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While there are plenty of different ways to make money online in your spare time, taking paid online surveys is easily one of the most popular options.
Fortunately, there are plenty of different websites and apps that make it possible to take surveys and answer simple questions for money. The confusing part is deciding which sites are worth your time.
With that in mind, we’ve been testing all of the most popular survey websites to create this list of the best options that you can use to make extra money.
All of the sites listed below make it possible for you to earn cash with great flexibility. You can sign up for the different sites and take surveys whenever you have some time to share your valuable opinions. Some of these sites focus exclusively on surveys, and others offer a few different ways to make money in addition to the surveys. Check the description of each site to see what it has to offer.
Some of the sites also have signup bonuses, which is an awesome way to get started. We recommended signing up for the ones that offer a bonus since it’s essentially free money.
Note: Taking paid online surveys is definitely not the most lucrative side hustle. You’re likely to end up earning an hourly rate that’s pretty low. If you’re trying to maximize your income, there are other side hustle ideas that allow you to earn much more. However, taking surveys is extremely flexible and anyone can do it. If you’re looking to make a small amount of extra money in your spare time, consider the sites listed below.
The Best Legit Survey Websites
One of the keys to making money with surveys is to use a few different legit survey sites or apps. The number of opportunities available at each site will be limited. If you’re using a few different sites, you’ll have more opportunities. If you’re only using a single site, you might run out of surveys, or the ones left will be lower paying.
1. Swagbucks ($5 signup bonus)
Swagbucks is our top choice for paid surveys for a few different reasons. For starters, you’ll get a $5 signup bonus just for creating a new account, which takes just a minute.
As a Swagbucks user, you can make money in several different ways through this online community (which is one of the reasons we like it so much). It works on a point system, and they refer to the points as Swagbucks, or SB for short.
Once you’ve accumulated some SB, you can redeem them for cash (via PayPal) or your choice of gift cards from many different stores, restaurants, and websites. The conversion rate for cash is 100 SB = $1. They offer some gift cards at discounted rates, but those specials vary. For example, you may be able to get a $50 gift card to a particular retailer for 4700 SB, which would represent a 6% discount.
One of the benefits of Swagbucks is that you can start redeeming rewards as soon as you have enough for a $3 gift card reward. Some of the other sites require you to have a higher balance before the rewards can be redeemed.
You can earn Swagbucks for things like:
- Taking surveys
- Watching videos
- Playing online games
- Trying special offers
- Shopping online
- Using the Swagbucks search engine
- Buying e-gift cards to many different stores and restaurants
As far as the surveys are concerned, Swagbucks will show you the available surveys, along with the estimated time needed to complete each survey and the number of SB that you’ll earn for it. There are usually a good number of quick surveys to choose from, so you can start with the ones that pay the best rates.
What really separates Swagbucks from other survey sites is all of the other ways that you can make money. If you want to maximize your income with Swagbucks, you should be doing more than just taking surveys.
While you can make money from things like watching videos, playing games, and searching, the best results will come from things like shopping online, buying gift cards, and trying special offers.
The online shopping or cashback component is similar to Rakuten. You can install the Swagbucks browser extension and you’ll be notified whenever you’re browsing a website that’s part of their program, and it will also show you how much cash back you can earn, in terms of SB. Sometimes the amount you can earn is higher than what Rakuten offers. If you use it for purchases you need to make anyway, it’s an easy way to earn a little something extra.
Buying gift cards through Swagbucks is also a great way to rack up some SB quickly. The key is to use this only for things that you would need to buy anyway. If you do that, you can earn SB for your normal shopping habits. You can also buy gift cards for others (like birthday gifts) and earn the extra SB.
Trying offers can also be a great way to earn SB. Some are free offers and others will involve making a purchase or starting a trial. Again, the key is to not make any extra purchases, unless the amount of SB that you’ll earn exceeds the price.
Overall, Swagbucks is our top choice because of the number of ways you can earn money, the constant selection and availability of surveys and offers, and because the site is very user-friendly.
Unlike Swagbucks, Survey Junkie focuses exclusively on surveys. While Survey Junkie doesn’t offer any other ways to make money, if surveys are what you’re after, you should definitely sign up for this site.
When you take surveys through Survey Junkie you’ll earn points that can be redeemed for real cash. The conversion rate is 100 points per dollar, and you’ll need at least 1,000 points before you can cash out (minimum payout of $10).
