At first glance, Toluna seems to be a great way to make money from home surveys. But it may not be as lucrative as it seems. Find out whether it’s a legitimate paid survey site in this unbiased Toluna review.
Toluna seems really refreshing at first. You’re presented with a massive amount of survey options, they reward you at a significantly higher rate than any other well-known survey website, and you even get 500 points just for completing the signup process. But once you dig a little deeper, you’ll realize that momentum builds up to a series of huge letdowns.
I am not an affiliate for Toluna. Many people reviewing this survey website will highly recommend it because they’re paid a commission for everyone they convince to join—I am not one of those people.
At the end of the day, Toluna is one of the most well-known but lowest paying survey sites available online. When you compare them to the industry leader (Swagbucks), there’s a dramatic difference in earning potential, even when spending the exact same amount of time completing offers.
Many users at Toluna have also complained about having their accounts suspended right before they qualified for a payout—something I’ve never seen happen at SB.
If you’re going to take the time to create an account and complete offers on any paid survey site, Swagbucks is by far the most legitimate and worthwhile site to join. Even if you spend the same amount of time completing offers, you’ll earn at least 2-4x as much in your time there, which is why we’ve reviewed them so highly.
If you don’t have the time to read this entire review, at least read this section.
Toluna looks very attractive early on, mainly due to their great user interface and massive amounts of rewards points for relatively quick and easy surveys.
The first time you stop into their Rewards Center, however, you’ll notice that their point-to-redemption ratio is 30x poorer than many of their competitors. In comparison, a survey network like Ipsos i-Say only requires 100 points per $1 redeemed whereas Toluna requires 3,000 points per $1 redeemed.
Every paid survey site I’ve reviewed has turned up unfortunately low time-to-earnings rates, usually somewhere around the equivalent of $1-$2 per hour. Because of Toluna’s remarkably high rewards redemption ratio, even though it feels like you’re accumulating points faster, you’re actually accumulating them even slower and earning an even poorer hourly pay.
It’s the poorest paying survey site I’ve reviewed by far and, along with the other reasons I’ve outlined in the review below, there’s just absolutely NO WAY I can recommend Toluna. You’d get paid much better by securing a part-time job or potentially building your own part-time internet business.
Let’s take a moment to delve into what Toluna is and what they offer.
This survey website used to be called simply Toluna. Now, the online survey site is officially called Toluna Influencers, which looks to be part of the Toluna Group. Since many long-time members still refer to the paid survey website as Toluna, I’ll do the same in this review.
According to their About page, Toluna offers its members the chance to make their voice heard and inspire change in the products and services they believe in by participating in surveys by brands and market research companies. Aside from this power to influence, members are rewarded for their participation, which I’ll describe below.
Toluna hosts various surveys that its members can answer in exchange for points, which they can then exchange for gift cards from different retailers or cash through PayPal. Not all members are qualified for all surveys at a certain time, though, but Toluna will give you 200 points for attempting.
Members can also earn points from testing products, answering sponsored mini-polls, referring other members, and winning contests and sweepstakes, but the main method to earn points is still answering Toluna’s surveys.
The one thing that I will say Toluna has going for it is the ease and simplicity of setting up an account.
Everyone in this industry makes it easy, but Toluna makes it super easy and then rewards you with 500 points on top of that so you almost get a sense of accomplishment. Sure, that’s just the equivalent of $0.17 but you’re probably not far enough into the members’ area yet to realize that.
So I just dove in and started taking surveys. Really quick and easy ones didn’t have any information about how long they’d take, but once you get into the higher “paying” surveys you see screens like this:
Earning 2,500 points for a 35-minute survey sounded GREAT compared to the other paid survey websites I’ve been a member of, and I started to get pretty excited that I’d found a website where I can make money with surveys legitimately.
That was before I made my way into the Rewards Center.
When I started poking around the Rewards Center, I was actually pretty impressed. There are a plethora of options to choose from between gift cards from various retailers and sweepstakes. You also have the option to get paid for surveys via PayPal.
But it all came crashing down when I got to the most important section: where you can cash your points out for gift cards or cash through PayPal. This was the first time I paid attention to the redemption rate, and I was floored by how high it was:
95,000 points for $30?! If we use the survey I posted as an example earlier (35 minutes for 2,500 points), I’d have to spend 22 hours to earn this $30 PayPal credit. That’s $1.36 USD per hour.
And this isn’t just the case for PayPal redemption options, it applies to all of the gift card options. After noticing this, I also noticed that even their sweepstakes entries cost a minimum of 500 points per entry, whereas other survey websites require as little as 1 point per sweepstakes entry.
After noticing this, I very quickly realized I wasn’t in the best paid survey site I’d ever joined, I was in the lowest paying, worst possible survey network I’ve joined so far. I hightailed it out of there and got to work on this review to hopefully save others from this horrible experience.
It seems like I’m disappointed in Toluna—and I am!—but it doesn’t mean that Toluna is a straight-up online survey scam.
There are reports of users truly earning points from surveys and winning sweepstakes that they enter, but the fact that it takes too much time to earn enough points in the first place and too many Toluna points to cash in for a decent amount makes Toluna not worth my while.
Do you want to earn $1.36 USD per hour? If the answer is yes, Toluna might be a good fit for you. If you’re a sane person who values their time and the answer is no, then avoid Toluna at all costs. It looks really great early on, but once you start digging you realize that your time is going to be wasted for pennies per hour here. Most people pay their kids better allowances than Toluna pays their members.
I've been in internet marketing for over 10 years, and I've purchased dozens of illegitimate products for the sole purpose of evaluating them and exposing the truth about these products to anyone who's thinking about purchasing it. I never let money influence my rating of a product and your success/safety is my absolute highest priority. Don't want to buy a product? Register for one of my 100% free internet marketing training courses>>