I've tried a few online money making opportunities, but most of the time they're a lot of work for very little return, or require you to spend money up front that you will probably never recoup. I thankfully never got involved in any of those. I've been using Swagbucks for about a month, and have managed to acquire $30 worth of Amazon gift cards. They have a lot of other prizes that you can trade your points in for, but so far I've only been interested in the Amazon cards. When I tried to trade in points for another one last night, I got a message that you were only allowed to get 5 of the same prize in the same calendar month, so after the first I can get 2 more. Or I might save up my points for an iTunes gift card this time.
The way it works is, you go to the Swagbucks homepage to do your searching, rather than using Google or some other search engine. Just doing this normally, you'll randomly win some "swagbucks," usually 7 or 8, or sometimes as many as 50. There are also surveys that you can do; I seldom qualify for them, but if you do, they pay 50-200 "bucks" upon completion.
There are also special offers and "tasks" that you can perform. The special offers are the usual--Netflix, book clubs, credit card offers, insurance quotes, etc.--they pay very well, but I would only do those if it was actually something I was interested in. If I wasn't already a member of Netflix, I could sign up and get 850 Swagbucks, which would be almost enough for 2 $5 Amazon gift cards. The tasks (listed under "Special Offers/Wall 1") are mostly search-related, i.e., they give you a search term and you copy and paste what you believe is the most relevant search result, or you're choosing categories for a list of items.
I'm pretty good at the search ones, but not so great at the categorization; still, if I spend an hour or so at it over the weekend, I can end up with another hundred points or so. Voting in the Daily Poll gets you one point, as does visiting the survey page, even if there aren't any surveys for you to fill out. One thing I almost missed--on the Survey page, there's a section for Profiles, asking you questions on everything from automobiles to snack foods. The profiles are worth 50-100 points each. They take quite awhile to fill out, but they reward you fairly well.
On one hand, it seems kind of silly. After all, $5 isn't that much. But it's kind of hard for me to spend $9.99 or more for a Kindle ebook; $25 in gift card currency makes me feel rich! Swagbucks doesn't cost anything to use, you don't have to give them a credit card, there is really no downside that I can see.
Following any of the links in this post will get to you my referral page, and if you sign up, Swagbucks will give me the same amount of bucks that you win, up to a certain level. Pyramid marketing is where the money is!