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Does Swagbucks Really Work? Insider Tips and Tricks to make money even with doing a single survey!

Does Swagbucks Really Work logoThe Quick Low-Down – Does Swagbucks really work?

Owners: Josef Gorowitz, Scott Dudelson, Ron Leshem, Eron Zehavi

Website url:
Price: Free
Overall Rank:  3 out of 5

Summary: This is a legit paid survey site. If you love searching the internet, watching videos and taking surveys for fun during your free time, this is PERFECT for you to generate free prizes from a good range of merchants for what you normally do every day of the week.

Join Swagbucks today

However, if you are hoping to replace a part-time income with this then DON’T waste your time.

Do you know what the minimum wage in California is? The answer is A LOT MORE than what Swagbucks will pay you!  

Find out how ordinary people are making a full-time income online

My In-Depth Review of Swagbucks

Swagbucks has recently gained popularity as a paid survey site. That is not surprising given its very catchy name and very successful marketing campaigns.

Its tagline is, ‘The Largest Free Online Rewards Program”, but does it really work? And is it really worth your time?

So how does Swagbucks work?

You can sign up for free (yay for free!). It’s a very simple 10 second sign up process. (Swagbucks is available in US, UK, Australia, Ireland, Canada, Germany, France, and India.)

And immediately I already earned 2 Swagbucks or SB with the easy opportunity to earn more!

Does Swagbucks Really Work 2 SB for signing up

The Main Ways you can earn more SB:

Does Swagbucks Really Work Sb Answer

The main way you can earn SBs is through Swagbucks Answers, their platform for taking surveys.

You can get anything from 1 SB to 1000 SB for each completed survey.

My personal problem these survey sites is that I NEVER seem to quality for most of the surveys offered. Their advanced matching algorithms just don’t like me.

It’s obvious that the companies behind the surveys are targeting very specific age groups, income levels, work description, and most importantly if you have had any contact or experienced their product or service in the past.

Does Swagbucks Really Work Do not qualify

If you happen to fit into the general demographic they are looking to survey, then score! I am certainly not in that category and over and over again I start a survey just to be disqualified.

I usually just go through 5 surveys a day for my 5 SBs. If you have more luck, there are gold surveys which are worth 100 SBs for about 1-12 minutes.

Swagbucks Games

Does Swagbucks Really Work Games


If you already spend hours playing popular games online such as Wheel of Fortune, Bejeweled Blitz, and Scrabble Cubes, you can actually get paid for doing what you do every day!

I note you won’t be making millions by doing so (usually 1-10 SB per game) but if you are going to play the games anyway, it’s a good way to earn some cash while you are at it.

Swagbucks Watch

Update December 2017:  From time to time you do have to push the videos along. If you’re SB meter up the top hasn’t moved in a while, then you have to click to the next video along the bottom.

So Swagbucks watch is no longer a purely ‘passive’ way to earn Swagbucks. You can’t just leave the video running on your computer while you go about your day. So I’d recommend Swagbucks discover as a better way to earn Swagbucks.

Swagbucks has an in house video channel which offers 1-4 SB for every set of 4-8 short videos.

Personally, I don’t think it’s very much at all but if you enjoy watching a lot of videos every day to unwind, then you can earn well from this feature.

Alternatively, you can run the videos in the background (put it on mute) if you are on the computer for most of the day (at work) using the Swag button you install on Chrome or Safari browsers.

You get about 3 SBs for watching a playlist of videos, which is much at all, but if you aren’t actually watching then hey, its free money isn’t it?


Does Swagbucks Really Work Watch


Swag Codes

Swag codes are a super easy way to earn more Swagbucks. All you need is to make sure you have the Swag button installed. A notification appears on my Swag button and the mobile app on my phone every time a new Swag code goes live. When you click into the swag button it will tell you where to get the code and link you to Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

Does Swagbucks Really Work swagcode

The swag code which is usually in the latest post/tweet. You just need to type it into, into the toolbar, or the app. It’s a simple way to earn a few SBs a day.

Swagbucks Discover

Does Swagbucks Really Work discover

Swagbucks Discover is how you can make the best money on Swagbucks. I’ll let you in on the secret – what you do is look for paid offers (it’s harder to find a good deal on free offers) which give you more money than you need spend. That’s it! It’s pretty simple isn’t it 🙂

So for example if you need to spend $2 but you get 500SB ($5 worth) then that’s a $3 gain. However, the catch with this method is that you need to be pretty onto it and use your calendar or phone to set up reminders to cancel reoccurring payments.

Here is an example of how I would make 400 SB in one hit. The offer would look something like this:

Does Swagbucks Really Work discover example

I found this offer under “daily discover” on my Swagbucks “to do list” on the bottom left hand side of dashboard. This is an easy 400 SB and it would take you hours of doing gold surveys to get this kind of SBs.

But it is vital that you read through the fine print carefully before you click “continue”.  There are some things to note with this offer:

  • I have to be subscribed for a full 30 days to be eligible for the 400 SB – so I can’t just sign up then cancel tomorrow.
  • If I don’t cancel after 30 days, then I will be charged a monthly membership fee.
  • I can cancel anytime.

