Can you make a living doing paid surveys online?
I’ll cut straight to the point and say “No.” By their very nature, there are built in limits to just how much you can earn doing paid surveys that are offered online and that is why they are best thought of as pocket money. On average, you’ll be eligible to complete 1 to 4 surveys a month for any one company. Completed surveys generally pay between $1 and $20 dollars.
If you sign up with enough survey sites and fit a set of demographics that they frequently need, it is quite possible to cover all of your entertainment expenses for the month, but it’s not something you can rely on for your monthly rent or mortgage payment and the other bills you need to pay every month. At the most you are likely to earn between $100 and $300 doing paid surveys. Any site that suggests otherwise is likely trying to scam you into paying for information that is freely available if you know where to look for it.
So why can’t you earn a living doing paid surveys?
The main reason you can’t make a living doing paid surveys is that for every survey that market research firms need to conduct, they also have a set of criteria for who is eligible to do the survey. This usually includes demographics information such as gender, age, annual earnings, job category, family size, etc. It really depends on what the target market is for the product being discussed.
For example, you won’t be able to do surveys about dog food if you don’t own a dog. So while the market researchers may have lots of different survey opportunities available, you’ll usually only be eligible to take some of them. Of course, if you fit a demographic that they are looking for frequently, you’ll find yourself with a lot more survey-taking opportunities.
How much can you actually earn doing paid surveys?
How much you can earn doing online surveys partially depends on what kinds of surveys you want to do. If you prefer to stick strictly to the surveys conducted by market research firms, you will usually max out at around $300 a month and may not even approach that if you aren’t in the demographic they are seeking to cover that month.
However, if you are also interested in getting involved in doing offers and surveys that are used to promote specific products, you can earn quite a bit more. Many folks who do online surveys also sign up with what is known as “Get Paid To” sites, commonly referred to as GPT sites. If you want to participate in both pure market research and also complete offers, then you can definitely maximize your earnings potential — — maybe as much as a $1000 per month if you sign up for a lot of offers on multiple sites. I don’t believe this will sustain itself over the long term, but you can probably cash in fairly well during the first couple of months.
The downside of GPT sites though is usually you need to sign up for some offers with your credit card and you occasionally need to actually buy things in order to get the payment. That’s the only way to earn the big money on these sites. You’ll also need to keep track of what you’ve signed up for and when so you can cancel any free trials you’ve decided not to continue, otherwise you’ll be paying out more money than you are earning.
By using GPT sites to complete offers, you will also be opening yourself up to marketing phone calls, email and postal mail. If you already do some of your shopping online, however, GPT sites can not only save you a lot of money, you can also earn some extra money as well. There are also ways to limit some of the privacy concerns.
Ultimately, the choice is yours and you can always experiment to see what works out best for you. You can sign up with just market research companies, just GPT sites or sign up for a combination of both. One important thing to keep in mind as you look for survey opportunities, all survey and GPT sites are free to join. Never pay for a list of sites or a survey membership site. All of this information is freely available online.