Can you make money entering competitions online? Yes you can!
Entering competitions was the very first way I ever made money online and at that point, I had little idea about other ways that were possible.
For example, I had no idea that some bloggers actually made af full time living online – let alone a substantial side income of any kind.
The extent of my make “money online knowledge,” pretty much extended to online paid surveys and entering competitions.
I found paid surveys very dull and frustrating, (my favourite now is Swagbucks)…
But entering competitions was more enjoyable – because the possibility of winning a great prize was always there.
How Did I know You Could Really Make Money Online From Competitions?
I had already known for many years that there were people who entered lots of competitions, because my mum used to do it when I was a child.
She won various trips away and other little prizes when I was growing up and I saw the benefit from it, (but couldn’t imagine myself doing it).
Back then though, she’d enter everything by writing slogans and sending off tonnes of postcard entries.
It was very different to now, with so much being online – the odds were far more in your favour back then.
But I remember reading an article about someone who had won some great prizes from entering competitions and decided I should just give it a go.
At the time, I’d not long had my second child, I was home a lot anyway – so, I thought it might be a way to boost our income.
I read up all I could about it and decided I would try and enter 50 competitions a day at first and build up to more if I had time, (via a free competitions listing site I joined).
It took me a whole month of plugging away before I made my first win – but it was a good one!
It was a designer handbag for almost £500 and remember being completely shocked, I couldn’t believe it.
50 competitions a day? 100 a day? How Do You Find Them?
If you think entering 50 a day sounds like a tall order, it would be if you didn’t know where to look.
The best way of finding and entering competitions very easily, is by joining a forum or site where people post them.
My favourite competition forum now is over at money saving expert (UK).
There is a very active forum of compers on there, who post many new competitions every day.
Why I Gave Up Comping – And Why I Started Again:
After several years comping and winning some awesome prizes… I pretty much gave up for around 2 years.
That’s because I wanted to find a more sustainable and long term way to make money online and I just didn’t have the time, (or the drive) to enter competitions anymore.
I’ve only recently returned to it within the last month…. but no where near to the scale that I used to.
Now I’m just treating it as a hobby and if I win something great – it will be a bonus.
The reason why I’ve returned to it is, I just missed the wins that I just wouldn’t or couldn’t buy – –but that are really great to win.
For example, things like chocolate hampers, shopping vouchers, or festival tickets… there are so many things that I wouldn’t necessarily buy, but that I would love to win.
It’s like receiving gifts… you may not go out and buy yourself a case of champagne, but you’d certainly love to receive it.
For example, one of my best wins was £5000 to spend at hotels worldwide – this led to trips to Florida and Spain, but had I not won the prize, I may never have taken those trips.
When you win tickets to the theatre, or concert tickets, it gives you the opportunity again to do something you may not have otherwise.
There are just lots of perks to comping that make it a great hobby.
However, there can be long periods where you may not get anything, so you just have to enjoy the process and possibility.
Top Comping Tips, Facts & Info:
If you want to get started entering competitions, I’ve compiled a list of come information that is useful to know before you begin…
Remember: It’s a numbers game!
Unless you’re entering competitions that take extra effort, (often lower entry) the numbers count.
The more competitions you enter, the greater your chances of winning. It’s that simple.
So, if you’re just entering a few competitions a week and expecting to win – you will be disappointed.
It will probably take some time….
Depending on how many competitions you enter, it’s likely to take a bit of time.
When I first started, it took around a month before I won, but after that I started to win much more regularly.
After my long comping break, I won my first competition after just three days!
If you try and think of it as a hobby, where winning is a bonus – you will be less disappointed.
The great thing is, you just never know when an awesome win is around the corner.
Some wins, could be life changing.
Of course, not everyone will win big, but there are some big prizes out there and they can be life changing.
It’s not about huge cash wins either, what about the chance to go to the Bafta Awards, or win your child a “meet and greet,” with their idol!?
For me, it’s the money-can’t-buy prizes that really make comping a special hobby.
