man doing online surveys on his laptop

Paid surveys are a great way to earn a couple of extra bucks. Taking surveys won’t make you rich, but it’s probably the easiest way to collect some pocket money. The only trick is to choose survey sites wisely. Some of them will not deliver on their promises and you might end up with a lot of frustration and a little bit or no money. If you’ve come across Scarborough Surveys, and you wonder if they are a good opportunity or not, you’re in the right place. I’ve done a thorough examination of this site and the company, and this is what I’ve found out. 

Is Scarborough Surveys Legit?

The short answer is yes. Scarborough Surveys is owned and operated by Nielsen Scarborough, which is a branch of Nielsen Holdings Plc., a large information and data company that operates in more than 100 countries worldwide. It is based in New York, NY, and has its offices in Sarasota, Florida and San Antonio, Texas as well. Furthermore, it is accredited by the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and has an A+ rating. The company was founded in 1923 and it has around 44,000 employees worldwide. 

They conduct over 200,000 surveys per year in more than 120 locations across the USA. It’s one of the leading market research companies in the US.

It’s pretty obvious that the company is legit and reputable. So, we know that it’s a good company, but we don’t know if it is a good opportunity for survey takers like you or me.

Scarborough homepage preview

How Does Scarborough Surveys Work

As soon as we take a closer look, we hit the first obstacle. The panel is exclusive and not everyone can join. Actually, it is not a panel at all. They randomly select households to send survey invitations. So, the only way to participate in their research is through their invitation. If you’re the ‘chosen one’, they will contact you by phone or mail. You can accept or decline their offer, but there’s nothing you can do to increase your chances of being invited. The bottom line is that you can’t decide to become a participant. All you can do is sit and wait for the invitation. If you want to join, that is. 

If you get lucky and get the invitation, there are several different types of surveys for you. Usually, it starts with Consumer Survey in paper form. You should complete it as soon as possible for they are accepting completed surveys for no more than a couple of weeks. These surveys aren’t too long and they will ask you about your favorite TV shows, newspaper, radio programs or your shopping, traveling, and entertainment preferences.

Survey e-Booklet is basically the same as the consumer survey, but it’s in digital form.

Phone surveys and TV Diary are the other two assignments that usually follow. Also, occasionally you might get a new product to test. So, this is not a typical survey site. They actually don’t need a website at all. 

 Last but not least, for each assignment you will receive between $1 and $10 reward. They pay pretty quickly via paid check. 

Pros of This Panel

  • No sign-up procedure. While signing up is a one-time assignment, it can be bothersome. With Scarborough Surveys, you don’t have to fill in anything. Accepting the invitation is all it takes.
  • Quick payout. Usually, it takes up to seven days to receive your reward. 
  • No payout threshold. You don’t have to wait forever to accumulate enough points or money to collect your reward. Scarborough Surveys will pay you for each and every completed survey almost immediately.
  • Decent rewards. There are no different rewards, actually. They will pay anyway between $1 and $10 per completed assignment. It’s a pretty big range, but even $1 is a decent reward for a single survey.
  • They offer several different activities. Taking survey after survey after survey can become boring. Scarborough Surveys offers a couple of different survey types, product testing studies, and TV diaries.

Cons of This Panel

  • You can’t choose to join. The only way you can join the studies is to get invited. Exclusive survey panels are usually more lucrative, but it’s not really fun if you can’t do anything to sign up. 
  • Rare opportunities. You may think that you will be invited more often since you’re the lucky one to get an invitation. But, it’s not the case. It is difficult to assess the average number of opportunities. However, it is not very likely that you’ll get more than one invitation a month.
  • Signing out can be a hassle. While it’s so easy to join once you get an invitation, it is not so easy to quit. By accepting the invitation, you also agree to allow Scarborough Surveys to call or contact you about future surveys or research. The interviewers can’t take you off the list. There are a specific phone number and email to request removal from their call list. The process includes verification and it can take some time. Actually, all the complaints I could find were about unwanted phone calls and a never-ending process of removing your name from the call list.


Scarborough Surveys is not a typical survey panel, but it has some qualities to attract survey takers. They pay well and quickly, and these are two out of several most important things when it comes to paid surveys. However, if you don’t have too many opportunities, you can’t make any decent amount of money. Unorthodox paper and phone surveys aren’t particularly appealing, though. Some people really dislike unexpected phone calls as well. 

So, this company has some advantages and disadvantages. It is undeniably a legitimate and reliable company. You won’t waste your time and every survey will count. There are no bothering pre-qualifying questions. But, the earning potential is not so great either. Ultimately, it’s up to you to make a decision. If you get invited, that is. Anyway, you have all the facts now. 

Finally, I always recommend joining at least a couple of survey sites to make the best of it. You can look for some other legit opportunities reviewed on our site and join a few of them to supplement your income further.