We all need extra cash from time to time and one great option for doing this is by joining paid focus groups. But with so many sites out there offering these kinds of opportunities, it can help to know what you’re getting when you sign up for one.
That’s why my Apex Focus Group review will show you the details on whether this company really offers a legit way for you to make money.
After all, Apex Focus Group is one of the more common names you hear about in this field. But with all of us so short on time, you don’t want to waste money on something where you’re not actually going to get paid.
Instead, it’s best to focus your efforts on those paid focus groups that pay you the best and have the most opportunities. But is this one of them?
How does Apex Focus Group work? And does it pay well? Keep reading to find out.
Top pick for focus groups: Spoiler alert…my top pick for sites offering paid focus groups is easily Survey Junkie.
This is because it pays up to $150 an hour just for you to answer a few questions – which is basically the easiest money you’ll ever get.
And Respondent is a solid runner up. It actually pays more, with rates of up to $250 an hour, although they do sometimes have more stringent requirements to qualify. Definitely worth signing up for as well though to see what’s on offer!
What is Apex Focus Group?
Apex Focus Group provides access to focus groups run by companies undertaking market research. The company also provides people with information on available clinical trials and survey panels in which they can also be paid for participating.
This means that it’s essentially a middleman between those looking to participate in these groups and those firms looking for consumer information.
Of course, there are many focus group websites out and about on the internet, but Apex Focus Group dangles a seemingly high-paying carrot that is quite tempting to chase.
Like many other websites of its kind, it will put you through the wringer of personal questions in order to test your compatibility with current studies.
Online and in-person options give participants a wide range of studies to choose from in product areas like clothing, food and drinks, and pet products. These all sound pretty impressive – after all, who wouldn’t want to get paid for trying the latest drink on the market – but is it a scam?
Is Apex Focus Group legit?
Apex Focus Group is a legit, but not necessarily worthwhile, means of making money. While some do make money with them, there are also plenty of complaints, many of which are focused on the fact that you perhaps can’t make as much as you may hope.
This is a relatively new site, so it’s not accredited by the Better Business Bureau yet, meaning there isn’t any Apex Focus Group BBB page that could shed some light on any other juicy details.
The reviews on Glassdoor are confusingly opposite, though. While the average satisfaction rating is about 2.9 out of 5, there’s an almost even split of euphorically happy, well-paid participants and angry, embittered participants who swear by Apex Focus Group’s lead generation and spam being their source of income. Several reviewers on Glassdoor even detail issues they had in receiving payments for completed studies.
While the sheer number of websites attesting to complaints about email spam is concerning, there aren’t a lot of other blatant red flags for Apex Focus Group.
This includes, surprisingly, that there aren’t any comments about whether or not Apex Focus Group is legit on Reddit. Instead, all the comments about Apex Focus Group on Reddit are asking other people if they know whether or not Apex Focus Group is a scam – with no one, seemingly, able to reply definitively.
It definitely seems that Apex Focus Group is real, if that’s your concern. But even with that aside, if you’re worried about them using your data, there are focus group options on its “Focus Groups” page that you don’t have to join Apex to participate in.
Right now, it’s best to be careful. While it may not be a scam, it may also not be worth it. This means that while it may be worth joining them, it’s also a good idea to sign up for other sites that may offer better opportunities where you’re potentially more likely to earn money.
Apex Focus Group alternatives
If you’re feeling unsure about whether Apex Focus Group is actually legit, there are a few other options to consider that offer focus groups as a side hustle.
While Survey Junkie gets its name from the surveys they offer, focus groups are also available for product testing in-person and over the phone. And the best part is, you can earn up to $150 an hour for the focus groups offered on this site.
Signup for surveys and focus groups is easy. Simply sign-up for the Survey Junkie website and fill out your profile to get opportunities sent to your email inbox. Focus group opportunities are much more limited, though, so it’s a good idea to keep your eyes on the website so you don’t miss the opportunity.
Targeting a different niche of survey takers, Respondent offers research surveys to professionals in different fields.
