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One of the hardest things about exercising and getting in shape is finding the motivation to do so. Wouldn’t it be great, then, if someone offered to pay you for it?
That would be awesome. It’s also the exact principle behind the app StepBet, a money-making app that pays you to get moving.
It sounds too good to be true, I know – but is it? That’s what we’re going to be finding out throughout this in-depth StepBet review.
What Is StepBet?
Alright, so what exactly is StepBet? In a nutshell, it’s a smartphone app that allows you to bet on whether or not you’ll reach your step goals against other people. If you win the bet, you win money.
Sounds like gambling, right? Well, it kind of is, except that with gambling, everything is up to chance. With StepBet, you control the odds. And as we all know, no casino in their right mind would let the gambler control the odds!
According to the WayBetter website, StepBet currently has over 82,000 active players that have collectively taken over 154 billion steps and has paid out almost $10,000,000 in cash.
How Does StepBet Work?
Here’s a basic model of StepBet works:
- Select a game and receive your personalized step goals
- Reach your goals each week for six weeks
- Split the pot with the other players in your game who also met their step goals
Of course, there’s a little more to it than that, so let’s jump into a more detailed breakdown of exactly what happens.
The first thing you have to do is connect an activity tracker (like a Fitbit or Apple Watch) to the app so that StepBet has some way of tracking your steps. Using the historical data on your activity tracker, the app will calculate a personal step goal for you that’s challenging but manageable.
The step goal will be split into different days of the week, and there’s usually a little variance between the days. For example, you might be set 3 power days where the step goals are higher than usual and be given 1 rest day. Sometimes, you might be given no rest days at all.
When I tried the app, my regular day goal was set at a little over 9,000 steps and my power day goal was just short of 12,000 steps.
You can then place a bet to join in a game. The bets are set at a specified amount depending on the game, but it will usually be $40. You have to pay the bet upfront and can do so via PayPal or previous winnings. All the bets from players in the game go into a collective pot of winnings.
How Do You Win?
The game runs for six weeks, and to win you need to meet your step goals every single week except for week one. Week one is a ‘warm-up’ week where you’re allowed to fail.
At the end of the six weeks, the pot money is split between the remaining players, minus a 15% cut that goes to StepBet.
I know what you’re thinking: What if all the players are still in the game? Will I lose Money?
The answer is no, you won’t. StepBet guarantee that, at the very least, you’ll get your money back at the end of it. Usually, though, at least a couple of players will lose, so you’ll typically earn a small profit on top of your bet if you win.
Is StepBet a Scam?
You’d be forgiven for being a little sceptical about StepBet at this point, as getting paid to move around does seem to be too good to be true. However, the truth is that StepBet does seem to be totally legit.
It’s clear that it isn’t a scam just by looking at what other StepBet reviewers are saying. The Google Play Store reviews give it a 4.5/5 star rating based on over 2,700 reviews. iTunes reviews give it a 4.8/5 star based on almost 5,000 reviews. That many people surely can’t be wrong.
Plus, their parent company has a track record of making popular, legit apps like DietBet, so you can be sure that it’s all above board!
How Much Money Can You Make With StepBet?
Presuming you meet your step goals, you’ll probably win about $10-$25 per game with StepBet, plus your initial bet back. Games last around 6 weeks, which means you’re probably only looking at around $10-$20 per month.
Obviously, it’s not the kind of app that’s going to leave you filthy stinking rich. That being said, it is money for old rope, and you’ll get something infinitely more valuable: an active lifestyle. You can’t put a price tag on that, right?
However, that’s not to say that you’re capped at $10 per month. Some users on StepBet have managed to make $50 or even more per month on occasion.
The amount of money you’ll be able to make in any given month depends on how lucky you are. if everyone in your game drops out, you’ll get a much bigger share of the pot.
If there are ten people in the game, and all of them contribute $40 and proceed to drop out, you’ll get the whole $400 pot minus 15%. That’s $340 – a $300 profit on your initial bet. Granted, you’d have to be incredibly lucky for that to happen, but you never know.
You can also bump up your earnings by becoming a member. Non-members can only play one game at a time, whereas members can play up to 3 games at a time.
That means triple the earning potential. Plus, the 15% StepBet cut is waived for members, so you’ll get your full share of the pot every time. As a member, you could probably expect to earn $30 – $60 per month.
Now that’s covered, let’s move on and look at some pros and cons of StepBet.
What I Like About StepBet
Here are the main things I like about StepBet…
1. It Pays Out in Cash
We’ve reviewed a lot of different smartphone apps that you can use to make money here on Frugal For Less, and most of these apps tend to pay out in rewards like gift cards and merch.
The great thing about StepBet is that it does. You win cash every single time. They pay out straight to your PayPal account.
2. It Motivates You to Get Fit
Like I said at the start of this article, the main USP of StepBet is that it pays you to get moving. If you want to start getting fit, this app is a great motivational tool. Winning your bets provides you with the positive reinforcement you need to keep going.
It’s not just positive reinforcement either; it’s negative reinforcement too. When your money is on the line, you’re much less likely to give up. Nobody wants to throw away $40. In that sense, it provides real accountability to make sure you stick to your goals.
