We’ve all been minding our own business online when an advertisement claiming to be sending boxes full of high-end “Free Samples” catches our eye. If you’ve clicked on one of these ads, you may have seen that there is almost always a catch, and that they ask for loads of personal information, or force you to click through to junky websites. These ads are NOT the place to look for freebies online. There are several companies, though, who will send free products in exchange for your honest opinion and a post or two on social media. Many of these companies use Word of Mouth Marketing, which is a marketing strategy which aims to get people talking about a product or service. You do not need to be an influencer with 1000s of followers to benefit from these websites, either!
I wish I would have kept a list when I started seeking out these legitimate opportunities years ago. Some of the most expensive items I’ve received for free over the years include a Soda Stream, booze, and an epilator (OUCH). There are way too many smaller items to list or remember. In the last couple of months I’ve received 3 shades of Revlon’s newest lip gloss, Kopari natural deodorant, a punny calendar, Downy Unstopables, ketchup, razors, mayo, cough drops, microwave ready rice, and several sample-sized products. These aren’t all things I necessarily NEEDED, but the value of the items I’ve received in the last two months alone nears $100, and I won’t need to buy deodorant for a while!
Before I get to some of my favorite companies I use to receive free products, there are a few things worth noting.
-The products are free, but you’re often asked to share your opinion in return for receiving them. This might be through a survey after you receive the product, or via a post on social media where you share your thoughts. If you don’t fulfill these requirements, your account will be flagged and you are much less likely to receive offers in the future.
-Patience is KEY! You often have to “qualify” for free products based on information you’ve provided about yourself. For example, if your profile indicates you don’t have kids, you won’t get asked to be in the diaper sampling. If you’re a female, you won’t get offers for after shave. This can be discouraging sometimes, since you might complete surveys for weeks before qualifying.
-You cannot sell the products you receive (usually). Many of the companies below ask you to agree not to sell the items you receive for free. This is against terms of service and if caught, your account will be flagged or banned.
-Be detailed and original with your feedback. Companies want to know who you told about the products, that person’s reaction, and what you really did like or dislike about what you’ve tried. Good feedback will often increase your chances of getting more freebies.
-Prepare for emails! Unless you unsubscribe and regularly check these sites on your own, you’ll be receiving emails when new surveys or product sampling opportunities are available.
-If you’re ever asked to enter credit card information–STOP!!! None of the sites below have EVER asked for my financial information, but scammers do exist, so beware when exploring companies on your own.
Bzzagent: Bzzagent has been a long time favorite of mine. They very recently redesigned their website and how things work, so I’m still getting used to it and deciding if they’re still a favorite. I recently received a bunch of goodies for flu season from a bzzagent campaign sponsored by Walgreens, and have received countless freebies from them in the past including shampoo & conditioners, coupons for free new food items, spices, razors, and more! For Bzzagent, you need to connect your social media accounts so they can verify your posts. Connect your accounts here.
Pinch.Me Samples:This is one sample site that I’ve found to be legit and spam-free. Samples are released one time each month. You need to log on to the website at the date and time posted each month to select samples you qualify for. If you wait too long, samples may all be claimed, so it is important to set an alarm on your phone (or however you’ll remember) to log on and select them. They also ask for a short survey to be completed before and after sampling, based on what products you qualified for. Click here to get started before this month’s sign up date!
Influenster: Influenster has been moving up in my list of faves lately! I used to qualify frequently for campaigns in college, and now I’m starting to qualify more regularly again. This is where I recently received my Loreal Matte Lip Stains and Kopari Natural Deodorant. Here’s an old Instagram post where I received a whole box of goodies! The more social accounts you connect, the higher your score becomes. Influenster sends an email when you’re likely to qualify for a campaign. Then, a survey needs to be filled out to verify qualification and shipping address. Click here to get started!
Crowdtap:I’ve been with Crowdtap since what seems like their beginning! It has changed a lot over the years, but it is still a favorite of mine. Not only can you qualify for campaigns for free products, but answering quick multiple choice or short answer opinion questions allows you to cumulate points which can be turned in for gift cards. By logging on a couple times a week to complete active questions, I’ve earned many $5 Amazon gift cards which always come in handy! Some of the products I’ve received from Crowdtap include active leggings, hair spray and mousse, razors, shampoo & conditioner, makeup, cleaning products, and food products.
Smiley.360:Smiley.360 is similar to Crowdtap and Influenster, in that you complete surveys to become eligible for certain campaigns. From Smiley.360 I have received shaving lotion, new candy products, soup, and an acne system. To continue to qualify for products, providing feedback in multiple ways (surveys, reviews, social media shares) is required.
VeryDice: VeryDice is a bit different, since YOU get to choose what products you get for free. VeryDice makes money through advertisements, so each day when you “spin” to see how many dice rolls you get, you watch a short ad. Simply roll the virtual dice to accumulate points and save up until you have something you’d like to purchase from Amazon’s catalog. This is where I got my calendar at the end of the year. I’ve also used points in the past to purchase dish soap and other household supplies. It can take a while to accumulate enough points to get anything good, but I’m happy to watch a short advertisement each day to turn in my points for something every few months. You can do other offers to earn more rolls, but I’ve never bothered with that. Use my Friend Code 1103038 when you sign up to start with some extra rolls! Pro Tip: Spin daily and save up your rolls until you have about 100. Then, do all your dice rolls at once so you’re more likely to roll every set of doubles for the 300 point jackpot!
-Ripple Street: Formerly House Party, Ripple Street is actually really awesome. The only reason they didn’t make my “Favorites” is due to their strict requirements, and the work required to put in before you even get selected to increase your chances. If you’re selected for a campaign here, you’re required to invite a group of people to your “party” sponsored by the company. This is how I got my Soda Stream a couple of years ago. They sent branded cups, balloons, stickers, and other branded treats along with the Soda Stream and flavors, and I was required to host a party within a certain time frame, and post pictures to the website proving I did so. In college, it was easy to get 12 people together for a party, but now it isn’t as ideal for me. Ripple Street also has some sampling opportunities that do not require a party, so it is worth signing up if you’re not overwhelmed with the options by now 🙂
-Sample Source: I’ve only received a few sample boxes, but it isn’t spammy or scammy.
-Other Apps to Make & Save Money: Not free products, but great apps to check out if you’re looking to save or make some extra money! I won $4000 using Givling (Invite code LS503586) in July of 2018!
Comment below and tell me which sites you’ll try out, or if you qualify for any fun products!