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How to Make Money Online With Surveys [7 Best Survey Sites]

How to Make Money Online With Surveys - Best Survey Sites Featured Image

In today’s world, with the global economy going from bad to worse and the struggle of covering one’s expenses becoming increasingly intense, many people turn their attention online to supplement their income and make ends meet.

While there are dozens of ways to make some extra money online each month, one of the most flexible, convenient, and time-tested methods is taking paid surveys.

Completing online surveys is extremely unlikely to help you build wealth and reach financial well-being, but it could undeniably provide a quick and easy financial boost in times of need.

However, always keep in mind that not all survey sites are created equal.

Unfortunately, the online survey market is filled with scams. If you don’t take the time to do proper research, you could end up wasting time and energy filling in surveys for nothing, all the while running the risk of having your devices infected by computer viruses and your data stolen by hackers.

In this article, I’ll answer every single survey-related question you might have, such as:

  • How do online surveys work?
  • How to make money with online surveys?
  • Which are the best survey sites that actually pay?
  • How much money can I earn taking surveys?
  • How to maximize my survey earnings?

Additionally, I’ll share with you a few tips that’ll help you identify legit opportunities that actually pay well and avoid scams.

Let’s take a more in-depth look.

How do paid online surveys work?

It all starts when a company wants to gain insights into the opinions, needs, and purchasing habits of a particular target group so that it can make data-driven decisions regarding optimizing its processes, mitigating product development risks, and improving its overall performance.

For example, the feedback collected via paid surveys could help a business save thousands of dollars they’d otherwise waste in developing and launching a product no one would buy.

Similarly, brands can leverage survey data toward tailoring their products to the needs and wants of their audience, which can in turn boost sales and customer loyalty.

While some large companies do run their own surveys, most of them hire specialized survey panels that have the expertise and infrastructure to crowdsource respondents, design and deploy large-scale market research, and conduct extensive data analysis.

Such survey panels take a cut of the payment they receive from the companies that hire them and then distribute the rest among the survey participants they recruited.

The process of taking online surveys is a win-win for everyone involved. On one hand, it enables companies to gather valuable feedback about their products or services. At the same time, it allows regular people, like you and me, to earn some extra cash fast and without much hassle in exchange for filling in simple questionnaires.

All you have to do to start making money with surveys is sign up for a few survey sites, submit your demographics, and start completing the surveys you get invited to.

Unfortunately, legit survey panels are scarce and greatly outnumbered by scams.

The good news is that after having experimented with hundreds of different survey platforms over the last few years, I’ve managed to uncover a few gems, some of which I’ve listed right below.

Let’s take a closer look.

Best survey sites for making money online

1. Swagbucks

Launch date: February 2008

Average earnings: $0.1 – $50 per task

Availability: Americas, Europe, Asia, and some countries in Africa

Currency: Swag Bucks (SB)

Currency exchange: 1SB=$0.01

Payment methods: PayPal, Payoneer, and eGift cards

Min. cashout threshold: $1 for gift cards, $10 for PayPal, and $52 for Payoneer

Signup bonus: None

Trust score: 4.3/5 stars based on 32k Trustpilot reviews

Swagbucks is one of the most popular and reliable paid survey sites in the world. It was launched in 2008 by Prodege, one of the largest US-based market research companies. Since then, it has gathered over 20 million members and paid over $800 million worth of rewards.

Over the years, Swagbucks has gathered a significant amount of positive feedback throughout the web.

On top of its 4.3 rating on Trustpilot, Swagbucks holds 4.4/5 stars based on 9000+ reviews on Sitejabber, and 4.2/5 stars based on 114K reviews on Google Play. Additionally, Swagbucks has been featured as one of the best survey platforms by dozens of major online publications and is currently ranking first among similar sites on Sitejabber, and third on SurveyPolice.

Besides taking part in surveys, Swagbucks allows you to earn money by completing other tasks, such as:

  • shopping online
  • signing up for free trials
  • downloading apps
  • searching the web
  • playing online games
  • watching videos
  • & more

I’ve casually been using Swagbucks since 2018. Up until now, the most money I’ve earned with it in a month is about $70 with approximately an hour of work per day. That’s equivalent to approximately $2.5 per hour, which is a pretty decent hourly rate for a survey site.

