Just Updated! (Nov 2009)
Recently I was surprised by a close friend telling me she was going to try to make some extra money at home stuffing envelopes. She surprised me because I knew that she was one of those women that really was well informed, even though she wasn’t online much. Excited about finding something she could do at home, in between taking care of 5 small children, I felt bad about bursting her bubble of enthusiasm.
As far as I know, there are no legitimate envelope stuffing jobs – unless you work for a mailing service, and they will probably want you to come to their offices. There are legitimate ways to make money at home, and the internet has made that more of a reality than ever….as well as open a Pandora’s Box of internet scams, too.
So, can you make money taking surveys? I think I am asked that more often than any other question. Yes. You won’t get rich, but you will make a little extra AND you can do it at any time in your busy day. You also have a chance at some really big prizes, which really do get awarded – or the company can get in BIG trouble.
HOWEVER! Here are a few warnings to heed first:
~Never pay for the privilege to access a list of companies, or buy a membership to a ‘growing list’ of survey offers.
~Never sign up for anything that offers you something via a spam email. You don’t want to be a part of anything that markets with spam. Speaks for itself.
~Never give out financial info like bank account numbers, credit card balances, or the like. NONE of the companies listed below will ask for information like that. (If they do, let me know, I try to thoroughly research everything we recommend, but things change and I’m far from perfect 🙂
Check out the companies online before you invest your time and labor, some ‘survey sites’ are simply running affiliate offers by you and the surveys seem to have NO end. The ads to give you a free laptop or other premiums are counting on a number of sign ups and purchases from you that they’ll make a commission on first.
Sign Up With Several Companies! Realize that a legitimate survey company will offer you surveys according to how well your profile fits their marketer’s needs. That’s why it’s a good idea to sign up with as many survey sites as possible to keep the surveys (and money) flowing in! There isn’t one survey company that could keep you even remotely busy.
One such company that isn’t really a survey site, but offers points you can redeem for gift cards, etc. is My Points.* Rachael and I have both earned several gift cards by reading emails and looking at various offers. You might be offered a survey, but it’s what I described earlier as an ‘affiliate promoter’, and they receive a commission on the items you sign up for or purchase and they share the wealth (somewhat). The difference is that My Points is up front about what the deal is. I only caution you to be sure to read the fine print of any free offer you sign up for. My Points does not completely weed out the deceptive companies. I learned this the hard way by not reading the terms of one of the offers. On a positive note, I have received over $200 worth of restaurant gift cards that I like to save up for various occasions. Basically, there are many ways to earn points, and the points earn you a wide selection of gift cards to choose from. No cash is paid-but it’s fun to pick out what you redeem your points for!
Cash Crate used to be one of my favorites (when I had time to do this), probably because they are one of the rare companies that paid cash! Most of the incentives are “affiliate offers”, but there are many free trials and surveys that you can earn from, too.
Survey4Profit is basically a site that will give you a list of survey sites to sign up for, but it’s free. Has potential.
Lightspeed International has been around for awhile, and you can win prizes and earn points for taking surveys. You can redeem those points for prizes, cash, and downloads (like music). Answer surveys about new, upcoming products like “Would you watch TV on a cell phone?”
American Consumer Opinion – This is one of the more steady, higher paying survey sites. You may not have as many offered to you, but you will receive cash.*
If you know more sites that are good for making some extra money, let us all know! I realize there are hundreds out there, but I know that 95% aren’t legitimate. We’ll post more opportunities as we find them.
Update 11-2009-More survey sites that have been recommended to me:
Winning Surveys.com – listing some of the better prizes, like a Nintendo Wii, a Hummer, $1500 Shopping Spree and more-(think Christmas…)
Ipsos Survey Panel – giving your opinion enters you into a regular drawing for $5,000, along with other prizes.
Permission Research – has one of the largest prizes I’ve seen, ($100,000) but also has lots of opps for smaller prizes.
The Net Panel – currently is giving away a 42″ plasma TV (among other prizes, of course)
ECN Research – you get free movie tickets just for registering, and have prizes like $500 worth of Huggies, $1000 shopping sprees. Smaller prizes, more often – improves your winnings.