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In 2020, making extra cash on top of your regular income is easier than ever before. ‘Why’, you ask? Because there are a ton of apps that pay you money for completing really easy tasks, or in some cases, no tasks at all.
In this article, we’ll take a look at 15 apps that pay you cash for a variety of different tasks. We’ve split these apps up into four main categories to make it easier for you to navigate to the apps you might be interested in. These categories are:
So without further ado, lets jump right into things by looking at…
Cash Back Apps
Cash Back apps are a great way of reducing your monthly expenditure on things that you already have to pay for.
There are a lot of different cashback apps that will pay you money for doing things like scanning grocery receipts, and some even give you a bonus when you sign up. There are a lot of apps of this type, but our favorites include:
Ibotta is one of the most established and well-respected cash back apps that you can download. It was also one of the very first rebate apps to pay users for scanning grocery receipts -and it’s still one of the best.
The best part? We’ve partnered to with Ibotta to give you a $10 registration bonus when you use our link to sign-up and claim your first offer.
Many similar grocery-scanning apps will only reward you with gift cards, coupons, and other products. However, the great thing about Ibotta is that it also offers an option to receive actual cash back on your purchases too.
Using Ibotta is simple. All you have to do is check if the item you want to purchase is on their product list and, if it is, add it to your account. You’ll then complete a short, easy task that might be something like watching a video.
Once you’ve done this, you can go ahead and buy the item. Finally, you can redeem your cashback by providing proof of purchase. You provide this by scanning your receipt in the app and submitting it.
Another great thing about Ibotta is that you can use it really easily with everyday purchases as it participates with a lot of major stores, including:
Drop is another cashback/rewards app like Ibotta but with two important differences:
- Drop rewards you points automatically. You don’t need to scan any receipts
- Drop was made for millennials and has partnered with brands and retailers that match this demographic.
The first point here means that Drop is much easier to use than Ibotta. All you really have to do is download the app, link up your credit card, and select 5 of your favorite retailers.
Then, every time you make a purchase at one of these retailers, Drop will know about it and distribute points to you. These points can be redeemed for things like gift cards later.
This almost kind of makes Drop a passive income app as you’ll be earning points/money while doing nothing at all (and that’s the dream, am I right?).
Drop also really did their research when selecting partner brands and seem to be pretty in-tune with where millennials like to spend their money. Their partners include Starbucks, Cineplex, and Uber.
Trunow is the perfect complementary addition to the first two apps. While Ibotta and Drop give you cash back on everyday food and grocery purchases, Trunow will take care of your gas.
For frugal motorists, Trunow is a must-download app to add to your cash back arsenal. It gives you between 2% cash back every single time you fill up your tank at one of Trunow’s partnered gas stations, and 1% at all other stations.
If you’re a regular commuter, gas probably makes up a significant chunk of your monthly outgoings, so shaving off 2% should be a no-brainer.
In fact, you’ll probably save even more than that as it also uses your GPS to inform you where the cheapest place to buy gas in your area is to help you get the best deal.
a must-have app for any motorist out there. It doesn’t just help you to earn money and rewards on purchases – it helps you to save money too by using the location data on your phone to inform you where the lowest gas prices are near you.
I’m aiming for variety here, so the next cash back app I want to talk about is BerryCart. Unlike the others we’ve mentioned so far, BerryCart is a cash back app designed for vegans, conscious consumers, and anyone that likes to eat healthily.
This is very much BerryCart’s USP and what makes them stand out from the other cash back and receipt scanning apps. They award cash back for many healthy food products that you just won’t find on most of the other apps out there.
They’re partnered with popular, big-name stores like Whole Foods, Safeway, Sprouts, and Walmart in over 100,000 locations across the US.
They help users to earn cash back and find deals on food products that are all natural, organic, gluten-free, GMO-free, soy-free… you get the picture!
Here are some of the things we like most about BerryCart
- It rewards you with real money that you can claim through PayPal
- It pays out fast, with a $5 minimum withdrawal requirement
- The cash back reward amounts are higher than many other apps
- It’s educational and teaches you about healthy products with fun-facts and quizzes
Shopkick is one of the best cash back apps on the market. They don’t reward you points. They reward you with ‘Kicks’.
No, that doesn’t mean they send someone round to kick you. Kicks are Shopkick’s cute name for the points used on the app, and they can be redeemed for things like gift cards and other items in their product catalog.
The cash back part of the app works in the same way as most other apps: you make a purchase and scan the barcode/receipt, or else link up your credit cards to automatically earn Kicks.
