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Online Paid Surveys|Are Online Surveys For Money Legit or Scam?

Updated on February 13, 2015
Online surveys for money - legit or scam?
Online surveys for money - legit or scam?

Know the real truth whether online surveys for money legit or scams.

Whether the offers of many web-sites to do online surveys for money legit or nothing but scams, is a very frequently asked question from people who are looking for part-time home based jobs. There are quite a large number of web-sites that claim that you can make money doing surveys online easily sitting at home simply by completing few ‘paid to do surveys’ offered by them. Any meaningful answer to the question whether such online paid surveys are legitimate or scams can not be given straightway unless you know the real truth behind these survey related business operations.

Of late, persons looking for easy money utilizing free time at home have found the offers for online paid surveys, a gold mine open before them. Before I go into the details let me explain what all these surveys are and how participants in these schemes get paid to do surveys.

Online paid surveys
Online paid surveys | Source

Online paid surveys - the mode of the business operation

Online paid surveys comprise answering few simple questions e-mailed to you by the survey companies, to be answered in a given format, which normally does not take more than 10 minutes to complete. Leaving aside whether these offers of online surveys for money legit or not, going by the survey sites’ claim, for each and every survey you complete you will be paid a certain amount and you can earn up to $20-$25 a week by taking 2/3 surveys comprising 10/12 questions. The more surveys you take the more money you can make. If statements of the survey companies are to be believed, millions of people are making tons of money doing surveys online sitting at home through this novel multilevel marketing model.

Are paid to do surveys legit or scam?
Are paid to do surveys legit or scam?

Do online surveys for money- legit or scam?

You may rightly wonder why then people are sweating it out to earn their daily living when they can easily make money by taking surveys online and earn a handsome income by few clicks of mouse. I have spent a lot of time to research on the subject whether these invitations for doing online surveys for money legit or are nothing but scams. I also tried to find out the real catch behind such business of paid surveys at home online. In fact, I chanced upon to meet someone who is a technology professional and is also associated with such online survey business for quite some time. He was forthright in his answer to my straight question put up to him whether these get paid to do surveys legit or scam. According to him, all online surveys offer good opportunity to those who are looking for part-time home based jobs in their spare time provided they know the actual mod-us-operandi of the business. Therefore, in order to get a satisfactory answer to your doubt whether all these offers of paid surveys at home are genuine or not, you need to know where actually the catch lies in this business operation.

The real catch behind online surveys for money.
The real catch behind online surveys for money. | Source

The real catch behind online paid surveys from home.

To become a panellist member in most of the survey companies that are running schemes of 'get paid to do surveys' sitting at home, you need to shell out a joining fee. This amount goes into buying the subscription for training materials and other related costs. The person who referred you to join the survey program also gets a cut from this amount, as referral commission. However, the amount you will earn doing online surveys for money, as projected by the survey companies, suggests that the amount paid by you as joining fee is recoverable within a period of 8 to10 weeks. There is also scope for you to earn more money by referring new members to join this survey program. You get certain percentage of the earnings of such new members referred by you as referral bonus. So you refer more and earn more. Now coming to the big questions, whether online surveys for money legit or scams my answer would be, both yes and no. Read on......

The operating features of most of the companies running schemes of online paid surveys closely resemble ‘Ponzi scheme’, which is considered a fraudulent operation that pays returns to the investors, not from any profit earned by the company but from the money collected from the subsequent investors as fees or in some other manners. In case of online survey programs, as more members join the survey schemes of the company the older panel members get their payments out of the joining fees collected from the new entrants. This mode of operation continues till no new members can be brought in when the program is eventually left high and dry. The internet in the recent times has helped these fake survey companies to expand their area of operation globally and a significant number of investors have lost their hard earned money in the process. Although hundreds of complaints can be found on the internet from the deprived investors who lost their money in their attempt to make money from home doing surveys by participating in various schemes relating to online paid surveys, you would also get several postings on the net appreciating the services of these money spinners narrating how they gave them great income opportunity to earn money doing surveys online in their spare times.

Who can take the risk to make money from online paid surveys?

The technology professional from India whom I referred to earlier, was frank enough to clear my doubts about genuineness or otherwise of the survey web-sites. Without referring to any specific website he admitted that one should not invest in the schemes relating to online paid surveys unless he has appetite to absorb risks as there is a possibility of losing his total investments in such schemes. He has also valuable tips for the impending investors who want to make money by participating in offers to get paid to do surveys at home in their free times. According to him, you should not join such schemes if the survey company is more than 2/3 years old and is nearing its saturation level, since you stand to lose your money in full in such situations. Therefore, without going into whether such offers of online surveys for money legit or not, his advice is, to go in for those companies only who have just started their operation where you have scope to recoup your invested money and also earn a reasonable amount in the initial period.


From the discussion above you must have by this time got a clear understanding of the business operation of the survey companies. You can, therefore, make your own conclusion whether the offers by hundreds of web-sites for online surveys for money, legit or nothing but scams. However, in my opinion, ideally one should not participate in any of such fake online paid surveys schemes to get paid to do surveys. Nevertheless, should you desire to give a try in such schemes to make money from home doing surveys online, go for a company which has minimum entry cost and about whom you are well informed and whose business details are available on the internet.


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    • profile image


      3 years ago

      Useful, I tend to not use survey websites as they take too long to complete most of the time, in my opinion. I'd rather spend the time writing a lengthy hub and earn passively over time.

    • radharenu profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from India

      Hi Bristol

      Thanks for your comments. I entirely agree with your views.

    • BristolBoy profile image


      4 years ago from Bristol

      Useful hub, in my opinion some sites are good; however their reputation is tarnished by less professional companies active in the paid survey arena.

    • radharenu profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from India


      Thanks for sharing your experience with such fake schemes. In my opinion we should avoid these 'ponzi schemes'.

    • texasgirlfw profile image


      7 years ago

      Forget it. I tried signing up for one of these survey sights. It's a scam, you spend hours doing one survey and never get anything for it.

    • radharenu profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from India


      Thanks for your comments. Surveys which do not charge entry fees usually pay meager amount as in your case.I have mentioned particularly about those companies who assure higher pay out to their panelled members who had to pay joining fees.

    • myi4u profile image


      7 years ago from United Kingdom

      Well, my concept is never to join something that asks you for some fee in advance. Online surveys might be different from countries to countries. I have several online surveys account on hand and all of them are free to join. The payouts are not as generous as you mentioned above. Normally, it will be about 20-30 questions for around £1. Some online surveys reward users with points which can be exchanged into vouchers and the likes.

      Online surveys are just a little bit of extra cash to spend. Over the course of twelve months or so, I have managed to claim at least £100 in vouchers and paypal through online surveys. By the look of it, it's only about £10 per month but I think it's quite good already considering that you are only answering multiple choice questions all the time and sitting in front of your computer.

    • radharenu profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from India

      Hi, Diva

      Glad to meet you and thanks for your comments.I fully agree that we should avoid these ponzi schemes as there are many other assured online money earning ways which you have explained very well in some of your hubs.

    • divacratus profile image

      Kalpana Iyer 

      7 years ago from India

      There are SO many ponzi schemes online nowadays. Personally I never join anything that needs you to pay to get paid. Nice hub! Good to meet a fellow Indian :)


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