Looking for the best survey sites of 2021?
Companies use surveys to gain valuable market research that helps them develop better products and services. But let’s get this out of the way: taking online surveys isn’t a lucrative way to make money.
Taking surveys for money is honestly one of the lowest stress ways to make extra cash. You can chill on your couch watching Netflix while you’re getting paid to take surveys. Of course, you won’t qualify for every single survey you try because each has specific demographic data it’s trying to meet, but there are many online survey opportunities.
You’re going to learn about the best survey websites — they’re all 100% free to sign up! I will also give you some tips to help you earn more, avoid scams, and answer frequently asked questions about paid online surveys.
13 Best Survey Sites | Top Paid Survey Sites of 2021
1. Survey Junkie
Survey Junkie is one of the most well-known and best survey sites available in 2021. It’s 100% free to sign up for Survey Junkie, and the sign-up process takes 5 minutes or less.
Once you sign up for Survey Junkie, you should start filling out their survey profiles. Filling out these profiles will help you get matched with surveys that fit your interests and demographic profile.
The survey profiles ask you questions about things like health, fitness, technology, and hobbies. Survey Junkie pays you 5-10 points for filling out each of the profiles.
New Survey Junkie users can cash out after earning 500 points. Previously, you needed 1,000 points to cash out. In addition, the points you earn on Survey Junkie can be converted to cash or gift cards, and one point = $0.01.
Survey Junkie also has a web browser extension called SJ Pulse that you can download to earn even more points. You’ll need to keep it for at least three months to receive the payout, and it looks at which websites you visit, what ads you see, your online shopping activity, and the kind of content you engage with. The browser does not collect sensitive data like email addresses, credit card numbers, etc.
Survey Junkie quick facts:
To learn more, read Survey Junkie Review | How to Sign Up and Start Making Money.
Swagbucks has hundreds of paid survey opportunities on their platform every day, but they’re more than just a paid survey site. Swagbucks has a full-blown rewards program that pays you points for online and in-person shopping, watching videos, discovering offers (claiming offers for subscriptions, checking out web content, etc.), searching the web, playing games, and more.
You’re paid in points called SB (for Swagbucks), and each SB is worth $0.01. You can redeem your points via PayPal or Visa gift card. Or you can convert them to an e-gift card for more than 140 different companies, including Amazon, Walmart, Target, and more.
Swagbucks also has a solid referral program that helps you earn more points. Every user gets a unique referral link to share with friends and family, and here’s how you earn points with it:
- When your referral sign-ups and earns their first 300 SB, you both get an additional 300 SB
- You earn 10% of their SB earnings for as long as they are using their account
- Earn an additional 100 SB if they add the SwagButton extension
Swagbucks quick facts:
Learn more in my full Swagbucks review.
MyPoints is owned by Prodege, the same company that owns Swagbucks, so there are some pretty significant similarities between these two top survey sites.
It’s free to sign up for MyPoints, and you can get paid to take surveys, shop online, download the MyPoints browser extension, read emails, watch videos, play games, and more.
There’s also a strong referral program that pays you points when friends or family sign up through your unique MyPoints link. You can earn extra points when they take surveys for money too. Another reason MyPoints is one of the best survey sites because you earn some points even when you don’t qualify for the entire survey.
MyPoints also pays in points, and 150 points are worth approximately $1.
MyPoints quick facts:
Learn more in my complete MyPoints review.
One of the reasons that InboxDollars is one of the best survey sites is because they’re straightforward with the amount of money you can make – before you even sign up to start taking surveys.
InboxDollars says its surveys pay $0.50-$5 and take 3 to 25 minutes to complete. It’s free to sign up for this online survey site, and you see your earnings in dollars, not points.
You can also get paid to watch videos, play games, read emails, and earn cash back for shopping online.
It takes about 30 seconds to sign up for InboxDollars so you can start making money.
InboxDollars quick facts:
Related: 17 Best Apps to Make Money in 2021
5. Pinecone Research
I know Pinecone Research is one of the best survey sites available because I used it to take online surveys when I was in college and trying to make extra money. Pinecone Research is owned by Nielsen Holdings, which is a really well-known company for consumer engagement ratings for TV shows and networks.