However, the real stand-out feature of Shopkick is that they offer a bunch of other cool ways to earn Kicks too. Here are a few of them:
- Watch online videos
- Browse online store
- Purchase products online
- Walk into a partner store in your area
The last of these features is great for window shoppers who like to browse shops on the weekend but might not necessarily want to spend any money. It gets you out of the house and helps you to earn money/Kicks while you’re having fun.
Ok, moving on to survey apps. As you’ve probably already guessed, survey apps pay you money for filling out short surveys. They do this to collect valuable market research data that they sell to companies who need that kind of thing.
That’s pretty much all you need to know at this point, so now let’s take a look at the 5 best survey apps on the market.
Survey Junkie is probably the most well-known dedicated survey app. It’s also one of the most lucrative. If you stick to the higher-paying surveys, expect to earn somewhere between $12 and $18 per hour.
Their strong reputation indicates that it’s unlikely that you’ll have any problems using this app. In my own experience, they pay out on time, every time. The few times I have had to contact their customer support team, they’ve been very helpful.
A great thing about Survey Junkie is that they tell you up front how long it’s likely to take and how much it pays out, so you don’t end up wasting hours of your time for mere pennies. There are a lot of surveys on this app, so you can afford to be picky and stick to the ones that pay the most.
Another good thing about the app is that if you’re not eligible for a survey, Survey Junkie will let you know within 2 questions. That means that you won’t end up wasting your valuable time filling out something which you’re not going to get paid for.
Pinecone Research is my second choice after Survey Junkie. Like Survey Junkie, Pinecone Research gives you the chance to earn up to and around $18 per hour if you’re fast.
That figure is based on the fact that most surveys are set to pay out $3 in cash, and can take up to 15 minutes to complete. If you can type fast and shave 5 minutes off that, you’ll be averaging $18 per hour.
Unfortunately, Pinecone Research surveys are in shorter supply than many of the other apps on this list, so you won’t be able to do them consistently.
Pinecone Research will send you an email when a survey is available that you might be eligible for. You’ll probably receive a couple of these emails per week. Still, that’s an easy bit of extra cash each week for little to no effort!
As Pinecone Research pay so well, they’re sometimes overloaded with applicants and don’t always accept new users. If you’re unable to sign up right now, try again every few weeks to see if any slots have opened up.
YouGov is an international research company that collects data on public opinion. As you’ve probably guessed from the brand name, they’re all about politics and collect data on specifically that.
This means that the surveys you complete are probably going to be a little more interesting than many of the other survey apps on this list and elsewhere. Most surveys will be asking you to share your opinion on world events and political issues.
It’s much more ‘high-brow’ research so, if you’re into that kind of thing, this is the perfect survey app for you.
It also doubles up as a way to stay informed about relevant political issues. After you complete a survey, the app will share with you the opinions of others who took it. You kind of get the feeling that your part of a small community, which is great.
The only downside is the surveys aren’t quite as lucrative as on the previous two apps. Expect to earn around $8 to $10 per hour. It’s still pretty good for a side hustle, though.
SurveyClub is a great app for filling your survey-schedule. If you’ve run out of eligible surveys on the higher-paying apps (like SurveyJunkie and Pinecone Research), you’ll find plenty of smaller ones on here.
My favorite thing about SurveyClub is the way it enables you to pick and choose surveys based on time, payout, and location. This makes it easy to choose one you actually have time to complete.
For example, let’s say you’re commuting on the train to work. You only have ten minutes before you arrive, so you can use the filters to show only the surveys that take less than 10 minutes to complete.
That way, you can fit in a survey and earn an extra few bucks to pay for lunch before your shift has even started!
Global Test Market is a leading international survey site that has been operating since way back in 1999. The reason this app had to make the list despite the low earning potential is that it’s suitable for international users.
While many of the other apps are only available for users in a select few countries, Global Test Market is open to users from as many as 49 different countries.
They have lots of surveys on all sorts of topics, including:
- Consumer products
- Current events
- And more
There is a lot of low-paying surveys on Global Test Market that just aren’t worth your time. Stick to the high-paying ones, though, and it can still provide a nice supplementary income of up to around $20 extra per month. You need a minimum of $10 before you can cash out.
If you want to get a broader picture of how Global Test Market works, you can also check out Global Test Market Review.
Passive Income Apps
Passive income apps are apps that pay you money for absolutely nothing at all. You can use them to earn money ‘passively’, so to speak. That makes them one of the easiest money hacks available, and a must-download for anyone who considers themselves frugal-minded.
