How to to Avoid Getting Disqualified from Paid Surveys

If you want to take surveys for money, one of the most important things you need to do is get to the finish line. If you get disqualified before the end of the survey, most paid survey sites will pay you nothing, or at best just a small amount.

Of course there’s no way to guarantee you’ll never get disqualified, but if you follow these five tips you can help make sure it doesn’t happen very often.

1. Complete the Whole Signup Form

Usually when you sign up for a paid survey site you’re asked fill out a very special type of survey, the signup form. Now sometimes these are long, so it’s natural to just want to bust through quickly to collect a signup bonus or whatever. You may even think about skipping over an optional question or two.

Here’s our advice… don’t!

It’s okay to work efficiently when you sign up for a new site, but be sure to answer every question completely and honestly. It’s not just good practice for taking real paid surveys, but it also helps the survey site find the most relevant surveys for you. And that’s really the best way to avoid getting disqualified.

2. Keep Your Profiles Up-to-Date

Did you have a baby? Travel recently? Buy a new car? These are all things that may be part of the profile you maintain with each paid survey site you join.

Many of these sites will let you log in to your account and update your profile. We recommend doing this any time you have a big life change, since this information is very valuable to help ensure you get the most relevant, high-paying surveys.

And of course, if the paid survey you’re taking is well-targeted at you, there’s less chance you’ll be disqualified.

3. Honesty is the Best Policy

Remember that suggestion to fill out the signup form completely and honestly?

The same holds true when you’re actually taking the survey. It may be tempting to give the answer you think they’re looking for when taking a survey. Some sites even say “there are occasions when you may need to stretch the truth.” We find it’s best to avoid such deception and keep it honest.

Start making up answers and you may find yourself disqualified from the survey you’re taking. Worse yet, do it a few times and you may get disqualified from the whole site and lose all of your earnings. Frankly, it’s just not worth the risk.

Cash out early, cash out often, and always answer questions honestly to make sure you get paid for taking surveys.

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4. Stay for the Long Haul

Sometimes you’ll join a survey site that doesn’t seem to be worth the effort at first. You’ll take surveys, but it just doesn’t feel like you’re making any money.

When this happens, it’s totally understandable to consider bailing out and stop taking surveys from that site. But before you do, look into the site terms.

With some paid survey sites, it’s just a matter of earning enough to hit the minimum and cash out. With other sites, like Ipsos for example, a loyalty program ensures that you’ll get paid more as you take more surveys.

If you want to make more money, always read the fine print and be sure to stick around long enough to get paid.

5. Be the Early Bird

Since most companies don’t have the same marketing budget as Coca-Cola, most surveys are only open to a limited number of people. Act too slow, and you’ll miss your chance to make money.

If you want to increase your chances of making money, check your email regularly for new survey invites. Or better, yet, create a dedicated email inbox that you use just for paid surveys to make sure nothing slips through the cracks.

If there’s one sure thing about paid surveys, it’s that you’ll never get paid for a survey you never take!


Bottom line: it’s pretty darn frustrating spend 10 or even 20 minutes taking a paid survey only to get disqualified before you finish. Put these tips to good use and you’ll avoid disqualifications, finish strong, and make money every time.

Robert Fleming
Written By
Robert Fleming

Robert Fleming is a 20-year veteran of the market research industry and now serves as co-CEO of Paid Survey Update which he co-founded in 2015. He resides in Myrtle Beach with his dog Gunnar.