So my plan of action to get the 400 SB is as follows:

  • Click ‘continue’ and complete the sign up process,
  • Calculate today’s date plus 30 days. I usually use excel, key in today’s date in a cell then do (+ 30) to get the end date. Otherwise, you can also use a date duration calculator like this.
  • Set up 2 reminder on your phone. Don’t forget to select ” send me an alert”. I often err on the cautious side and set two different reminders so I don’t forget to cancel my trial after 30 days.

This process takes me about 5-10 minutes. A gold survey that takes you 10 minutes gives you about 40 SBs. So you can see how this is a great deal for the time spent.

Start earning with Swagbucks now

An example of how I would make 3,000 SB in one hit. The offer would look something like this:


Does Swagbucks Really Work discover example 2


I found this offer in my Swagbucks inbox.

swagbucks inbox

Look out for deals in your inbox


Again it was a “daily discover” deal. So for a donation of $15 or more, you will earn 3,000 SB (the equivalent of $30).

So that’s an investment of $15 to get $30, a profit of $15. Well, provided you remember to cancel the recurring monthly donation. I can’t emphasis this enough.

And again, please make sure you read through the fine print carefully, which is this case will say you have to use the same email address that you have signed up to Swagbucks with. If not, you won’t be awarded the 3,000 SBs. And it will take 60 days for the 3,000 SBs to be awarded, so you don’t freak out if you don’t see the SBs right away.

The main point that I can’t emphasis enough with these discovery deals is to:

  • Read the fine print carefully, and
  • Remember to cancel recurring payments.

If you remember these two keys, then you will make money faster than any other survey platform that I’ve come across.

I’d love to hear how you go with the daily discovery deals 🙂

Swagbucks Cash Back

Swagbucks offers cash back in the form of SB for shopping at online retailers like Amazon, Macy’s, Target, Walmart, and Best Buy. This can be up to 20% cash back. I note that’s up to so it’s more common to get less than the 20% mark and do watch out for the fact that not all the items at a retailer are available for cash back.

However, it can be a good way to offset some of your holiday shopping – to make Christmas less painful on the wallet when it comes round.

During the holidays when retailers have their biggest sales, Swagbucks does often double or even triple the percent of cashback they offer for certain retailers, so cashback is a good option to offset some of your holiday shopping. It’s not going to pay for it all though!

Daily goal

Swagbucks has a meter on the home page that flashes your daily SB goal. If you meet this daily goal, you will receive a 10% bonus on your days SB’s.

On way to meet your daily goal is to follow your daily to-do list. I usually just do the daily poll, daily search and daily watch. I often attempt gold surveys (100SB compared to the usual 30SB for a 10 in survey) but like I said I don’t have a good qualification rate. Hopefully you do better than me in this department.

Does Swagbucks Really Work to do list


Hourly Random Winner

Does Swagbucks Really Work Hourly WinnerIf you love lottery type thrills, this section is for you! So how do you get in on the action?

Well, the Swagbucks blog displays a random username and avatar in the “Hourly Random Winner” section.

If you see yours, you have to click the link to claim it.

However, you have to make sure you click on the link because unclaimed winnings will NOT be delivered to your “bank account” if you miss the chance!

How easy is it cash out?

I usually only exchange my SBs for paypal and this process has been pretty straight forward so far.

The trick is that your PayPal first name, last name and email address must match your Swagbucks account.

And your PayPal account must be verified.

If you need help with getting your PayPal account verified, click here for instructions.

Sign up for Swagbucks now

Is Swagbucks a Scam or Legit?

This is a very important question and there are many survey companies that make it hard for you to cash out. And that is after you have put in the work!

I needed to settle in my mind whether Swagbucks was a scam or legit before I would recommend it to my readers.

And I can safely say it is NOT a scam.


All my efforts did not go down the drain.

In fact getting paid out was a pretty simple and pain free process. I personally choose to get paid out via PayPal as I do most of my online shopping using PayPal (yes Swagbucks funds my shopping addiction).

Proof of Swagbucks Paying Out

I usually only cash out my SBs through PayPal as I can then use it to buy whatever I want.

All I had to do was select a $25 PayPal voucher to redeem and my order was sent through.

And within 24 hours, the cash was in my PayPal account. Woohoo!

Here are some screenshots showing my $25 PayPal gift card coming through:

Does Swagbucks Really Work Order Verification

Does Swagbucks Really Work Payment Proof

So how much for my efforts?

You might have read that Swagbucks paid out $135 million in Rewards to their members last year. Wow you might think!

But hold up! Let’s assess how much of that pie you can realistically expect.

A typical 10 minute survey earns you about 10 SBs. 

You need 500 SBs for a $5 amazon cash out.

Let’s do the math.

So for every 1 minute I spend doing a survey, I get 1 SB. So I earn 1 SB per minute.

To get $5, I need to do 500 minutes of work.

So 8.3 hours of work for $5 which works out to $0.60 an hour.

Do you know what the minimum wage in California is? $10.50, a lots MORE than what you are making.

Swagbucks is alright to make a bit of pocket money here and there. But that’s it.

But what if you want earn more than just pocket money online?

