30 Best Paid Online Focus Groups (Earn $500/hr +)

By Carol Perez •  Updated: 05/07/21 •  8 min read

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

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Want to make some good money by sharing your opinions on products and services?! (I swear I’m not talking about surveys).

I’m talking about focus groups! And not just any kind of focus group, but online focus groups that you can participate in from the comfort of your own home!

Focus groups let companies and researchers get valuable information that they can use to improve their products and services, and when you participate you can get paid!

Just think about how awesome it would be to get some cash like this:

From just trying a product for half an hour and sharing your opinion!

If any of this sounds interesting to you, I’ll go through all the details, including how focus groups work, and where you can find focus groups yourself.

What are focus groups?

A focus group is a group of people brought together by researchers or businesses to give their opinion on a product or service.

If you’re participating in a focus group, you may just be asked questions about a certain topic, or you may get to try out a product or service (for free!) and then asked about your opinion.

The people or company conducting the focus group will use the data gathered to make their products and services better. So it’s basically a win-win! You get to try out products and services (and get paid!) and companies get to make their products better! Woo!

How do focus groups work?

No two online focus groups are the same, some focus groups may be pretty simple, you will just set up a time to speak to the people conducting the focus group and then you will be asked questions and after you’re finished being interviewed you will get a payment.

If the focus group you’re participating in involves trying out a product or service, you may have to first take a qualification survey, and then you will either get the product in the mail, or you will get access to the service.

You will be given instructions about how to use the product or service (including how long you should use it, how to use it, what kind of information you need to keep track of, etc), and then you can try the product/service.

After trying out the product for a certain amount of time, you will either be interviewed by the researchers or you will take a survey about your experience and give your feedback that way.

Once all of those steps have been completed, you will get paid!

My Focus Group Experience

Last year I was contacted by Forthright Surveys with a survey opportunity:

One of the online focus groups that I was invited to!


I took the eligibility test, it asked me questions about my skincare routine and makeup routine, and after that, I received an email that I was eligible for the focus group and I would be sent the in-home product.

About a week later I received the products, and I was given instructions to test the product daily for a week and record my feelings about the product. The product took just a few minutes to use each day and all I needed to do was take notes on my phone. At the end of the week, I uploaded my notes, and less than 24 hours later everything as approved and I got the payment in my Forthright account!

I got to withdraw the money immediately to my PayPal account! It was easiest $200+ I’ve ever made and I didn’t even do more than 30+ minutes of work!

Where to Find Online Focus Groups

Okay here’s the goods, a list of legitimate websites where you can find online focus groups!


20|20 is a survey panel and market research panel where you can earn money for testing products.

Earning Potential: You could earn anywhere from $50 – $3500+

Adler Weiner Research

Adler Weiner Research is a nationwide market research company.

Advanced Focus

Advanced Focus is a market research company.

American Consumer Opinion

American Consumer Opinion is a US-based survey panel where you can also find online focus groups.

Apex Focus Group

Apex Focus Group is a market research company.

Brand Institute

Brand Institute is a market research company that helps name products (in the medical field).


Some researchers and companies will post on Craigslist in the “jobs” or “gigs” section. Don’t forget to check other surrounding cities!

Engage Studies

Engage Studies is a research panel targeted to business professionals and healthcare professionals.

Experience Dynamics

Experience Dynamics is a user research company that has field studies, diary studies, usability testing, phone interviews, online surveys, and online focus groups.

Earning Potential: You could earn between $50 – $150 for your participation.


You can occasionally find focus groups in your area by searching local Facebook groups.


Fieldwork is a market research company that specializes in in-person research studies and focus groups (but they also have online focus groups available).


FindFocusGroups is a website that collections different focus group opportunities. There are in-person focus groups and online focus groups on the website.

Focus Pointe Global

(As of 2021, Focus Pointe Global is now Focus Groups by Schlesinger).

FocusGroup.com (Focus Group by Schlesinger)

Focus Group by Schlesinger is a website where you can find online focus groups and other types of market research studies.

Sign Up Requirements: You must be at least 18 years old to create an account.


FocusGroups.org is a market research website that connects researchers and participants.

Earning Potential: You could make $50 – $200 per research study (sometimes even up to $1200+)

Forthright Surveys

Forthright Surveys is one of my personal favorites! They have survey and focus group opportunities.

Google Usability

This is a panel that comes right from Google! If you’d like to help make Google products and services better, you can sign up for Google Usability! In exchange you can get gift cards for participating.


GreenBook is a directory of different market research companies and focus group facilities.

Inspired Opinions

(As of 2021, Inspired Opinions is now Focus Group by Schlesinger)

Ipsos i-Say

Ipsos i-Say is a survey panel that also has online focus group opportunities.

You can earn PayPal cash, different giftcards, and merchandise.


Mindswarms conducts mobile video surveys and research studies. They work with brands like Nike, Verizon, and Google!

Nichols Research

Nichols Research is a market research company.


PingPong is an online market research company.

Earning Potential: You could earn anywhere from $10 – $100+

Plaza Research

Plaza Research is a research network that has been around since 1982.

Probe Market Research

Probe Market Research is a US-based market research company.


Quirks is a website that has a directory of market research companies.

Recruit and Field

Recruit and Field helps connect researchers with participants worldwide.


Respondent.io is a website that helps connect researchers with “responders”, think of it as a marketplace for online focus groups.

Most of the online focus groups that are found on Respondent.io are conducted as 1-on-1 interviews between researchers and responders (but there are other types of focus groups, too).

Earning Potential: You could earn anywhere from $50 – $700+ depending on the which market research you’re a part of.

Sign Up Requirements: You must be at least 18 years old to sign up on Respondent.io (they’re open worldwide).

SIS International

SIS International is a US-based consumer market research company.

Springboard America

Springboard America is a US-based survey panel that has focus group and survey opportunities.

Survey Feeds

Survey Feeds is a website that aggregates different research study and focus group opportunities.

They list the requirements for the studies, the pay, and where you can apply for the study (or find more information).

Survey Junkie

I know it has “survey” in the name, but Survey Junkie doesn’t just have surveys that you can complete. They also have opportunities to participate in online focus groups, product testing opportunities, and app testing opportunities!

Earning Potential: You could earn anywhere from $50 – $300+ for participating in different online focus groups and product testing opportunities.

Sign Up Requirements: You must be at least 18, and live in the US, Canada, UK, or Australia to create an account on Survey Junkie.

Survey Squad

Survey Squad is a survey panel that was created by Focus Forward. They occasionally have online focus groups available!

You can get $2.50 just for filling out your profile.

User Interviews

User Interviews is similar to Respondent.io, it connects researchers to participants.

User Interviews not only has online focus groups, but there are also surveys, online interviews, and online diary studies.

Earning Potential: Depending on the length, you could earn between $40 – $200+


WatchLab is a market research company that has in-person and online focus groups available.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for a side hustle you can do from home that pays good money, try out focus groups! There are tons of online focus groups that you can do from your house!

The only downside is that these opportunities aren’t always available!

FAQs About Online Focus Groups

Are paid focus groups legitimate?

Paid focus groups are legitimate. There are dozens of companies that conduct legitimate offline and online focus groups that pay real money.

How much do you get paid to be in a focus group?

How much you get paid to be in a focus group depends on what kind of work is involved and how long the focus group lasts. You could earn up to $500/hr for your participation.

Carol Perez

Carol Perez has been dabbling in all sorts of side hustles and online money-making projects for over a decade now. From setting up her own e-commerce store to freelancing gigs, she's pretty much tried it all.