I have only very recently discovered the Swagbucks website. Having used it regularly now for the past few weeks, it has become my favourite way to earn rewards online for free. It took me a little while to work out how best to maximise my rewards without having to spend a great deal of time completing the rather mundane tasks, but once you know how it works it really is very easy to accumulate Swag Bucks. Once accumulated, these Swag Bucks can be exchanged for all manner of rewards, including PayPal cash, Amazon Gift Vouchers and iTunes Gift Cards.
Whilst you are very unlikely to earn enough rewards at Swagbucks to quit your day job and retire to the Bahamas, it is possible to earn £10 per week in Vouchers without spending more than an hour per day at their website (and much of this time can be spent multi-tasking). £10 per week might not sound much but, if collected over a year, £520 worth of Amazon Vouchers can significantly ease the pressure of Christmas for most families.
Even if you don’t want to dedicate this amount of time every day, you can still use Swagbucks occasionally to earn rewards more slowly.
Below is a brief overview of the many ways to earn Swag Bucks. I will add youTube videos to demonstrate how easy it is as soon as I have worked out how to use my Screencasting software.
To watch a video demonstration of “How to Use Swagbucks”, please visit here.
How Do You Earn Swag Bucks?
(1) Daily Poll (1SB – 5 seconds)
You simply click on “Daily Poll” and answer the simple question to get 1SB. ”Daily Poll” is under the “To Do List” on the left side of the home page.
(2) NOSO (No Obligation Special Offers) (2SB – 5 seconds)
You simply click on “NOSO”, “Start Earning Now” and then “Submit & Continue to Next Offer” a few times to get 2 SB. “NOSO” is under the “To Do List” on the left side of the home page.
(3) Flash Games (10SB – 5 minutes)
You DO NOT get paid to be good at these games. You DO get paid for just playing them (even if you lose after a couple of seconds each time). You get paid 2 SB every 2-3 games played and there is a daily maximum of 10 SB. I play Swag Jump and Swagasaurus Run – they are truly dreadful games but they don’t last very long so you can earn your Swag Bucks quickly. The reason you get paid for playing these games is that prior to starting some of the rounds, you have to watch 10-15 second advert (similar to youTube ads). The games are accessed via the “Play” tab on the home page.
In addition to the FREE games where you are awarded SB for just playing the games briefly (however bad you are), you can also enter tournaments where you risk a small amount of SB to win larger SB prizes. However, these can be time consuming and you have no way of knowing if your opponents are cheating. Personally, I would avoid them.
(4) Internet Searches (20SB – 10 minutes)
You simply get paid to use the Swagbucks search engine to perform your normal everyday internet searches. If you are wondering how you can possibly get paid for doing internet searches, the answer is that all search engine operators get paid by companies to display keyword adverts at the top of the results page and Swagbucks are passing on some of their revenue to you. You can earn about 20-25 SB per day in about 3 instalments, but you must NOT abuse the system by quickly searching for random things. They will find out and may suspend your account. I suggest you just use it like a normal search engine. Just in case you are worried about the results produced by this unfamiliar search facility, Swagbucks actually uses the Google engine (it’s just disguised with the Swagbucks logo). The search box is at the top of the home page. Alternatively you can select “Search” from the main menu. There is a toolbar that you can download and install on your usual search engine (e.g. Chrome) but I don’t bother since I tried it and found it a little annoying.
(5) Daily Surveys & Survey Dashboard (variable)
Every day you can participate in surveys. They usually take between 5 and 30 minutes (you are usually warned in advance) and you earn between 40 and 200 SB per survey. When you start the survey you will be asked a few basic questions to establish if you are the sort of person they are interested in hearing from. For example, if you work in the advertising industry or say that you are not responsible for the shopping decisions in your household, you are very unlikely to be chosen. Sometimes, if you are not chosen you will be given 1 SB to ease your mental anguish. I usually qualify for at least 2 per day (I usually complete them bleary eyed whilst my children are watching Peppa Pig on the TV at 6am!)
These surveys can be found on the home page and on the “Peanut Labs” page. However, the easiest way of accessing all of the surveys is from your “Survey Dashboard”. This is accessed by selecting “Paid Surveys” under the “Answer” tab on the home page.
(6) Surveys by email (generally 80-200 SB each – 20 minutes or so)
Every so often you will receive an email inviting you to participate in a survey (or surveys). You can simply click the acceptance button within the email and be taken to the survey site.
