinion online, and it’s true! Signing up with paid survey sites or focus groups is a great way to earn some extra money, and often you can participate in the comfort of your own home or even on your smartphone as you go about your day.

 These types of sites offer a number of opportunities, from simple questionnaires that provide feedback to manufacturers to product testing where consumers are paid to try goods. Both are designed to help high-level decision-makers choose what to introduce to the market and are considered a vital part of market research. And each of them affords users an opportunity to earn rewards for their opinions. If you are ready to join the opinion-sharing fray, read on for more details.

Focus Groups

Focus groups target a select group of individuals and are typically an invite-only gig. Historically, they have been conducted in person, but most have moved to online platforms. Commonly, they are used for products, services, and political campaigns. Like online surveys for gift cards, the purpose of a focus group is to gather relevant data to help make decisions on things like branding, packaging, user experience, etc.

 Focus groups usually pay a lot more than surveys, and you will often find yourself with free products, too. But they are generally a one-time side hustle, so you can’t keep earning consistently. They are also harder to find and more selective in choosing the participants than online surveys.

 Since research companies are typically looking for a particular demographic, you will need to apply for a focus group and wait patiently to see if you get in. If you are interested in checking out some focus groups, you can do a Google search for those in your area. Alternatively, sites like User Interviews, Respondent, or Recruit + Field are good places to start.

Paid Online Surveys

Although focus groups sometimes pay hundreds of dollars, it can be hard to land an assignment, and they usually require more of a specific time commitment. In comparison, paid survey sites can help you earn extra money without leaving the house or even getting off the couch. And you don’t need to wait for an invitation or approval. You can start earning right away. Plus, you can earn consistently, week after week. 

How Can I Earn With Paid Surveys?

Earning extra cash with paid online surveys is easier than you think! Once you find a reputable survey site, you can get started right away. Just sign up, nofollow confirm your email, and begin. It’s that easy! Here are some tips to help you make the most of your time and effort: 

  • Use a dedicated email address. It is easy for survey invitations to get lost in an overflowing inbox, so set up a separate address just for surveys. This will help you to stay organized and on top of things.
  • Complete all your profiles. It may be the most tedious and least rewarding part of the process, but those participant profiles are very important. Market research firms and survey companies use this data to match members with surveys, and the more they know about you, the more opportunities will come your way.
  • Give honest answers. Honesty is the best policy when completing surveys, so be forthright when you answer the questions. Never try to guess what the survey company is looking for or respond with answers you think they want to hear. Answer every question thoughtfully and mindfully.
  • Read questions carefully. It can be tempting to speed through surveys, especially low-paying ones. Even so, rushing could cost you future opportunities. So take the time to read each question carefully and provide the best possible answers.
  • Act fast. Some surveys are time-sensitive, while others are available only for a limited number of days. If you want to earn more with paid surveys, check your email frequently and grab those surveys while they last.
  • Use a form filler. Instead of filling in your name, ethnicity, and household income every time you take a survey, a form filler like RoboForm can do this at the touch of a button. Be careful, though; some sites prohibit the use of form fillers, so you should check the terms of service first.

How To Avoid Scam Sites

There are plenty of legitimate survey and focus group firms out there, but it is essential to steer clear of scams. Here’s what to watch out for: 

Never Pay to Participate

 Never pay a sign-up fee. If a survey site charges a sign-up fee, it is time to move on. Legitimate sites never charge fees to their participants; they make their money from the businesses that hire them.

 Don’t Fall For Ridiculous Claims

 If a site is advertising unrealistic payouts of hundreds of dollars or more, don’t fall for it. Legit surveys for money don’t operate that way; otherwise, everyone would quit their full-time jobs and take surveys for a living. Don’t expect online surveys to replace your day job. Instead, look at it as an opportunity to earn a little extra cash online.

Read Reviews

Before you sign up for every survey website that claims to pay, read some reviews online. Proceed with caution because hundreds of websites only exist to send spam to your inbox. You don’t want to waste your valuable time with online paid surveys that don’t actually pay. One useful resource is Trustpilot, where you can read real reviews of online paid website services from people who have accounts with them.

Verify Payment Type

 It is essential to know how you will get paid. Many paid survey websites will pay you through PayPal, which is ideal. You can set up a PayPal account online for free, and it’s one of the fastest and safest options. Other sites will mail you a check, which obviously takes longer. Some sites give you the option to answer surveys for gift cards, which is a great way to purchase something you’ve had your eye on.