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Multitasking on your smartphone. We all do it. Those little devices allow us to share our experiences and opinions with everyone we know. So why not put those opinions to good use as a side hustle and get paid for completing surveys in your free time?
Paid online surveys are a great way to earn extra cash, but not all of these companies are equal. In our full Pinecone Research review will learn all about what makes them one of the best survey companies around. We’ll also discuss the best ways to make extra money by sharing your opinions through Pinecone Research surveys.
What is Pinecone Research?
Pinecone Research is a well-known and reputable company that has been around for over 20 years. Pinecone Research pays its survey panel members for each 5-minute survey they complete. This survey website is known to have higher payouts than most survey sites.
Surveys usually are around $3.00 apiece and Pinecone research has relatively low payout thresholds compared to its peers.
One of the Top Market Research Companies
Pinecone Research is owned by the Nielsen Company and based in Ohio. The company was founded in 1998 and has a long history as a consumer market research company.
They offer consumer surveys and product testing where participants are paid for their time and feedback. The site is free to join. However, they are selective in who they accept into the Pinecone Research Panel, making them one of the most exclusive online survey sites around.
Selective about who they recruit
One of Pinecone Research’s competitive advantages is how selective they are at recruiting members for their Pinecone Research panels. This means there is a limited number of online survey panel spots available.
So you may not be accepted for every new survey that comes out. Usually, you might not meet the demographic profile they are looking for at the moment for market research purposes.
But if you do get accepted you can expect regular pre-screened paid surveys to keep rolling your way as available surveys come out. It’s not going to replace your day job or produce full-time income, but you can likely make $100 a year or earn a few gift cards for just a few minutes of your time.
Is Pinecone Research legit?
Yes, it absolutely is a legit survey panel. While you won’t get rich, taking Pinecone surveys a few times a month does add up. And when you are working on improving your personal finances every little bit helps.
According to the Better Business Bureau, Pinecone Research has a C+ rating, and is not accredited. However, after reading the singular review that led to the C+ rating, it appears that the BBB rating might be a little heavy-handed.
How to join Pinecone Research
Joining Pinecone Research isn’t hard, but you do need to take specific steps.
- Step 1: Find a Pinecone Research sign up offer through an affiliate link.
- Step 2: Complete the short sign up form.
- Step 3: Receive survey invitations and start completing surveys.
Below is a bit more detail if you need additional help.
Find an invite to join Pinecone to find a sign-up page
Signing up is done through affiliate links like this, as they do not have a signup form on their site. Their site says that they do not recruit new members through their website or take unsolicited referrals.
Pinecone Research is an exclusive survey panel. Recruitment opportunities are invitation-only through affiliate partner websites. That said, it’s not difficult to track down an invite though if you want to join.
Quick Tip: If you plan on signing up for multiple surveys you should think about setting up a separate email address. It’s a quick way to optimize the survey process a little by cutting down on inbox clutter.
Go to the Pinecone Research login
After you find a link to sign up with, you’ll go to the login page to establish your Pinecone Research account. There you are prompted to fill out your demographic profile information.
They ask for basic personal information, such as your name, email address, website. All publisher-required fields are marked.
After that, you click submit and cross your fingers for a confirmation email saying you’re now a member of Pinecone Research.
It’s common that you will get a page that says they do not have availability for someone matching your profile. Customer reviews suggest that you wait several weeks. When a spot opens up they will get back to you.
It was worth the wait, I promise. If after a few weeks they haven’t gotten back to you, try to login again.
If one of those lucrative spots do open up, make sure you jump on it. The reason that it is difficult to get accepted into Pinecone Research is that they only send their panel members pre-screened surveys. This means no more responding to 10 question surveys only to find that you do not qualify for any of them.
If you get an email that you have a survey to complete, you will be able to complete it and get paid. If only everything was that easy.
One limitation is that only one person per household can sign up. Sometimes, Pinecone Research will send surveys with household questions for your family to complete or to test products for them. But they consider the entire household to be one member.
How much can you make?
With Pinecone Research you can make around $3 for every survey you complete. As a Pinecone Research panelist, you will receive emails for new surveys from time to time. The good news is you will always qualify for the survey due to their prescreening process.
Depending on the number of surveys you receive, you can easily earn $10-20 per month. It won’t replace your income, but it’s a decent amount for just a little bit of your time.
The surveys are also quick and easy, taking around 5 minutes to complete. Not a bad return for your effort while watching TV.
Something to point out is that you have to complete all of the surveys sent to you. If you stop responding, Pinecone Research will drop you from their panel in favor of someone who is more engaged. This can cause you to get locked out of the site, along with your access to your non-cashed out earnings.
An easy workaround for this is to email Pinecone Research if you will be traveling or otherwise unable to complete surveys for a while. That way, they know you still want to remain a Pinecone Research member and resume panel activity in the future.
Product Testing and Survey Opportunities
Some of the surveys will include product testing opportunities and will pay a little more. Usually, product tests yield around $5, plus you get to keep the new products that they send you to test.
Product testing is a fun way to try out new items, get free stuff for your family, and share your feedback with the manufacturer so that you can help them create an even better product.
Pinecone Research Rewards
After you complete a survey, your earnings will be posted to your account 3-5 business days later. Your first earnings redemption will always be sent via check to your mailing address.
After that, you can select to have a direct bank account transfer to your Paypal cash account, a virtual prepaid Visa gift card, or continue to get a check.
You can also use their point system to cash out with an Amazon gift card or browse their virtual store for items like a Google Home or Keurig coffee maker.
Make Money with Pinecone Research sweepstakes
In addition to getting paid for each survey, you receive an entry into a Pinecone Research’s quarterly sweepstakes. The sweepstakes are held in conjunction with other survey companies, like Harris Poll Online, and allow panelists for either site to enter to win cash rewards.
Pros and Cons
Okay, so what’s the best part about Pinecone Research?
- Prescreening: You are sent pre-screened surveys so no testing out of surveys and wasting your time. This is a huge benefit of working with Pinecone. You waste no time taking surveys you don’t qualify.
- Great payouts: Each survey pays $3.00, which is pretty high for most survey sites. What makes it even more attractive is that you are guaranteed to receive it if you complete the survey.
- Low payout threshold: You can get a payout at only $3.00, so no need to wait and no unattainable payout threshold.
Honestly, Pinecone Research doesn’t have a ton of flaws, besides how exclusive they are. That in mind, one could argue these issues are part of what makes them great to work with.
- Very exclusive survey site: It can be very hard to get selected to join as it is based on the specific demographics they need at the time. When this happens you’ll have to wait and re-apply in the future. That means some months you’ll get many surveys, and some you’ll get none.
- They expect you to stay engaged: They value having a highly engaged user base. That means you can get booted from Pinecone Research if you don’t complete the first survey they send you.
- Will drop members: A big part of their success is driven by having a diversity of opinions available to them. As a result, they re-evaluate their membership panel demographics and will drop people sometimes if they no longer need you.
Pinecone Research tips
- Sign up early and often. If you don’t get selected at first, keep trying to sign up for Pinecone Research every two months and hopefully, they will let you in.
- Take the surveys they send you. It is possible to stay a member in good standing for years on end but you have to regularly take the surveys they send. Don’t worry, they are short and sweet with product and household questions.
- Cash-out as soon as you can. Transfer your earnings to your Paypal account as soon as you get them. That way, you won’t lose access to your account if you get locked out.
Wrapping up our review
If you found this Pinecone Research review helpful, check out some of our other unbiased reviews of reward and survey platforms. Our goal is to help you make the most out of your time online while adding a few dollars to your pocket.