Basically, if you’re a professional in software development, marketing, business ownership, sales and support, and a few executive options, you can participate in market research studies that fit your profile and get paid through Paypal automatically.
And while it can be slightly harder to qualify for Respondent’s focus groups and surveys, it’s definitely worth trying given that you can earn up to $250 an hour with these focus groups.
User Interviews is smaller than the two previous options, but does still have legit opportunities. While normal, everyday consumers can participate in studies, there is also a niche for professionals.
After creating a profile, you fill out some demographic information and get paired with relevant studies. For one to three-hour focus groups, the promised pay ranges from $40 to more than $200 for a day’s work.
While more geographically limited, Fieldwork offers comparable pay to User Interviews. After signup, you can either join focus groups in locations near you or join the national database which will give you online access to studies and surveys.
Fieldwork, though more selective, does have a more professional air. Once you’ve been flagged for a study, someone will either call or email you to confirm your compatibility. This more person-focused approach might save some frustration.
Mindswarms’ platform is unique because it requires a video interview for the studies you’re selected for. Because of this aspect, a good smartphone or webcam is a must-have to participate.
Though the video part may be a hurdle for some, the pay is a bit more guaranteed than with a few other websites on our list.
When you’re paired with a study, you can get $10 per question answered with up to seven questions per study, and it’s automatically sent to your PayPal account within 24 hours. This makes it a great way to get free PayPal money instantly (well, as instant as it gets).
How does Apex Focus Group work?
The website for Apex Focus Group lists several different means of income: focus groups, clinical trials, and paid survey panels.
Under their focus group search, they offer a variety of products to test based on your location in the US. Each listing shows a payout and the qualifications for participating. Most focus groups offer online meetings with a few requirements such as internet access, ownership of a smartphone or laptop with a webcam, and a high school diploma or its equivalent.
Signing up for the website requires you to list such things as your brand of smartphone, whether you have children, your employment status, education level, and general biographical information. These personal questions will make it easier for companies to sift through applicants based on their products’ topic areas.
Some topic areas included on the website are:
- Child related
- Cell phones
These topic groups revolve around products in each of these domains.
How does Apex Focus Group pay?
Opportunities through Apex Focus Group are paid either by cash, gift cards or via PayPal. The payment method depends on which activity you have done to earn the money. For example, payment for clinical trials is usually in cash whereas focus groups generally pay via PayPal.
On the other hand, if you complete a paid survey through Apex Focus Group, you’ll likely get paid either by PayPal or, occasionally with gift cards.
Keep in mind though that Apex Focus Group is, in essence, a middleman for other survey sites. That is, it shows you paid survey opportunities on other sites, allowing you to then click through and sign up for whichever one you’re interested in.
This means that it’s never Apex Focus Group paying you but the final company you do the relevant activity with.
Does Apex Focus Group pay well?
Apex Focus Group certainly promotes itself as having some very good pay options. For instance, the sign-up page boasts payment of up to $750 a week with smaller jobs clocking in at $35-$75 per one-hour session and $350-$750 for multi-session studies.
A review on Glassdoor even testified to a $1,200 check for Covid research.
If you elect to join a focus group straight through the company without joining Apex’s website, there is a range of compensation options, most letting you earn well over $100.
Apex Focus Group reviews
Back on Glassdoor, there are a few useful reviews that may help you get a little more confidence in regards to Apex. Here are a few of them:
- Headline: Great experience overall
- Pros: “I have participated in a few well paying market research studies and focus groups through them, including the latest one on cellphone brands. They provide access to quality panel opportunities as well as great service to their clients.“
- Cons: “I don’t qualify for every study that they recommend for me . Success rate is maybe around 20%-30%.“
- Headline: Had a lot of fun sharing my thoughts on interesting topics.
- Pros: “I haven’t done a lot of the studies I was given, but I do take the screening quiz when I get the chance. Quite often I’m outside the demographic they are looking for. Participated in a few surveys and phone reviews, and was paid promptly on all those occasions. Good to work with. Anyone I have talked with by phone has been knowledgeable and friendly. Just positive thoughts!”
