These days, I’m starting to feel like everything I review in the home working world reveals a few more pieces of a rather sinister jigsaw puzzle! I learned a lot from reviewing Wealthy Affiliate recently, and this Picoworkers review has taught me a thing or two also.
If you want to read a quick “TL;DR” and then move on, I’ll save you some time: Picoworkers wouldn’t be my first choice of micro-working site, even though the platform itself seems legit.
However, I’d suggest reading the whole review anyway. If nothing else, it will give you some interesting insights into the murky world of internet marketing!
Let’s get started!
What is Picoworkers?
Picoworkers is a two way platform. Once you set up an account, you can both perform small tasks for money, or pay people to do micro-tasks for you.
For example, if you were keen to get more people to follow your social media accounts, or to join the mailing list for your blog, you could pay them to do so.
It’s the nature of some of these tasks that make me a little uncomfortable about recommending Picoworkers – so read on to find out more.
Is Picoworkers a Scam?
Picoworkers isn’t a scam. It’s easy to find Picoworker payment proofs from people who have earned money from the platform. The company has an “About” page with full address details and even a phone number.
However, there are various reasons why you might want to think carefully before joining Picoworkers.
Most of the tasks on the platform only earn you a small amount of money. Admittedly, this is the nature of micro-working. However, additionally, as explained later in the review, some of the tasks seem morally questionable.
Picoworkers Review – Signing Up
Signing up to Picoworkers in really easy. There’s a fairly short sign-up form, asking for things like your name, country, and desired login credentials. You also have to provide a brief summary of your skills to form your profile.
Later on, you are asked to provide your nearest city and your date of birth, before you’re able to complete any tasks.
It’s all very straightforward, and relatively informal, allowing you to begin work very quickly. However, there is more formality when it comes to actually cashing out. You have to provide your ID and go through a verification process before you can take any money out of the platform.
Once you’ve verified your email address and logged in, you’ll see a wide range of tasks you can complete on Picoworkers.
You’re restricted to “small jobs” on the platform until you complete some successfully, which builds up a success rate score. Once this rises high enough, you can get involved in (slightly) better paying larger and “ongoing” jobs.
My initial observations were positive. There were 178 “small jobs” there for the taking at the point of my Picoworkers review, and they all looked very simple – things like “Visit website and click once,” and “Visit Facebook and Visit website.”
While these tasks only pay pennies each, they also only take seconds. This, in essence, is what a lot of micro-working is like.
It was once I started looking at the jobs themselves that I felt less comfortable.
Click Fraud on Picoworkers?
The very first job involved me going to a website, clicking into some blog posts, and then “clicking on two banner ads.”
Now this might seem like an innocuous request, but what this actually is is something called click fraud. The owners of these websites earn money when people click on their adverts. So, presumably their strategy is:
- Pay people a tiny fee to click the ads
- Get paid MORE than that by the advertising network for those clicks
- Pocket the difference.
I have ads on my own sites, and know that it’s very much against the terms of service to click those ads myself, or to in any way entice or encourage people to click them unless they want to.
PAYING people to click them is definitely off limits, and would likely see the site owners banned from Google Adsense, or whichever other networks they are using. It seems clear plenty of them are willing to take that risk.
Once I started delving deeper, I found that a LOT of the jobs on Picoworker involve visiting sites and clicking adverts.
Now there are two things I should make clear:
- I’m not saying that Picoworkers as a platform is doing anything wrong, but it’s clear to me that plenty of the service’s users are paying people to take part in (at best) questionable activities. The same think happens at RapidWorkers.
- While I personally wouldn’t want to earn money for doing “work” involving things like this, I do realise that some people have a less strict moral code than I do.
Follows, Likes and Comments: Other Jobs on Picoworker
Not all jobs on Picoworker involve clicking website ads to earn the site’s owners shady money!
There’s also a lot along the lines of “post YouTube comment,” “follow on Instagram,” or “sign up to this website.”
While these things are less morally questionable that helping people fraudulently earn advertising revenue, they still annoy me. Essentially, these are all activities that make the internet a little bit worse.
It’s easy to gain a huge social media following by paying for “likes” and other such things, but in reality it’s pretty pointless. People who’ve been paid to like something don’t actually like it, and are unlikely to ever interact with the brand or buy anything.
Most of the “sign up for this site” jobs seem a bit questionable too. There are plenty of sites that pay out a few bucks when you refer a signup to them. All people need to do is pay a “Picoworker” 50 cents to do it and pocket the difference.
