Top 10 Ways to Tell if A Survey Site is Legitimate

legitimate paid surveys

How do you know if the survey site you are about to sign up with is legitimate? Here are ten ways:

  1. There is no charge for signing up Companies like these should be giving you money or credits for filling out surveys, not the other way around! If they’re asking for any financial information like bank account numbers or anything similar, the site is most likely not real. Don’t ever input credit card information for a website such as this, because it may result in sham charges.
  2. They ask for additional info besides just your name and email address Companies who are actually surveying you want to know other demographic information so they can pinpoint the survey opportunities that will make the best use of your time and valued opinion. A lot of websites who are not real just want to sell your limited information to spammers. Check the “About Us” or “Learn More” links on a webpage to make sure there is a good explanation of what you can expect from the site that will be sending you surveys.
  3. Their site has a “Terms and Conditions” page and/or User Agreement Check on the site to find a document or set of terms that explains what the company’s responsibilities are to you as a user and the particulars you’re agreeing to before signing up with them. This means if you hold up your end of the bargain and take surveys honestly, the business will be held to the agreement to pay you in the method they have termed in their agreement.
  4. They don’t require your social security number (unless you make over $600 in a given year) and people doing that much in surveys are generally prize winners You don’t have to report for taxes in the USA if you do not make over$600 in a fiscal year so a survey company shouldn’t be asking you for this information. You won’t earn more than $600 in a year doing surveys unless you’ve won the site’s sweepstakes (one of the payment methods employed by some survey sites). If they do ask you to input your social security number while you are filling in your basic information, the site may be a scam.
  5. The method of payout is via check, PayPal, or other well-known payment methods Check the section of the website that talks about how they will pay you and if they are using reliable modes of payment. Stay away from survey sites that offer only sweepstakes entries because even though some people win, the odds are too difficult to beat, and you will most likely end up regretting having wasted big chunks of your time and effort with them.
  6. They have a physical address and a phone number on their 'Contact Us' page Look for a survey website that has an actual company location with an address and phone number that checks out. Try searching for either of these on a search engine to see if they exist and to ensure the company has a place to receive mail and a valid phone number for you to reach when customer service issues arise. Make sure there are real humans who offer customer service, people who understand and take care of making sure your survey taking and cashout experience is smooth and hassle-free.
  7. They are stamped by BBB, TRUSTe and other reputable organizations Look for accreditation seals by the BBB and/or TRUSTe. Once you see them on the site, click on their logo, it should give you details on the site’s accreditation or certifications. You should also be able to trust survey sites that are affiliated with highly recognized market research organizations such as the ESOMAR, CASRO, and AMA.
  8. Some of your relatives and friends are active members of their site Don’t hesitate to join if you have been referred by a family or a friend, if you trust their recommendations. If you are still a little unsure about joining a site, talk to the recommender about it. See how long your friend or family member has been part of the survey company and if there have been any problems during their time with the company.
  9. Their site name shows up in web searches and they show up in survey review sites such as If they are a real survey company who pays people for taking surveys with them, people will talk about them. Panel members share their survey-taking experiences in blogs, forums, and in survey rating sites like If you search for a survey site in Google or Bing and don’t get results, the survey company is most likely not legitimate.
  10. They don’t have advertisements crowding their website Most survey sites that are legitimate don't have ads. Their business plan is to get you interested and engaged in taking surveys with them. Seeing too many irrelevant ads on their site--especially those trying to get you to buy products--should tell you two things: (1) the site is not doing well enough with surveys and they need other sources of revenues such as posting ads; and (2) they are not sure what their goal is, whether to provide you with a user-friendly and a clutter free survey taking environment or to help sell their partner’s products or services.

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