There are numerous ways you can make money on the side with little effort. One option is to get paid to search the web from your phone or computer.
You can earn cash while getting search results similar to what you’d receive with Google.
Better yet, many platforms offer additional ways to make money when you’re not searching for an answer to a question or researching a potential purchase.
Top Companies That Pay You to Browse the Internet
There are several websites that you can use to earn some extra cash while finding the information you need. Here are some of the best options.
Swagbucks is one of the most popular rewards programs since there are several easy ways to make money.
The platform has a web search engine and mobile app. You can also download a browser extension to search from any website.
It’s possible to earn up to 1,000 bonus points ($10) for search queries. However, not every web search earns points, so you may need to perform several before you randomly win points.
Another way the app lets you make money by searching the internet is by finding Collector’s Bills. These images will appear on the results page for random searches.
Clicking the bill deposits extra points into your rewards balance.
Other ways you can earn money include:
- Completing surveys
- Using their online shopping portal
- Scanning receipts
- Redeeming coupons
- Watching sponsored videos
- Playing games online
You can even get $3 if you refer a friend.
The number of options to earn money makes the platform one of the best micro task sites on the internet.
You can start redeeming your points for Amazon gift cards with a $1 balance (140 points). Other gift card rewards require a minimum $3 balance (300 points), while PayPal awards start at $5 (500 points).
The platform also lets new members earn a $10 signup bonus.
Read our detailed guide about earning money on Swagbucks to learn more.
Trustpilot score: 4.3 out of 5
Get $10 when you sign up now!
Earn free gift cards and cash rewards taking surveys, shopping and more.
InboxDollars pays users to ditch traditional search engines and use theirs instead.
For every four searches you complete, you can play a digital scratch game and win rewards. The top earnings for the game are $10, $25, or $100.
Typically, you can earn anywhere from a few cents up to $0.25 per search.
Setting the InboxDollars search feature as the homepage on your computer is the best way to remember to use it. You can also use the mobile app.
Other ways to make extra money include:
- Testing new products
- Downloading coupons
- Watching sponsored videos
- Reading sponsored emails
- Shopping online
- Answering surveys
You can redeem earnings once you amass $30, and InboxDollars pays you $5 to start.
Redemption options include paper checks, PayPal cash, and gift cards.
Trustpilot score: 4.2 out of 5
3. Nielsen Computer and Mobile Panel
The Nielsen Computer and Mobile Panel is an excellent option if you want to continue using your favorite search engine. For many people, that’s Google.
Most platforms require you to switch to a smaller search engine to earn money by searching the internet.
You can earn up to $50 per year by installing the app on your mobile devices. If you install the platform on your computer, you gain entries for the monthly cash sweepstakes to win up to $10,000 instead.
Your payment options are gift cards and PayPal.
While you can effortlessly earn cash online, the platform tracks which websites you visit and the general ways you use your device.
The good news is that the app doesn’t collect sensitive information like your usernames and passwords.
This app is also one of the best ways to get paid to watch ads on your phone.
Trustpilot score: 3.7 out of 5
Another app that pays you to use the internet without changing your search habits is MobileExpression. You can install the app on your Android or iOS mobile device.
Whether you download the MobileExpression iOS or MobileExpression Android app, you can earn weekly credits that you can exchange for gift cards.
The number of weekly credits you earn depends on how frequently you use your device.
It’s possible to earn a $5 Amazon gift card after your first week of using the app and sharing your mobile device activity.
To protect your privacy, this app won’t record sensitive information like your contact list, text messages, or phone calls.
Trustpilot score: 2.7 out of 5 (due to relative low payouts)
KashKick lets you make money searching the internet and completing other online tasks.
You can also complete these paid activities:
- Watch videos
- Shop online
- Download apps
- Play games
- Online surveys
The best reason to use this site can be to answer surveys for money to quickly reach the minimum $10 payout threshold for PayPal rewards.
Unfortunately, this platform doesn’t offer gift card rewards. You must have a PayPal account.
Trustpilot score: 3.8 out of 5
InstaGC is one of the top micro task sites as it has $1 payout minimums for many gift cards.
