Thanks to the invention of computers and the Internet, people no longer have to leave the comfort of their own homes to shop.
Whether you’re looking for clothes, home goods, groceries, or electronics, you purchase everything you need with the click of a button.
With online shopping has come the invention of various cashback websites, apps, and browser extensions. Ebates.com is one such site, and a rather popular one at that.
However, it can be difficult to know whether or not you’re getting the best deals possible. So, before utilizing Ebates yourself, take a look at all that Ebates offers and its pros and cons.
What It Does
You’ve probably figured it out by now, but Ebates is a rebate or cashback website that gives you money back when you shop through one of their affiliated stores.
While you don’t shop on the Ebates website itself, you do go through one of their store affiliated links located on their website.
Ebates features an array of stores, over 1,600 to be exact. They have selections from Macy’s, Nordstroms, Kohl’s, Target, Best Buy, Amazon, Petco, and many more. By signing up for an account and shopping through their site, Ebates returns anywhere from 1 to 6 percent back to its customers.
It’s no different than shopping at some of your favorite stores, you simply have a middleman in between.
How to Get Started with Ebates
To sign up, you simply create an account using your email address, upon which, you’ll be given a $10 gift card to a store of your choosing. You don’t even have to link a credit card or bank account to your Ebates account.
After doing so, you can freely search for your favorite stores on Ebates’ website, click on said store to begin shopping, and be on your way to earning cash back. Once you’ve found your store, you’ll hit the “Shop Now” button and be provided with a ticket tracking your order when you’re ready to make a purchase.
After you’ve paid for your item, points are carried over to your account, although it usually takes anywhere from one to six days. That being said, Ebates does hold your points for 60 days to make sure you don’t return your purchase, after that, however, the money is yours.
Ebates hands out payments on specific days and then, sends your money to you via your PayPal account or check. The best thing about Ebates is that, once you’ve signed up, it doesn’t require any extra steps of you. You simply shop as you normally would and earn money back for doing absolutely nothing, especially if you use the extension in Google Chrome.
How Much It Costs
To sign up for an Ebates account is simply free. Moreover, there’s no fees to access said money once you’ve received it.
That being said, Ebates does take out a portion of what you’ve earned back. Essentially, Ebates gives you half of the commission they actually receive for referring you.
Overall, the account is free and you’d be hard-pressed to find a cashback site that doesn’t require a portion of what you receive.Ebates is completely free to sign up for and use to get cashback for your online shopping. Click To Tweet
Pros & Cons
Pro: You can earn extra gift cards and money, by simply signing up, referring friends, and shopping yourself.
Con: Ebates has received a few complaints in terms of tracking orders and missing the occasional payout.
Pro: You have a wide array of stores to choose from.
Con: Amazon only provides cashback in a few categories.
Pro: It’s free and requires little effort on your part.
Con: You won’t have access to money or a payout for a full 60 days upon making a purchase.
Pro: Ebates provides great customer service.
Con: Ebates only provides payouts four times a year.
How It Compares
Ebates is one of many sites and apps that offers you cash back when you shop.
Another popularly utilized site is Swagbucks. Swagbucks, like Ebates, provides you with points when you shop at stores by using the links on their website.
For the most part, Swagbucks provides you with one point for every dollar you spend. However, unlike Ebates, Swagbucks only allows you to redeem your points for gift cards and coupons.
While they do allow you to choose PayPal gift cards, one point is only worth one cent, which means you’ll have to rack up quite a few Swagbucks to receive any sort of significant payout.
That being said, Swagbucks doesn’t require you to wait for any period of time before redeeming said points. As soon as you have enough to earn a reward, you’re allowed to redeem.
Another prime cash back site is TopCashBack. TopCashBack definitely has its benefits when compared to other cash back sites. Not only does it partner with over 3,500 retailers, but offers some of the highest cash back rates available.
Like Swagbucks, it promises to credit your money to you within a week. Plus, it allows you to withdraw any amount you please as soon as your cash hits pending status.
Moreover, TopCashBack gives you 100 percent of the commission they earn from their affiliates. This is a practice unprecedented by many other rebate sites. This feature alone puts TopCashBack as one of the top, if not the top site to use if you’re really looking to earn great money back.
Moreover, should you ever find that Ebates, or any other rebate site, has offered a better cash back amount, TopCashBack lets you file a claim so that they ensure that they have the highest rates available. Overall, TopCashBack serves to give Ebates a run for its money.
Who It’s Best For
If you’re an avid online shopper, and Ebates has an array of stores you’d normally shop at, then it is definitely the site for you. It costs you nothing to sign up and requires no extra work on your part to use.
After all, if you were normally going to purchase an item anyway, why not go through an Ebates link to earn cash back instead? If the majority of your shopping takes place online, don’t miss out on the hundreds of dollars you could be earning and utilize Ebates.