- Cons: “Sometimes there’s a group meeting but there isn’t enough lead time to fit it into my calendar. Two days is not enough time!”
- Headline: I got picked to join a focus group on tax software
- Pros: “I was paid via PayPal once I finished all the required Zoom calls and journaling. $250 wasn’t too bad for the amount of time it took. This is a fun and awesome way to make money! Another friend which I recommended this company to was chosen for a clinical study. Overall, I had a great experience with them.”
- Cons: “I had to apply to 7 or 8 studies before being selected for this one.”
As with anything, I’d expect more reviews – both good and bad – to appear as their user base also grows, noting that Apex’s website currently boasts only having around 800 active users.
(Perhaps the early and plentiful email spam rage will set them back for good…)
Apex Focus Group complaints
At the moment, reviews on Apex Focus Group are a bit few and far between – another reason to be wary. However, here are a few of my favorites from Glassdoor and around the internet.
Keep in mind they aren’t necessarily representative of the overall feeling that everyone seems to have for this company – but they’re definitely representative of how some (angry) people feel.
- Headline: This is a Scam.
- “This is a lead generation company who sells your data or attempts to get you to enroll in their education or other backend/affiliate services. They may conduct the odd focus group but I repeat THEY ARE A LEAD GENERATION COMPANY. This means your data will be shared with their partners so they can sell you things, not enroll you in a clinical trial.”
- Headline: Scam
- “They are scamming people out of money. I have 4 kids and these people scammed me. I want my money back. I wish this site had it where I can post the pictures and email. To back up my story.”
- Headline: Scam
- Pros: “Very good intro to make you think it’s real.”
- Cons: “They will spam your inbox.”
- Headline: This is a complete joke they do not pay you. You get points for surveys, which ‘bug’ just before completion, so no point
- Pros: “There are no pros to this job advertisement because it is not a job.”
- Cons: “Sounds too good to be true because it is too good to be true.”
(I’m honestly not sure if this person is actually talking about Apex Focus Group, although they seem to think that they are, as it doesn’t seem from anywhere else that they do a point-based survey system.)
Complaints are plentiful, but there are a few useful reviews out there that, if legitimate, may be proof enough that you can trust Apex Focus Group and make a few dollars.
Is Apex Focus Group a scam?
There’s good reason to be tentative about Apex Focus Group. Overall, though, Apex Focus Group is not a scam, but whether it’s worth the time and effort is still up for debate.
Complaints can be found on many middle-of-internet-nowhere scam reporting websites all saying the same things:
- Email spam is out of control
- Pay is hard or impossible to receive
- Opportunities are too few and far between
- Administration and tech support staff are hard to get in touch with
Yet, there are still reviews that give the impression of legitimacy. Some positives include:
- When opportunities are found, the pay is good
- Interesting topics with a lot of good options for studies
- Covid studies were useful and well-paying
- Companies conducting studies were friendly to speak with
Final thoughts based on my Apex Focus Group review
In general, it’s a little difficult to find the pulse on Apex Focus Group. Are they maligned unfairly by users because of common business practices and fewer opportunities than expected? Or, are the complaints true and representative of an average user’s experience?
I think, to be fair, we can say it’s both.
What you can see for sure is that survey and study opportunities on Apex Focus Group are plentiful but selective. You may not get selected for participation in a long time, if ever.
However, if you are lucky enough to get selected, the people you interact with will be great, the studies will be interesting, and the pay will be good (perhaps better than its competitors).
Overall, I think most users would say, “Don’t put in the effort for little if no reward,” but if you’re patient, I think you’re safe to give it a shot and wait for opportunities to come to you. I mean, with Apex Focus Group being a work from home job (or at least some extra cash on the side), there are definitely worse ones out there.
Alternatively, you may want to focus on more legit focus group sites where you know you’ll actually get paid – which some say will happen with Apex Focus Group, while others aren’t quite as positive.