Paid Surveys Online Review

Updated for 2010

We've found that doing paid surveys is the easiest way for an average person to make money online. However, we have also noticed that most of the paid survey sites out there do not really pay very well, and some of them even turn out to be scams!

So in order to help you weed out all of the scams and low-paying sites, and make it easier for you to choose only the best paid survey companies that will pay you the most money, we periodically search the Internet for all of the top paying survey directories and then try to determine the "best" paid survey site. Sites are rated based on several different factors such as the number of active, paying survey companies provided, amount paid per survey, their level of customer support, and several other factors such as our new "fun factor" rating.

Currently, Paid Surveys Online, Survey Vanguard, and Survey Scout are our top picks, with Paid Surveys Online being ranked slightly ahead of the other two, based mostly on their level of customer support. We found that Top-Dollars is actually one of the few paid survey programs that has consistently provided people with a way to bring in some sustainable income. It is ranked as the #1 home business!

Paid Surveys Overview:

Although the paid surveys field has attracted its fair share of scammers over the years, the general idea of doing paid surveys is not a scam in itself. Companies value your opinion because they need to understand how consumers think, shop, and why they buy certain items so that they can improve their products and services and make more money!

In order to do this, they hire market research firms that will gather information from customers or potential customers (like you!) by conducting simple online surveys.

They compensate you for your time via cash, prizes or free products. Surveys usually take 5-20 minutes, and can pay anywhere from $5-75 per survey, depending on the length of the survey and how much the survey results are expected to benefit the company.

However, because surveys are limited, most companies will only send you 2-4 surveys per month. So if you're really serious about making money with surveys, you should sign up with at least 200 market research companies.

So where do you find all of these market research firms? How can you tell between the legitimate ones, and the scammers who are only posing as survey companies so that they can get your personal information and later bombard you with advertisements or unsolicited phone calls? How do you go about signing up in the right way?

Fortunately, there are online paid survey databases that already take care of this for you. Some charge a small start up fee, and others are free. But you need to be careful because our research has shown that about 90% of survey databases are scams!

Watch Out for Paid Survey Scams!

Unfortunately, while the popularity of paid surveys has grown over the past several years, it has also opened doors for hundreds of scam artists who saw an opportunity to profit from selling memberships to paid survey databases that didn't really deliver what they promised. Their intention was simply to get paid themselves without really providing you with the best survey opportunities!

In our extensive research of the paid surveys field we have reviewed a total of 138 paid survey databases, of which about half were free to join and the other half required an up-front fee.

Free Databases

Now you might think: "How can something free be a scam?" To answer your question, we'll take a look at the free databases first.

Since the free survey database owners have to make their money somehow, they get paid from the market research companies each time they refer a new survey participant. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that, except:

  • All of the free databases that we reviewed listed mostly low-paying or non-paying companies. Most survey participants were paid in the form of worthless "points" instead of actual cash or were entered into "drawings" that they had almost no chance of winning.

  • All of the free databases contained only 20-40 listings (you will need at least 100 or so in order to have a good chance of getting enough of the higher-paying surveys).

  • Most of the free databases were linked to spammers that were disguised as legitimate companies.

  • About 80% of the free databases listed links to irrelevant programs or contained lists that were outdated.

  • Almost half of the free databases offered no real training or customer support at all.

A person would sign up, take the time to register through all the links, and make the owner money. He/she receives no survey invitations from the "market research companies" but instead gets bombarded by spam, unsolicited phone calls etc. He/she decides that paid surveys are a scam and gives up!

No, these free scam companies do not take your money, but they do rob you out of something even more valuable - your time! So if you're thinking about joining a free survey database, don't! You'll most likely get exactly what you paid for - nothing!

And you'll be lucky to get out of it without having to change your phone number!

Paid Databases

Now, let's move on to the paid survey databases - the ones that require a small one-time start-up fee. Out of all the paid databases we've reviewed, we've found:

  • Over 90% of them had exaggerated or unrealistic income claims.

  • About 80% offered no real customer support; we were not able to contact the company if there were any problems.

  • Another 80-85% contained outdated links and/or offered little or no training.

  • Nearly 75% linked to spammers or "e-mail farms".

  • About 10% of the paid databases had various other problems that kept them out of our top rankings, such as outrageous start-up fees, lack of any refund policy, or lack of any service at all (that is, they were essentially scams).