When you’re logged in, you’ll see the different surveys available, as well as the estimated time needed to complete the survey and the number of points you’ll earn. While there are a decent number of surveys available, you’ll probably go through most of them if you’re a frequent user.
If you’re logged in to your dashboard and you see a survey with a high payout, be sure to take it right away. Most of the surveys are limited to a specific number of users, and once that number is reached, the survey will be gone. So it’s a good idea to jump on the best opportunities as soon as they become available.
Overall, Survey Junkie offers a nice user interface and some good opportunities for surveys. If you’re looking for a site that focuses exclusively on surveys, Survey Junkie will be one of your favorite sites.
3. MyPoints ($10 signup bonus)
If you like Swagbucks, you’ll like MyPoints as well. The two sites are owned by the same parent company, and there are a lot of similarities. Although the sites are similar, there are a lot of different offers, so it makes sense to use both.
MyPoints also works on a points system (they also offer a signup bonus you can earn with just a minute of your time). However, the points-to-dollars conversion will vary a little depending on the reward. Currently, you can choose a gift card from 85 different stores, restaurants, and websites, but there’s no option to redeem your points for cash.
Like Swagbucks, MyPoints allows you to earn points in several different ways. You can get points for:
- Taking surveys
- Watching videos
- Playing games
- Printing coupons
- Booking travel (hotels, flights, cars)
- Shopping online
- Accepting different offers
Like Swagbucks, online shopping and special offers will allow you to accumulate points the fastest. MyPoints also has a browser extension that works similarly to Rakuten or Swagbucks and will notify you of eligible offers while you’re browsing.
One of the cool features of MyPoints is the Daily 5. It gives a list of several different things you can do to earn points, and if you do 5 of them on any given day, you’ll earn 5 bonus points. This is a great way to stay active on the site and ensure you’re continually earning points.
4. Branded Surveys ($1 signup bonus)
Branded Surveys is one of the more popular and legitimate survey companies out there, with a few million active users. They also have a solid rating (currently 4.3 out of 5) on TrustPilot, which is not always the case in this industry.
Like Survey Junkie, Branded Surveys focuses mostly on surveys rather than offering users lots of different ways to make money. If you’re looking to monetize your spare time, this is an excellent site that you’ll want to sign up for.
Branded Surveys uses a points system. Each task will earn you a specified number of points. When you have at least 1,000 points, you can redeem them for a reward. You can choose cash (through PayPal) or gift cards. The conversion rate is 100 points = $1, which makes it nice and easy to keep track of how much you’re earning.
When you sign up, you’ll get 100 bonus points (50 for signing up and 50 for completing your profile). There are also a few other introductory surveys that are quick and easy to complete and you’ll earn 10-50 points for each. It’s a good idea to complete these because it will help them to learn more about you so they can match you up with the best surveys.
They also offer what’s called the Branded Elite loyalty program. There are three levels: bronze, silver, and gold. As you complete more surveys, you’ll work your way up through the different levels. The higher tiers allow you to earn more and also provide access to some of the highest-paying surveys. To maximize your earning power, you’ll definitely want to work your way up to the gold tier.
LifePoints is a very well-established site that pays out over $20 million per year to its users. Unlike some other sites, LifePoints focuses exclusively on surveys, and they’re one of the best options. There are loads of surveys available on their platform, and most of them are short. The pay per survey is lower with short surveys, but you can take them whenever you have a few minutes to spare and you won’t need to dedicate a lot of time to any survey.
New users will earn a 10 point bonus just for signing up and completing a profile. Each survey will show how many points you’ll earn for completing it (most will be worth around $0.50 – $1). Once you’ve accumulated some points, they can be redeemed for cash rewards, through PayPal, or your choice of gift cards.
LifePoints sends reminders via email, which makes it easier to stay on top of the relevant opportunities that are available. Overall, LifePoints is one of the best sites that focuses exclusively on surveys. If that’s how you want to earn some extra cash, be sure to sign up for LifePoints.
6. InboxDollars ($5 signup bonus)
- Taking surveys
- Watching videos
- Playing games
- Searching the internet
- Installing mobile apps
- Trying different offers
When you log in to the InboxDollars dashboard you’ll see the latest offers, and if you scroll down you can also see the most popular offers. The best way to make money is to take advantage of as many of these offers as possible. Some of them are as simple as installing a free app on your phone, and others will require you to make a purchase.
