Once you get started with paid online surveys, you will immediately be asked to complete some demographic questionnaires that allow the research company to know if you qualify for surveys or not. These are commonly called “screeners” by experienced survey takers, because they allow the survey site to screen participants and send invitations to the right people.
Depending on the survey panel, completing these screeners will either cause you to receiver more survey invitations, or fewer invitations. Either way, it is good.
You may receive more invitations if the survey panel only sends invitations to pre-qualified candidates. For these panels, you only get an invitation if you have completed a screener that specifically told them that you meet the qualifications of the survey. If the survey is only for 25-35 year old mothers, you will only get an invitation if you have already told them that you are in that age group and are a mother. So completing the screeners is the only way to qualify for survey offers.
Or, you may receive less invitations if the panel sends invitations to everyone who is not specifically disqualified. These survey panels work in the opposite way. If the survey is only for 25-35 year old mothers, everyone will get an invitation unless they have determined that you do not fit this category. Once you start the survey, you will then be asked these questions, and immediately disqualified if you don’t fit the profile. This, of course, wastes your time as you complete a partial survey each time for no pay.
Optimally, you would like to be invited to as many surveys as possible, but only those that you qualify for. I complete every screener possible on the survey panels I participate in, and as a result I am invited to a lot of surveys, and I qualify for 80-90% of these surveys. This makes me very efficient in my survey completion and allows me to maximize my earnings.
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