This is the 1 year late case study. It’s embarrassing to admit, but with all of the projects I had going on in 2013 I held off on posting this case study for a very important reason. Read on to find out what it is. For now here’s the article as I had written it in 2013:
In early May I set out to answer the question “Can you really make money with paid surveys?” and today I’m sharing my results.
Table Of Contents
- So, can you really make money filling out surveys?
- My One Month Income Results: $248.06
- So How Do You Actually Make Money?
- How Long Do Surveys Take To Fill Out And What Do They Pay?
- How Can You Complete Surveys Faster?
- Overall – Would I Suggest This Strategy For Everyone?
- So Why Did I Take So Long To Publish This Case Study?
- New Case Study: Watch Me Make Money From The Survey Chris Website
So, can you really make money filling out surveys?
Yes – but let me elaborate.
Filling out surveys isn’t a day job income replacement, instead it falls in the line of a supplemental income method.
The less you make per hour in your day job the more valuable this method will be for you.
If you’re already making over $100,000 per year than this strategy may be worth skipping, but if you’re at or below the median household income avg for the US (roughly $50,000 per year) than this strategy becomes much more relevant.
The other benefit of filling out surveys is that it’s a much more guaranteed method for earning money online as opposed to the other strategies I’ve shared on this website that rely on more skills, research, time, effort, luck etc to be successful.
Bottom line it is drop dead simple to get your very first check of online income from filling out online surveys:
Getting your first check of real online earnings may just serve to inspire you to move on for more.
I know the very first Adsense deposit I received for $176.16 way back in November 2005 felt amazing. It’s the light switch that told me there was something to this online business thing and what pushed me forward failure after failure onto much bigger payments.
The payout potential is entirely dependent on the company you’re using to fill out surveys, selecting the highest payout surveys from the available opportunities and going through the surveys as quickly as possible while still providing quality results.
Filling out surveys is entirely possible while watching TV shows, so it’s important to point out that you can essentially make money while watching TV – but you still have to “work” to make the money.
My One Month Income Results: $248.06
I said I was going to spend an entire month testing this method of earning money online, but I only really spent just under 3 weeks in my spare time.
My brother was in town from Australia for 10 days so I took those 10 days off from work to do nothing but hang out with him. With that said here are my results with 99% of my income coming from actually filling out surveys and completing offers – obviously if I included referral income it could sway the results:
May Income Total: $248.06
Keep in mind, I only took surveys in a little bit of my spare time after my regular work hours and for a less than 3 weeks.
Your first question might be – why did you sign up for so many different companies?
Each survey company only has so many surveys available at any one time. So in order to make the most money possible you will want to sign up for more companies so that you will always have surveys available for filling out if you’d like. Some companies will offer the same survey though so don’t do that survey at each company or you’ll get credit revoked for each survey you filled out.
So How Do You Actually Make Money?
The above companies offer you methods for making money from filling out surveys and some companies provide offers you can complete (which I’ll describe next). But it really is as simple as signing up for the companies listed above, answering the preliminary screening questions they may ask you and then waiting to be emailed survey opportunities. In many cases surveys will be available for you as soon as you sign up for a company.
I have over 1,000 emails in the less than 30 days that I’ve been signed up for these survey companies so I strongly suggest you create a separate email address when signing up. Update: this number is now over 35,000 emails. I created a separate email address and in Gmail created a filter for all emails sent to my survey email address to skip my inbox and go straight to my Surveys tab so that I could simply click the tab anytime I wanted to do some surveys.
What About Making Money With Offers?
CashCrate and FusionCash are primarily offer companies that provide both free and paid offers that you can complete for compensation. For example, I signed up for a company called Manilla.com and got $2.40 from CashCrate when I linked my Netflix account and two other accounts in their service (took me less than 5 minutes). There are some paid offers that make it possible to make more money from the reward than the cost of signing up, but sometimes these are tied to monthly subscriptions so make sure you cancel in time – or just stick to the free offers (some offers will revoke your reward if you cancel too quickly)
How Long Do Surveys Take To Fill Out And What Do They Pay?Every survey varies in length and compensation, but from my experience so far the typical payout is anywhere from $.50 to $4.00 and between 5 minutes to 35 minutes.