Pinecone Research is 100% free to sign up for, and you earn points for every survey you complete.
The paid surveys on Pinecone Research are invite-only, which means you’ll have to fit their demographic profiles to be chosen, but it means you’re less likely to get a late-stage disqualification.
Pinecone Research quick facts:
6. Branded Surveys
Branded Surveys pays you points for taking surveys on their platform, and your points convert to cash, PayPal, or gift cards.
What’s interesting about Branded Surveys is that they reward users with badges — Bronze, Silver, and Gold — and you earn higher ranking badges as you take more surveys or refer friends. In addition, you unlock more earning opportunities as you move up levels. So it pays to spend more time on their site.
The site is super user-friendly, and you earn 100 points simply for signing up. Like Survey Junkie, you will fill out some short profile surveys, so Branded Surveys can get to know you. Don’t worry; you are paid points for taking those getting to know you surveys. They’re also super short and help them match you with more surveys.
The only real downside to taking surveys on Branded Surveys is that some surveys take you offsite. Those sites may run slower, which can get frustrating.
Branded Surveys quick facts:
7. Opinion Outpost
is a 100% free paid survey site. And in addition t0 paying you to take surveys, Opinion Outpost occasionally has product testing opportunities.
Their paid surveys typically take 10-15 minutes to complete, which is on the shorter end, but longer surveys do pay pretty well, around $5 on average.
Opinion Outpost also offers loyalty badges based on how active you are on the site. There’s a silver, gold, platinum, and diamond level, and you can earn additional achievement points the higher you go.
There’s also a referral program that pays $1 for every friend you refer, up to $5. They’ll need to complete at least one survey before you can get paid.
Opinion Outpost quick facts:
8. Life Points
Life Points was founded in 2019 after the market research companies MySurvey and Lightspeed merged.
Most of the surveys on this site are around 10 minutes long – this is a little shorter than some of the other survey websites. Short surveys typically pay less, but most of the surveys on Life Points are easier to qualify for.
Life Points pays you points that can be converted to cash. Besides taking surveys, you can also earn points by completing online diaries. This involves recording your behaviors or habits related to a specific product or service.
Life Points quick facts:
9. Vindale Research
Vindale Research has already paid almost $8 million to members. This survey website pays cash via PayPal, not points that need to be redeemed for cash or gift cards.
There are additional ways to make money on this site, including getting paid to watch videos and a strong referral program.
The only downside with this survey company is that you need to earn $50 before you can cash out.
Vindale Research quick facts:
OneOpinion has a simple and quick sign-up process, and they email you with surveys you might qualify for. You’ll see what the topic of the survey is, how many points you can earn, and how much time it takes to complete. They’re actually owned by the same company, Dynata, that owns Opinion Outpost.
You’re paid the full points value only for surveys you complete, but you can earn partial points for completing qualifying questions.
OneOpinion values 1,000 points to $1. The surveys pay a little higher generally, but they can easily run 20-30 minutes or longer.
OneOpinion quick facts:
11. Harris Poll Online
Harris Poll Online is another survey website owned and operated by Nielsen, like Pinecone Research, so you know it’s legit.
You can get paid to take surveys that run 5-25 minutes long. You only get paid for the surveys you complete, but your name will be put in the quarterly Harris Panel Sweepstakes for each disqualification. The drawing pays out $10,000.
Harris Poll has extra opportunities to earn money with focus groups and telephone-based surveys.
You’re paid with points that convert to gift cards, and each point is worth a little less than $0.01.
Harris Poll quick facts:
12. Ipsos i-Say
Ipsos i-Say is an online survey community that’s part of the market research company Ipsos. The sign-up process is quick and easy, and you earn points that can be converted to cash via PayPal or gift cards.
Besides online surveys, you can also make money with online focus groups, product testing, video surveys, diary surveys, and the refer-a-friend program.
Ipsos i-Say quick facts:
13. Valued Opinions
Valued Opinions is a fairly large market research company, and they pay users points that can be converted to gift cards. This sign-up process takes you through questions to build a profile that helps you qualify for surveys. So you might not see as many survey opportunities on the site, but you’re much more likely to qualify for the ones you see.