In my opinion, Swagbucks is the perfect starting point for anyone looking to earn some extra money online with paid surveys.

Sign up for Swagbucks right here or check out my thorough Swagbucks review for a more in-depth look into the platform and its features.

2. Survey Junkie

Launch date: February 2011

Average earnings: $0.5 – $5 per survey

Availability: US, Canada, UK, and Australia

Currency: Points

Currency exchange: 1 point=$0.01

Payment methods: PayPal, eGift cards, and direct bank transfers

Min. cashout threshold: 500 points ($5)

Signup bonus: 75 points ($0.75)

Trust score: 4.3/5 stars based on 42k Trustpilot reviews

Survey Junkie was launched in 2011 by a market research company named DISQO (formerly known as Blue Media Ventures). Since then, it’s gathered over 1.5 million active members and is now considered among the leading platforms in the paid survey industry.

Survey Junkie is one of the simplest and most intuitive survey apps I’ve ever used – its interface is very minimal and decluttered, its questionnaires pretty straightforward, and its payments extremely fast.

Upon creating your free account, Survey Junkie will automatically credit you with 25 points ($0.25) and an additional 50 points ($0.5) for setting up your profile.

After that, it’ll prompt you to install Survey Junkie Pulse for an extra 150 points. That’s a browser extension that’ll notify you about surveys you qualify for. Generally, people who install it tend to receive more survey invitations.

I’ve experimented with Survey Junkie back in 2019 for a handful of months. An hour of filling in surveys daily yielded $40 – $60 per month. That’s equivalent to $1.3 – $2 per hour.

You can sign up for Survey Junkie right here. If you’d like to gather more info before jumping in, check out my extensive Survey Junkie review.

Please note that Survey Junkie is constantly working on expanding to cater to more countries. If the platform isn’t currently available in your country, stay tuned as it may become in the near future.

3. InboxDollars

Launch date: 2000

Average earnings: $0.3 – $5 per survey

Availability: US, UK (InboxPounds), and Canada (DailyRewards)

Currency: Dollars

Currency exchange: None

Payment methods: PayPal, checks, eGift cards, and prepaid cards

Min. cashout threshold: $30

Signup bonus: $5

Trust score: 4.2/5 stars based on 35k Trustpilot reviews

InboxDollars was founded in 2000 by a college student named Darren Cotter and was acquired in 2019 by Prodege, the same company that created Swagbucks. Over the years, InboxDollars has paid out over $80 in cash rewards to its members and has grown to become one of the most popular survey panels in the world.

On top of doing surveys, InboxDollars offers a wide range of additional money-making activities, including searching the web, watching videos, playing games, reading emails, and making referrals, plus a $5 signup bonus.

After having tried InboxDollars myself for a while a couple of years back, I concluded that the average user should expect to earn anywhere between $30 to $70 per month for one hour of daily focused effort.

The main drawback of InboxDollars is that it might delay fulfilling payments, but these instances are rather rare and can be easily resolved by contacting the platform’s customer support.

You can sign up for InboxDollars right here or take a look at my in-depth InboxDollars review if you’re in need of additional info.

Please note that InboxDollars is only available in the US.

However, Prodedge has launched two identical panels for people in the UK (InboxPounds) and Canada (DailyRewards).

4. Branded Surveys

Launch date: 2012

Average earnings: $0.5 – $3 per survey

Availability: US, UK, and Canada

Currency: Points

Currency exchange: 1 point=$0.01

Payment methods: PayPal, eGift cards, direct bank deposit, and prepaid cards

Min. cashout threshold: 500 points ($5)

Signup bonus: 100 points ($1)

Trust score: 4.2/5 stars based on 70k Trustpilot reviews

Branded Surveys was founded in 2012 under the name “MintVine” by a group of market research professionals. In 2017, MintVine was acquired by Branded Research, a market research firm, which then rebranded it to Branded Surveys.

Since its launch Branded Surveys has paid over $20 million to millions of its members and grown to hold a place among the most popular and reputable paid survey sites across the US, UK, and Canada.

While the primary focus of Branded Surveys is delivering surveys, you may occasionally be offered the option to take part in other money-making activities, like:

  • attending online focus groups
  • reviewing products
  • joining third-party communities
  • subscribing to email lists
  • & more

According to my own personal experience, the average hourly rates of Branded Surveys range between $1.5 and $2.5 per hour. Nevertheless, I’ve come across people claiming to be earning more than $4 per hour.

