I feel like everyone’s heard about Ebates, and most people even understand the basic cash-back model. But only a small fraction of you are actually taking advantage of cash back because of the perceived hassle.

FOR SKEPTICS: Ebates gets a commission for referring a sale. They split that commission with Ebates users, and that’s the basic business model. If Macy’s pays Ebates 8% of every sale, and Ebates gives users 2-6% of that commission, both Ebates and the customer come out winners.

Here’s how one woman proved that beginning to use Ebates was long overdue and well worth it:

 

I made $10 when I signed up.

My sister was yammering on about Ebates over the holidays, so I finally bit the bullet this January and signed up. Since sis is the one who twisted my arm to join, I used her referral link, which earned her some extra bucks and got me a $10 bonus.

 

I received $54.72 cash back for buying things I would have bought anyway.

In the first quarter of 2016, I earned $54.72 in cash back with almost no change to my routine. I’m a proud online shopaholic. My UPS driver and I are tight. The only thing I do differently now is visit Ebates before I shop online. I shop everywhere from Walmart to West Elm, and average cash back is about 2-4% per retailer.

BONUS: I still use my Visa card to earn an additional 3% cash back on qualified purchases made through Ebates.

 

I earned $74.80 for shopping during double cash-back earning periods.

After receiving my first check, I was feeling on fire, and I wanted to find a way to earn even more on my next quarterly Ebates check. So I began watching for double cash back and planning my online shopping around the Ebates promotions and coupons. I knew I wanted to buy a stand-up paddle board, so I waited until Ebates published a $20-off coupon and Dick’s double cash back was at 6%. That $329 paddle board alone earned me nearly $20 cash back, not to mention the additional coupon savings.

Ebates always verifies their coupons, so unlike competitors, the coupons you find on Ebates work every time. Average cash back during double earning periods is about 6-8% per retailer.

 

After forgetting to use Ebates on a big purchase, I installed the Ebates button, and it’s changed my life.

Our vacuum (God rest her soul) kicked the bucket last month. She’s been on her last legs for a while now, but an incident with a mess of cat litter a few weeks ago lead to her ultimate demise. I needed a new vacuum in a hurry, so I hopped online, picked a model that was on rollback at Walmart, paid online, and picked up in-store an hour later. As I was driving home, I realized I’d forgotten to use Ebates and left $30 on the table. I could have shopped through Ebates, ordered the vacuum online, and still picked it up in-store. Ugh!

I’d seen the little pop-up ad at the bottom of Ebates.com advertising their Ebates Cash Back Button, but I’m usually not a fan of bookmarklets and browser add-ons, so I’d not considered installing it…until the vacuum incident. I installed the Cash Back Button that evening, and I haven’t missed a cent of cash back since. The install took less than ten seconds, and it’s been the best experience I’ve ever had with a browser extension.

Shop through Ebates, order the item from Walmart online, and pick up in-store!

 

I made a quick $60 for referring just three of my friends.

I get that I’m now sounding a lot like my sister last Christmas. At this point, I’m a hardcore Ebates groupie, and I’m the one yammering about my savings to all my friends. Without even being aware that I’d been acting like a salesperson, three of my friends all decided to sign up. They each used my referral link so they could get the free $10 just like I did. See, I earn $10 to refer a friend. But I get $60 when I refer 3 friends that make a $25 qualifying purchase. I’d have sold out sooner if I’d been paying attention! Ca-ching!

 

I downloaded the free Ebates app.

I think I’m one of the only people who still does most of my shopping from my laptop. I know my kids are gonna grow up and make fun of me for not using my phone more. So, it’s only due to my fat thumb syndrome that I didn’t download the free Ebates app sooner.

I’ve used the app a few times now. It’s really easy to get cash back for my online shopping. Fat thumbs notwithstanding, I can complete my entire purchase without leaving the app.

 

I just tried in-store cash back for the first time and earned $1.68 on my first trip.

Now, this you probably didn’t know about. For the last decade, Ebates has been all about cash back online. But they just launched a link-to-credit-card method that allows you to get cash back even when you shop in-store!

So, if Gap is running 2% cash back, you can ‘link’ the cash-back offer to your credit or debit card. Then, all you have to do is pay with the card you linked to your Ebates account, and the cash back is tracked and credited to your Ebates account.

 

That brings my total savings for the first half of the year to $201.20. My new goal is to hit $500 by year’s end! And while I’m celebrating, I’m also kicking myself for not doing this sooner! Friends don’t let friends miss out on this kind of cash. Sign up now and thank me later.

 

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