How to Test Products and Keep them

It seems like a simple idea. Businesses want people to test their products. You sign up to do it and receive freebies for your efforts. But is it really that straightforward?

The answer is yes, but with conditions. Much of this is done through market research companies, who are paid by brands to get consumer feedback.

What are the best companies to choose? With lots of free products and samples on offer and lots of websites aimed at the product testing market, it can get rather complicated. That’s where we come in!

To save you some time here’s a guide. We’ll take you through the most worthwhile options, as well as showing the various ways you can test some cool products…

Traditional testing

By this, we mean the “old school” method of having products sent to you in order to test. It’s the backbone of product testing, but as you’ll see later there are other choices.

Here are the pick of these traditional options:

Toluna

Toluna are well-known as an online survey site, where you get paid for filling in surveys. But it has a section called ‘Toluna Influencers’ for product testing.

Here’s the thing. The surveys reap financial rewards, but this doesn’t apply to testing. On the plus side, you do get some decent products for nothing.

Brand names such as L’Oreal and Bic can arrive on your doorstep, but the main deal with Toluna is you take part in their surveys to qualify. Which isn’t a bad thing!

Alba Science

Despite the name (which makes it sound like crazy lab experiments are going on), this is a good way of testing freebies relating to cosmetics.

We know what you’re thinking. Is it safe? According to the company, everything has been pre-tested, so no need to worry about putting something dangerous on your face!

The quality of the free product you receive is reportedly quite high, though you won’t know what you’ve got till you tear open the (anonymous) packaging.

Pinecone

This one’s a bit of a wildcard, relying on its mysterious nature to draw you into a world of freebies. Throw in an offbeat company name and you’re left with an intriguing prospect.

Here’s the kicker. The survey site mentions categories like music and health & beauty. However, there’s little information on what you can get your hands on.

To add to the mystery, it has an “invite only” system. By keeping an eye out for web banner adverts you’re able to jump aboard that way.

But on the whole, they don’t make it easy. One thing you can guarantee with Pinecone is that product testing is never dull! It’s definitely one where you’re taking a virtual punt.

Review & Share

Following on from traditional testing, Review & Share sites turn you from feedback provider to mini-marketeer. After testing the product, you take to social media.

How does it work? You basically natter about your experience on Facebook, Twitter etc, either by posting comments or interacting with others. You then receive a ranking.

BzzAgent

With this site you become a (free) agent, getting sent freebies which you then have to chat about with your online community. Or, if you’re feeling brave, tell your friends in person.

Now, BzzAgent monitor how effective you are, and if you’re a dab hand you get more stuff at zero cost. Products mentioned include steam irons, lotions and even cookies!

An important thing to note about Reviewing & Sharing is you must clearly state that you got the product for free. Otherwise, you could be in breach of consumer law.

Approach companies direct

Another product testing route is to get in touch with companies yourself. Philips, for example, are on the lookout for testers and this cuts out the middle man/woman.

In a way, it’s more satisfying because it’s just you and the company. On the other hand, you might want someone to handle that big corporate entity on your behalf!

Sites will want to know your age and give you a few questions before they let you take part. This applies to product testing in general as things are targeted at specific markets.

Have you ever tested a product before? How did it go?