  • Fortunately, three of the paid databases that we reviewed managed to pass all of our tests and meet the BestPaidSurveySite quality standard.

Out of all of the paid survey programs from both groups, only Survey Scout, Paid Surveys Online, and met the BestPaidSurveySite quality threshold. Of those three, we have found that Paid Surveys Online by far offers the best service at the lowest price.

Paid Surveys Online Overview:

The Paid Surveys Online membership area contains an extensive database of over 500 legitimate survey companies willing to pay you for your opinion, which is more than enough for most people to make a decent income with paid surveys. It is also the largest database of the three approved survey sites.

The database is updated monthly and new survey opportunities are added regularly.They also feature a comprehensive "Getting Started" guide, full of tips, hints, and strategies to help you get the most out of the program. They even have free software available to help you get started quickly, along with numerous other bonuses.

Earning Potential:

Well, let us start out by saying that you will not get filthy rich just by doing surveys. Yes, there are $150 surveys, but they are very rare. Most surveys pay between $5 and $20 and they usually take between 5-20 minutes to complete. Also, the number of surveys you can do is obviously limited by availability.

While $4,500 is the the most anyone has ever made in a single month with paid surveys, $500-$1,500 a month is safe to expect for someone just starting out. This sum could easily increase to $2,000 or more in a few months, as you start receiving more and better survey opportunities the longer you stick with it.

The BestPaidSurveySite staff member who reviewed Paid Surveys Online has already made over $500 from paid surveys, easily recovering the small fee that he had paid several times over!

Ease of Use:

The main reason we have chosen this program as our #1 work at home opportunity is not because of its earning potential, but because we truly believe this to be the easiest way for the average person to make money working from home!

Now, it may take you a few days to register with all of the market research companies. This is simply telling the companies about yourself so that they know which surveys to send you and where. Luckily, the Paid Surveys Online program offers free software that will dramatically speed up this process.

But you only "register" once, and after that, you can enjoy a lifetime of easy cash, rewards, and free products just for sharing your opinion!

Online Support:

This is where Paid Surveys Online really shines, and is the main reason that we have given this program a slight edge over the other two companies that met our quality standard. All of our inquiries were answered within a few hours, with a prompt, personal, and detailed response. Most companies will just try to answer you with a quick reply (such as a canned copy-and-paste response or pre-written text from an autoresponder) and then move on. This is definitely not the case with Paid Surveys Online. They will go that extra mile to ensure you're satisfied!

Start-up Cost:

For their top-notch service, Paid Surveys Online charges users a small, one-time fee of $34.95, which can quickly be covered with just 1 or 2 surveys. The fee includes lifetime access to the paid survey guide, tips, tools, and resources, a regularly updated database, and a huge selection of bonuses.

Considering the value of the program, the return on investment, and the fact that the paid survey business would be far more difficult and time consuming without companies like we'd say this is money well spent. The fee is backed by a 60 day refund policy if at any point you decide that paid surveys are not for you!

Keep in mind that there are no additional start-up costs of any kind -- EVER! In fact, paid surveys are one of the few home based businesses we're aware of that requires no additional start-up costs - you pay just once and enjoy a lifetime of easy cash and free products for your opinion!

Fun Factor:

This is a cool new feature we've added to the BestPaidSurveySite reviews. We now measure how much "fun" we've had while earning money with each work at home program.

Paid Surveys Online gets a fun factor of 10 out of 10. Not only are the surveys quick and easy to do, but you actually get to express your ideas, which will help in shaping new products available to the market.

You also get to "tell them off" in case you don't like something about a particular company's products or services. And you get paid for it! Pretty cool, huh?

Additional Notes:

While we have listed this opportunity at #1 because of its ease of use, fun factor, and lowest overall start-up cost, paid surveys are meant to be treated as a supplemental income and are not really designed to completely replace most people's careers.

A good idea would be to sign up, make some easy money, then take the cash you made with surveys and invest in a more serious income opportunity such as using the power of Google to advertise for affiliate programs.

Also, most paid surveys have proven to pay really well only for U.S., Canadian, and U.K. residents. If you live outside of these three countries, you may find that there are not that many paid surveys available in your area. You'd be probably be better off selecting another program such as Legit Online Jobs.

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