Feel Like You'll Never Win? Before You Give Up, Read These Tips

If you're thinking about giving up on sweepstakes, these tips could help.

Frustrated Caucasian businesswoman using computer
Feel Like You'll Never Win Anything? Don't Give Up!. JGI/Jamie Grill / Getty Images

If you've been entering sweepstakes but not winning anything, you might be starting to worry that you're just not cut out to be a winner. Maybe sweepstakes are rigged, or too many people enter for you to have a realistic chance of winning. Maybe sweepstakes simply don't work.

The truth is that sweepstakes do work, and the secret to winning them is patience, persistence, and a positive attitude. If you are feeling like you'll never win anything, try these tips to see if there's anything you can do to win more prizes, faster.

Do You Have a Realistic Idea of How Long It Takes to Win?

Many people think that if they haven't won any prizes in the first few weeks, they'll never win anything. While some people are lucky enough to have their name drawn right away, most of the time it takes a few months of entering a solid number of sweepstakes regularly for the prizes to start rolling in.

Keep in mind that it will take a while for the sweepstakes you're entering to end, draw winners, and notify them. Even if you submit an entry that will end up winning on your very first day of entering sweepstakes, it can take weeks or months before you find out about your prize. When you are feeling frustrated, it might help to remind yourself that you may already be a winner and that a prize notification could be right around the corner.

Sweepstakes entries really do snowball. So if you enter every day, once you start winning, the prizes will come much more regularly (barring dry spells, which seem to happen to every sweeper).

However, it's possible that you are making some mistakes that are increasing the odds that you're going to win a prize. Before you give up on winning, ask yourself these questions:

Are You Entering the Right Sweepstakes?

All sweepstakes are not created equal. Some have great chances of winning, while others are long shots.

By concentrating your efforts on the  best sweepstakes to enter, you can win more quickly and reduce your frustration.

For example, if you are primarily entering those big-name sweepstakes that everyone's heard of, like the HGTV Dream Home Sweepstakes, PCH SuperPrize Giveaways, or sweepstakes from magazines, you're going to be competing with hundreds of thousands or even millions of other entries, for just a few prizes. 

Now, there's nothing wrong with aiming for the stars and trying to win some of those high-publicity, life-changing prizes. But if you enter a good mix of sweepstakes types every day, you'll also be winning smaller (but still fabulous) prizes while you're waiting for your dream prize to arrive.

Sweepstakes with lots of prizes are a good choice if you want to prove to yourself that you really can be a winner. More prizes mean more winners and better odds. You might also want to search out local sweepstakes which have very few entries compared to nationally-advertised giveaways.

Are You Maximizing Your Odds?

Only one part of winning sweepstakes is luck. The rest is being a smarter sweeper. There are only 3 factors that influence sweepstakes odds, and you can tweak those odds to be more in your favor.

 Taking advantage of bonus entries, picking sweepstakes that limit entry by certain age groups, and being sure to enter as often as possible are some ways to improve your odds of winning.

The more sweepstakes you enter, the more chances you have to win as well. There are more sweepstakes out there than anyone has time to enter in a day, but by streamlining the amount of time it takes to enter each one, you can enter more sweepstakes in less time.

Are You Making Some Mistakes?

If you're wondering whether you're not winning anything because you're doing something wrong... well, it's possible. There are some common sweepstakes mistakes that many people make which lower their chances of winning.

Are you skipping over the sweepstakes rules? Do you have a typo in your sweepstakes information that's keeping sponsors from reaching you?

Are you avoiding picking up the phone if you don't recognize the caller's number? 

If you think that a mistake you're making could be slowing down your prize wins, check out 10 Reasons Why You're Not Winning More Prizes (and How to Fix Them).

Are You Being Patient Enough?

The hardest thing about sweepstakes for a new sweeper is that you haven't had any proof that people really do win sweepstakes.

Sadly, most people don't win overnight, and when you've been entering for months with no proof of a payoff, it's easy to give up. But many people have won when they were on the verge of giving up, and your very next entry could be the one that wins.

Stick with it, and focus on the fun of entering, the friendly sweepstakes community, and the excitement of thinking about what you could win, and the prizes will follow.

How to Stay Motivated Until the Wins Come In:

If you feel like your motivation is flagging, it's a good idea to try to focus on making entering fun, rather than just on how long it's taking the prizes to arrive. For example, you can try one of these eight time-tested ways to improve your luck. Or you can make yourself a cute lucky charm. Or try these tips for winning with no extra effort.

Entering sweepstakes isn't a get-rich-quick opportunity. Oftentimes, the prizes you win will be fun, but not life-changing, and sometimes even useless. But if you have the patience to wait it out, sweepstakes can be very rewarding indeed. So try to keep the frustration at bay and focus on the fun parts of entering, and you'll find that you really can be a winner after all!