Are Paid Online Surveys Legit Or A Scam? The Truth About Surveys

Are Paid Online Surveys Legit or Scam? The Actual Truth About Paid Online SurveysOne of the most popular ways for beginners to make money online is through taking paid online surveys. So today I’d like to write the truth about taking surveys online for cash. Let me say up front that taking online surveys is legitimate and scam free, but not all survey sites are created equal and people usually the wrong idea of what paid surveys can actually do for them.

In this post I’ll cover how to make money with online surveys, how much money you can really make, what makes survey sites a scam, and the complaints most people have when taking surveys.

Here’s my take on paid online surveys, I think this will give you a really good idea of what you’re getting into when you join survey panels.

How To Make Money With Online Surveys?

1) Join Survey Panels

The first step to getting paid to take online surveys is joining a survey panel. There’s 100s of survey panels out there, but not all are created equal. I go over a few that I recommend at the end of this post or you can see all the surveys sites I recommend here.

2) Wait For Survey Invitations

Once you’ve joined a survey panel, wait for surveys to be available. Some survey panels have surveys available at all times, but others send you emails when surveys are available. When surveys become available make sure to click the link to start the survey.

3) Qualify For the Survey

Once you start the survey you’ll need to qualify for it. Unforatnetly you won’t qualify for all the surveys you try to take. There will be a few questions to answer about your age, education, income level, and other demographics. After you answer the screening questions you’ll be told if you qualified or not.

4) Complete The Survey

If you qualify for the survey, you can continue to complete the survey. Once you’ve completed the survey you’ll get paid. If you did not qualify you can try another survey.

5) Reach The Cash Out Amount To Get Paid

On most sites, after you complete a survey the money will be added to your account balance. Sites usually have a minimum cash out amount that you’ll need to reach before getting paid. Most sites offer PayPal, Direct Deposit, Check, or Gift Cards. Once you reach the minimum cash out amount, you can cash out via one of their payment methods.

Can You Really Make Money Taking Online Surveys?

Now that you know how most survey sites work I’d like to cover some “truths” about paid online surveys that will give you a better idea of exactly what you’re getting into when taking online surveys.

How Much Do Surveys Pay

So the most frequent question I get about paid surveys is how much do they actually pay? Unfortunately, there’s many sites out there that advertise surveys that pay $50 or more and that’s not the case.

In general most surveys pay from $.50-$5. Probably 95% will fall in between $.50-$2.50 with very few that pay over that amount.

The surveys that pay more usually have very specific qualifications and take 30 minutes to an hour to complete. Which is a big time commitment and makes it very hard to qualify to take the survey.

Just know that most of the surveys you’ll have available to you will pay under $5.

How Long Do Surveys Take

Just like the sites that advertise surveys that pay $50, many sites say that their surveys pay a lot and only take a few minutes to complete.

I already said that most surveys pay from $.50-$5. Most of the surveys that pay in that dollar range can range from 5-30 minutes to complete.

When you really break it down you’ll be making minimum wage or less while taking surveys.

Paid Online Surveys Complaints

Although taking online surveys is completely legitimate there’s some complaints that many people have once getting started. Now there’s many other complaints if you get on a site that are a scam, but these are just complaints about most of the legitimate survey sites out there.

Having To Qualify

If you’re familiar with surveys, you know that before the survey starts you have to answer some screening questions to see if you actually qualify for the survey. Most of the time it’s just a couple minute process, but it’s very annoying when you give out information, just to be told you don’t qualify.

On most sites you won’t get paid anything for trying to qualify. This means if you try 5 surveys you could waste 10 minutes trying to qualify without any cash to show for it.

Not Many Surveys Available

Now every survey site is different, but there’s a lot of survey sites out there that only send you surveys when they’re available. This means you may get one or two surveys a week. Keep in mind that even though they sent you the survey doesn’t mean you’ll qualify and get paid to take the survey.

This makes it very difficult to actually make any money taking surveys, when you don’t get many surveys and don’t qualify for most.

I just spent an Hour Making $5

The last major complaint about surveys is they don’t pay much. I mentioned that most surveys pay in the $.50-$3 range, but some do pay more. For those that do pay more they usually take 30 minutes plus to complete.

So when you really break it down the hourly wage that you make is pretty small. Almost always under minimum wage. Even if you find surveys you qualify for it can be a long time commitment to actually make any money and reach the cash out amount to get your cash.

Giving Out Your Personal Information

When you go to qualify for a survey you’ll always be giving out your personal information. They always ask your demographics, education, and income level. Some people won’t have an issue with this, but you should know that most sites and surveys do ask for this information.

Most sites say they do not sell any of this information, but when you do take a survey the company running the survey will have access to all of this information.

Online Surveys Scams: How To Find Them

Now that you know some complaints and expectations of what to expect, I’d like to cover some things you’ll see on paid survey sites that are scams. Most likely you’ll come across at least one of these when looking for a good place to take surveys.

Paying For Access

There’s not a single legitimate survey panel that makes you pay to join. Every legit survey site is completely free to join and take surveys with.

Never pay to access a survey site. There’s also so products out there that have a list of surveys sites that they say pay more then any other sites. These sites are also scams and they take your money and give you a list of survey sites that can be found for free.

