The Best Paid Survey Sites Hand-Picked for Easy Money

Whitney Bryden spends time on her laptop at Black Crow Coffee in St. Petersburg, Florida on July 5, 2018.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder
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There’s a certain appeal to paid online surveys.

Prop up in bed and click, click, click — cash out. Heck, you can even earn money while binging “The Great British Baking Show.”

No, you’re not going to get rich — earning money on survey sites can be time-consuming. That’s why you might want to flip on Netflix in the background.

Still, there’s something thrilling about making extra money from your bed.

We’ve combed through dozens of platforms to hand-pick the most legitimate online survey sites to help you avoid the scams.

We chose these sites based on user experience, the ease of cashing out and the actual potential to earn money.

The Best Paid Survey Sites — That Are Actually Legit

We suggest signing up for these paying survey sites all at once. Check into each a few times a week to find at least one or two surveys you qualify for.

Remember: Every little bit adds up.

  1. 1. Swagbucks

    swagbucks screenshot
    Swagbucks sign-up page.

    Swagbucks is definitely a reader favorite, probably because of the wide variety of ways to make money beyond taking surveys. Plus, you’ll earn a $5 bonus when you sign up. Get started with Swagbucks here.

    Pros: Swagbucks does its best to match you with qualifying surveys, so you don’t waste your time. Additionally, you don’t have to earn an insane amount of SB to cash out. There are also other ways to earn SBs, like watching videos and shopping online.

    Cons: Because Swagbucks offers so many features, it takes a little bit of time to fully explore the site. Like other survey sites, you might have a hard time qualifying for surveys.

    BBB rating: A-

    Payment method: Exchange points (known as SB) for PayPal cash or gift cards to popular retailers like Amazon and Walmart.

    Amount paid per survey: Approximately 40 to 200 SB (100 SB equals $1)

    Minimum amount required to cash out: 300 SBs ($3 gift cards are available for Dunkin Donuts, Amazon and eBay.)

    Time to get paid: Up to 10 business days

    Pro tip: To earn your 500 SB (or $5) bonus when you sign up, you’ll need to earn 2,500 SB within your first 60 days.

  2. 2. InboxDollars

    Screen capture of the InboxDollars sign up page.
    InboxDollars sign-up page.

    InboxDollars offers several short, daily surveys, and you’ll get a $5 bonus for signing up. Plus, you get to earn cash, so you don’t have to worry about exchanging points. We talked to one college student pocketed $600 with InboxDollars. Her secret? Persistence.

    Get started with InboxDollars here.

    Pros: With InboxDollars, you earn cash, so you don’t have to worry about exchanging points. It also offers more ways to earn, such as watching videos, playing scratch-off games and searching the internet.

    Cons: You have to earn $30 to cash out, which is a bit high compared to other sites on this list. Also remember you’ll have to pay that $3 transaction fee. You’ll probably want to unsubscribe from its frequent emails, which you can do under your account settings.

    BBB rating: A+ (for parent company CotterWeb Enterprises, Inc.)

    Payment method: Check via mail

    Amount paid per survey: Surveys pay up to $5 each, though it’s more likely you’ll earn 10 to 50 cents.

    Minimum amount required to cash out: $30, though there’s a $3 transaction fee to cash out.

    Time to get paid: 10 to 16 business days

    Want to learn more? Read our complete InboxDollars review.

  3. 3. Survey Junkie

    A screenshot of Survey Junkie's homepage.
    Survey Junkie homepage.

    Survey Junkie’s clean look keeps you motivated to take as many surveys as you want. It’s relatively quick to reward you with points once you’ve completed a survey. Once you earn 1,000 points — equal to $10 — you can cash out for gift cards or cash via PayPal.

    Get started with Survey Junkie here.

    Pros: Compared to other survey sites, the threshold to cash out is a bit lower at $10. If you qualify for five 200-point surveys, you’ll earn $10 in no time (though that’s not the most realistic situation). The platform itself is clean and easy to navigate.

    Cons: Like other survey sites, you might have a difficult time qualifying for opportunities. And although you might find 200-point surveys, you’ll also find ones that only reward you 35 points for a 14-minute survey. That equates to 3.5 cents for 15 minutes of your time.

    BBB rating: A+ (for parent company Blue Media Ventures, Inc.)

    Payment method: Points, which you can exchange for gift cards or cash via PayPal, Dwolla or direct deposit

    Amount paid per survey: 20 to 200 points

    Minimum amount required to cash out: 1,000 points, which equates to $10

    Time to get paid: Up to 24 hours through PayPal; bank transfers can take longer.

    Pro tip: Once you sign up for Survey Junkie, you’ll start banking bonus points. If you take all the profile surveys, which will ideally help match you to opportunities you qualify for, you can earn an easy 200 points or so.

    Want to learn more? Read our complete Survey Junkie review.

  4. 4. MyPoints

    Screenshot of the landing page for surveys at MyPoints
    MyPoints sign-up page.

    MyPoints is a platform that aggregates market research survey opportunities for its users. It’s been around since 1996.