One of the reasons Valued Opinions is one of the best survey sites is that it has a fully responsive mobile app. This makes it easy to take surveys from your phone for even more flexible earning opportunities.
Surveys take about 15 to 20 minute on average, and pay averages $1 to $5 per survey. Valued Opinions emails you updates when new surveys are available, and their emails include an approximate time it will take for each survey.
Valued Opinions quick facts:
Tips for the best survey sites
Don’t try to come up with what you think the target demographic is for the survey. There’s no way you can tell who they’re looking for, and if you falsify your information, they may kick you off the site.
Create a dedicated email address for taking surveys
You’ll get lots of emails from each survey site you join, and it can get pretty overwhelming and clutter your inbox.
Install anti-malware software
Many of these survey sites send you to a third-party site to take the survey. Just in case one of them is spammy, having anti-malware software will keep your computer and data safe.
Sign up for multiple sites
Most survey websites have limited survey opportunities – the surveys are only open for a certain number of days or take a set number of people. Signing up for more sites can open more opportunities.
The only downside of signing up for a bunch of survey sites is that you’ll receive a lot of emails. Some users will set up a new email account dedicated for surveys so your main inbox isn’t inundated with survey emails.
Watch out for scams
All of the survey websites on this list are 100% legit companies, but there are definitely some scammy sites out there. Below are a few red flags to watch out for:
- The promise of a major payout. None of the sites above pay a ton, and that’s a sign of a legitimate company. Sites that say you can earn $100 taking one survey are probably too good to be true.
- There’s no “About” page. Some of these survey websites have antiquated looking home pages, but they all provide basic company info. You should be able to find out who the company is and how to contact them.
- They ask for sensitive data. Your Social Security number, bank account info, credit card numbers – you shouldn’t give that out to any of these sites, ever. Doing so puts you at risk for identity theft.
The final word on the best survey sites of 2021
Taking online surveys is an easy and mindless way to earn extra money. The commitment is low and pretty much anyone can do it.
Again, you’re not going to get rich taking online surveys, but it’s a little extra money that you can put towards paying off debt, investing, your vacation fund, etc. Every little bit counts!
While there are good opportunities with all of these sites, Survey Junkie is my top pick. They regularly list new surveys and the average survey payout is $1-$3. Survey Junkie also has one of the lowest minimum points/cash redemption rates so you can cash out sooner.
You’re not going to get rich taking online surveys, not even from the best survey sites on this list.
You’ll average around $0.25-$5 per survey, and you can realistically expect to make $20-$50/month, especially if you sign up for multiple sites. Not a ton of money, but it’s a decent little chunk.
If you’re looking for better-paying side hustles, check out 40 Best 2020 Side Hustle Ideas (Make $1,000+ Per Month).
Survey sites do market research for companies that want to know what consumers think about their products and services. Companies can use that information to come up with more targeted marketing campaigns, create better-tailored products, etc. Because this is such valuable information, they offer surveys for money.
Most companies are looking for consumers that fit specific demographics, and this is why you can suddenly become disqualified – you no longer match the target market.
For example, I remember being disqualified for a survey after they asked about my preferred allergy medication. Zyrtec must not have been one they were interested in.
Being disqualified or screened out of a survey makes you no longer eligible for the survey, and it happens when you’re no longer a good fit for the survey.
You’ll spend a lot answering questions that seem random or irrelevant, but these questions ensure that you are in the demographic the company wants to know more about – you’re the target customer. Something simple like not owning a dog or buying the wrong allergy medication can be the breaking point.
Everyone will be disqualified at some point, but you stand the best chance if you fill out survey profiles. These help companies match you with the right surveys, meaning you’re more likely to qualify.
It depends on the market research company and what the survey is about. They typically last anywhere from 5-50 minutes, and the longer ones generally pay more.
There’s a survey opportunity going around that promises a payout of $350, but it’s not just a simple survey. It includes a phone call, online bulletin boards, and in-person focus groups. The whole process runs several hours for a few weeks. That’s a lot of time and a major commitment.
You can take surveys for money while vegging out and watching Netflix, not many side hustles require as little mental energy. So while they don’t pay well compared to some of the best side hustles, it’s not bad pay for the work you’re doing.