InboxDollars does not use a point system, so you’ll see exactly how much money you’ve earned. When you’re looking at the available surveys, you’ll also see how long the survey will take, and how much you can earn for completing it.
Although InboxDollars is similar to Swagbucks and MyPoints, we have it rated lower for a few reasons. First, InboxDollars does not have a cashback component for your online shopping like Swagbucks and MyPoints have (similar to Rakuten).
Also, InboxDollars charges a $3 processing fee when you cash out your balance. Because of the fee, you’ll probably want to wait longer and let the balance build up before you cash out so you’ll pay less in fees.
Despite those negatives, InboxDollars still has a lot to offer. If you find a few offers you like, it can be a really easy way to make money (especially the offers that pay you to install an app).
PrizeRebel allows you to earn points for things like:
- Taking fun surveys
- Watching videos
- Accepting offers
The site works on a point system and you can redeem your points for cash (through PayPal) or gift cards from many different stores, websites, and restaurants. The conversion rate is 100 points = $1.
The available surveys will list the time needed to complete the survey, as well as the points you’ll earn by completing it.
While there are a number of different ways to earn a reward with PrizeRebel, we have several other sites rated higher. The amount you can earn from surveys at PrizeRebel is generally not as good as what you can earn at other sites (from what we’ve found), and we also find the user interface to be a little confusing and not as easy to use as some other options like Swagbucks.
If you’re only going to use a few different online survey sites, we would recommend the others that are higher rated ahead of PrizeRebel, but if you’re looking to use several different sites to maximize the number of relevant surveys that you can take, PrizeRebel is a good option.
American Consumer Opinion (ACOP) is one of the most established marketing research companies, having been around since 1986. They have six million members and have paid out more than $30 million to date. ACOP focuses exclusively on surveys for different brands and companies. While you won’t find lots of different options for making money like you will with others like Swagbucks and MyPoints, ACOP is a legit site that should be on your list if you want to take paid online surveys.
The conversion ratio for ACOP is very straightforward, with 100 points equaling $1 dollar. Users are able to redeem points for cash once they’ve earned the minimum reward threshold of $10. This market research firm is a solid option for anyone who wants to bring in some extra cash.
KashKick offers survey opportunities, and you can also earn extra cash for other small tasks like watching videos, surfing the web, and taking advantage of special offers. Although KashKick is more than just a survey website, the options for making money aren’t quite as broad as other sites like Swagbucks and MyPoints. Still, KashKick does offer several different ways to make small amounts of money in your spare time.
One of the benefits of using KashKick is that you’ll receive cash payments directly to your PayPal account (can be redeemed once your balance reaches $10). You don’t have to mess with gift cards or other redemption options, which is ideal if you prefer cash.
The downside of KashKick is that you’ll need to keep your account active or you may lose your balance for inactivity. If you don’t log in for 60 days, your account may be considered inactive. KashKick is a good option for someone who is active and wants to maximize income opportunities, but the casual survey taker will probably want to use other platforms.
MySoapBox is a survey site focused on brands, products, and services. If you sign up to participate, you’ll be able to take surveys related to the products and services you use. The average survey takes about 5-10 minutes of your time and pays $0.50 – $2.00.
When your balance reaches at least $25, you’ll be able to claim your rewards. You can redeem for your choice of gift cards (no option for a cash payout). They work on a point system, and 1,000 points = $1.
There are always surveys available on MySoapBox, so joining this platform could be a good option for anyone who wants to maximize what they can earn through paid online surveys.
Respondent is very different from all the other sites included on this list. The surveys available through Respondent are generally on the longer side, but they pay very well (like $50 per hour, or more in some cases). There are not a ton of surveys available from their partners and you’ll need to meet certain requirements and qualifications to be eligible for specific surveys, but when the opportunity arises, it pays very well.
We recommend that you sign up for Respondent and create a profile to see what’s currently available. When there is a new survey that may be a good match for you, Respondent will email you and you can try to participate if you’re interested. You can’t count on having a survey available every week or every month, but the hourly rate you can earn will far exceed what you earn from other survey sites.
Choosing the Right Survey Websites
With so many websites offering surveys, deciding which ones to sign up for and use can be confusing. We recommend that you sign up for at least a few different sites because the number of market research surveys available at any site will be limited. If you’re using a few different sites, you can participate in the highest-paying surveys that are available at each site.