What about the win below…
While you can’t expect to win those kind of amazing prizes, plenty of compers do – people do really win these competitions.
Join A Forum And Work Systematically!
Don’t just randomly search the internet for competitions, there are competition forums online that hold hundreds of competitions and are updated daily.
Every comper is different, but will normally have a method of working through competitions so that they don’t miss important ones.
For example, I tend to start working through all the competitions that are ending today and ending tomorrow first.
The next day, I will check for any new and then go through the ending tomorrow again.
There are then competitions that are on regularly, such as daily or weekly, that you can keep track of.
If you join a forum, you will also be able to keep track of competitions enter, so that you don’t enter more than once.
Open A Separate Email Address….
I used one comping email address over my initial years of comping and eventually I’d be getting 100’s of emails a day from all the newsletters and companies I’d subscribed to.
I also ended up getting lots of unwanted text messages – you have to be so careful what boxes you’re ticking when you’re entering – and it’s easy for your concentration to wane at times.
Now, I personally have a block on my phone so that I cannot be charged for any texts coming in.
I also opened a brand new email account when I started comping again.
You certainly wouldn’t want to start comping with your personal email account!
Alternatively to using your normal mobile, I know a lot of compers use a different phone – such as a cheap pay as you go.
That way, you know if that phone rings – you know it’s competition related!
Do You Really Need That Prize?
I’ll be honest, when you’re going through the competitions, the temptation can be there to just enter every one you see.
However, you can end up with all kinds of random stuff that you never really wanted, nor needed!
I’m much more selective now and think twice before entering.
It’s also worth checking the T&C’s – as often there may be specific details that mean it won’t be worth your while.
For example, a prize may have to be collected from the other side of the country…
…or the concert tickets you’d love to win, may just be for tomorrow.
There are lots of occasions where you will wish you’d read the small print.
Don’t Ignore The Extra Effort Comps!
It’s always said within the comping community, but many people do avoid doing competitions that take a little extra effort.
Whether it’s a little story you need to share about a past experience, or a creative photo competition, if a comp requires extra effort – there will be less entries.
Lower entry = a better chance!
That being said, there are certainly some creative folks winning big within those competitions…
If you have any creative flair at all, it will be worth your while checking out those competitions!
Make Form Filling Easy…
When it comes to entering competitions, a majority of it is filling in forms.
It’s very repetitive and unless you have an auto-form-filling tool, it will take a very long time too.
Personally, I just use the autofill feature on google chrome – but prior to that I used roboform.
Check whether the browser you use has an autofill feature, or google one to download. It will save you a LOT of time.
Create An Email Signature
Check your email settings, you should be able to create an email signature.
If you add your name/address/tel number to your signature, this can make email entries super speedy to do.
Regularly Check Your Spam Folder!
I’ve had the odd comp win end up in my Spam folder, it’s really important that you check this regularly.
Make sure you check through and delete them every few days.
Keep Track Of All Your Wins
It’s not uncommon for prizes to not arrive…. for a long time, or sometimes not at all!
I have had to hassle companies for wins before – but sometimes they will say it will be at least 30 days, so you need to keep track and get in contact if your prize doesn’t arrive.
It’s also really nice to look back and remind yourself of all prizes you’ve won, especially if you’re having a dry spell.
In The UK – Comping Wins Are TAX FREE!
Unlike in the US, anything you win via entering a competition, is totally tax free.
Comp wins are considered to be the same as betting wins, so you don’t need to worry about declaring your wins to the tax man.
Write Down Your Dream Prizes!
It’s common to have times where the prizes seem to be few and far between, but having a list in mind of dream prizes can help you keep motivated.
It can also help to have a list of items that would be useful to win, so that you can actively seek them out.
Hopefully I’ve given you enough reason to give entering competitions a go!
You really can make money entering competitions online, (and much more besides) – it just takes a bit of dedication.
At the time of writing, I make the most money online from affiliate marketing … you can see where I got started with that here.
Have you had much luck winning competitions online?
Let me know in the comments!
All the best….