Branded Surveys will credit you with a total of 100 free points ($1) for signing up and filling in the introductory profile questionnaire.

You can sign up for Branded Surveys right here. Also, make sure to stay tuned for my dedicated Branded Surveys review.

5. PrizeRebel

Launch date: 2007

Average earnings: $0.5 – $10 per task

Availability: Worldwide

Currency: Points

Currency exchange: 1 point=$0.01

Payment methods: PayPal, gift cards, prepaid cards, and sweepstakes

Min. cashout threshold: 500 points ($5)

Signup bonus: none

Trust score: 3.8/5 stars based on 400 Trustpilot reviews

Since its launch in 2007, PrizeRebel has gathered 14 million members to whom it’s paid over $28 million worth of cash and rewards.

Most surveys offered by PrizeRebel pay between 40 and 100 points for about 15 minutes of your time. That’s equivalent to $1.6 – $4 per hour.

PrizeRebel doesn’t just pay you just for filling in surveys but also for taking part in other simple activities, such as:

  • playing games
  • watching videos
  • making referrals
  • signing up for free trials
  • shopping online
  • etc.

What separates PrizeRebel from most other survey panels is its unique loyalty program that offers bonuses and prize discounts based on the points you’ve accumulated. For example, when you reach a total of 4500 points, you’ll receive a 1% bonus on all your subsequent earnings and a 1% discount on most prizes you redeem.

Moreover, contrary to most survey panels out there, PrizeRebel is available worldwide.

You can sign up for PrizeRebel right here, or check out my PrizeRebel review for more info.

6. Prolific

Launch date: 2014

Average earnings: £0.5 – £3 per study

Availability: All OECD countries except Turkey, Lithuania, Colombia, Costa Rica, and South Africa

Currency: GBP⁠

Currency exchange: none

Payment methods: PayPal

Min. cashout threshold: £5

Signup bonus: none

Trust score: 4.6/5 stars based on 1300 Trustpilot reviews

Prolific is a UK-based survey panel founded in 2014 by Ph.D. holders Phelim Bradley and Ekaterina Damer. At the moment, it consists of over 130,000 active members from all around the world and is the highest-rated survey panel I’ve ever come across with a Trustpilot rating of 4.6/5 stars based on over 1300 reviews.

Prolific studies come in many different shapes and forms, such as:

  • simple surveys
  • interactive experiments
  • quizzes
  • games
  • creative & memory exercises
  • cognitive puzzles
  • & more

The average hourly rate of completing studies for Prolific is the highest among all survey panels I’ve ever tried, ranging between £4 and £10.

Something that gives Prolific the upper hand over almost all its competitors is that it prohibits researchers to kick participants out of studies they’ve already started competing.

Due to its rising popularity, in March 2022, Prolific implemented a waitlist for new participants, to avoid saturation and ensure that its existing users remain satisfied with the number of studies they receive.

Therefore, if you’d like to join Prolific, you’ll need to join its waiting list right here, and you’ll be notified once they start taking on more participants.

In the meantime, you can take a more in-depth look at the platform by checking out my Prolific review.

7. SuperPay

Launch date: 2012

Average earnings: $0.5 – $10 per task

Availability: Worldwide

Currency: Dollars and points

Currency exchange: 1 point=$0.01

Payment methods: PayPal, Skrill, Payza, Bitcoin, and gift cards

Min. cashout threshold: $1

Signup bonus: $0.20

Trust score: 4.6/5 stars based on 3500+ Trustpilot reviews

Last, but not least, we conclude this roundup with SuperPay, which was launched in 2012 by a UK-based advertising company, 99 Ventures LTD.

SuperPay isn’t a mere survey panel but rather a platform that’ll compensate you for performing tasks, such as:

  • shopping online
  • playing games
  • watching videos
  • installing apps
  • joining free trials
  • & more

Since its launch, has paid almost $6 million to over one million members.

The primary aspect of SuperPay I personally didn’t like was that its overly cluttered and poorly designed interface was very confusing and distracting.

On the bright side, SuperPay seems to be paying its members rather generously. According to its official leaderboard, the top five SuperPay earners make between $2000 and $3500 per quarter. That’s equivalent to $600-$1100 per month.