If you are looking to earn a bit more than just pocket money and are looking to replace a part-time or full-time income online, then don’t bother with paid surveys. They aren’t going to get you there.

How to make a full-time income online?

My preferred way to make money online is based on a business model with low start-up costs and large potential audience size of 3.75 billion (yes, you heard right, BILLION).

I build a website about something I’m interested about, it can anything from makeup, skincare or wellness. And did you know building a website is as easy as filling in a form?

Well it is, if you have the right tools.

I then talk about the topic and various related products on my website. Because I do keyword research, I’m able to write articles that address what people are actually searching on Google.

That means they will find my website through a Google search. Then when people start visiting my website, I start make a commission from the products I sell.

I also buy any inventory or deal with customer enquiries or shipping logistics, this is all handled by a third party.

But yet I can actually make a full-time income from this.

Do you want to find out how you can do this too?

I suggest you check out my no. 1 recommendation here.

=> Tired of Earning Cents or Pennies? Learn How to Make a Living Online! (I Use This Strategy Myself.)

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  • Reply james November 27, 2017 at 8:49 am

    Hi Shan,
    Thanks for your post on this. I’d not heard of Swagbucks so thanks for sharing this. It’s a shame that it can’t be really converted into a full time job due to the amount of work you would have to put in. I like the fact that it’s a combination of games as well as surveys so you don’t get bored too easily. A nice idea as an additional income if you’re prepared to put in a lot of hours.


    • Reply Shan November 27, 2017 at 6:45 pm

      Hi James

      Yes, its definitely not a source of full-time income. And imagine its one of the much better ways to earn money when it comes to survey sites. I often just let the videos run in the background and just accumulate swagbucks slowly. And when I feel like being active I take advantage of the offers to boost my swagbucks.

      But if you are wanting to put in the hours and a build long term sustainable income stream then affiliate marketing is the way to go. If you are wondering where to get started, this free online course will get you off on the right track.

  • Reply David December 4, 2017 at 9:03 pm

    Nice article! I always wondered about all of the sites that offered money to take surveys or watch videos etc. I am probably not in the most coveted demographic either, who do you think would be the ideal candidate for taking these surveys? Who are the people doing these? Are they older and retired or young kids even?

    • Reply Shan December 5, 2017 at 12:59 am

      Hi David

      To be honest, that’s what I felt like with some survey sites. It seemed like every survey I did I didn’t qualify for, and I thought I was in the most common demographic – your average young family with kids.

      OpinionWorld is one that requires you to fill in an online profile and in my experience. I tend to qualify for about 95% of the surveys they send.

      I’ve found that with Swagbucks at least there are other ways like taking advantage of the offers or watching videos to earn some Swagbucks. You aren’t limited to just surveys.

      If you have a bit more time to invest, you might want to check out affiliate marketing. It doesn’t discriminate based on demographic. If you are keen, this is a free course to give you an idea of how it works. No credit card required 🙂

  • Reply Ed December 6, 2017 at 1:49 am

    Hi Shan,
    “Does Swagbucks Really Work? Is It Really Worth Your Time” is an interesting article. If you are wasting time on the Internet anyway, why not make a few bucks while surfing and playing games.
    I tried taking surveys online at one time using a different platform, but like you, never qualified for the surveys. Swagbucks, however, has other options to make money.
    Your calculation of $0.60/hr is based on your personal experience. Do you think if you really got some experience and were willing to spend hours a day at it, could you increase that per hour amount to make it more worthwhile?

    • Reply Shan December 6, 2017 at 6:43 pm

      Hi Ed

      That’s true, if you are killing time watching video on the internet, why not make a buck or two while you are at it?

      I suspect experience does not add to your survey qualification rate. However, one way you can earn more with swagbucks is to take advantage of their offers. Have a look at examples of how I earned 400 SB and 3000 SB in one hit. These deals are found under “Swagbucks Discover” but make sure you read and follow the fine print if not you will LOSE instead of earn money!

      However, if you really want to commit to spending hours a day towards make money online, I would suggest going the affiliate marketing route. The return will be much better in the long run. If you are interested, you can check out this free starter course, I highly recommend it. It will get your started on the right path.

  • Reply matt December 14, 2017 at 5:11 am

    Thank you for the article I had heard some of my friends talking about taking surveys on swagbucks but I didn’t know you could watch videos as well. I realize it’s not alot of money but it might be a good way to buy a few christmas presents. Assuming I actually find the time to do it.

    • Reply Shan December 14, 2017 at 6:46 pm

      Hi Matt

      Yes you are absolutely right, I have cashed out my Swagbucks in time to pay for a couple of Christmas presents. Its good like that. As long as you aren’t going in with the aim of making a full-time income then you won’t be disappointed.

      I used to find playing videos in the background quite an easy way to rake up the Swagbucks. I’d set it up on my computer in the morning and just leave it running. But recently Swagbucks has caught on and you have to push play on the video a lot more often, so you can’t earn passively from the videos.

      But if you have time to look into Swagbucks Discover that where the real money is.

      If you are looking for more of a full-time online income, then check out affiliate marketing. This free starter course will get your heading in the right direction.

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