Are Cashback/Survey Sites Worth It?
Have you ever been paid to go shopping? As bizarre as it sounds, the concept of getting cashback on everyday purchases is nothing new. In fact, many credit card suppliers and banks offer customers the chance to claim a little bit back at specific rates. On the other side of this, of course, there are cashback sites, which – along with survey sites – have quickly become a bastion of ‘side hustling’.
If you’ve spent time looking into making extra money online, you’ll likely have come across both cashback and survey sites before. But what do they actually do – and ultimately, are cashback and survey sites worth signing up for?
What Are Cashback Sites?
Cashback sites and apps, essentially, let you claim a little bit of money back from purchases through popular stores and brands they’ve partnered with.
For example, if you sign up to TopCashback, you may find that you can get money back from online shopping with Sainsbury’s, ASDA or Argos – and more besides. If you sign up with another popular cashback provider, Quidco, you could get a fraction of your money back from purchases at Dunelm and Opodo. It’s worth checking out all the different partners at different sites!
Once you have signed into a cashback website or app, use a presented link to the online store that you wish to use and do your shopping as usual. Once your purchases have completed, the cashback website will give you back a percentage of your shop, usually stored in a wallet on the site itself. This may only be as little as 10% back – but on a weekly shop of £200, you’re £20 better off!
Are Cashback Sites Worth It?
Providing you’re careful, using cashback sites can be highly lucrative. It’s important, though, to avoid spending more for the sake of chasing the cashback! Try and think about where you normally make purchases from online each week or every month. If they’re listed on a cashback site, it’s well worth getting involved.
That said, there is also the factor of clearance times. In some cases, you may have to wait months to see money become available for you to withdraw to a bank. On the other hand, this may not bother you too much if you are saving towards Christmas shopping at the start of the year!
Always check the deals you enter into – some cashback options may be free, while others will charge you a fee. While the fee may not be huge at first, it can easily rack up, especially if you end up in debt on your credit card.
It is always best to read as much as you can about the cashback provider that you are considering, and as annoying as it may be, take the time to read your terms and conditions, just to be sure of what you can expect.
For small, incremental wins over a long period, cashback sites prove to be nice little earners. Survey sites, on the other hand, require a little more effort on your part.
What are survey sites, and how do they work?
As the name suggests, survey sites pay subscribers to take various questionnaires. These may be on what you buy on weekly shopping trips, what you think about public figures, and even your opinions on products you’re asked to test.
Many survey sites will pay you in gift cards, vouchers, and direct cash – meaning that if you have time to spare, you could end up building up a nice little cash pot just for sharing your opinion.
Popular survey sites that are also well-rated by experts include Swagbucks, Curious Cat and Branded Surveys. It’s good to check out reviews and feedback on survey sites before you join, simply because payment thresholds can vary from platform to platform.
Is it worth using survey sites?
That really depends on how much time and effort you’re willing to spare on using them. Many survey sites will offer questionnaires for a few pence at a time, and will have payment thresholds you need to meet before cashing out. This means that it may be a month or two before you start seeing reasonable amounts of money.
There’s also the matter of ‘fitting the bill’. In some cases, you may complete surveys and find that you’re not an ideal fit for the survey provider – which can get quite annoying! Therefore, as you may imagine, there is some trial and error involved.
On the plus side, taking surveys for money doesn’t take too much time from quiz to quiz. It’s something you can easily get into on breaks at work, on the daily commute or while waiting for the kettle to boil.
As a long-term money earner, you’re likely going to need to sign up with several sites and to regularly engage with the surveys you receive. Like cashback sites, this isn’t a quick money fix. If you’re saving for a fairly low goal months down the line, of course, signing up for several questionnaires is a great plan of action.
Lastly, let’s address the elephant in the room. Not everyone likes taking surveys because they can ask personal questions! If you’re worried about this side of survey-taking, always make sure to read the privacy policies and terms of any site you sign up with. Further to this, never tick any boxes you don’t agree with!
Cashback and survey sites both serve a niche – people who want to make money by doing very little! That’s likely to appeal to many of us – but to really get the most out of these sites and apps, you’re going to need to at least set aside time regularly to make it worth your while.
With cashback sites in particular, you’ll need to make sure you change your shopping habits a little (i.e., use TopCashback or Quidco and click through to your chosen retailer). There’s also a slippery slope into spending for the sake of it here, too – so keep a close eye on any impulse buying habits.
Many people make hundreds of pounds a year through cashback and surveys – by all means give them a go, but don’t expect big money too quickly!
As we’ve covered, these online tools can be great little money makers, but not everyone has the time. LoanBird has access to fast cash loan lenders that you can apply to 24/7, with software designed to examine your affordability of a loan very quickly.