Back in December, I put together a list of ways to earn extra money. Embedded within that list was the suggestion to sign up with a site like CashCrate, which pays you to fill out forms, take surveys, and/or sign up for free trials. While I’ve only messed around with it a bit, I received a check for over $30 in May.
While $30 isn’t a life-changing sum, I spent very little time earning it, and it seems like it would be easy to earn considerably more. Beyond that, who wouldn’t want a bit of extra money every month to help them get out of debt, pay down their mortgage, or save for retirement?
How does Cash Crate work?
For starters, CashCrate is free to join. Once you give them your name and contact info, you’re ready to roll. Upon logging in, you’ll be presented with a list of opportunities. You can switch between cash offers, points offer, and research surveys. I’ve typically focused on the cash offers and research surveys.
Payouts vary widely, and are generally proportional to what’s expected of you. Most of the offers don’t pay a whole lot (generally $0.25 to a few dollars) but they also require very little. In some cases, it’s as simple as signing up to receive an e-mail newsletter — just be sure to use a secondary e-mail address.
Here’s a screenshot of an offer that I just completed this morning. It paid $2.25 and required nothing more than signing up to receive a newsletter.
While most of the offers are free, there are some that require an upfront payment. For example, you can get $9.00 in return for signing up for a one day trial with Driving4Dollars, which costs $5.95. Obviously, they’re hoping that you’ll stick around and become a paying customer, but you’re free to cancel and pocket the difference.
CashCrate can make these offers because companies need consumers to try/review their products or services, and are willing to pay for that sort of feedback. They pay CashCrate to find participants, and CashCrate passes along a piece of the action.
Another way to earn money is to click through to shopping sites from Cash Crate before making a purchase. While their list of participating retailers isn’t huge, there are some big names there. For example, you can get 3% cash from Disney, and 5% from iTunes and WalMart. Note that these bonuses are in addition to any credit card rewards that you might receive.
Refer a friend
Finally, you can make a bit of additional money by referring others to CashCrate. For example, I get a $3 bonus for every person that signs up and earns $10, and I also earn 20-25% of what my referrals earn, and 10% of what their referrals earn. Note that this comes at no cost to the individual being referred — they keep everything they earn. Once you’ve signed up, you are likewise free to refer others.