Those numbers might sound too good to be true but the overall feedback the platform has received over the years kinda backs them up.

Please note that even though is available worldwide, the vast majority of its offers get served to people from the US, UK, Canada, Australia, Italy, and Spain.

You can sign up for right here, or check out my review for more info.

How to maximize your online survey earnings

According to research conducted by EliteSurveySites, 70.7% of survey respondents earn less than $100 per month while 10% earn over $1000 per month.

While it’s widely known that filling in surveys won’t make you rich, there are still some tactics you can implement to push your survey income beyond the hundreds and closer to the thousands.

Let’s take a more in-depth look at a few of them.

1. Focus on a few trusted panels

One of the most important factors that determine your survey earnings is the number of survey panels you utilize.

Go for too few and you probably won’t be receiving enough survey invitations to make a satisfactory amount of money. On the other hand, if you join too many, you run the risk of spreading yourself too thin.

The key to maximizing your survey income is balancing quantity and quality by focusing on five to ten reputable survey panels that have a proven track record of paying their members well.

Signing up for the seven best survey sites I’ve laid out in this roundup is a great starting point to ensure maximum returns on the time and effort you invest.

2. Fully set up your survey profile

Upon signing up, most survey sites will prompt you to set up your profile by answering a couple of dozen of questions regarding your demographics, income, interests, lifestyle, purchasing habits, etc.

Your answers are then used by companies to determine whether or not you’re eligible to take part in their surveys. If all this personal info is either missing or incomplete, the chances of being invited to surveys reduce dramatically.

To ensure that this doesn’t happen, make sure that your survey profile is completed and up to date at all times. That’ll boost the likelihood of receiving more survey invitations, and ultimately, earn more money.

Additionally, most paid survey sites offer incentives or bonuses for fully setting up your profile, such as extra points or entries into sweepstakes.

3. Act promptly

Most surveys have a limited number of available spots compared to the number of potential participants. For example, there might be 300 people who qualify for a survey that needs only a total of 100 respondents.

This means that not everyone who gets invited to a survey will actually be able to take part in it, especially if they don’t act promptly.

To ensure that you don’t miss out on surveys due to not applying on time, it is advisable to set up email notifications to alert you about new surveys as soon as they go live so that you can apply to them before they fill up.

Furthermore, some companies may prefer people who appear to be eager to participate in their surveys, so acting promptly could actually increase your chances of being invited to even more surveys in the future.

4. Don’t rush & be honest

Most survey panels use complex systems to ensure that the data they gather is honest, accurate, and valuable. If they find out that it’s not, they won’t compensate the respondent that provided it.

For example, if a survey is expected to last ten minutes and you complete it in one, the survey panel will know you rushed through it without reading the questions and it won’t qualify you for payment.

On top of that, some survey platforms implement trick questions to confirm that you’re actually paying attention and not answering randomly and dishonestly. For example, they might ask you about your race or income level to cross-reference if your replies match the demographics on your personal profile. If not, they’ll rightfully assume that you didn’t bother to read a single question and that all your answers are inaccurate.

Being disqualified from multiple surveys due to providing false and contradicting data can have a rather negative impact on your overall survey earnings – it can hurt your payment qualification rate and increase the risk of being excluded from future surveys and even having your account terminated.

To ensure that you won’t run into such troubles, make sure that when filling out a survey you always take your time to read all its questions carefully and answer each one as accurately and honestly as possible.

5. Leverage referrals

One of the best ways to maximize your online survey earnings is by leveraging referrals.

All survey panels I’ve included in this roundup run programs that reward their members for referring other people to them.

For example, Swagbucks will credit you with 10% of all the money generated by your referrals. This means that if you make 100 Swagbucks referrals that earn a total of $5000 per month, Swagbucks will pay you $500 monthly, even if you’ve completed no tasks yourself.

Therefore leveraging referrals can not only boost your survey earnings but also turn surveys into a source of passive income that persists and compounds for as long as you acquire and maintain active referrals.

Common pitfalls to avoid when taking surveys

Even though taking paid surveys is the simplest way to make money online, the process still involves pitfalls that could hinder your progress, waste your time, and cause a lot of frustration.

Let’s explore some of the most common ones and how to avoid them.

