When it comes to paid surveys, YouGov is not on top of most people’s list, but those who have been involved in earning money by taking surveys, certainly know this panel. It is one of the most reputable marketing research firms in the world.
That said, there aren’t any real reviews of YouGov out there. Being a member of this panel as I am, I thought I would give you my 2 cents on what the site is all about.
An online market research company with operations across the international space, YouGov was established in May 2000 in the UK. Stephan Shakespeare co-founded this company and he also happens to be its present CEO. The other half of the founding team was Nadhim Zahawi, who happens to be company’s ex-CEO.
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In 2006, the firm took over Siraj, which was a market research company based in Dubai, and then bought Polimetrix, which was a non-partisan and venture-funded online polling company that was founded by Douglas Rivers, a professor at Stanford University.
The company made its mark in the United States between the years 2009 and 2011, when it made three more acquisitions; namely Harrison Group, Definitive Heights and Clear Horizons. Consequently, all acquired companies were brought under the YouGov brand and group. Same was the case with some organic businesses in France and the UK.
The company is based out of the United Kingdom and holds membership of the British Polling Council. The group is also a signee with the British Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). The group operates 21 offices around the world including ones in the United States, the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Nordics.
YouGov calls upon its extensive expertise in online research and sampling to conduct polls and give insights for media, political, non-profit, marketing and university organizations.
A market research company is typically approached by large corporations to know more about the wants and desires of their target market when it comes to advertising, product development and any other aspect. YouGov, however, adds a distinctly political dimension to its market research. The company asserts itself to be non-partisan firm whose surveys are completely independent of Democratic or Republican viewpoints.
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That said, the company also partners with external organizations for gathering opinions from its own members. However, such surveys are totally confidential and even though your answers can be accessed by an external organization, the same cannot be said about your personal contact information.
As for the BBB, the panel is rated A which is one below the perfect rating. YG has been a BBB accredited business since 2011. And looking at their profile on BBB.org, I saw about 11 complaints against the company in total for the last 3 years or so.
I have to say I am impressed. Usually, no matter how good of a company you are, you are bound to have a few dozen or so complaints as you can not please every single customer, but it seems like YouGov is doing a good job when it comes to that.
There was a survey panel named PollingPoints.com. YG acquired it a while back when they created their US panel. So, if you were a member of Polling Points your account would have been automatically moved to what is now known as Today.YouGov.com
Review of YouGov Surveys
Registration is free of charge with this site and the process is also very simple. Clicking on the “Register Now” enables you to answer certain profile questions. Answering these questions takes roughly 2-3 minutes, which also instantly gets you 1000 points. All those points for simply registering!
However, as you register with the site, it’s imperative that you provide a precise home address. This is because, firstly, the site needs an address to deliver your rewards and prizes to after redemption. Secondly, a few of the site’s political surveys tend to be exclusive to certain voting populations and regions.
As is the case with most survey panels, YouGov sends you an email containing the link to an available survey. Pay for a survey is typically in the range of $0.25-$1.50 but it also varies with the survey length.
Once every month arrives an “Omnibus” survey, which does not carry any tangible prizes. Rather, it rewards you entries into different competitions that the site conducts. Unfortunately, taking this survey is mandatory as answers to the same are used to evaluate your suitability for surveys in the future.
So, to conclude here, not taking this survey puts you in a situation where you could receive a lot less surveys than otherwise.
However, omnibus surveys are not the only way to gain admission to competitions. The site really wants you to take part in these as you can also buy admission to these competitions using your points.
But take utmost care here. Once a survey with this site finishes, you are given a choice to purchase admission into one of the competitions with the points you’ve just earned. Thankfully, this link is highlighted using bright colors while the link to just take and keep your points is left normal.
I’d strongly recommend clicking on the dull appearing link as the chances of you winning in one of these competitions are quite low.
Surveys with this site are quite regular, although it is typically around one invite a week (Usually, I receive lesser). But the subject of their surveys is normally more interesting compared to the fare from other paid survey panels.
The surveys from YG are also presented in a professional and slick manner and it’s not unusual to see the surveys you’ve completed being mentioned in the media, which is a nice little touch I believe.
And, it seems I never get disqualified from any of the site’s surveys (may be the Omnibus survey isn’t really a goofy idea). Considering how often you experience such things on other survey sites, this is very pleasant indeed.
Rewards & Payout
Now comes the rewards part, which I have to say is YouGov’s Achilles heel. You are paid through check once your earnings hit the $50 mark. As far as cash out minimums are concerned, this figure is the joint highest I have encountered among all survey sites.
If you make it a point to complete every survey you get invited to, may be you can reach this amount. But even then, it is likely going to be two years before you can reach that cash out level!
Seriously, how many members are going to be able to reach this ludicrous level? I am guessing quite a few which must aid the payout levels of this panel some good.
Recently, I managed to reach my cash out minimum and the check for the same arrived very quickly. However, I’m not sure if my association with this panel is going into the future.
Is YouGove any good?
To sum it up, YouGov boasts of some really slick, interesting and very professional surveys. The chances of being screened out from its surveys are really very less and it also finds prominent coverage in the press.
That said, the manner in which the site keeps pushing its prize draws can get on your nerves while the high cash out minimum can take many years to achieve.
If a long haul is what you are looking at then YouGov would probably get my recommendation. However, if you’re new to the scene of online paid surveys, I’d urge you to look at some of the other panels that I recommend. That way, you can see for yourself if what they offer meets your needs.
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