It’s wrong and it’s dishonest – so if you thought “ooh, that’s a good idea,” please slap yourself on the wrist!
So essentially, a lot of what’s here is just online “noise” created by people who want to make money online but want to cheat rather than doing the hard work. Anyone who’s followed HomeWorkingClub for any length of time knows I’m not a fan of people like that!
However, there is a flip side. It’s sad but true that “nice guys (often) finish last,” and I suspect that there are plenty of entrepreneurs using Picoworkers to take business shortcuts, getting away with it, and making money.
I wouldn’t judge you if your integrity level made you feel you’d be happy to get paid to help them (well, perhaps I’d judge you a little bit..!)
And there will also be some inevitable “diamonds in the rough” among the jobs on offer. i.e. Micro-jobs from honest people who just want to do a little to boost their following or carry out repetitive tasks. I must be honest though – they seem to be very much in the minority.
Getting Paid by Picoworkers
You can request a cashout from Picoworkers once you have a balance of $5, plus enough to cover the processing fee. These fees vary depending on the cashout method you choose. There are various options, including PayPal payments and Amazon gift cards, and a handful of different cryptocurrency options.
As mentioned already, you need to provide identification to request your first payout.
Of course the big question is whether you will actually get paid! Before I started on my Picoworkers review, I looked at other online reports and did see plenty of payment proofs. However, there are also some comments on various Picoworkers reviews talking about delays and problems with payments.
Due to my personal objections to some of the jobs on Picoworker, I won’t – in this case – be sticking around until I personally receive a payout. As such, I have to suggest you proceed with some caution.
My instinct here is that payments are unlikely to be an issue. The platform is busy and established and provides contact details. All companies of any size attract some complaints, and there are always two sides to the story. That said, with some of the tasks here involving playing with fire, I can’t promise that you won’t get burned.
There is more I could say about Picoworkers, but I don’t intend to go into tremendous detail, since my overall impression is somewhat negative – but here are some more key points:
Picoworkers User Interface
The user interface is functional, but quite old-fashioned and cluttered. In fairness, there’s a lot of functionality squeezed in, but it’s not the most pleasurable site to use, and it’s easy to get lost. The site doesn’t appear to be mobile-friendly, and I couldn’t find any Picoworkers app either.
You can also build up “Picoworkers points” for doing anything from completing tasks to uploading your ID and verifying your phone number. I’m unclear what the points and levels really achieve, and alongside various success rate percentages, it all makes for a lot of rather confusing metrics.
Picoworkers Referral Scheme
Like many home working platforms and survey websites, Picoworkers operates a referral scheme. It pays you 5% of anything your referrals deposit (to have tasks done for them), and 5% of the value of tasks they do “in your downline.”
Given that the amounts of money involved are typically tiny and that I’ve probably put you off signing up by now, I won’t be planning any holidays as a result of earning commission. However, my own link is here if you still want to sign up, despite everything I’ve said!
I have to conclude my Picoworkers review by saying this isn’t – for me – a great home working opportunity.
Yes, you can plug away and earn some VERY easy money just by clicking around websites. However, I’d personally rather do something useful with my time than earn a small amount for enabling others to take shortcuts and – in some cases – pull off scams.
This isn’t a reflection on Picoworkers itself, or the people behind the platform. It says more about those who’ve started using it to hire micro-workers.
In fact, I think Picoworkers is perhaps most attractive to morally challenged people who are happy to try to trick the system, or those willing to work with people like that. You can sign up here if you meet that description!
Picoworkers Pros and Cons
- Easy to sign up.
- Low payout threshold.
- Plenty of work.
- Could be a useful platform if you want people to do small tasks for you.
- Morally questionable tasks.
- Very low rates.
- Charges to make withdrawals.
- If you’re looking for the same kind of “gamified” micro-working environment as Picoworkers, both PrizeRebel and SwagBucks are worth a look. They offer micro-tasks alongside surveys, offers and other ways to earn small amounts of money.
- For something more serious, take a look at Clickworker and Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. We also have a round-up of similar sites here.
- Check out this article for lots of other online side job ideas.
Founder of HomeWorkingClub.com – Ben has worked freelance for nearly 20 years. As well as being a freelance writer and blogger, he is also a technical consultant with Microsoft and Apple certifications. He loves supporting new home workers but is prone to outbursts of bluntness and realism.