The best way to get the most out of your passive income apps is to run several at once. Each will only pay you a small amount of cash, but you can stack these small amounts on top of each other to make a substantial amount.
In fact, it’s possible to run 20 Free Passive Income Apps and Earn $1,500+/Year. Here are our top 5 picks to get you started:
ShopTracker is an app that pays you to let it track your Amazon purchases. All you need to do is download it and link it up to your Amazon account – and that’s it!
After that, they will credit your account with $3 every month, which amounts to $36 in a year. It’s not much, but considering the fact that it literally takes no more than 10 minutes to set up, it’s an easy win. Once you’ve installed it, you don’t need to do anything else, ever.
Why your Amazon spending habits are so valuable is anyone’s guess, but apparently, it is. ShopTracker is owned by Harris Poll Online, a hugely reputable data company with their own survey site, so you can trust that your data is at least in good hands.
As an added bonus, you’ll also get an immediate bonus of $3 just for signing up to ShopTracker and completing a short survey.
The great thing about the ShopTracker app is that you automatically get a $3 bonus once your account is ready to set up.
The next passive income app I want to introduce you to is ScreenLift. ScreenLift is a smartphone app that changes your lock screen and pays you money (or more correctly, points) every time you unlock your phone.
Don’t worry though, these points can be exchanged for cash deposits straight to your PayPal account.
It works like this: once you’ve installed ScreenLift, your lock screen will change to an advertisement display. This display means that you have to watch an ad each time you unlock it.
ShopTracker earns advertisement revenue for that, and it can pass on a percentage of these earnings to you via points. In that sense, these so-called ‘lockscreen apps’ operate in a similar way to pay-to-click websites.
The main difference between this app and the previous one on this list is that, while ShopTracker pays you for your data, this pays you for your advertisement engagement.
The only downside about ScreenLift is that it really doesn’t pay you all that much. You’ll be earning very small amounts each time, but it does add up eventually – especially if you use it in conjunction with other passive income apps.
To be honest, though, having a lock screen which changes to show you something new each time is actually kind of interesting and fun. It really doesn’t feel like you’re sacrificing anything, so why not?
SavvyConnect is another data collection app that wants to know what you’re shopping for, and what apps you’re using. They’ll pay you to help them gather this information by downloading the app and letting it run in the background.
They pay out $5 per month that you leave the app installed on your smartphone, for a total of $60 per year. Again, it might not sound like much on its own but remember, it all adds up.
The app is also available for desktop, tablet, and mobile devices. What does that mean? It means you can download it on all 3 and triple your earnings. That’s $180 per year. To put that into perspective, that’s around 2 months worth of electricity bills for many households.
The only problem is that you can’t cash this out to PayPal or bank transfer as they only pay by check, but hey, it’s still money!
SavvyConnect is a sub-branch of SurveySavvy, which is a high-paying survey site. An added bonus of signing up to SavvyConnect is that you get access to exclusive surveys from SurveySavvy once you complete your profile.
Mobile Performance Meter is another data collection app. This one is interested in the way you use your phone. That means they’re looking at things like:
- Your mobile internet speeds
- What apps you’re using
- How many text messages you send
- Other relevant use statistics
This app pays out around $6 per phone, per month, and you can run it on multiple phones if you have them.
There are only two downsides to this app that I can see: the first is that it’s only available on Android devices, and the second is that it pays you in points redeemable for gift cards, which isn’t quite as good as real cash.
However, you can always sell those gift cards or use them for products you’d buy anyway.
Acorns is an app that invests your small change. You can link up your credit cards and allow it to round purchases up to the nearest dollar, investing the rest automatically for you.
Depending on your risk-tolerance level, you can choose one of 5 strategies from conservative investment to aggressive investment.
That’s all you really have to do. After you’ve chosen a strategy, Acorns will handle all your investments so that, hopefully, that small change will turn into big piles of cash.
It could be argued that Acorns is closer to an investment app than a passive income app, but it certainly can earn you money passively, so I’ve included it here for a little variety!
That concludes our list of 15 apps that pay you money, but it doesn’t end there. There are lots more smartphone apps out there that reward you with points, gift cards, and money for small, easy tasks.
If you’re looking for further inspiration, we’d recommend checking out:
- 10 Apps and websites that give you a $10+ sign up bonus
- The best easy money apps to get paid from your smartphone
- Apps that will pay you money to drive your car
That should be enough to keep you busy for a while. Good luck!