It’s possible to find a few companies that offer data entry jobs from home and The Smart Crowd formerly Virtual Bee is one of the better known. Data entry work you can do from home is quite popular as you don’t really need much in the way of qualifications and you can earn some extra cash.
In this review we will see what’s involved in data entry jobs and if it’s really worth your time joining The Smart Crowd.
Product: The Smart Crowd
Overall Ranking: 40 out of 100 or 2/5 stars
Price: Free to join
Owner: Lionbridge Technologies, Inc.
The Smart Crowd was formerly known as Virtual Bee and before that Key for Cash. Key for Cash offered data entry work from 2001. The owner of The Smart Crowd is Lionbridge Technologies. Inc who specializes in providing translation services.
Lionbridge took over Virtual Bee in 2012 and was running two data entry platforms side by side for a few years. They decided to merge the two into The Smart Crowd in 2015.
They currently employ about 100,000 multi-lingual people worldwide for their data entry and translation platform. A couple of facts that surprised me were that more than one-third of their workers are over 55 years old and more than 90% have a degree. I wonder why these people are willing to spend a lot of time working for very small rewards? In my opinion, there are better ways to earn money online from home.
What is data entry?
Data entry can be applied to a number of tasks, but usually, it involves inputting data, via a computer keyboard, into a company’s database. Although the name “data entry” might sound a little scientific or specialized, for most of these jobs you don’t need any previous experience or qualifications.
Here are some of the sort of the typical sort of tasks you might have to complete:
- Verify and correct data
- Prepare and organize documents for data entry
- Enter data from documents into required format
At The Smart Crowd the type of work they offer is divided into three categories:
- Data services – which involves typing, data cleansing, digitalizing data, updating data or data tagging
- Global testing – testing new products to make sure there are no glitches prior to launching. This might involve testing products in different countries, as with mobile devices.
- Language services – this might include translating a website, reviews, videos, live telephone translations or actual in person translating.
In this review we will only be considering the data services.
Who is this for?
Data entry could really be for anyone over 18 years old and from almost anywhere in the world. You don’t need much in the way of formal education, the most important qualification is to be proficient in using a computer. You should also have some knowledge of using a word processor and in general, the faster you can work, the more you can earn. The only requirements in the way of technical equipment are a computer and a high-speed internet connection.
This may sound good so far, however, you will be asked to take an evaluation before you will be offered a job, so you should have some basic skills:
- Be able to type fast and accurately
- Good spelling, grammar, and punctuation
- Work quickly and accurately
- Have good comprehension of read matter
There is a lot of competition for these jobs and you may be kept waiting a while (several months) before you are finally offered some work.
You are not paid per hour, but by task and the pay isn’t that good. Therefore, you shouldn’t consider this as a full-time job or count on this to pay your bills. You are not employed directly by the company, you are a freelancer or independent contractor.
Should you consider The Smart Crowd when looking for work online?
The Smart Crowd does provide some legitimate work opportunities and there is no charge to join, which sounds okay. However, before joining this data entry program, you need to consider several things.
- You will have to take an evaluation and depending on the result you may be offered some work. Even if your results are very good, in the upper 90s, you will probably be put on a waiting list. There’s a lot of competition for the work that’s available, that means you may only work very occasionally.
- The pay isn’t good, you will probably be working below the minimum wage. The pay may be anything from 20 cents to 60 cents per 1000 keystrokes, many workers report being paid 30 cents per 1000 keystrokes.
- You cannot rely on this to provide a regular income, each month you will be offered different work. This might be for just a couple of hours one month and the next month 30 hours, you never know. You might have to wait a few months before you are even offered some work.
I signed up just to see what was involved with the evaluations. I tried a couple and as you can see in the image, there are quite a few different tests you can take with more languages than are shown in the image. The evaluations take just a few minutes to complete.
The two I took were comprehension tests and I managed to make a mistake in each, lol. Good job I wasn’t really looking for some data entry work!
Pros and Cons
- Free to join
- Work when you like
- Not well paid
- You won’t always have work
- Evaluation when you join doesn’t guarantee work
- Not very interesting, can be repetitive
Data entry may sound appealing, you can get started immediately with no outlay and if you have the typing capabilities you have nothing new to learn. Nonetheless, this is a very shortsighted way to earn money because you never know how long you will have work, that’s assuming you manage to get work in the first place and the pay isn’t very good, usually less than the minimum wage.
You could only use this type of work to supplement your existing earnings. The Smart Crowd provides legitimate work and is not a scam, but at the same time, I can’t recommend making money this way. Too time-consuming for too little pay.
What I recommend
If you are ready to spend a few hours a day doing data entry work and earning very little, why not consider creating your own business. My favorite business model is affiliate marketing, you can build up your business over time and there is no limit on your possible earnings.
Another advantage is you can build your business around one of your passions or hobbies, now that can be a really enjoyable way of earning some money online. Nothing like the boring data entry work.
If you think you might be interested, you could check out the platform that taught me how to build this site. One of the great things about this training platform is that it’s completely free to join, you don’t even need your credit card details. On top of that, you are given 2 free websites and 10 lessons on how to start your own affiliate marketing business. Below you can see just some of what is offered.If you have tried data entry how did you find it? Is it worth the time? I would love to hear your opinion or if you have any questions leave them below.