Monday, December 15, 2014

Earning Money with Swagbucks: Pros and Cons

Note: This article originally appeared on my Hubpages Site.

 What is Swagbucks?

Swagbucks is a website-based rewards program that pays you virtual currency for doing basic tasks, such as checking in on their website, doing web searches, taking surveys, filling out profiles, watching videos and shopping online.

Every time you fulfill one of these tasks, an amount of virtual money, known as “Swagbucks” or “SBs” is credited to your online account and that is how you earn money (the Swagbucks can be swapped for goods or money later).

There is also a Swagbucks toolbar that they will pay you to install, should you want it, which is supposed to help you to keep track of your SB account balance and increase your prospects for earning money online. So what are the pros and cons of earning money online with Swagbucks?

The Pros of Swagbucks

1. Swagbucks is free to sign up to and to use. You just go to their website and fill out a form and then you can start earning money straight away.

2. You often receive SBs for performing tasks that you would do anyway, for example, searching for something on the web, or buying an item you need online through Swagbucks, which means you make easy money sometimes.

3. The daily Groupon deals provide some great bargains and sometimes you win twice, because you buy a bargain through Swagbucks and then they award you lots of SBs on top of that, which is great when you’re making a purchase that you planned to make anyway.

4. Another good thing is that with most earn from home sites, you need to earn a minimum threshold before you can spend any of your money (Mechanical Turk being a notable exception to this) but with Swagbucks you can start redeeming your SBs straight away (although you will still have to build up a reasonable amount of SBs to afford anything half decent!) That means that you can earn money online instantly with Swagbucks.

5. Swagbucks encourage you to redeem your SBs at their online store. But if you can’t find anything you want in there, you can either convert your SBs into Amazon Giftcards (450 SBs for the $5 giftcard), or buy the PayPal cash (700 SBs for the $5 PayPal) which goes directly into your PayPal account. (From your PayPal account, the money can be transferred to your bank account, if you wish, although there are so many places nowadays who accept PayPal, you might well find that it’s not necessary. If you are unfamiliar with PayPal, you should definitely consider getting an account as there are many earn money online websites who use it.)

The Cons of Swagbucks

1. The concept has always seemed a little gimmicky to me. What’s the point of earning money that's in a virtual currency that you then have to convert or redeem? Why not just have real dollars and cents from the start?

2. Another criticism I have is that the Swagbucks online store just isn’t that great, in my experience. As there is nothing there that I want to buy, nine times out of ten, I end up having to swap my SBs for the Amazon gift cards, or PayPal money, so that I can take my trade somewhere else. (At least they give me that option, I guess!)

3. I have also seen some people criticize Swagbucks online for having issues relating to malware. My wife and I have used Swagbucks regularly for a long time, however, and never had any problems in this area, so I can't confirm this.


People can and do make money from Swagbucks. But you have to work at it, in my experience, even if it’s only for 20 minutes each day. Over time, you’ll see your earnings and account money grow.

I probably make around $30-40 in a typical month nowadays, but I made far less when I first started. You will never become a millionaire from Swagbucks, but it can allow you to buy a few of life’s little luxuries and treats that you might not have been able to afford otherwise.

For more ideas regarding maximizing your Swagbucks earnings, I would recommend that you read my wife's post: Swagbucks tips and tricks.