I’ve seen ads for survey companies that advertise that you can make up to $50 (or whatever) per survey but I haven’t seen any of those yet. In either case, it’s generally very obvious which surveys are worth taking because the companies list out the reward as well as the estimated time for completion. This variation in payout and time for completion is precisely why I signed up for a lot of companies and why I’d suggest you do the same. That way you can quickly scan the highest paying offers and go for those ones first.
In my experience 90% of the surveys I filled out I completed in less than the advertised time.
This held true across every company I tried out so it wasn’t specific to one company. Roughly 5% took as long as indicated and another 5% took a bit longer than was advertised. Roughly 20% or less of the surveys I would be screened out of (where they ask a few questions and eventually determine you’re not in the target market). This screening process generally would take less than 60 seconds to be weeded out so you don’t end up wasting too much time.
How Can You Complete Surveys Faster?
One of my best strategies for signing up for survey companies and filling out surveys faster was by using RoboForm to automatically populate answers to common questions such as age, sex, address, race, income etc.
With RoboForm you can even program in custom questions and answers. So I programmed in every variation of the most common questions asked so that I could simply click the RoboForm button and automatically input my information.
RoboForm has a free trial that also allows you to store a smaller amount of passwords and a pro version that allows you to store and sync unlimited passwords between your phone, multiple computers etc. I’ve been paying for the software for 3 years now as it’s enables you to just remember one complex password and then use a highly complex password for every other password protected online service out there.
Overall – Would I Suggest This Strategy For Everyone?
As I said in the beginning, this method of earning money online should be considered supplemental only. The less you earn at your day job, the more valuable this strategy can be for you. Ultimately it does take work and you are trading time for money so it’s just like a side job. Granted, it’s a side job you can complete while watching TV and not paying a lot of attention which is a bonus.
So Why Did I Take So Long To Publish This Case Study?
In my search to discover if you could make money with these online survey companies I did a lot of research. Specifically, I wanted to find the best companies available but whenever I’d do a search for something like “opinion outpost review” I’d find a blog with a review that had very little detail. It was clear that the author was just trying to make money but as an interested survey taker I felt like there should be a more quality review source.
So last year I wanted to build an authority review website for all of these survey companies. I set aside the project because I was busy with so many other things but now I’ve finally got back to it.
Feel free to go check out my new site: SurveyChris.com (you may recognize the design as well, I’ll get to why I picked that later)
Note: Much more content (and particularly) reviews are coming soon.
New Case Study: Watch Me Make Money From The Survey Chris Website
I’m going to share my income results from building this review website as a case study right here on this blog. I want to show you how and why I make various decisions as I build an authority style website.
If you’re interested in trying out survey’s as a monetization method be sure to sign up for the Survey Chris newsletter. I’m working on a free great guide which will help you avoid some of the dumb stuff I did:
Have you ever tried taking online surveys? Share in the comments below.
Note: Obviously I’m not going to be pulling in a ton of money taking surveys, but there is a segment of internet users looking for easy no fail ways to make money and I can certainly also make money referring people to the winners. That’s who I’m going to serve with this website.
Hey Chris Me again 😉
So all those spam comments on YouTube have some truth to them… who’d have known!
I think this kind of thing might be good for people who don’t have the skills in making websites etc that you need to Adsense or Amazon associate earnings.
A great sideline and anyone can fill in a survey 🙂
lol – well the spam comments are usually advertising products that cost money that teach you where to find surveys (I assume – never clicked of course hah). I haven’t investigated those but likely they are shams hah.
Really interesting niche Chris. I’m signed up for a Google app that sends me survey’s all the time and I’ve earned about $15 over a period of 6 months whenever they pop up on my phone I just complete them really quick.
I also have another app installed that earns “points” just for running in the background on my phone (Does not appear to hurt battery) and after you reach X number of points you can redeem a gift card on various sites such as Amazon and I’ve managed to with draw about $15 in the same time frame.