Please never pay to join a survey or extra income site.

Make You Sign Up For Other Sites

I’ve seen a few sites that make you go through a huge list of offers before actually getting to members area. Most survey sites let you join and you’re immediately taken to the members area.

If a site takes you through and makes you sign up for other sites before you get to the members area, it’s most likely a scam that’s just trying to get you as a referral on other survey sites.

Highest Paying Surveys

Pretty much all of the legitimate paid survey sites don’t talk about how much their surveys pay, and if they do they’ll give you a range of $.50-$5+.

The sites that are advertising $75 or more per survey are lying. There’s some surveys that pay more then $5, but they are hard to come by and having very specific qualifications that the general public won’t qualify for.

If you run into a site advertising a large dollar amount per survey, it’s usually a scam.

If you’re wondering if a survey site is a scam, search this site for a review or leave a comment and I can check it out.

Legitimate Online Survey Sites

I actually am a member of many survey sites and actively promote and recommend survey sites to my readers, but you really need to know what you’re getting into before joining. As long as you have the expectations of an extra income, all the survey sites I recommend will make you happy. Here’s a list of some of my favorite survey panels that are free to join.

PaidViewpoint : Read Review This is by far the best survey site in my opinion. The reason is because they only send you surveys that you’re pre-approved for. This means no more screening questions and being kicked out of surveys because you don’t qualify. All the surveys are short and payment start at $15 via PayPal.

Fusion Cash : Read Review This another great option to take online surveys. Out of all the sites the rewards sites, Fusion Cash is my favorite place to take surveys. For some reason I seem to qualify for more surveys on this site, and if you don’t qualify you’ll still earn a few cents for trying. They also pay you to do things like complete offers, watch videos, and more. Payments start at $25 via PayPal, Direct Deposit, and Check.

CashCrate : Read Review Another rewards site that pays you to take surveys and also to do things like complete offers, shop, and more. Payments start at $20 via PayPal, Direct Deposit, and Check.

Swagbucks : Read Review Probably the most popular rewards site out there, that offers tons of ways to earn. One of them being paid surveys, I really like Swagbucks surveys because they have a huge list of surveys available all the time. Payments start at $5 with gift cards to hundreds of stores.

InstaGC : Read Review Another great option to take surveys and get paid to do other things. They offer surveys from many different providers, so there’s always plenty of surveys to take. Payment start at $5 via PayPal, Direct Deposit, or Check.

Full List of Sites I Recommend

Other Ways To Make Money Online

Hopefully this post gives you a really good idea of what paid online surveys really are and how much money you can actually make taking them. Surveys are very popular, but it’s not going to be a huge income. It’s what I like to call an extra income site. Surveys aren’t the only way to make extra money online. You can see a full list of extra income sites that I recommend at Scam Free Extra Income Sites.

Although I really like to make money with extra income sites, this isn’t the only way I make money online. I use a method called affiliate marketing to make a much larger income. You can learn how I do this by checking out My #1 Recommendation. You can even start for free!

Do you take paid online surveys? What sites do you use? Let me hear your thoughts in the comments below!


My name is Brok and I am the Owner of Full Time Job From Home. I started making money online in 2013 and created this site to teach others how they can do the same. To see exactly how I make money online visit Start A Profitable Blog

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 5 comments
James - April 9, 2016

My wife does these online surveys and gets the gift cards. Usually for shopping at stores like Express, which is fine with me because that is less money coming out of our checking account…haha.

Are there sites out there that only pay in the $50 dollar range or do they usually have all types of pay ranges? Do you have to gain the site’s trust by completing small surveys to work yourself up to the good ones?

    Brok - April 11, 2016

    Hey James,

    Glad to hear your wife’s already taking advantage of survey are reward sites, and can’t complain about having to pay less!

    In regard to the amount a survey pays. Most pay from $.50-$2.50 you will find some that pay more, but very rarely a survey that pays $50. If you do find one there’s very strict qualifications that you have to meet. You really don’t have to have a history of completing surveys you’d just have to meet the qualifications, which is unlikely.

    Over my years of taking surveys the highest payment amount I’ve received is $9.50 it was about a 30 minute survey and was looking for HVAC business owners, so very very strict requirements that I was able to meet, but most people would not.

    Hope this clears it up


All Work At Home Job Reviews Full Time Job From Home December | Full Time Job From Home - January 1, 2016

[…] Are Paid Online Surveys Legitimate : I’ll tell you the truth about online surveys, how much they actually pay and what to expect when taking surveys. […]

Hamza Musana - December 30, 2015

Hello and thank you for your article, it is really insightful.
I have recently joined a lot of online survey platforms and was really stressed out because, to me, it seemed they were giving much less than what they said they said they offered.
However, after reading your article, I see the error of my ways.
Also, could you please recommend any international survey platforms? It would be a big help.

    Brok - January 2, 2016

    Hey Hamza,

    Thank you for checking out my post. I’m glad you learned that Paid Surveys won’t make your rich, hopefully now you know what to expect when getting into these sites.

    International surveys are bit difficult because even though some sites let you join they don’t have many surveys. If I were you I’d look more into building your own online business. With this method it does not matter where you’re located. You can learn more at My #1 Recommendation.


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