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If you own or have access to a personal computer, if you enjoy working from home to make extra money to help pay bills, and if you like giving your opinion or testing new products, you should try online surveys and sampling from the comfort of your home to make a little extra cash to help pay bills, and also try new products. There are thousands of companies out there that rely upon various research panels made up of consumers to complete surveys online.

While you should not expect to earn a full, high paying salary from taking online surveys, it is very possible, and fairly easy, to earn between $50 to $100 a month in cash and also free products if you take several short surveys, according to experienced online survey site members. The key to having the most success with these surveys is to register with several online survey sites (which are all free to join). This will increase your chances of being selected for the surveys and also increase your income.

When you do decide to join an online survey site, you will need to provide both your personal and demographic information. Credible survey sites will not disclose this info to any other party. That information that you provide is then used to select participants for surveys on specific products and services. When you are selected to take a certain survey as a panel member, you will then receive an e-mail from the company inviting you to take a short screening survey to determine if you are a good match for that particular survey. If you are a good match, and you do qualify for the survey, you will be asked to take a longer online survey in exchange for some sort of compensation, including cash, prizes, or maybe free samples.

Compensation will vary by company and by the survey that you take. You may receive only few dollars, which can help with paying your heating bills or other debt. You may even be sent free products in exchange for trying them and providing feedback about the products. Most surveys will "pay" even more money by entering participants into a sweepstakes.

I have taken about a dozen online surveys myself with the two different online survey sites that I joined. I was paid for three of the surveys that I took ($15, $6 and $1 each) and I was entered into a sweepstakes for the other nine surveys (which I did not win). However, I did find it easy to take the surveys and very enjoyable to answer the questions.

Experienced survey site members, such as Christa Alewine of Georgia, also tend to greatly enjoy getting all kinds of free products for themselves and their family, from dog food, to graham crackers, to many other items. Even her kids will look forward every month to getting products in the mail to test at home and have even participated in some surveys for children (with parental approval).

The largest cash survey payment Christa has ever received from a company was $50, and the survey that paid her that took only about 30 minutes to complete. Her usual cash payout is generally $1 to $3 for surveys that take anywhere from 5 to 45 minutes. She estimates that she is paid cash for over 10 percent of the surveys that she completes and she also receives free products for many of them.

Christa began her online survey experience by earning money just by playing online games for 30 minutes or so per day and she now earns more by spending that 30 minutes completing surveys. She gets to keep the products she tests, and enjoys getting a $20 Amazon gift card, gift cards to local restaurants or a few dollars in her Paypal account.

Make Sure the Online Survey Site Is Legit

Experienced online survey members recommend joining several different survey sites (from between five to 10 sites) if you want to take daily surveys to make money, get samples, or win prizes. You should register with an e-mail address that you check frequently so you can respond quickly and, of course, be both honest and very accurate in filling out the survey information requested. You should never get discouraged if you are not selected as a survey participant after your first few screening surveys, as it may take you a while to see which survey companies' needs match your demographics.

While it is not possible to list all the legitimate online survey sites that are out there, you can find many of the top sites on this website.

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If a survey site were a marketing site posing as a survey site, it would disclose its practice of sharing member information with other parties in their privacy policy. If you can't find a privacy policy link prominently displayed on its site, skip that site and look for another one to join. Additionally, some sites will ask if they can share your information with other parties, and will already have the "yes" box checked. If you uncheck the box, you can avoid getting unsolicited e-mails.

A credible Web site's privacy policy will have a statement like this one: "We do not share personally identifiable information with other third-party organizations for their marketing or promotional uses without your consent except as part of a specific program or feature for which you will have the ability to opt out."

(abcnews.go.com/GMA/Consumer/Story?id=1937788&page=3)

 

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