Are Search Engine Evaluator Jobs with Leapforce a Scam?

Company: Leapforce (also RaterLabs)
Job: Search Engine Evaluator
Pay: Starts at $13/hour in the United States, but actual pay rate can be decieving

See how I’ve been earning money online since 2013

Leapforce is one of a small handful of companies that hire at home search engine evaluators. However, they have extremely mixed reviews online – some are claiming it’s a scam, yet others say it’s great. So where lies the truth? Let’s take a closer look to find out exactly what Leapforce is all about and why people are making such claims.

If you’re searching for to see if RaterLabs if a legit opportunity,  this is essentially the same. If you go to Leapforce’s website and click apply, you are taken to the page to apply to RaterLabs.

So what’s the deal? Is Leapforce a scam?

leapforce claims

Actually, they’re not any sort of scam at all. They’re a legitimate independent company contracted by the big search engine companies (Google) to help them assess their algorithm. They say Google is always striving to be the best and give quality results, and they hire real people to help them in the process. When you’re hired as a search engine evaluator, you’re an independent contractor – not an employee. This means that you’re paycheck is not taxed and you’re responsible for withholding your own taxes.

In order to get hired you need to fill out an online application and submit a resume. If you’re selected, you have to take a series of 2 exams. They send you the training material and give you 1 week to take it. It’s a very difficult exam and a lot of people won’t pass. But if you do, you’ll be hired on and will earn about $13/hour.

Even if you do pass, you’re not a permenant employee. You could be let go at any time and your work could fail to meet their guidelines and productivity standards. Ultimately it isn’t a sustainable income source for most people.

This is what sucks about trying to work for Leapforce…

#1 – Their pay rate is misleading

You’re told that you’ll be making a certain amount hourly, however that is not 100% accurate. You are paid for the time it should have taken you to do the work rather than how long it actually took you to do the work. In other words, they calculate how long they think each task will take you, and pay you for each task no matter how long it took.

If they think a task will take you 5 minutes but it takes you 10, you’ll only be allowed to get paid for 5 minutes. Alternatively if it took you 3 minutes to do that 5 minute task, you don’t get paid more for working faster – you just have to sit there for that 2 extra minutes and wait for the next task. Those who work slower will end up getting paid a lot less and potentially fired if they are too slow.

Those who work too fast won’t get any added benefit and could end up being punished too if they think they’re going too fast. Ultimately, you need to work at their pace.

#2 – You’re not paid for training (which takes up a lot of time)

Once you get past the initial examinations (which are difficult and time consuming) there is a huge learning curve and you are not paid for any time spent training, studying, taking tests or watching webinars. This will have a negative impact on your pay rate, especially when first starting out.

#3 – Not consistent work

Unfortunately work won’t always be available 24/7, and depending when you are able to work you may not be able to reach as many hours per week as you wanted. Some of these companies have a weekly/monthly cap on how many hours you can work, but I don’t think Leapforce does.

It may be very hard to actually reach 40 hours a week – expect around 20 and don’t count on it for a full time income.

#4 – They can easily fire you

They’re known for letting people go at any time. They have certain work quality standards you have to adhere to and if you fall below you’ll get threatened with termination. However their “quality” is subjective and doesn’t mean the person isn’t working hard, just that they’re not agreeing to their standards.

Ultimately what makes it hard is that they’re trying to standardize tasks that are inherently subjective!

Trying to standardize something that is inherently subjective is extremely difficult. Testing to monitor quality and relevancy of search engine result queries is something that isn’t an exact science. Of course there will be discrepancies, and however much they try to “standardize” it with their rules and guidelines, it’s still going to be difficult for a lot of people to perform in the exact way they want. Hence, why so many people complain about their sub-par performance levels.

I know first hand from scoring standardized tests, this was a huge problem. You have to be able to take their guidelines and apply them to each unique situation. There are people that will be really good at doing this, and those that can’t. It’s just the nature of the work.

The main thing to realize here is this job just isn’t for everyone

It may not be the greatest job and you may be treated like a disposable object, but that doesn’t really make it a scam. The fact is they DO pay you and many people do this work with no problems. I think a lot of people who complain about Leapforce have too many expectations for the job. It isn’t a full time reliable job. You don’t get benefits, vacation time, nor are you guaranteed to remain working for them for any set amount of time. It’s a contracted project and you are not their employee.

Unfortunately it may require a large initial time commitment that may not pan out in the end. However for many it is a great source of extra income. I’d say if you are a college student, stay at home parent, or just in need of a second income source for yourself then go for it. If you’re trying to make it a full time profession, you’ll be majorly disappointed.

What other companies hire for this type of work?

You can easily find these companies from a quick Google search.

Want to learn how I make money from home?

While this may be a real contracted position that people are actually getting paid to do, personally, it’s just not my cup of tea. There are just too many downsides and the pay averages out to be extremely crappy.

I have been making money online since 2013… doing something called affiliate marketing.

It isn’t exactly a “job” or even a contracted position like Leapforce, but rather you work entirely for yourself. If you work hard and establish yourself in this field, the earning potential is only limited by the amount of work you put in.

Check out my complete review of Wealthy Affiliate, the online business community and educational platform where I learned the beginning tricks of the trade!


About the Author Wendy

Wife, Mother, Entrepreneur. I've been making money online for the past 5 years with online marketing and blogging, and I love helping others learn to do the same. You can read my full story here

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