The top survey sites are ranked in this article, so we recommend stating at the top and signing up for at least a few of the top-rated sites. As you use the sites, you’ll probably find a few that are your favorites and you can give them the majority of your time and attention going forward.
Is Taking Online Surveys a Good Side Hustle?
If you’re looking for a way to make extra money, you may be wondering if taking surveys and polls is worth your time. There’s not really a “yes” or “no” answer to that question. The truth is, any side hustle can be right for one person and wrong for another.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of making money with online surveys so you can judge for yourself if it is a good fit for your own situation.
Here are some of the best things about taking surveys for money.
It’s Extremely Flexible
Taking surveys is one of the most flexible side hustles you’ll find. You can work whenever it fits into your schedule, even if it is just a few minutes at a time. You can take surveys from your phone, complete them while you’re watching TV, while your kids are napping, or whenever you like.
Another nice thing is that you can start and stop whenever you want. Some side hustles may not require a ton of your time, but they do require you to do something each day or each week. With surveys, you can take long periods off if you want to, and come back at any time. It’s totally up to you.
For people with busy schedules, inconsistent schedules, and small windows of time for a side hustle, taking surveys can be a great option.
Anyone Can Do It
There are no special skills or experience required. Things like your work experience, income, family, and living situation may impact the surveys that are available to you, but there are surveys available for all different types of people.
The combination of extreme flexibility and the lack of requirements or qualifications needed make this a good option for a lot of people.
You Can Take Surveys in Your Down Time
You don’t need a lot of time to set aside for taking surveys. Whenever you have some downtime, even on your lunch break, you can take a few surveys and make some extra money.
Many Sites Offer More Ways to Make Money Aside From Just Surveys
Several of the best survey sites also offer other ways to earn points or make money. Sites like Swagbucks, MyPoints, and InboxDollars allow you to make more money for things like watching videos, installing apps, shopping online, and accepting special offers. If you want to maximize your income, these options are perfect. You can easily multiply your earnings without too much extra effort, which is why those sites are all rated highly on our list.
Like anything else in life, there are some cons to go along with the pros.
Limited Income Potential
Although you can definitely make money by taking surveys, it’s not going to offer the same income potential as some other side hustles like blogging or selling on Amazon. Taking surveys offers more flexibility, but you’ll sacrifice a little bit in terms of income potential and hourly earnings.
If you’re looking to make a few hundred dollars per month with a flexible side hustle, surveys could be a good fit. If you want a side hustle that has the potential to turn into a full-time income, you’re better off going with a different side hustle.
Survey Sites Can Be Frustrating
To be honest, there are some frustrations that come with taking surveys. One of the reasons we created this list of the top survey sites is to help you find the best options for minimizing frustrations because there are some bad sites out there that are horrible to use. Still, even with quality sites, there are still some things that are frustrating. Here are a few examples of what you might experience:
- Limited number of surveys available – Your income might be limited because of a lack of available surveys, which is why we recommend signing up for a few different sites.
- When does it end? Some survey sites will direct you from one survey to another. It can be hard to know when one survey ends, and equally hard to know if you’ve completed the requirements to get compensated for the survey.
- Answering several questions only to be told that you’re not eligible – This is possibly the most frustrating thing. With many surveys, you’ll have to answer preliminary questions to know if you are eligible for the survey. Sometimes these qualifying questions seem more like the survey itself, and if you don’t qualify you won’t be able to earn points (you may get a few points just for trying).
- Answering the same questions over and over again – Be prepared to answer basic questions like your gender, age, ethnicity, income, and family situation many times.
Tips for Making Money with Surveys
- Join several sites. If you want to maximize your income, you’ll need to use at least a few different sites so you have a steady stream of opportunities.
- Create a new email address. You’ll need to enter your email address to join any of these platforms, and most of them will email you about new opportunities on a regular basis. Rather than cluttering your existing inbox, it’s a good idea to create a separate email address just to use for these sites.
- Be realistic. These sites can present an opportunity to earn a maximum of a few hundred dollars (total, not per site) each month. If you’re looking for something more substantial, you should consider other side hustle ideas.
- Stick to legitimate companies. There are a lot of sites and apps claiming to offer surveys, but some of them are scams. Stick to the established companies, like the ones featured here, to avoid wasting your time.
Overall, taking online surveys can be a good way to make extra money if you’re looking for something flexible. If you’re having trouble deciding if it’s the right opportunity for you, please take our free interactive side hustle quiz that will help you to find your ideal side hustle.