(7) Watching (or rather playing) Short TV Adverts (12 SB – 5 minutes)
Every day you will find short TV adverts on the home page and on the “Peanuts Lab” page (accessed by selecting “Special Offers” on the home page). You get paid 1-2 SB per advert.
(8) Swagbucks TV Clips (variable – you can earn unto 150 SBs per day)
There are some truly bizarre clips on Swagbucks TV. Have you ever heard of Doga? No? Well visit the Yoga section of Swagbucks TV and all will be revealed. The clips vary in length, but you only have to watch 30 seconds of each before you can move onto the next one. You get paid 3 SB for every 10 clips that you watch (or rather play). You can earn a maximum of 150 SB per day doing this and you can watch the same clips more than once (provided its not on the same day).
(9) Entering the Bonus Codes posted on Swagbucks Twitter & Facebook pages (2-4SB each)
At various time thoughout the day Swagbucks post bonus codes on their Twitter and Facebook pages. If you find them, you simply enter them into the Swag Code box on the home page to earn 2-4 SB.
(10) Free Trials of goods and services (variable)
This is a slightly more murky area and you might want to avoid these altogether. Some of the Free Trials and Competitions listed under the “Special Offers” section look a bit too good to be true to me. You will often have to provide credit/debit card details to receive the Free Trials and the “innocent looking” competitions often direct you to some organisations that you would probably not wish to get involved with. I am not suggesting that they are doing anything unlawful, but they might make your life a little difficult when it comes to claiming your prizes or cancelling your Free Trial (e.g. you might have to use a premium rate phone number to cancel or pay an admin fee!)
The key thing about any Free Trial is to ensure that it is with a reputable company and that you remember to cancel the Free Trial before your card is due to be charged. iPhone alerts are great for this since they can be programmed to repeat every day.
(11) Shopping Online (variable)
I don’t use these since I think that cashback sites have better deals, but I will leave you to investigate this for yourselves.
(12) Downloading and Briefly Testing Apps on Your Smartphone
I tend to use AppNana for this since it has more offers and is specifically designed for this purpose. Having said that, if you access your Swagbucks Account via your smartphone’s internet browser or by using the Swagbucks App, you can get paid to download and briefly test (min 30 seconds) various iOS / Android Apps. If you choose to do this on an iPhone or iPad you will be directed to the iTunes store to complete the process as usual. You simply download and install the App, try it, and delete it (unless you actually like it of course). Most of the Trial Apps are free, but watch out for the paid ones. Since Apple has a very stringent App Approval System, you can be fairly confident that you are not downloading anything dubious onto your iPhone.
(13) Daily / Monthly Bonus System to boost your Swag Bucks Treasure Chest. It works like this:
- Each day you are set a Daily Goal (starts off at 30 SB – but this increases at week 3);
- Each time you achieve your Daily Goal, you earn 10% of the Daily Goal as a bonus (eg. 3 SB per day to start);
- In addition, you are paid a Monthly Bonus based upon how many days in a row you achieve you Daily Goal every month;
- The winning streak starts of 1st of the Month: 7 days = 50 SB, 14 days = 100 SB, 21 days = 200 SB, 31 days = 300 SB
- At the end of the month, you are paid all of your Daily Bonuses and any Monthly Bonus that you have earned.
So, assuming that the Daily Goal was 30SB every day of January 2014, if you achieved it 31 days in a row you would earn 393 SB
(31 x 3 + 300)
In fact, there is a second target set each day to earn an additional bonus but I will explain that in a future post.
The new time-limited (and very generous) Swagbucks Referral Program is described here.
Sometimes you will asked to enter a “Captcha” before you can receive your Swag Bucks. This is designed to ensure that you are not a robot that has been programmed to trick their systems.
You simply type the provided Captcha Code into the text field and press return/enter to receive your Swag bucks.
Your First Visit to Swagbucks
Before you begin though, you will be asked to complete some very short surveys to enable the good folks at Swagbucks to send appropriate surveys to your Survey Dashboard. You also get paid SB for answering these simple questions (approximately 20 SB in total). An explanation of the Survey Dashboard is at (5) above.
I suggest that you take the “Swagbucks Tour” under the “Help & Feedback” tab on the home page.
There are dozens of options when it comes to converting your Swag Bucks into cash or vouchers. The exchange rate varies for each method and £5 appears to be smallest amount that can be redeemed. If you use iTunes Gift Vouchers, they are much better value than some of the other options. The exchange rates for the 3 main methods are:
- PayPal Cash (£10 = 1,999 SB)
- Amazon Gift Voucher (£10 = 1,698 SB)
- iTunes Gift Voucher (£10 = 1,489 SB)