HCD Research Surveys has been one of those panels I always wondered about. Unlike many other panels I have been a member of for many years, I had never had the chance to join this site, until now.
I signed up a few months ago to give them a try. In this post I will give you my personal account of how this site works and whether or not its worth your time. With that said, here is my review of HCD Surveys.
About Holistic Communications Decisions Inc.
HCD (Holistic Communications Decisions) Research was founded in the year 1991 and deals exclusively with the various aspects of communications and marketing research. The company specializes in providing services based on traditional as well as internet based research methods. (By the way, if you are into this kind of stuff, I highly recommend you read this article from a faculty at University of Minnesota that talks about the difference between traditional vs digital research.)
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The company laid the foundations of their survey panel in 2005. The panel was created with the sole aim of quickly reaching out to people that the company’s clients wanted for their surveys.
The firm makes use of traditional as well as more sophisticated research methods in conjunction with innovative web-based applications to collect meaningful and comprehensive data for its customers.
The company is considered to be among the pioneers of internet based communications and marketing research. HCD Research has also conceptualized and executed a number of research studies to help many mid-sized and large companies in their quest to better understand consumer opinions.
Some of the sectors that these companies span across include pharmaceutical, publishing, financial services and many others.
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The company has also developed ReadMyLipz.com (no longer in existence), a site created for testing political ads during the presidential campaign of 2004. For more information about this research firm, you can visit their corporate website at hcdi.net.
The company is also an active member of the CASRO and ESOMAR marketing research industry associations and therefore adhere to both organizations’ standards and codes of ethics.
As for their standing with the BBB, it seems like they do not have any profile with the Better Business Bureau which is not that unusual considering that membership is optional and hundreds and thousands of legit companies do not participate in BBB’s business accreditation program.
My HCD review
I started off by registering with the site. Then I answered some short profile surveys containing about 5 questions each. After that, I was able to take my first survey without facing any interruptions like screen-outs and the likes.
Most of the surveys with HCD Research take around 15 minutes on average to complete. The compensation is in the form of points (100 points equals $1) and not cash like some other sites. Although I do not prefer sites that pay through the points system, $1 for 100 points sounds quite reasonable to me. Of course, the points you earn vary widely with each survey.
What really hampers the site though, is the low number of surveys it has. This contrasts starkly with SurveySpot, one of its bigger rivals, where surveys are available by the dozen in addition to many other ways of making money. Unlike a GPT site, HCD Research is an out and out survey panel.
Since signing up with the site, I got only one survey to answer with nothing to show thereafter; at least till now. However, you can expect to receive around 5 survey invites per week from them.
How much you earn here is greatly limited by the fact that HCD is not a GPT site like Panda Research with all kinds of offers that can earn you points, or even a rewards website that carries paid product offers.
The one survey I did take had some political questions and from what I’ve read on the web, many of their surveys circle around that topic. However, there still are many surveys based on other topics too.
The site shares a lot of similarity with SurveySavvy.com with the only difference being that the latter’s surveys are significantly shorter.
For the most part though, their studies and surveys are quite interesting. The topics of these surveys usually relate to the prevailing economic, religious or political events taking place in the United States.
A survey could be about the president’s address, an oil spillage, or even about plans to construct religious building in communally sensitive areas. As such, the site’s surveys are easy and quite enjoyable even though they come at irregular intervals.
To start taking surveys, you need to log in to your account and complete some of the surveys for demographic profiling purposes. It takes only a few minutes to answer these questions after which you are able to see the surveys available to you.
Once you select a survey, some screening questions are put to you. You’ll receive some points even if you fail to qualify for a survey, which is quite rare in today’s times. Intimation through email will be sent to you every time a new survey becomes available.
You can also earn by referring other people to the site. For every successful referral, you’ll be paid 50 points (amounting to $0.50).
HCD Research Points & Rewards
HCD does help you earn money by answering its surveys but this money is in the form of points. In this system, every 100 points you earn equal $1 in cash.
So, if you’ve accumulated 650 points, their value in cash becomes $6.5. However, what I truly like here is that you won’t have to redeem your accumulated points for anything else except cash!
How much you earn for every completed survey varies widely with the types of surveys that come your way. On average, most surveys will earn you between $1 (100 points) and $5 (500 points). Every now and then, you could also be invited to participate in studies that do not offer any incentive.
The invitation you get for a survey also carries information on the compensation that survey offers. This helps you to decide beforehand if you’d like to go ahead with that survey or not.
However, in case you receive an invite to a survey but fail to finish it, no incentive will be paid. But, members who are invited but do not qualify, stand to receive a credit of 10 points.
To determine whether you are fit for a survey, you will be asked to answer certain screening questions. Once you are done answering, you’ll be informed whether you qualify or not. If you’re disqualified, your account will be credited with 10 points, which I consider to be a rather nice touch.
To receive a payment, you need to accumulate at least 100 points (amounting to $10).
As of now, the company only offers payments via check, which take roughly around 3 weeks to arrive.
Should you join?
The good news is that HCD is not a scam. It’s a legit market research site that actually conducts online studies unlike sites like Survey Club or Maximum Paid Surveys that are basically a database of survey sites.
Summing it up, I think of this site as a decent site that you can use to complete occasional surveys once a week. Yes, I wouldn’t recommend you to complete surveys with the site on a daily basis.
The site does use a points based system but it still has a low threshold ($10) compared to some of its competitors ($30). As such, expecting too much from this site is not a good idea but even then, I’d recommend keeping it in your list of survey sites as it’s legit and costs you nothing in the process.
As of now, I prefer HCD over sites like BigSpot simply because the former’s only survey that I took went easy. Registering my account with them was also easier and there was no phone verification requirement.
I hope this review of HCD Surveys from me helped you in making a decision about this survey panel. Thanks for reading!
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