How to have a side hustle with User Testing
Have you ever needed a little extra cash? Ever wondered if a side hustle was for you? Maybe you’ve never even heard of a side hustle.
“A side hustle is a job that you can work on top of your full-time job. It is a flexible second job that brings in money, but it is also typically something that you are passionate about, that you don’t get to pursue in your main job” Emma Newcombe on The Balance Careers
The passion part may work out for some people, but when I became a stay at home mom bringing in a little extra spending money became a priority. Ever extra dollar helps! So, I started researching what was out there that didn’t require a big investment of time or resources; and didn’t require me to learn a bunch of new skills before earning.
Let me be honest that having a low entry threshold narrows down the side hustle gig opportunities. And needing one that I could fit into nap time narrowed it down even more. But, if you have more time, money, and energy to invest and get started read Emma Newcombe’s entire article. It’s filled with great ideas on how to choose a side hustle that may work for you and be more profitable if that’s what you are looking for.
For now I want to share about User Testing. I’ve found it to be a simple way to earn a few dollars. There is no cost to sign-up, the company is legit, and you can devote as much time as you want – but there is a slight catch so read on.
What is UserTesting
UserTesting is a website where you get paid to test other websites. Developers need real user experience to know how they can improve their site and understand how it works with real users. You get paid to share your opinion as you experience a website completing any assigned tasks while speaking your thoughts aloud. This is a dream come true for someone who has plenty of opinions to share like me! But, how can it be that simple to just log in, use a website, share some opinions, and get paid? Sounds like a scam. That is why I did my research before enrolling as a tester. Your personal information is too important to be given to just anyone. I was pleasantly surprised to find several independent reviews speaking to the legitimacy of UserTesting.com.
“UserTesting is not a scam from what we can tell. There are testimonials and proof of people earning from reliable sources online. However, your demographics determine how many tests you will qualify for so your income will be limited.” Eddy with a Y, Work at Home No Scams
More on the limited income later, that’s part of the slight catch I mentioned.
“They pay you $10 per test which is pretty generous. It also takes less than a minute to know whether you qualify to take a test, unlike survey websites where you can spend 10 minutes answering questions only to realize you don’t qualify to do the survey.” Eddy with a Y, Work at Home No Scams
How to get started with User Testing
It’s easy to get started just head here:
Enter you email address and click apply.
Then you’ll need to complete a sample test. This is where it is a little tricky to be a mom. When you are completing a test, sound quality is critical as they record your opinions spoken aloud. It’s very important to have a quiet room where you won’t be interrupted by the kiddos or a ringing phone. This is definitely the hardest part for me, that’s why completing a test at nap time is ideal.
After you complete your first test you’ll have to wait a few weeks for it to be reviewed and accepted. Once it is accepted you can start looking for more tests to complete. You should also receive helpful notes from a reviewer on how you did with your test.
Here’s the feedback I received from my first test: Thank you for submitting your first test! Remember, an essential part of being a test participant is the ability to speak your thoughts as you complete the tasks. The best participants speak loudly and clearly and keep up a running dialogue, which makes it easy for the viewer to follow their thought process. It helps to read the task out loud before answering it to ensure that you are thorough in your response and have completed what has been asked of you. Ask questions and add comments that help clarify what you’re thinking. The more you explain why you do things and what you are expecting, the more useful your video will be for the customer.
They want you to succeed, so even if your first test or two aren’t exactly what the client is looking for they will usually give you a good rating with notes like this to help you improve and get more tests in the future. The better your rating the more tests will show up in your cue.
How much can you earn
The biggest complaint with UserTesting when you check reviews is the difficulty in qualifying for tests. The requirements are specific to your demographics, geography, etc. But, it is essential to be honest so the tests you qualify for are areas of knowledge or experience you have. If you have no experience in computer programming, testing a computer programming website would result in a failed test and hurt your rating. UserTesting is very upfront that the money you make is not going to replace a full time income. The more screening tests I took, the more I realized this to be true. Qualifying for the paid website test is the most limiting factor of UserTesting.
You aren’t going to make a ton of money, but it’s something you can do when you have a half hour here or there. And it can make enough money for date night or a special lunch out with the girls! I usually find some time while finishing up my coffee to sit and take the screening tests. I do this again for another half hour during nap time. Taking the screening tests is something I can do while I am multi-tasking. I fold laundry while I’m waiting for tests to be available, or I work on other computer tasks and turn the volume on so my computer dings to alert me that a test is available. Spending about an hour of passive time a few days a week taking the screening tests is very doable for me. In this time I would maybe qualify for three or so tests. But, it’s important to note when you qualify for a test you have about 10 minutes to start. You’ll need a quiet spot as it records you speaking your thoughts aloud.
When you enroll it says you can make up to $60 per test, but so far I have not qualified for any of those. The tests I have taken are the short $10 ones. The $60 and $30 tests are more rare and take 30-60 minutes. Most of the tests that you will be taking are the standard tests. These tests have taken me between 10 and 20 minutes. Not too bad for $10, even factoring some time spent taking the screening tests.
Besides financial compensation, I have actually found some websites and website features I never knew existed. One of my first tests was for Sky Scanner. I was then given a scenario to follow: You’ve told us you are considering travel or a holiday this year. Please get yourself into this mind space as if you are ready to book some travel or seeking to find out some information about this trip.
I actually found a great price for the tickets we buy to visit family at Christmas time for $200 cheaper than we paid before. I ended up booking the tickets! Another test was for the White House Black Market website. As one of my favorite stores, I was really glad to learn about a new feature coming to the site and plan to use it once it is available! I consider these finds a win-win for a side hustle.
Is UserTesting a good fit for you
If I can make about $30 in a week, I feel like I can splurge on date night. It’s worth it to spend a half hour here and there to earn a little extra spending cash. I think it is an ideal side hustle for moms, or for anyone who wants to make a few dollars of expendable income.
Be aware that tests go fast. Just because a test is under the available tab doesn’t mean it is actually available. I think this is a flaw in the system. I have taken the screening test and qualified only to have a pop up tell me the test is no longer available. That’s why it’s best to take the screening test as soon as it pops up. In my experience most tests seem to come out in the morning around 8 am, at lunch time around 12, and after 5 in the afternoon. These are good times if you are working full time, so you can fit it in before work or on your lunch hour. As a stay at home mom these are good times for me when we are finishing up breakfast and my daughter has some time to entertain herself or during nap time.
UserTesting is a good fit for you if you want a side hustle to fill some down time. It’s also great if you are good at multitasking and want to make a few extra dollars so you can splurge on something you wouldn’t want to spend the cash on otherwise.
This mommy tried it and you can too!