eBates is a rewards website where members can earn up to 25% cash back on their online purchases. They are currently working with over 1,200 online stores. The best thing about using eBates is that you don’t have to redeem points, mail in forms or pay membership fees.
How does it work? Rewards websites like eBates earn a commission when you purchase an item from one of their partner stores. In turn, they pay part of that commission to you. This way you continue shopping through Ebates at their partner stores.
Here is an example: Wal-Mart gives eBates 2% of every sale that gets referred from their website. When eBates sends a customer to Wal-Mart, and that customer buys a $500 computer, eBates will make a $10 affiliate commission on that sale. Wal-Mart is essentially paying eBates to advertise. eBates then takes that $10 commission and they give you half ($5). We, eBates shoppers, get a in a 1% cash back rate when shopping at Wal-Mart through eBates.
It’s a pretty sweet deal for everyone involved! Online stores (Wal-Mart, Target, BestBuy, etc.) win because they get the sale. eBates wins because they get a commission from that sale, and you win because you get extra cash for buying something that you were already going to buy.
Something important to remember: you must use either their website or their downloadable toolbar to access their partner stores. Even if you have purchased at that store through eBates previously, you must access that store through eBates every time to get credit. If eBates does not receive credit for your purchase(s) then you will not earn cash back.
Yes, returns and exchanges of purchased items will cancel out your cash back earnings. There really isn’t a way to cheat the system before you try to do so. If you exchange an item at a retail location, the store will consider that a brand new purchase not done through eBates. You will not earn cash back on this sale.
As long as you have earned more than $5.01, you will receive a cash back payment every 3 months. Unless something changes, they pay their members in February, May, August and November. If you have earned less than $5.01, your earnings will be carried over to the next check. You can have the check mailed to you or directly deposited into your PayPal account. You can also have the check mailed to a charity or a family member, if you choose. Simply make sure to set up your account to reflect how you want your earnings paid to you. I personally love getting the checks because eBates calls them “Big Fat Checks!”
Right now eBates is running a free $10 gift card promotion. When you initially register at eBates, you will be asked to choose which bonus $10 gift card you would like. Traditionally, this gift card will be awarded to you after you have earned your first $25 in cash back. If you have not done so yet, go check out eBates here.
If you are part of my drop shipping team or one of my Amazon FBA students, you can use eBates to search for companies to source products from. Please note that some companies will not honor “resellers” purchases when going through a cash back site like eBates. There are terms and conditions listed with each online merchant. Please check to see if any restrictions apply. Personally, I have not had any issues with Wal-Mart, Wayfair, K-Mart, Amazon (only specific categories), JCPenny’s and Kohl’s. I did have an issue with Sam’s Club not funding purchases.