1. Don’t provide inaccurate info

There’s no shortage of people who set up their survey profiles using inaccurate info about their demographics, interests, and habits.

Some may do this out of negligence, while others in an attempt to appear more wealthy and trick survey panels into inviting them to more and higher-paying surveys.

Whatever the case is, since completing surveys you shouldn’t be eligible for can negatively impact the ability to provide accurate data to those who rely on it, most survey platforms use elaborate procedures to identify and penalize dishonest respondents by excluding them from future surveys or even terminating their accounts before they cause more harm on the overall integrity and quality of their services.

To prevent this from happening to you, make sure that all the personal info, including your demographics, interests, spending habits, marital status, etc., is 100% accurate and up to date at all times and across all your survey accounts.

2. Set your expectations straight

If you’re venturing into paid surveys expecting that you’ll make a fortune, you’re in for a bitter disappointment.

Competing surveys is a pretty decent method of earning some quick extra side cash without much hassle, but unfortunately, that’s as far as it goes.

If you’re after making more than a couple hundred dollars per month, I suggest that you forget about surveys and instead, check out the following articles:

3. Beware of scams

As mentioned multiple times throughout this article, the online survey industry is filled with scams.

The even worse news is that over time, scammers have evolved and adapted their techniques so efficiently that identifying a scam can be nearly impossible for the average user.

Luckily, after having exposed hundreds of make-money-online scams throughout the last few years, I’ll share with you a few of the most common signs indicating that a paid survey site is trying to scam you:

  • Unrealistic earning claims: Any survey site that promises to pay you thousands of dollars per month is almost certainly a scam.
  • Requesting payment: If a survey panel asks you to pay a one-time or monthly fee to become a member, run in the opposite direction. All legit survey sites are completely free to join.
  • Tons of negative reviews: Survey platforms that have a disproportionate amount of negative feedback on trusted review sites like Trustpilot, SurveyPolice, Sitejabber, etc. are either scams or not worth the trouble, to begin with.
  • Lack of contact info: A survey site that doesn’t provide contact information is definitely a scam. The same goes if the site’s contact info is fake.
  • Antivirus alerts: If your device’s antivirus goes off the moment you attempt to access a survey panel, leave at once and never go back. If the device you’ll be using to take part in surveys has no antivirus, I seriously suggest that you purchase and install one to fend off potential malware attacks.
  • Insane cashout requirements: Most legit survey panels enable you to cash out as soon as you’ve accumulated a few bucks. If a survey site doesn’t allow you to cash out until you’ve met many different conditions like making a certain amount of referrals, completing many surveys, or performing other tasks, it’s probably a scam.
  • Altered cashout requirements: If a survey platform alters its cashout requirements once you’ve already met its initial minimum threshold, it’s trying to get you to work for free without having the slightest intention of ever paying you.


Completing paid surveys is the best way to make some extra money online fast and without much hassle even if you’re the least tech-savvy person in the world.

Over the last few years, I’ve tried and tested hundreds of different paid survey sites. A few of the best ones I’ve come across so far include:

  1. Swagbucks
  2. Survey Junkie
  3. InboxDollars
  4. Branded Surveys
  5. PrizeRebel
  6. Prolific

Please note that taking part in surveys isn’t your golden ticket to financial prosperity, but if you play your cards right by focusing on a few trusted panels, acting promptly, providing accurate and honest data, and leveraging referrals, it could turn out to be a pretty decent and rather quick monetary boost in times of need.

Lastly, always make sure that you keep your eye out for scams. At the time being, survey scams outnumber the actual legit panels and unfortunately, identifying them is harder than ever. Some of the most common signs of survey scams include:

  • Unrealistic earning claims
  • Requesting payment
  • Tons of negative reviews
  • Lack of contact info
  • Antivirus alerts
  • Insane cashout requirements
  • Altered cashout requirements


If you have any questions or need further help, leave a comment below or drop me a line and I’ll do my best to get back to you as soon as possible.

All the best, and stay safe,

Harry, Founder & Creative Director at

Written by:

Harry is the founder and creative director of Dear Boss I Quit. His mission is to inspire and help as many people as possible escape the 9-5 grind forever by building a passive income online just like he accomplished a few years back.

You can read more about Harry’s story right here.

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