With our ever-growing shift towards complete digitalisation, making money online has never been easier – you can now make money by writing blogs, creating videos, and even sharing your opinion in the form of online surveys. But with this increased availability of opportunities comes an abundance of new tricks and scams that threaten the security of your data or leave you awaiting rewards that will never come.
- Reviews. Enter the name of the survey website followed by the word ‘trusted’, ‘review’ or ‘scam’ into Google. The top results will most likely link you to reviews left on the survey website you’re investigating, but do not base your decision on these. Many websites pay other businesses for a glowing 5 star review or delete the negative reviews altogether, so look for independent reviewers – whether that be on yahoo answers, forums, or personal blogs.
- Website Information. A legitimate survey website will provide you with their contact number or even the headquarters’ address. They should provide extensive information regarding the process of joining, participating, and receiving rewards, and should NOT ask for a joining fee or claim that this can replace your daily job; as much as surveys can earn some nice pocket money, it’s extremely unlikely that you can make a living out of it.
- Payment Method. A legitimate survey website will NOT ask you for your credit card details, and even if there is one that does, I do not suggest joining it. The only kind of payment information that you should be supplying is your PayPal email (not password) as this is enough to complete a money transfer. Many websites may only offer gift card rewards and will therefore not require any information other than an email to which to send it.
There are now so many survey websites to choose from that the whole process can be a little daunting and off-putting, so I’ve compiled a small list of recommendations for those of you who may be interested in joining.
- Opinion Panel. This may not be the biggest and best-known site, but I highly recommend it due to my own personal experience. Unfortunately, as far as I’m aware, OpinionPanel is only available to UK residents under the age of 30, but comprises of several panels: Youth, Applicant, Student, and Graduate.
- Each survey takes 5-15 minutes to complete and earns £1-2 which can be exchanged for Amazon or High Street vouchers.
- Students are rewarded 10 points (equivalent to £10) upon joining and have a minimum threshold of 25 points before receiving their vouchers.
- Non-students’ threshold is £1.
- Participants are notified of available surveys via email, though many of them have a target number of participants, so you should complete it on the day of receiving (subject to possible screenouts – but usually very early on in the survey).
- Surveys are relatively rare so completing them doesn’t feel like work (and rewards seem as if out of nowhere).
- The site offers around 1,000 points for completing your profile.
- Each survey takes around 10-15 minutes and can earn 1,500 or more points.
- Quite a lot of screenouts.
- Review products are limited and most people do not get the chance to try them out.
- Good rewards are relatively expensive: 107,000 points for £20 Amazon voucher or 185,000 for £35 to your PayPal.
- Offers a chance to pay a small amount of points for a chance to win a more expensive prize.
- Time to complete each survey can vary anywhere between 1-30minutes, though approximate time needed will be declared before starting. Rewards vary accordingly.
- Survey screenouts are very common.
- Points can be earned by shopping through their link in online stores such as Argos, Body Shop, or even French Connection, earning between 1 and 8 ‘swag bucks’ per every £1 spent.
- Exchange rate is 849 points for £5 Amazon or New Look voucher, though many other rewards are available.
Those are just a few examples of legitimate paid survey websites and there are many more out there. However, most of these websites are offering between £2-5 per hour, given that you’re comfortable disclosing extensive information about your life and are not subjected to screenouts. It’s not a stable income activity and should only be carried out in moments of free time, or as a little boost to your budget.