The ways you can make money include:
- Searching the web
- Watching videos
- Shopping online
- Online surveys
You earn points for each activity, and 100 points equals $1.
The redemption minimum is lower than most paid online surveys.
This platform can be a great option if you want a gift card to your favorite retail store or restaurant. There are more than 300 options, but PayPal or prepaid cash cards are not a payment option.
You can get a signup bonus of ten points worth $0.10 when you join.
Trustpilot score: 3.5 out of 5
FusionCash is another excellent option to get paid to search the web. You can earn a few rewards for each query.
Unfortunately, this site doesn’t have a mobile app. However, the platform is mobile-friendly in your phone or tablet browser.
Additional ways to make money include:
- Taking surveys
- Watching sponsored videos
- Using their cash-back shopping portal
- Downloading mobile apps and games
- Posting in the online forum
FusionCash offers a $5 bonus when you sign up and complete your profile.
Payments process via PayPal, check, or direct deposit. The minimum balance required to cash out is $25.
Trustpilot score: 3.0 out of 5
Qmee is one of the best survey sites as there isn’t a redemption minimum for PayPal payments. The site will also pay you to search the internet and complete shopping offers.
All you have to do is add the browser extension or install the mobile app.
Brands pay to appear in Qmee’s search results. You do not need to make a purchase from these sponsored results to earn money.
Each time you search, you’ll earn points you can redeem for cash or gift cards.
The other activities, such as completing surveys, earn rewards points as well.
Trustpilot score: 4.4 out of 5
9. Microsoft Rewards (Bing Rewards)
Microsoft Rewards (formerly Bing Rewards) allows people to get paid for internet searches.
It’s free to use and gives you points for searching on Bing.com.
The easiest way to earn points is by using the Microsoft Edge web browser and connecting your Microsoft account. Edge users can also earn more points per day than other Microsoft Rewards members.
You can use Microsoft’s digital personal assistant Cortana to search with Bing, which makes it easier to earn.
You can also install the Bing browser extension for a non-Microsoft browser or install the Bing app on your mobile device.
Some of the other ways to earn Microsoft points include:
- Daily trivia games
- Shopping on the Microsoft Store
- Xbox purchases
Each web search can earn five points. Online shopping offers earn more points but require a purchase.
The redemption minimum for Microsoft Store and Xbox Rewards is $1.25 (1,700 points). Gift cards for retailers like Target and Walmart have a minimum $5 balance (5,250 points).
Other redemption options include sweepstakes and charity donations. Cash awards are not a payment option.
*Related: Want to donate plasma but don’t know how to start? Read our guide on how to donate plasma for money to learn the requirements and how much you can earn each month.*
Points will expire if there is no earning activity in 18 months. This rewards program is best if you redeem points for Microsoft and Xbox purchases as the gift card selection is rather limited.
Trustpilot score: N/A
How to Increase Earnings
While the payouts aren’t always the best, there are ways to increase your earnings. Here are a few of the top ways to make more money from this side hustle.
Use Multiple Companies
Joining several platforms can increase your earning potential. Many apps have a daily limit for the number of web searches that can earn rewards points.
In addition to using several programs if you perform frequent web searches, you can also download an app like Nielsen Computer and Mobile Panel to earn extra cash as you browse the web.
Don’t Use Google as Your Primary Search Engine
Most rewards sites only let you earn money searching online if you use their search engine or you set your default search engine as a Google alternative.
For example, you may need to use Bing instead. The smaller search engines partner with rewards programs to increase their usage.
While your results may differ slightly from what Google provides, you earn rewards and can find similar page suggestions.
Search for Questions You Have
Many rewards search engines let you earn bonus points on multiple search queries each day.
Researching your random questions throughout the day lets you get paid for searching the web and automatically earn points.
If you want to get paid to search the web, there are plenty of available options. While Google is the most well-known search engine, various alternatives provide similar results.
Since you’re searching online anyway, it makes sense to use some of these options to get some extra cash.
You may not get rich, but the extra money or gift card rewards can diversify your income, help pay a bill, or contribute to savings.
What’s one mindless way you make money online?