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Paid Online Surveys: Getting Started

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Paid Online Surveys: Getting Started

Companies offering people an opportunity to earn money from home certainly seem to be more prominent these days. It's hard to browse the web without encountering online ads promising various avenues to "working in your pajamas" and making a paycheck. One of the most popular of these offers is the paid survey. Getting paid to fill out survey is easy to do and here is how you can get started.

Online SurveyThe first step in this home business opportunity involves finding a good database of consumer research groups (it would take an eternity to search for all these groups individually) and then sifting through them. If you really want to earn money for taking surveys online, sign up for as many online marketing groups as you can. Some seasoned veterans advise registering with as many as a few hundred.

A good survey database will have at least three hundred marketing research firms in its directory, but you won't be able to sign up with every single one. Some aren't open to U.S. residents. Others are only open to residents of certain major cities in the U.S (like Chicago, L.A., or San Francisco). Then you'll have to consider the ways in which these companies conduct their research. Some, though they may offer paid surveys from time to time, specialize more in secret shopping, surfing the web or phone interviews. Others host focus groups, which offer a high monetary incentive but also require your presence at their office or lab. That rules out a market research group in Ohio for a person living in California.

Lastly, consider the compensation offered. Not all companies pay cash. Some offer various reward prizes that while sometimes attractive or useful won't help you to pay the rent. Keep in mind, however, that policies change. A company that isn't currently offering any cash incentives might start doing so in the future.

The task of signing on with the hundreds of online survey websites on the Internet can be a daunting prospect. Although some are free to join, there are some which impose some sort of fee structure. Even if you invest $30-40 to sign up with a survey company listing, you'll still probably end up with a handful of companies that you personally prefer. Some of the more reputable ones include WinningSurveys, National Consumer Panel, LPSOS Survey, Valued Opinions and PermissionResearch. They're a good place to start.

Coffee and BagelAfter you initially sign-up (each registry takes about 5-15 min) you'll oftentimes be offered "screener surveys". These are surveys that a company sends you when they want to establish your demographic. You'll be asked your marital status, what business employs you and for how many hours a week, if you have children, how many vehicles you own, and whether you rent or own your home, among other things. There's generally little or no incentive offered for these screener surveys; but they're still worth doing because they'll actually save you time in the long run.

Although it's a hassle to fill out a five-minute questionnaire, it's not nearly as frustrating as following through with dozens of survey invitations only to find out halfway through - that you don't qualify for them. Market research groups send out those screener surveys so they'll know what kind of survey invitations to give you next time. Consider this the second time investment of your home business.

In order to get paid, you will inevitably need to open a Paypal account if you don't have one already. At least half of the market research groups prefer to pay this way, and that's a lot of compensation to miss out on if we insist upon the old-fashioned mailed check. Paypal offers certain advantages, anyway. You can transfer your funds into your bank account with a few mouse clicks and save yourself a trip to the bank. Also, paid survey companies generally credit your Paypal account in much less time then it would take them to mail you a check.

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