How to Make Money

The 9 Best Survey Sites to Make Extra Money (+How I Earn $250/Month)

September 30, 2013
by Kyle Taylor

Over the last few years I’ve gotten nearly a hundred emails asking me what I thought of survey sites and why I’ve never listed any survey sites on The Penny Hoarder.

Well, the truth is…. it’s just not my favorite way to earn extra money. Personally, I get really bored filling out online forms and I often find that with survey companies, I’m only making $7-8/hour.

But, it’s easy work and if you’re interested in this type of work, I’ve finally put together a list of our favorites. 

It can be a little time consuming, but my recommendation is to signup for all 9 survey sites at once. And that’s because each survey site is probably only going to be able to match you up with 1 or 2 surveys a month. So, if you want to make any real money — you need to be a member of a LOT of panels.

I do this kind of work while I’m watching TV and if I’m able to complete all the surveys sent to me, I’m usually able to earn $250+/month.

Without further ado, here are the 9 best survey sites…

Swagbucks 1. SwagBucks – This is a definitely a reader favorite, because of the wide variety of ways to make extra cash beyond taking surveys. They are also famous for handing out free Swagbucks at random just for being a member. Plus, they give you $5 just for signing up.

You can redeem your points (they’re called SB) for Paypal or gift cards to a number of popular retailers, including Sign up for Swagbucks here.


2. Inbox Dollars – I’ve written about Inbox Dollars before because I’ve made some easy money signing up for trial offers on their site. But, they also offer several short, daily surveys that you can take.

If you take all four each day, you could earn an extra $730/year. Not too bad. Sign up for Inbox Dollars here.

Ipsos3. Ipsos Panel –
You might recognize the Ipsos Panel name because they’re the same company that does most of the political polling during elections.

I’ve heard some of the top-end surveys can pay up to $95, but those are rare and can take awhile to complete. Most surveys pay a buck or two and only take 10-15 minutes. Also, Ipsos rewards you with points which can then be redeemed for Paypal or gift cards to Amazon, iTunes, etc. (example: 1000 points can be redeemed for $10 Paypal).

4. Toluna – One thing I love about Toluna is that sometimes they actually send your physical products to test. In addition to paying you for your thoughts, you also get to keep the free stuff they send you!

Sign up for Toluna here.

5. ProOpinion – Ever wonder how the products you see on grocery-store shelves wound up there? Or who thought those TV commercials were a good idea? Somewhere between the concept and the final edits, it’s likely that a focus group like ProOpinon was involved.

Focus groups vary in size and type, but most of them provide some sort of compensation — a check in the mail, a PayPal deposit or even a gift card. Sign up for ProOpinion here.

te-533x2006. Springboard Panel – As part of the Springboard Panel, you get to give feedback on a new ideas and test new products for extra cash. They reward you with points that you can use towards cash or gift cards.

Plus, once you join the site, you’ll be entered to win a $1,000 and can earn additional entries for each survey you complete. Sign up for Springboard here.

TheHarrisPoll_Logo7. Harris Poll Online – This is another favorite because it’s run by the Nielsen company (so you know they’re legitimate). They’re also famous for contacting survey panelists for local focus groups in their area.

One of my readers was asked to participate in a focus group for 2 hours about food and she earned an easy $80! Sign up for Harris Poll Online here.


8. Opinion Outpost – This company conducts polls for governments, public bodies, and local businesses. I usually get 5-10 surveys a month from them, so it’s not uncommon for me to get a check every couple of months. Sign up for Opinion Outpost here.


9. Pinecone Research –  They have a good amount of surveys, but what’s unique about this company is that you get paid cash after every survey you take. There’s no minimum to cash-out (pays via Paypal).

The surveys pay $3 for each one completed. Sign up for PineCone here.

This is open to USA residents to apply.

I’d love to hear your experiences with these companies in the comments below. Also, these aren’t the only survey companies out there  – just my favorites. But, I’ve written some tips about how to avoid survey scam here in case you stumble upon another site…

Good luck Penny Hoarders!

by Kyle Taylor
Kyle is the founder of

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