How to Make a Living as a Focus Group Participant
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How to Make a Living as a Focus Group Participant

EPF May 5, 2016

Did you know people make $50 to $200 an hour doing paid focus groups?

These opportunities should not be passed up. Yet many survey takers ignore the opportunity; wake up now to these great opportunities and maximize your online earnings!

At Elite Survey Sites, we focus our efforts on showing you which sites are good to join and which you want to avoid. This is easier said than done; at the end of the day, it’s hard to get technical about profitability.

But if you ever get fed up of earning just $10 or $20 in a whole day with paid surveys, the chance to make much more is right around the corner. So give yourself 10 minutes of time to read this, because we are going to show you HOW to get focus group invites!

Before getting into everything, let’s look at the pros and cons of focusing on paid focus group opportunities instead of just paid surveys.

Pros of Doing Paid Focus Groups

  • You can make up to $50 to $200 per hour.
  • You can get on an exclusive shortlist for focus group panelists.
  • You can make it a real job if combined with the right paid survey offers.

Cons of Doing Paid Focus Groups

  • You spend a lot of time trying to find new invites.
  • There is often no formal qualification process.
  • It is easy to not qualify due to demographic factors.

Are Paid Focus Groups Right For You?

Chances are you will be happy with the amount you will get compensated for your time, but what will you not like about being a focus group panelist?

The biggest thing for many people is the in-person aspect. You can do offline focus groups, and even get repaid travel costs, but many despise the personal dynamic. It feels too much like a ‘real job’ at that point.

If you want to make your money online, there are still many paid focus group opportunities out there. The problem is many require you to be on webcam when completing the panel. This is done as a way to bring the offline studies onto the Web without sacrificing the authenticity of the information supplied.

If getting in front of a webcam is not an issue, there’s really no reason to not do paid focus groups.

And if you are all for them — it just boils down to how you “trust check” each particular site before joining to do their focus group offers.

So, let’s start talking about where you should join …

What’s the Best Paid Focus Group Panel?

This is a tricky question, because paid focus group panels are not really marketed as such. In fact, most paid focus groups are orchestrated by paid survey panels instead. This is because businesses already turn to these companies for market research data — so it’s a perfect match.

But here’s the thing, most regular survey takers do not even know this fact. The general understanding is that paid focus groups are a rarity. Some panelists are aware that survey takers can get invited at certain panels, but few understand how to capitalize on this information.

So let’s use this to our advantage …

Where should you join to get paid focus group invites?

Your best bet is to dig through survey panel reviews for mentions of focus group offers getting sent out. Take a look at our old post to get some more ideas: How to Get More Invitations to Paid Focus Groups

Aside from that, here’s a shortlist of some sites that regularly give out focus group invites:

One trick worth knowing:

Say you are interested in a survey panel, but you are not sure if they offer paid focus groups. It is usually easy to figure this out. You can search in Google for the site’s name and include “focus group” in quotation marks. If you want to find mentioning of focus groups on the survey panel’s site, search instead for: “focus group”

Do not be selective about where you join …

You will want to join as many of these sites as possible. Plus, you should be constantly looking for other panels that are offering focus group invites to their panelists.

Then be as active as possible with their paid surveys; if you can learn the formula each panel uses for dishing out invites, you might figure out which ones require more focus.

For instance, if their support staff tell you invites are sent based on Omni survey results — then you would know you just need to show up for the monthly profile surveys to have a shot at an invite.

Other Ways to Get Paid Focus Group Invites

So the most common way someone gets invited is by being active as a survey panelist.

Often, the person will have stumbled upon a survey that’s secretly also a qualifier for a focus group. If the survey taker fits the demographic, they might just get a focus group invite after completing the survey.

But you do not always have to do a bunch of surveys to luck into focus group invites.

Sometimes the focus groups are just sent to a short list of users that ‘are so fortunate’ to have the opportunity. Yet, you might make it onto this easily — just email their support inquiring about whether they offer focus groups, and how you could qualify for them if they do.

Other than that, you can also watch for offline focus group studies. These are ran regularly, especially in busier cities in the U.S., and they pay very well.

The offline route is usually easier to qualify for, and the requirements are often directly laid out. If you are okay with the little travel and the in-person dynamic, it is definitely worth looking for these opportunities in your area.

On there, you can find studies available by area. There are 15+ specific cities and many other nationwide city-based options to choose from. After selecting your location, the offers available in your area will be presented to you.

They not only list focus group opportunities, but also paid product testing, video watching, and much more.

On there, you can find local focus group opportunities all across the U.S. with 12 large cities available as specific options as well. After you choose your city or state, you will be presented with the offers available to you.

The cool thing is these focus group opportunities can pay incredibly well. For instance, right now a video-based study offer is available for a set of parents and it pays $1,500 upon completion.

However, this is much less of a central site than the other one above. It is easier for just anyone to post a new focus group study. So you will have to do a little more legwork to make sure you can trust the focus group study issuer before applying to any opportunities listed there.

How Much Do Online Focus Groups Pay?

You should not expect to make less than $50 in a single hour, unless you are okay with the lower paying gigs. So the compensation is good — as long as you can keep enough invites flowing in each month.

Typically, the amount you can make in a month boils down to how presentable you seem.

The more exposure you have to the potential of getting invites, the more invites you will get on average. So to get the most focus group invites, you need to be an active survey panelist also.

If you dip into offline studies as well, you could make upwards of $500 to $750 in a single day!

With that said, we previously covered what qualifying factors tend to sway your earnings in the wrong direction. This was brought up in our post on ‘How to Make Your First $100 with Focus Groups’ where we mentioned the three key qualifying factors.

Qualification Requirements for Paid Focus Groups

The specific requirements to qualify for a paid focus group are dependent on what the company behind the study needs from it.

Ultimately, there are three variables that we have seen matter a whole lot.

They are as follows:

Your age … These higher paying gigs are typically tailored towards shoppers with higher budgets. So it is to be expected that the majority of focus group opportunities will tailor towards the adult audience. If you are a minor, these opportunities could be very limited.

Your location … If you are in the United States, the United Kingdom, or Canada, you will not have a shortage of opportunities. If you are in any other country, focus group invites become fewer and run further in between.

Your income The income tax bracket you fall under is a huge indicator on your purchasing power. If a new car dealer or maker wanted information on their target audience, how would they benefit off details from a minor or someone who cannot afford a new car? They simply cannot, yet a higher earner can give consumer data on lower priced goods. So the more you make in a year, the more opportunities that are likely to come your way.

Of course, that does not mean you should go lying your way through your applications. Your best bet is to be 100% honest all the way and to capitalize on the best opportunities that reach you.

Get Started Now — Begin Qualifying for Focus Groups Today!

At Elite Survey Sites, our primary goal is to show our readers how they can make money over the Web. If we find a paid survey panel that can average you $20 per hour — it gets us super excited. So, you can only imagine how pleased we are to inform you of the chance to make $50+ in just an hour’s time!

It will not be easy … but it will be worth it.

If you want to make a legit income off paid focus groups, it requires a lot of legwork. You have to sign up at many different panels to have much of a chance. At each of these panels, you will find yourself actively doing paid surveys and other tasks. You might even find yourself emailing support to learn about a particular sites’ qualifying processes to get an even bigger upper-hand.

Get started right awaysign up at the Top 10 Paid Focus Groups Online as reviewed by us!

Learn how to do surveys like a pro too … read our How to Make a Living as a Paid Survey Panelist’ post!

Elite Survey Sites

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