5 Steps to Entering Contests Online: A Complete Guide

Steps to Entering Contests Online: A Complete Guide

Entering contests is often something that people do for fun in order to try their luck at winning the desired prize.

But, there are contests out there that can be particularly lucrative for those who come out on top.

This is even true for contests that you enter online. Not everyone knows the steps they should take in order to create the best experience possible, though.

Not quite sure how to begin?

We’ve got all the info you need.

Let’s explore everything you should keep in mind.

1. Be Realistic About Your Odds of Winning

Before you invest the time to enter an online contest, you need to be realistic with yourself about how likely you are to win the prize that you want. For example, some contests allow a large number of participants but only award prizes to a small fraction of this group.

To elaborate, if an online sweepstakes awards 10 total prizes to a pool of 10,000 entrants, you only have a 0.001% chance of winning. 


You should also consider the amount of effort that you need to put forth compared to the probability you have of winning. A contest that requires no effort on your part is often worth entering simply because you have a passive chance of receiving a prize.

Other contests require you to complete a task (or series of tasks), and the extra work you do may or may not increase the base odds of winning. 

2. Are The Prizes Useful?


Once you’ve decided whether or not you have a realistic chance of winning a contest, you also need to consider whether or not the prices are actually useful to you.

In some cases, receiving a physical item as a prize could still be worthwhile even if you don’t use it on a regular basis (or at all). You could sell it online, Give it to a friend or family member, or keep it as a collectible.

Some contests, though, provide intangible words instead. It typically includes things like free memberships, discounts, etc. In most scenarios, prices of this nature are also non-transferable, meaning that you can’t pass them off to somebody you know simply because you don’t use them.

So, keep this in mind before entering— winning may not provide any sort of benefit in some scenarios. 

3. Carefully Read The Terms

One of the most important attributes of a contest to consider is its official terms. These dictate how your winnings are distributed, what you are and aren’t allowed to do during the duration of the contest, etc.

It’s not uncommon for someone to unknowingly breach the terms of a contest and invalidate their participation. In the event that they won after breaching this agreement, their award will be given to the next runner-up instead.

When it comes to distribution, the details will vary highly from contest to contest.

or instance, a sweepstakes that rewards a $50,000 cash prize may declare within its terms that this amount is paid out monthly over a period of seven years. So, many people who were expecting to receive a $50,000 check would likely be disappointed.

Although it may seem tedious, take the time to fully read the agreement before you enter— you’ll likely save yourself from a significant headache in the future. 

4. Be Wary of Scams

Unfortunately, the Internet is inherently full of risks in the form of hackers. After all, the cybercrime industry is projected to be worth more than ever before by the beginning of 2021.

This means that there are some online contests that exist solely to compromise personal information. To make matters worse, they often look entirely legitimate.

Luckily, there’s a handful of attributes that you can look for in order to determine whether or not a contest is a scam. These include:

  • The official sweepstakes contact information includes a free email account (such as Gmail or AOL)
  • The contest owner asks you for payment in order to ‘process’ your prize
  • You’re asked for bank account or credit card information
  • The messages you receive are full of grammatical errors

But keeping an eye out for these traits, you can avoid scenarios that result in having your financial data compromised, identity theft, etc. For a more indepth look at identifying Legit giveaways, check out our article, How to Tell if a Contest Is Legit or a Scam

5. Enter New Contests on a Regular Basis

As you may expect, you can drastically increase your overall odds of winning an online contest simply by entering a larger number of contests. In some scenarios, you’ll have a notably high probability of receiving at least something from the many sweepstakes you participate in.

It’s essential, though, that you keep the above criteria in mind when keeping an eye out for fraudulent contests. Entering a large number on a regular basis comes with a higher risk of participating in a scam.

How many or how few you enter is entirely up to you, and it often depends on how quickly you’re able to do so. For instance, having your browser auto-fill forms that ask for personal information can significantly increase the rate at which you enter the contest.

Finally don’t overlook the increased chances of winning you may have by finding local contest, giveaways in your area to enter

If you find yourself beginning to get burned out, take a short break to allow yourself to mentally decompress. 

Entering Contests Online Can Seem Complicated 

But the above information will make the process far smoother. From here, you’ll be able to ensure that the contests you enter are worth the time you invest.

Want to learn more about what we have to offer? Feel free to reach out to us today and see how we can help.