Selection of People's Choice Awards nominees takes place via online voting held at the People's Choice Awards official website. People's Choice releases a large list of candidates, and then anyone with Internet access is able to vote. The top five in each category become the official nominees.
Prior to online voting, the People's Choice Awards used Gallup polls to determine nominees. Members of the public were able to choose anyone they wanted from an almost unlimited scope. People's Choice eventually scrapped this method since polls have margins of error, which sometimes result in a tie. For example, both "Spider-Man" and "The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring" received the 2003 Favorite Motion Picture award.
Web research company Knowledge Networks determined the nominees for the 2007 People's Choice Awards. The company took a nationally representative sample of men and women between ages 18 and 54 and with or without Internet access and presented them with a list of candidates determined by national ratings averages, box office grosses and album sales.
The 2010 People's Choice Awards used media research company Visible Measures to determine its nominees. This was the first time the award show utilized Internet video viewing data to determine nominees. The Internet video viewing data was based on the Visible Measures' True Reach metrics, which is a measure of the total audience that has been exposed to an online video campaign, regardless of how widely the campaign has spread or where it has appeared.