    Through MyPoints you can earn gift cards for taking polls and filling out surveys. Once you complete your first five surveys, you’ll earn a $5 bonus.

    Get started with MyPoints here.

    Pros: You receive points even when you don’t qualify for a survey. Additionally, it’s an easy-to-use portal that offers multiple ways to earn points, including participating in polls and watching videos.

    Cons: MyPoints connects you with surveys on third-party consumer marketing sites, so you’ll often navigate away from the site’s portal. Users report difficulty qualifying for surveys. (I qualified for not a single one of the five I recently attempted.)

    BBB rating: A-

    Payment method: Gift cards to popular retailers, including Amazon, Old Navy and Starbucks.

    Amount paid per survey: Up to 400 points, but less than 100 points is more realistic; if you don’t qualify, earn five points — up to 25 disqualification points a day.

    Minimum amount required to cash out: 480 points equates to a $3 Amazon gift card.

    Time to get paid: Four to five business days

    Pro tip: Snag a $5 bonus after you qualify for and complete your first five surveys.

  5. 5. CashKarma

    A screenshot of the CashKarma homepage.
    CashKarma homepage.

    This survey app is from the same folks who created appKarma, a reward app that lets you earn cash and gift cards for playing mobile games. CashKarma differs from the other items on this list in that it’s exclusively available as an app. It’s also relatively new.

    Pros: CashKarma operates within an app, which makes for a simple, self-contained user experience. You can also watch videos, complete sign-up offers and earn bonus achievement badges. Plus, you’ll still earn points even if you don’t qualify for a survey — based on the amount of time you spend in a survey you’re screened out of — and you’ll earn an easy five points a day when you check in.

    Cons: The app aggregates third-party survey opportunities, which allows you to tap into a solid amount of potential points. However, because you’re tapping into different sites, it means you’ll be answering some of the same qualifying questions repeatedly, like with most survey sites.

    BBB rating: Not yet rated

    Payment method: Exchange points to cash out through PayPal, or earn gift cards to popular retailers like Amazon, Target and Walmart.

    Amount paid per survey: 50 points and up

    Minimum amount required to cash out: Earn 6,000 points, and get a $5 Amazon gift card.

    Time to get paid: PayPal payments are typically made within 24 hours and guaranteed within 72 hours.

    Pro tip: Look out for 500 bonus points when you download the app through The Penny Hoarder — then another 50 when you sign up and another 50 when you verify your email. So you’ll start off with 600 points just for signing up!

Penny Hoarder Tips to Make the Most From Survey Sites

First, pile your couch with pillows and get comfy. Turn on some tunes or play Netflix in the background.

But seriously. You’re going to want to settle in and practice patience with survey sites. To make the process more efficient, here are a few of our pro tips:

Create a New Email Address for Surveys

It’s no secret: Signing up for a survey site means you’re likely going to get an influx of emails. These could be ads or earning opportunities. Either way, it can really clog up your work or personal email.

Create a new email address for free through Gmail or Yahoo. Now these additional emails will automatically stay clear of your real life.

Answer Honestly, and Update Your Information Often

You’ll qualify for certain surveys based on your demographics. For example, a company might be looking for homeowners to answer a question about their product. Or another might only want parents.

Either way, be honest. Sure, you can be vague and broad in your responses (recommended), but honesty is the best policy.

Additionally, be sure to keep your profiles on these sites up to date. If you move, update your city. If you get a new job or a salary boost, update that. It could help you qualify for more opportunities.

Never Pay to Join a Survey Site (or Enter your Bank Info)

You should never have to pay to join a survey site. These sites are paying you, because you’re participating in market research and helping companies out.

Additionally, you shouldn’t have to enter your banking information. Legitimate sites pay with gift cards, through PayPal or with an old-school check in the mail.

Use Roboform to Auto-Fill Responses

You know how survey sites ask you the same questions over and over and over, especially when you’re first signing up?

Using a free auto-fill platform like Roboform can help. You’ll enter your information into its system once, then it’ll recognize when that question is being asked and automatically fill in the information for you. This will save you a bunch of time.

Additionally, you can use Roboform to save your passwords — because let’s be honest, no one can ever remember passwords.

Best Paid Survey Sites, Compared

We know that was a lot of information at once, but here it is, all broken down for you:

  Swagbucks InboxDollars MyPoints Survey Junkie CashKarma
Pay per survey About 40 to 200 points Up to $5 Up to 400 points 20 to 200 points 50 points and up
Amount required to cash out 300 SB = $3 $30 480 points = $3 1,000 = $10 6,000 points = $5 Amazon gift card
Payment method PayPal cash or gift cards Cash Gift cards Gift cards or cash PayPal or gift cards
Time to process payment Up to 10 business days 10 to 16 business days Four to five business days Up to 24 hours via PayPal Guaranteed within 72 hours

There you have it — our favorite paid survey sites! If you’re ready to start earning, here are those links one more time:

Sure, you’re not going to get rich from any of these. However, if you’ve got time to kill, why not earn a little money?

Carson Kohler ([email protected]) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’s become a tad obsessed with “The Great British Baking Show.”