Kinda fun bringing in small money here and there for doing very little. I’d just imagine over time doing a ton of these survey’s would become pretty tedious. Almost reminds me of that Amazon Mechanical Turk site where you can do tasks that require human interaction for small $.
I could definitely see this being useful for those that are struggling and want some extra money to help with bills every month. I do see more potential on your end with the review site though, if you have tons of affiliates signing up that could prove to be pretty lucrative with hundreds of affiliates.
I also like https://www.slicethepie.com/ Listen to music, rate & review and you make money. More enjoyable than survey’s.
Hey John, yah I will admit it can get a bit boring from time to time but again with finding any niche it’s all about finding a market that is interested in what you have to offer. Specifically I’m targeting the people that DO want to take surveys by providing quality reviews from someone that’s actually used the service (unlike every other site out there I could find).
Will check out that site.
It also may or may not prove useful but there is a forum called “The Bot Net” that has tons of people doing exchanges for these types of affiliate sites, discussing quick money methods etc.
There is even a forum sub category where you can blindly offer a “free method” to make money and it will literally get you 100’s of replies, PM’s etc without providing much detail beyond that your making money easily. You may be able to utilize a free report based on these simple survey’s to encourage all these freebie seekers to sign up with your links.
Kinda reminds me of the people who get tons of sign up’s for these Pay To Click sites like Neobux for example.
Hey John, interesting. Have you been on this site before?
Referring people to surveys is much, much more profitable than taking the surveys yourself. I refer people to some of the old things I used to do to earn money online – like reading emails with Inbox Dollars. I think getting the referral rewards is much more valuable than signing up with an affiliate program and getting $2 per lead.
When you get a bunch of referrals you’re getting a stream of income for as long as they stick with program – and surprisingly many people do these things for a long time. So if you get some traffic to your new site I think it will be hugely profitable. On the other hand it seems like there is a lot of competition in that niche.
I can’t wait to see how it goes!!
Yah I’ll be showing everything I do, why I do it and yes you’re right you can make good money referring people as opposed to taking surveys yourself. In the case of SurveyChris.com I’m going to be taking the surveys and then actually reviewing the companies to show which work best. Most affiliates don’t put the time or effort into actually using the services to see which are best.
Will share more on my strategy as we proceed onward. Thanks Alexa.
I understand now why posting this took so long! I’ve been doing online surveys for a little fun money for a while now, but I’ve never heard of most of the sites you mentioned. I’ve had good luck with SurveySavvy personally.
Hey Daniel, yah the main reason was that I just wanted to build out SurveyChris.com and I had to shelve that project for a while as I was busy with other stuff at the time.
I did a little experiment seeing how much money I could earn filling out surveys over here in England earlier this year. I picked the 5 top survey sites based on recommendations online and took part for about 6-8 weeks. The results were disappointing to say the least, 3 were outright scammy, 1 only released a couple of surveys a week and the other, which has a large online following really didn’t justify the time/payout. So I lost interest and stopped.
Good blog post, and good on you. 🙂
Hey Phil, yah admittedly the US market is likely the most lucrative one but perhaps I’ll see if we can get a freelance writer to cover UK ones.
I started doing surveys way back in 2009 At that time I was just making cents and then I started concentrating on Google Adsense, CPA and other ways of making money. Now that I am following your case study I want to give this method yet another try and hope that I will make some decent cash this time since I have acquired a lot of experience online.
Great post. As someone who works for a market research company, the type of place that would be sending out these surveys, we’re always happy to have extra respondents to help out and the incentives will always be there.
One thing for everyone to bear in mind – if you try and speed through surveys to get as many done as possible, as those reading may be likely to do to try to stack points, it’s more likely these days that you’ll be cleaned out of the data and will not be rewarded your incentives. Just something to watch out for.
Yah there are multiple times I’ve seen questions like “click this box and continue onto the next question” in the list of things like car manufacturers. So far I’ve not had any of my surveys not paid out and my plan is to go all the way through to a cash payout, take it and then see what happens.
