Organizations implement crowdsourcing applications in the hopes that the participation of an online community — a crowd — results in the design of goods or the solving of problems for the organization. Thus, it is important to understand how and why individuals in the crowd participate in these arrangements in order to maximize the crowd’s abilities. Crowds participate in crowdsourcing willingly, and they are not always driven by the opportunity to make money in the process. An organization that understands what motivates its crowd to participate and fulfills these needs will sustain a productive crowdsourcing platform.
In the past few years, research has been conducted specifically on the crowds of some well-known crowdsourcing applications to determine what motivates them to participate. These findings indicate that crowds are motivated by a diverse set of extrinsic and intrinsic rewards, and individuals in the same crowd can be motivated for different reasons. Some common crowdsourcing motivators include the desire to earn money, to develop one’s creative skills, to network with other creative professionals, to build a portfolio for future employment, to challenge oneself to solve a tough problem, to pass the time when bored, to contribute to a large project for the common good, and to have fun.