This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you purchase through a link on my site, I may receive a small commission at no cost to you.
Who else spends tons of money online on planners and stuff? Well, you can get extra discounts (cash back) on stuff you buy anyway by signing up for Ebates
Planner addicts and online shoppers, you have got to sign up for this. If you do a lot of shopping online this will save you some money. Just this weekend I earned cash back shopping on Amazon and Michaels. Although it isn’t a ton at each trip, it adds up over time. As of today, I’ve earned $198 by using Ebates when shopping. Much of this was earning 1% cashback on Etsy haha. I spend A LOT of money there.
Sign Up For Ebates
Go here to sign up for Ebates. Then you can do use it a few different ways:
- Install the Chrome extension on your computer (which is how I usually use it)
- Do your shopping through the Ebates website
- Do your shopping through the Ebates phone app.
How To Use Ebates With Chrome Extension
After you sign up for Ebates, do a Google search for Ebates Chrome Extension and download and activate it. The Ebates site has instructions for this as well.
Then, go to whatever store you plan to shop on. When you get to the store on the Chrome browser, the Ebates extension will usually ask you if you want to activate for a certain amount of cash back (YES). If it doesn’t ask me, I will often click on the extension and search for the store and see if there are any offers. Sometimes there aren’t, and the extension won’t pop up in those cases.
If not using the Chrome extension, you can go to the website (or app) and search for the store and click on Shop when you find a deal.
Click the big shop now button and it will take you to the store’s website. Then you buy stuff and cha-ching you get some money. (Well, it takes a little while because they delay it until you are past the return window for your items).
If you spend $25 using Ebates they give you a $10 cash bonus in the beginning so it pays to sign up and do this.
My husband signed up and bought something on Ebay through Ebates and they gave him the $10 even though the things he bought didn’t qualify for a cashback bonus. I thought that was pretty cool of them.
The way you get money is a direct deposit to Paypal.
It works quite nicely.
Forgetting to use Ebates is the worst! Last week for instance I made a large purchase of planner stickers from Michaels and forgot. Bummer! I could have earned a dollar or so.
Sometimes they have double cash back so you really don’t want to miss going through the site. It is a super bummer when you do.
Ebates customer service has been great. I once made a purchase on an educational platform that had a large percentage cash back and the cash back did not show up. I was able to go on their website and report that cash back was not received and they just gave it to me! All I had to do was submit my order number and amount and they gave me the cash back no questions asked. I thought this was awesome because I was ready to be turned down and get angry. But they took care of me. I think all you need is to have the website register that you were on the store’s website that day in order for them to give you the cash back you would have earned. Kudos to them.
How Can This Be Free?
When I first signed up for Ebates I was skeptical. I thought it would be some sort of scam or something because how in the world would they be able to give me money for shopping for things I was purchasing from somewhere else. It didn’t make sense to me…until I became a blogger and learned about affiliate marketing.
As a blogger, I make a little money if people click on my links to purchase things I recommend to them. I am an affiliate for those companies. So for example, if I tell you about my favorite pen on Amazon (which I would totally tell you about whether I was making money on it or not), and you buy it through my link, I earn a small commission without it affecting the price at all for you. Amazon pays me a small bit for the referral. (Thank you Amazon).
Ebates is also an affiliate for several stores. They deal in volume by having customers buy through them. So let’s say they get 10% commission on something you buy through their link. They share part of that commission with you. So it is a win win for them and for you. They get more traffic through their affiliate links and pay you for using their links so to speak.
Using Ebates is completely free for you. The only cost to you is if you choose to buy more stuff because you are getting cash back. Haha. I’ve done this. One time there was this special large cash back at Etsy and I went and spent money just so I could get cash back. Kinda silly but that’s what I did. To be fair, I bought this super cute cross stitch pattern, so it’s not like I wasted money (unless you consider that I have more cross stitch patterns than I could possibly use in my entire life).
What’s the Catch?
I haven’t been able to find any problems with Ebates as a consumer other than that I have to wait for cash back. It seems like it is about three months to get the cash back. But that makes sense, right? Some stores have a 60 day return window and as an affiliate if someone returns items, the commission I earn gets taken out of my account. This would be the same for Ebates’ account. The other delay is you have to have at least $5 earned in your account before you receive payment. Otherwise, there’s no issue. Ebates is completely free for you.
It is a win situation for you.
Are There Any Negatives to Using Ebates?
There is a negative to using Ebates, but it is a negative to bloggers like me rather than to consumers using the app.
Here’s the thing. Let’s say you click on one of my Affiliate links to go buy washi storage at Michaels (<—that’s an example of an affiliate link). If you go to Michaels and buy that washi storage, I’ll earn a few cents typically. However, if you use Ebates and you click on my link to go to that site and Ebates pops up telling you there is cash back and you choose to use their cash back, I lose the commission and Ebates gets it instead even though they did nothing to get the person onto the store’s site, the blogger did.
It’s a bummer for bloggers since we spend a lot of time working on writing quality material and recommending great stuff to our readers. So it ends up being that I do the work but they make the money.
So I do have a bit of an ethical issue with Ebates in this scenario (it feels a bit like stealing).
I do tend to be thoughtful with this since I am a blogger. What I mean by that is if I go and read a blog post and they introduce me to something I didn’t know about and they did a nice job, I choose not to click on Ebates so that blogger earns a commission. That’s the way I work with this so that I can be a blogger and also still use Ebates.
You can decide how you feel about this part of using Ebates.
The Verdict: This One is a Winner
For earning some money online, nothing is easier…especially if you are constantly shopping for stuff online. Getting a bit of the money you spend back in cash is nice. There is no fee for using it and Ebates makes it really simple with the Chrome extension and phone app. There’s also a great incentive and if you sign up with my link here you can earn $10 cashback when you spend your first $25 at your favorite store while using Ebates.
Marlena is the blogger behind apenandapurpose.com, where she writes about using journaling for self improvement and reaching goals in life and business. Using her experience as a Licensed Psychologist with a Master’s in Business, she teaches people how to break through negative thoughts and fear to do what matters. For more about me read my about page.