Nice article post, but no matter how big you show me Cheque, i will never participate in surveys.
This what i first started doing when i get to know about the internet, but i never get paid for all the surveys i did.
Very painful, all the my effort wasted. I never reach the payout of those website that offer paid survey. The moment you take like 10 surveys, you won’t have any survey to take again, meaning all the money you earn will never be yours cos they are not up to payout.
This comment is just from my own personal experience, no hard feelings Chris
Another disadvantage i got is that am from the Africa Part of the continent, which make me conclude that paid surveys is not for me.
Have a nice weekend
I found the link to this post on Kingged and i have also kingged it on kingged.com
Yah so that is likely the issue. Many survey companies have requirements for which country you are located in when you take them. So if you’re in Africa and taking surveys from US residents only then of course they aren’t going to pay out. Unless I’m misunderstanding your comment.
I seen a lot of sites of paid surveys when I was new to the internet, but all the sites were for US residents only. Cash Crate looks like it was a old one, but can�t remember it.
In getpaidforum there are lot�s of news about these paid surveys during those days. I see you had made some money with them and looks great for me, however i cannot able to join as they don�t offer surveys for Indians.
Thanks for sharing your earnings here.
I found this article on Kingged dot com
yah fair we’ll see I’ll only be able to take surveys that apply to my niche we’ll see how they go though.
Any idea what the profile is of the most profitable survey taker?
Is it a 30 year old married woman with 2 kids or or 45 year old man earning $75,000 with 2 kids, etc?
Hey Josh – not sure. My assumption is that most of the pay is fairly similar across demographics as they want to make sure they get a good sample size of all backgrounds.
Surveys are completely legit. Though I’d like to see you do a post on focus groups–since that’s where the big money is at. I personally love surveypolice.com (no affiliation/no affiliate link) because they rate all the top survey sites out there.
Yah I will have to research that space. Part of the fun in doing this is showing everything I try within that niche to build the site as a success.
I did come across SurveyPolice in my searching and that site is probably doing really well. It’s also more of a review aggregation site and I believe there is value there, but I also like being able to provide in depth reviews to really show the ins and outs of each service (whereas they’re just trying to send you on to sign up as quickly as possible for the affiliate commission).
Interesting topic and good read however I think i’d try and make it in the affiliate world of online marketing… rather put my attention there. Thanks Dude
Yah well the plan is to show how I build this site up to a $1,000+ per month income stream (and beyond). So half of why I’m even talking about it is to introduce my new public case study.
A very good article on surveys. I completely agree with everything you’ve stated here. I dabbled in surveys years and years ago but wasn’t too serious because it was too time consuming for the payoff.
Fast forward a few years…
I started a blog on ways to make money form home and wanted to see if it was really true that you can make DECENT money doing surveys. In a lot of ways, I did a “test” study much like what you did Chris. What I found is this…
You can make money – enough to pay a bill or two doing just surveys. The real money in the survey niche is getting referrals. You can make UP to $8 per referral on Fusion Cash. So in sense it’s like a CPA offer. This makes it much easier to make money.
I’ve made more than the average survey taker that’s for sure, but since surveys are not my main source of income, I don’t put much effort into this way of getting money.
So in a nutshell, from my experience, getting referrals is key if you want to make decent money.
IF you’re just going to be a survey taker and make enough money for a bill or two, then you’ll need to be consistent and do surveys everyday. Set a time limit to do surveys 30 minutes to an hour or two and stick to it day after day and you will make some money.
Again, great article Chris!
I fully expect the bulk of my income from this site to come from referrals, but the difference is that I’ll actually be trying out every company and getting paid by them to see which actually work best.
So we’ll see how it goes 🙂
Interesting results, Chris.
My experience years ago was that there were many shady survey sites and the few legit ones had lots of people and you didn’t get that many surveys. Maybe things have changed.
Your survey site will no doubt be a good one. I’ve considered that myself but haven’t had a whole lot of interest in the niche, so I don’t think I could get it done without stabbing myself in the eye.
