If you’ve ever done an Internet search about how to make money quickly from home, you’ve likely stumbled upon the promise that participating in online surveys will make you rich.
Unfortunately, like most things that sound too good to be true, the idea that paid surveys will help you pay your bills is misleading at best. We’ll tell you why – and what you can actually do to make some reliable cash – in this post.
It’s Time-Consuming and Inefficient
Filling out paid surveys from home can put some cash in your pocket, but if it were truly possible to earn a living wage from doing so, more people would be doing it. Many surveys require you to meet certain criteria, and assessing which surveys are legitimate (and which you may actually qualify for) can be time-consuming.
In fact, a recent NerdWallet experiment put three people to the test in an effort to determine just how lucrative surveys really are. After dedicating 50 hours to answering questions online, the group’s combined earnings came in under $90, or $2 an hour.
That’s not even close to the federal minimum wage of $7.24 an hour.
It Can Be Risky
Filling out online surveys requires you to disclose valuable personal information, such as your date of birth, zip code, income or medical history. While some of the information requested, like your spending habits, may seem harmless, it isn’t always clear how your information will be used. The threat of someone stealing your personal information is present anywhere on the Internet, but if you’re consistently sharing your personal data with survey sites, you’re opening yourself up to more risk.
There Are Better Options
Economic insecurity is a real problem. Around 40% of Americans struggle to pay for basic needs, like food or rent. But the earnings from filling out online surveys are meager compared to other income-boosting methods.
If you need to bring in more money, consider taking on a different side hustle instead. A lot of people have success with driving for a rideshare service, dog walking or house sitting. Additionally, you can go through your personal items and consider selling gently used clothing or trading in old phones or other electronics for cash.
Filling out paid surveys online might result in a little bit of extra money in your pocket, but the time, exposure and risk are rarely worth it. The difficult truth is that the best way to improve your income is to expand your skills and get educated – or at least use put the skills you already have to good use.
Instead of filling out online surveys, try learning a new software program or networking within your industry. Such efforts may not reap immediate financial rewards, but they could open doors to longer-term career opportunities. Effort in still equals effort out!
~Here’s to Your Success!
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