3. It’s an Easy Side-Income
If you’re someone who already leads an active lifestyle and walks a lot, it’s a really easy side income. You’d essentially be monetizing your movement and getting paid to do what you’d be doing anyway! This makes it one of the easiest side incomes to pick up.
4. It’s Free to Register
While StepBet does offer an optional membership plan, you don’t need it to use the app. You can register for free and start making money straight away.
5. It Has a Great User Interface
From my experience, the app itself is really straightforward and easy to use. Everything is totally intuitive.
6. It’s Fun
Last but not least, StepBet is fun. It encourages you to walk around and, as you get out and about, you’ll find you have a lot more fun than you would have by sitting around or driving. Plus, winning is fun too!
What I Don’t Like About StepBet
On balance, StepBet is great, but it’s not without its flaws. There were a few things about the app that I think could have been better. Here are the main drawbacks from my perspective:
1. The Earning Potential is Low
As you’ll typically be earning less than $50 per month even if you win all your bets, the earning potential is low compared to other money-making apps. It would be great if you could earn more.
2. People Can Cheat
People can drop out and have their bet returned to them if they have a doctor’s note providing a medical reason that they can’t continue. This is pretty fair, but it does have the unfortunate consequence of making it possible to cheat by forging a note.
As StepBet relies on data from your activity tracker to determine your step count, I’d imagine it’s also possible to cheat by faking steps. For example, you could just attach your tracker to someone else, or even a dog!
That being said, StepBet does seem to be pretty pro-active with preventing this. According to their FAQs, they have a zero tolerance policy for cheating and may ask for further verification of steps when they detect suspicious behaviour.
3. You Can’t Control Your Step Goals
One of the most frustrating things about the app is that the step goals can be very hard sometimes. They’re supposed to be challenging, but I personally found that they were occasionally just too high.
This was probably my least favourite thing about the app, and I think some other users agree as there are a few negative reviews about StepBet that mention bring this up.
4. They Take a Big Cut
Another drawback of StepBet is the fact that StepBet themselves take a pretty huge cut. 15% of a $400+ pot is a lot of money!
5. You Need an Activity Tracker
Another big put-off for some people is the fact that you need an activity tracker to use StepBet as these devices can be expensive. You’re also at the mercy of your fitness tracker. If it fails to record your steps, they don’t count!
Who Should Use StepBet?
I wouldn’t recommend StepBet if you’re just looking to make money and aren’t interested in walking or being more active. However, I do think it’s an amazing app for many different types of people.
I’d recommend using StepBet if you’re:
- Someone who wants to lose weight or get in shape
- Looking for an excuse to get out and about
- A runner or someone who lives an active lifestyle
- Someone who doesn’t drive and walks to work
- Interested in trying a fun way to make a little extra cash
I also think StepBet is perfect for dog walkers. If you’re already using an app like Wag! App or Rover to make money by walking dogs, you can bump up your hourly earnings and cross-monetize by using StepBet too.
Tips For Making Money With StepBet
Here are 6 ways you can increase your success with StepBet and make more money:
- Stack it with other apps that pay you to walk like Sweatcoin so that your steps count towards both goals.
- Become a member and join three different games at once
- Stop taking elevators and take the stairs instead
- Always take the scenic route whenever you’re walking somewhere and ditch the car
- Join a weight loss challenge to earn even more winnings when those steps help you shed weight
- Invest in some decent walking shoes. The last thing you need is to get sore feet or blisters that put you out of the running!
How to Sign Up For StepBet
Signing up for StepBet is easy. The first thing you need to do is register via the StepBet website or by downloading the app from the app store on your smartphone. You’ll need to fill in some basic details.
While you’re signing up, you’ll also be asked to link up your fitness tracker. You can use any compatible wearable device that you own or your smartphone’s Health app.
You’re now registered and you can start joining games straight away! When you join a game, you’ll need to pay your bet up front.
If you want to become a StepBet member, you can do so by following the instructions on the app and paying the annual membership fee.
Alternatives to StepBet
If StepBet doesn’t seem like the right app for you, there are plenty of other smartphone apps that pay you to be more active. Here are some of my favourites…
Sweatcoin is another ‘get paid to walk’ style app like StepBet, except it doesn’t pay you in cash, it pays you in ‘Sweatcoins’. These are cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum, so they have a real monetary value.
Unlike StepBet, you don’t bet on yourself with Sweatcoin, you just earn coins as you walk and can exchange them for rewards. Some of the rewards are high-value, like an iPhone 8 and a trip to Borneo. You can sign up for Sweatcoin here.
Gigwalk is a smartphone app that pays you to walk around your local area and complete short gigs, like photographing items in certain stores. Most of the gigs are listed by local retailers, so it works best if you live in an urban area. Check it out here.
Postmates is kind of like Uber Delivery, except that you don’t need a car. You can be a walking courier and accept delivery jobs in your local area. You can get paid for something as simple as picking up a coffee from Starbucks and dropping it off at someone’s address.
Aside from the above, there are lots and lots of ways to make money from your smartphone. Check out our make money section for even more ideas!
Final Thoughts on StepBet
That concludes our full StepBet review. Have you tried it yet? If so, let us know your thoughts on the app in the comments section below.
If you haven’t tried it yet, remember that every little helps, and every step counts… so download it and get walking!
Good luck and stay frugal!