You can make good money just by taking paid online surveys. However, it is possible to add to your income with other related activities, such as focus groups. Focus groups are less common and participation takes more time. But they pay well, much better than most surveys.
While an average online survey might bring in $ 10 to $ 25, an average focus group participation will pay $ 50 to up to $ 250.
With focus groups, a group of participants discuss subjects under the leadership of a moderator who poses the questions. Participants talk with each other as well as with the moderator. The group develops discussion threads with one building on what another has said.
In this way they often forget and discuss new aspects of the market need, product or service under discussion. This includes aspects that may not have occurred to the market researchers to bring up and ask questions about.
When market researchers ask questions in surveys, there are always implicit assumptions in the questions. The open format of focus groups permits consumer participants to discuss things in a freeform manner.
This can give useful insights. Oftentimes there is relevant consumer thinking that is found to be outside of the framework of the market researchers assumptions!
Thus valuable insights are gained, which makes focus groups very worthwhile to understand what thinking and forces drive the marketplace.
Focus groups are connected both in online conferencing mode and in person. For online conference format it is only necessary to get all participants online at the same time. For those focus groups done in person, you have to be physically present. Usually these will be conducted in a series of cities in heavily-populated areas.
Your ability to participate in focus groups connected in person will be dependent on how convenient it is for you to get to one of the cities near you where they are being processed.
Usually the survey makers pick people to invite to participate in focus groups out of their databank of good survey takers. They may ask you to take a short pre-qualifying survey beforehand to determine if you qualify for the focus group.
For example, if they are going to focus on green olives they only want participants who like and eat green olives, not those who do not like them and avoid them! If the focus is to be on whiskey, they want no teetotalers in the group!
If you are taking paid surveys and get asked about participating in focus groups, consider it an opportunity to make extra money. Volunteer if you can, take an active part in the discussion. Try to inject useful ideas and observations.
When you make useful contributions to the focus group's subject matter, you greatly increase your chances of being invited again and again, and making more money from participating in more focus groups!