I’m curious as to how much actual time it took you and what it panned out to hourly?
Not just that it was “spare” time because you could have been doing something else with that time. There is always an opportunity cost. 🙂
Something legitimate like this could be a great way for people who have button-pusher and warm-body jobs that allow you to do other things (like gate keepers or such) could be a good way to earn extra while at their hourly job if they don’t have the desire to build something recurring or more passive.
In future reviews I’m posting on the site I’m documenting time spent taking the surveys along with how much I earned. e.g. Survey pays $3 and advertised to take 15 minutes but I completed in 9 minutes for example. So I am tracking that.
But remember I’m building this site also to make money from referral income. The goal being that I will have the best reviews because I’m actually doing the work to show what works and what doesn’t.
The only problem with the surveys is that too many of them won’t let you earn money, but “rewards” in the form of all kinds of giftcards ect. And some of them delay payout months and months later (when the study has been concluded).
Every company I’ve tried so far offers payout via Paypal or paper check. Will show more details when I post more and more reviews.
I’ve looked into the surveys a few times over the years because of trustworthy people saying some are legit, but every time it seems the only worthwhile ones need my phone and/or credit card #. The last thing I need is to be getting sales calls and fighting unauthorized CC charges for a buck or two… my time is worth more than that
Hey David – see that’s precisely why I’m building this site. To actually try these out. Obviously this income method isn’t quit your job level money, but for the niche I’m targeting there are people that are interested in this.
amzing post. You explained it in awesome way.
I never tried paid surveys so far. but, this post will definitely push me to try this survey offers.
Thanks for post 🙂
Chris, great article.
I follow your blog through RSS on my iPhone.
Just let you know that none of above aff links works. Please check them again.
They all work for me? That’s odd I’ll look into it though thanks.
Chris, maybe this is because I am in NL, not US. I tried today again and once links change to URL following by aff details, the page stop loading and become blank.
Only 2 opens, one detecting me in Holland and pop-up saying this is only available for US Residents and another with Pizza.
Ok so if you’re in NL though they don’t have an offer for that area so that’s expected that you might not see something or be redirected to some other offer.
Thank you Chris,
This is what I thought too. The same is with Apple Store. When I switch to NL, then I can download apps not available in another country. However, when I try to download the same app while being registered in another country, it shows me blank app store with message: “Cannot access iTunes”
I, for one, NEED extra cash! Thanks for this article.
[…] 31.�How To Make Money With Paid Surveys � Income Results […]
I love the way you think! You’ll do great with this! You are role-modeling a method to me also, which is another thing you could make an income from – at least in theory. I mean if you pull together a package on how to corner a niche market and sell that – BOOM!
Hey Chris what is your website for your program. I am just starting to look into surveys and need extra cash after being laid off from job and I live in a small town having a hard time finding a job. Never been out of work for the last 30 yrs so its kinda depressing me but I know the ones I have got on want me to fulfill 3 offers to get a $50 gift card. I have had several do that. Have you done any of these and did they in fact send the gift card??? Also if you are having to pay for offers how are you making any money that way?? I know not all do that but several do and its aggravating to start a survey that promises to pay you to take it and then you find out later at the end you have to fulfill offers etc… I don’t know maybe I am missing something. I would love to do referrals too if I can make more money but not sure how you do that exactly.
You say it took “a little bit of my spare time,” but what does that mean? Thirty minutes a day? An hour? Three?
Just varies on how much time you want to spend right? Ultimately if you sign up for one of the accounts and do a survey you’ll see how long it is and what the payout is etc.
How do I know I am receiving payment for the surveys I complete? Do the checks automatically arrive in the mail, or is there something I have to do to ensure that they come through the mail? For instance., I do not want to do a bunch of surveys like I have been doing, and nothing come to me in the mail/ PayPal etc. for doing them. Just wondering. Thank you!
