Sunday, November 20, 2011
Holiday Shopping - Ebates Cash Back
When it comes time for holiday gift giving, I love shopping online.
Internet shopping has come a long way in the past ten years or so...a very long way. Nearly every major retailer now offers an online shopping option, and such sites are secure and safe for credit cards. I laugh thinking about a gift Alex and I received the Christmas of our engagement year (2004), purchased online.
Way back in the early 2000s (haha), many shopping sites were not reliable or legit, and I'm pretty sure the wireless speakers we were given were either refurbished or hot, and by hot, I mean stolen goods. We had the speakers for less than a week, when one night, they literally became hot, burning to the touch. They began to crackle and pop. As smoke puffed out of the speaker casing, a green foam began to ooze from every opening on the speaker - battery acid - battery acid foam, leaking all over not just the speaker, but the desk and carpet.
I share this story to suggest that you use a little discernment when shopping online. And look for a store that offers a good return policy (which the speakers did not), perhaps free return shipping.
Now, back to the original intent of this post - EBATES.
If you're like me, you plan to do at least some of your holiday shopping online. If that's the case, why not grow your money in an easy way? Sign up for an Ebates account.
Ebates is a website that offers cash back on your online purchases. Simply log in to your account, search for your desired retailer, and click to visit their website. Ebates will track your purchase using a tracking number. You never enter any credit card information on the Ebates site. Once you have made an online purchase, the retailer confirms it with Ebates, using the tracking number, and your account will be credited with a certain percentage of your purchase amount, say 5% or 8%. Once your account has accumulated at least $5.00 in cash back, you will receive payment from Ebates, your choice of a check or paypal payment.
Now, I made a $25 purchase at Nordstrom.com a week or two ago. I will receive $0.66 back from that purchase. That isn't a lot, but when combined with the online purchases I still plan to make, it will add up. It's certainly more than I received without Ebates. AND, I received a $10 Target gift card for making my first purchase of $25 or more. The gift card has already arrived, so I can tell you that the gift card promo is legitimate.
Some other Ebates perks: The site gives you available coupon codes for each retailer you visit, like codes for a percent off purchase or free shipping. By using Ebates, you won't have to seek these out on your own. Also, during the holiday shopping season, many retailers are offering double cash back (or more) through Ebates. For example, instead of 2%, Old Navy is currently offering 7% cash back. Snapfish is offering 20% instead of 10%.
If you've managed to read through my rambling and story telling, I invite you to check out Ebates, and let me know what you think!