Copyright 2005 Elaine Currie
Doing paid online surveys is a very easy way to make money at home. I'd rank this occupation as second in simplicity only to getting paid to autosurf - there simply cannot be anything easier than logging into a website and allowing advertisers' websites to scroll across your computer screen - doing paid online surveys does take a little more effort but not too much and it is an enjoyable pastime.
I discovered paid online surveys by accident. I was actually using the Internet to search for a job and I had the idea of looking for work at home opportunities. It all seems a bit unreal when I look back - was there really a time when I didn't know you could get paid for doing online surveys? In those days, the only surveys I knew about were the ones I occasionally received in the post and which would promise entry into a prize draw as a reward for taking the time to complete the survey. I never did win a prize but I built up quite a collection of free pens. Now I take it for granted that email invitations to take part in paid online surveys will turn up in my mailbox on a daily basis and (the important bit) that I will get paid for completing the surveys.
One great thing about paid online surveys is the fact that you don't need any special skills to take part. As long as you have an Internet linked computer and an opinion, you are qualified. There are no right or wrong answers when it comes to surveys, the companies want to hear what you think, they don't want to test your knowledge. Most questions will permit you to answer "don't know" or "not sure". Sometimes, you will be given multiple choices and asked to pick the closest to your viewpoint. The best survey companies without fail, try to make it easy for you to give meaningful answers.
Another great thing is that you can complete your paid online surveys at your leisure. When the invitation is sent to you, it will normally state a deadline for closure of the survey and, as long as you respond before the deadline, it does not matter when you complete the survey. As the majority of paid online surveys can be completed in 5-15 minutes, it is very easy to slot them here and there into your daily routine. You can easily do a short survey or two while you drink your morning coffee but, if you prefer, you can save up all your survey invitations and do them at midnight.
All sorts of companies, all over the world are spending a small fortune every year on advertising their products and services. In order to advertise as effectively as possible, these companies invest heavily in market research programmes to help them target their advertising. Market researchers also investigate what people might like or dislike about various products which are still in prelaunch.
Paid online surveys will quite often include a question about whether you would be prepared to test a sample of a product from their client. I've received free samples of a variety of things from chocolate, to facial soap to detergent tablets. These free samples are worth having because they are generous in quantity: they aren't the mini free sample sizes you see given away in shops. I was quite surprised when I received a full size box of detergent tablets through the post. The fact that it was a new variety of my preferred brand was an added bonus, I only wish I could get to test chocolate more often.
Paid online survey companies make payment to their members by a variety of methods. Some pay instantly via PayPal, some by cheque, some with Amazon gift vouchers, some have a points system where you earn points which you save up and later trade in for products of your choice or for cash. There will also be some surveys where the reward will be entry into a draw for a large prize.
Generally speaking, the cash payments for taking part in paid online surveys are quite small but, as each survey takes only a short time to complete, you can do several each day and build up a steady income. If you want to earn a decent amount of money, you won't do it by just joining a couple of paid online survey companies you need to sign up with a large number of them. The easiest way to do this is by joining one or more paid online survey database companies. For payment of a small one off fee, you will get access to a database of reputable paid online survey companies. Your membership will include regular industry updates and notification of any new additions to the online paid survey company database.
Another advantage of joining paid online survey companies by paying for access to a database, is that you will avoid the scam companies who are just out to harvest your details which they will then sell to anyone willing to pay. If you do a Google search for online paid surveys, you will undoubtedly notice many websites which offer a free list of survey companies and which advise that you should not pay to join a database when you can join free through their website. The owners of these websites are not philanthropists, they are affiliates for each company they list and they receive commission if you sign up through their link. They don't care how much junk mail you will get!
I made the mistake of signing up to some paid online survey companies through a couple of these websites and I very soon noticed an increase in junk mail, unsolicited marketing phone calls and emails. I also noticed the poor quality of some of the "surveys" I was invited to complete. The worst company would regularly email me a message claiming they wanted me to take part in a $50 survey on movies. I answered pages of questions about my taste in cars, holiday destinations and various other unconnected subjects. Eventually, I would be informed that I was not suitable for the $50 movie survey. All I got for answering all those questions was mail and phone calls from people who seemed to think I wanted to buy a Mercedes, go on a cruise and buy all sorts of mobile phones.
If you are looking for an easy way to make money at home, I recommend paid online surveys as an excellent place to start but beware of the scammers. The small fee (which you can soon earn back) for access to a reputable database is well worthwhile both in terms of getting paid and in avoiding the nuisance of junk mail.
About the author:
Elaine Currie has a Work From Home Directory and Survey Review at her Plug In Profit Site:
for people who want to make money at home.
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