Each site is different but generally you do them, earn the points (money or whatever) and request a cash out. Should be straight forward though…
I’m a teenager living in South Africa and would love to start earning some money through paid surveys but it seems that there aren’t any of them out there for me. Where can I be sure that I will always have surveys to fill? Any other advice?
Thanks for your expertise!
Sorry not sure on those 🙁
My friend suggested I try out some online surveys for some extra income and I decided to look into it first and I came here. Everything seems great and all, but if you don’t fit the demographic you spend 5 minutes filling out the preliminary info and then get told you don’t fit the bill….I’ve been rejected from 10 surveys in a row now and the only ones I have been able to complete are the member profile.
Apparently you have to be Latino, have visible income, and be interested in whatever they ask you about in order to even take the surveys.
Definitely depends on the company and in some cases yes they can fill a demographic and then only be looking for people in other areas. You can always apply to other companies though too.
[…] https://upfuel.com/case-study-intro/ […]
[…] Online Surveys […]
I’m anot Indian residing in the UAE Can I still take these surveys ? Or are they only for US residents?
It varies by company often you just need to sign up to look.
Why isn’t there any option for Pakistan in select my country?
Some countries aren’t available for various companies.
What about taxes?
What about them? You should pay them.
okay so I’m from SA and I always wondered how to make some money online legitimate way so does this survey thing really work and can I use my smartphone or is a computer really needed ?
I’m not as familiar with the survey offers for your country – I can only speak from my own experience. That said this is a legit way of making money but as I’ve said before it’s not a lot of money to be made.
Okay I’m a high school student that doesn’t have a car making it hard to get a job, it’s summer and I think this could work for me could it?
Depends on how expensive the car is but a few hundred bucks a month is doable depending on if you happen to match the demographics you’re searching for.
Do any of these do PayPal payouts? Honestly seems like a hassle to have a paper check, not to mention the junk mail i know they are going to send to my PO Box.
Yah there are several that do.
How many surveys can you actually get from just 1 site you subscribe to? And how much money can you earn?
I actually don’t have much time in my regular rutine, just about an hour, excluding weekends.
It completely varies both individually based on your own demographics and also on a site by site basis. The advice I typically give is to apply for several and then go from there.
I have tried many survey sites off and on over the last 10 yrs and every single time, all I get is “scammed”. So I start a survey about a digital product and the next thing I know I am asked if I own a car and do I have car insurance or I am asked if I have a health condition like say RA. NOTHING about the digital product. THEN I have to fill in my email & other info and I get slammed with spam from the car/medical places (using those as examples). I end up 20 to 30 minutes later quitting.
Maybe I’ve just been signing up at terrible sites. I will give some of yours a try 🙂
Yah I mean don’t get me wrong, making money with taking surveys isn’t going to be a big money maker. I just set out to test that this would actually work.
Hey Chris, I’m a highschool student looking to make extra money on the side while working about 20 hours at my local grocery store for about $8.00 an hour. Would this kind of thing work to my advantage?
If so can I get some tips on how to get started that may not have been listed above?
Earnings rate will fluctuate but it’s a good supplemental income strategy. Won’t be “amazing” though.
hi there, thanks for the info! 🙂 just had a question i downloaded roboform and recently have signed up for surveys , not many so far to fill out :/ or much money for them so i will need to keep doing that :P.
~*But just wondering you said “you can even program in custom questions and answers” on RoboForm, i downloaded it and filled in basic form info such as my name, age, gender etc but how can i put up my own questions and answers, surveys often ask such as :
How many people live in your household etc common survey questions. thanks! if you had a video, article or could comment back it would help a lot !:) thanks have a nice day
i thought when first starting off there would be more surveys to complete right away, :p and that once i filled in my info that i would only get surveys specific to what i am qualified for, but each survey seems to re-ask all the info that the online survey site already asked me i.e My survey, and some end up saying oh sorry but i’m not the criteria the survey wanted after i had to fill out again xp . So it would help if RoboForm could save custom made questions and answers it doesnt already have, i’ve looked it up but it seems to only show how to get to the basic info and not custom questions, thanks for the help hope you get this ^^.