Amazon Mechanical Turk Review

By Business.com Editorial StaffLast Modified: January 3, 2018

Do you have a task-heavy project that you need to get done fast, perhaps something simple but repetitive, yet beyond the capabilities of a computer? Amazon Mechanical Turk is a crowdsourcing solution built for these kinds of tasks.

This crowdsourcing website allows you to post tasks, called Human Intelligence Tasks (HIT), for pennies per task. The HITS are simple questions: classify a photo, find a single piece of information, or translate a word or phrase, for example. You can post as many of these as needed, and more than one person can work on HITs. As a result, you can get a large project done quickly because you are using the labor of multiple people.

Say, for example, you are building a database of websites for a marketing campaign and need the contact information for each blogger. Rather than hiring one person to look up each of the, say 500, sites, you could list each site's web address as a HIT with the request for the contact information with the pay of 5 cents per HIT. The person taking the job would look up just one address at a time, earning a nickel for each.

You can ensure accurate results in a couple of ways. You can hire Mechanical Turk Masters who have proven their accuracy and are certified by Amazon. You can use Amazon Mechanical Turk's System Qualifications requirements or create your own qualifications. Participants would have to meet these requirements in order to participate in your project. If you find a task is not done to your satisfaction, you can reject it without charge.

Companies have used Amazon Mechanical Turk for clearing up data, categorizing items, getting feedback on products or marketing, and creating or editing short content. They find it's a convenient way to scale up their workforce on a temporary basis to get a project done quickly and with a set budget.

The minimum charge per hit is $.01. Amazon Mechanical Turk takes 20 percent of payments, including bonuses. You cannot use this crowdsourcing platform for spamming, fraudulent activities or direct marketing.

Sometimes businesses have projects that are simple and repetitive but important. Rather than hiring temporary employees to do these tasks, you can use Amazon Mechanical Turk's crowdsourcing service to find individuals across the globe to take on these projects for pennies per task. With this software, you set the price per HIT and have several means to ensure quality. Thus, you can get a large but painstaking task done quickly and inexpensively.

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Business.com Editorial Staff
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