A friend just sent me a message asking me to explain Swagbucks, of course I typed it all out then the message got eaten by Facebook instead of sent. Oh well. So, I figured this time I'd post it here instead so that it would be easier to share with others.
At the most basic, Swagbucks is a rewards program that works! You get reward points (Swagbucks) for doing things online that you'd do anyway.
First, Sign Up!
If you sign up before the end of June, enter the code JuneBoom when you signup and you'll get started with 80 Swagbucks (otherwise you'll start out with 30 Swagbucks).
After you signup, download their toolbar. It's not an absolute must, but it does help me remember to search and earn using their tools. You also get an easy 1 Swagbuck a day just for opening your browser with the toolbar installed. You can earn another easy 2 points a day by answering their daily poll (1 point) and going to their surveys (1 point).
Before I go much further, let me explain what you do with these points. You earn them, then you trade them in for real stuff. I usually opt to trade mine in for Amazon gift cards (because it's the best deal). You can get a $5 Amazon gift card for just 450 Swagbucks! And you can easily earn that in just a few weeks of doing the most basic things through Swagbucks.
Besides those easy 1 point earns, the easiest way to earn Swagbucks is to do searches through their search portal. You won't earn points every time you search, sometimes you'll have to do a few searches and if you don't earn when you search, I suggest you at least make sure to click to the second page of search results (sometimes you'll get points there). On average you'll earn about 10 points when you earn through searches and I've seen points earned as many as 4 times a day via searches (but, most of the time you'll earn twice a day).
You can also earn BIG Swagbucks by going through Swagbucks to do your online shopping, whether it's daily deals at Groupon (make sure you go to Swagbucks when buying those) or just regular shopping, it's worth it to go through Swagbucks and get those points.
If you are a couponer, you can also earn points for going through Swagbucks coupon page and printing (then redeeming) those coupons. It takes a little while for those points to show up, but you will get 10 Swagbucks for every coupon that you print and redeem.
You can also earn points for playing games in their game portal, and watching videos via "Swagbucks tv" (basically Swagbucks youtube portal).
With all the ways there are to earn, even if all you do is the freebies and searches you can easily earn a gift card every few weeks, but if you really use them you can earn tons more. If you refer your friends once you join you will even get matched on what they earn via searches (up to 1000 points), so make sure you do your friends a favor and tell them how they can earn free gift cards.