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Isn’t it nice to open your mailbox and see a check with your name on it instead of the usual bills? I know, it happens far too seldom. But one method I’ve used to earn a regular side income is through survey companies.
What’s a survey company?
Well, suppose you had a company that made sneakers and you’re just about to have the factory make 30,000 new pairs for the Spring season. What colors should you have them make? How many should be men’s versus women’s? What sports should they be for?
Businesses need information about customer preferences in order to make products that they’ll be able to sell. But they already have a primary focus – like making sneakers. So, they’ll pay companies that specialize in market research to make sure they’re targeting the right customer. And those market research companies will pay you for your opinion.
You won’t get rich by taking surveys, but it’s a great way to supplement your income to help pay down debt or be able to afford a few extra things each month. It’s such a pleasure reaching in the mailbox, and there between the bills is a check for $75-$100.
Why Use Surveys to Earn Money?
I’ve found surveys a real convenient way to earn extra income because 1) it’s easy work and 2) you can do it whenever and wherever you want. If you have 15-20 minutes on your lunch break you can earn some money then. You can fill out a few while your kids are napping, while you’re waiting at the soccer field, or even while you’re vegging out on the couch. They don’t require any deep thought. It’s just a matter of running down a list and checking boxes.
The companies below are the ones I’ve found are easy to sign up for and simple to use. It’s best to use multiple companies because surveys are usually targeted to a certain demographic group. So, if you don’t fall into one group, you’ll be in another and you’ll receive enough surveys to make it worth your while.
Here are the ones I’ve used and was able to receive regular payments from. They’re all free to sign up.
Survey Junkie – Really simple to sign up for and use, Survey Junkie has over 5 million users. For surveys you take, payments are made right to your Paypal account.
Inbox Dollars – In 2016 Inbox Dollars paid out over 50 million dollars to users. One way to earn through Inbox Dollars would be to participate in surveys. But you can also play all sorts of games, like card games, word games, or strategy games and get paid while you play. Or if you use their toolbar for your searches you’ll earn money just for doing the normal searches you’d be doing anyway. Another way to earn through Inbox Dollars is by referring friends. For every friend you refer, you’ll earn 10% of what they earn.
Paid Surveys at Home
Paid Surveys at Home – Paid Surveys at Home will pay you not only for taking surveys but also for watching movie trailers (really!) or for trying new products or participating in focus groups.
Swagbucks – Swagbucks is one of the more flexible earning sites because you can earn in a lot of different ways. You can take surveys but you can also watch videos and give an opinion. You can search the web and earn because Swagbucks values your search preferences. You can also earn SB points by making purchases that you’d be making anyway, and then redeem those points for gift cards to major stores like Walmart, Target, Amazon and Starbucks.
Some people are reluctant to sign up for anything online because understandably, there are some companies that aren’t legitimate. But there are a few things you can keep an eye out for.
- Be on the lookout for any site that’s asking for a fee to sign up. There are some sites that promise work from home jobs if you just sign up for their membership. None of these survey sites ask you for any money to take part. They’re all well established. If you come across any others that do ask for a signup fee, I’d avoid them.
- Most survey sites are a great way to make a side income but they’re not designed to make an entire income from. So if you encounter a site that is promising you several thousand dollars per month, I’d be very wary.
- Keep track of anything you’ve signed up for. Anytime you receive an email asking you to enter personal information, make sure it’s something you’re already aware of. This goes for any email you receive, but if you’re ever not sure if a particular email is legitimate, just check the site for a service phone number and verify with one of their reps.
If you’re stretched to the limit each month, and spending everything you take in, then you’re probably not saving anything. But earning just a couple hundred dollars more each month can make a huge difference in your situation.
The post below, shows a great example of how saving just a few hundred dollars as early as possible in life can mean the difference between retiring on $16k per year, or $100k per year.
Side income from survey companies is also a great way to pay down debt or save for something specific. Using your spare time, you could dedicate all that income toward a specific debt. Or even surprise your spouse with the money to pay for a little mini-vacation. Use your imagination and let me know how you do.
If you can use some extra income each month, check out these other posts that may also help: