This is a repeat post from Thanksgiving weekend of last year. I thought I’d share the info on Ebates again this year because I really do think it’s an awesome way to save $$ on holiday shopping.
I have more than a few friends who seem to be kind of genius when it come to finding, organizing and using coupons, discounts and rebates when they shop – online and off. And then there are the folks you see on TV shows and on various websites devoted to “extreme couponing” who have made saving $$$ this way into a sort of full time job for themselves.
Me, not so much.
I admire people who are really good at this whole supercharged saving thing, and to be sure, I love a good discount as much as the next girl. But honestly, I have enough trouble just keeping up with my debit card and email inbox on a day to day basis. I really do. The complexity of couponing as a way of life or even as an organized budget-helping strategy intimidates the heck out of me. Also, as a very busy person juggling many different things with work and family, I am a subscriber to the “time is money” life philosophy, and frankly, chasing down and keeping up with all the coupons, rebates and discounts floating around out there almost always seems like more trouble than it’s worth.
Enter my new online shopping crush: Ebates.
I’m sure some of y’all already know about EBates and have been using it to shop online, but I’m a new convert, and thus, I am still in that early stage of new convert fanaticism where I’m so excited by my discovery that I feel the compulsion to prosyletize to anyone I can get to listen.
(And today is YOUR lucky day!)
So here’s the basic deal: Ebates is a web site – an online portal, if you prefer the technical term – and when you start your online shopping excursions by first passing through the EBates web site before heading out to one of the more than 1,000 retailers affiliated with it (examples: Sears, Gap, Barnes and Noble, Children’s Place, Best Buy, Land’s End, Old Navy, Lowe’s Sephora….), you then receive cash back on every item you purchase. It’s honest to goodness just that simple.
And they actually pay you in cash money. It’s not some complicated scheme; instead, when you sign up with the site the first time (a simple process that took me less than 20 seconds and was as easy as giving them my name and an email address), they immediately give you a $5 sign-on thank you, and then you can indicate how to want to get the cash back you earn at the end of every 3 month quarter.
You can choose to have your cash:
1 -Deposited in your PayPal account
2 -Mailed directly to you in check form
3- Distributed directly to the charity or non-profit of your choice (and if this is what you decide to do when you sign up with Ebates, please consider designating Henry’s Fund, which is where I will be donating any Ebates cash back I earn in the year ahead.)
The best way to explain it is that when you start an online shopping trip by going through the Ebates portal, it ends up working pretty much like one of the very popular cash rewards credit card programs where you earn a percentage of cash back every time you use the card.
But wait! There’s more!
If you use Ebates when you start an online shopping excursion, it automatically alerts you to any existing coupons, discounts or rebates being offered by whatever retailer you visit through the Ebates site. So in my case, I am no longer feeling guilty that I’m not tracking down the special deals I know are out there; I let Ebates do it for me, and any savings I rack up that way are separate from the cash back dealio that I’m also getting when I enter retailers through the Ebates site portal.
Last, but not least, Ebates, like Zulily offers referral bonuses when you send folks their way, which is why if any of y’all DO decide to give Ebates a try, I hope you’ll consider letting me refer you this first time via this blog post (after which you should then refer all your own friends and fam.)
This is definitely one of those “sounds too good to be true” things, so when I had it explained to me, and before actually signing up with Ebates, I did a little checking to make sure it was legit. And it absolutely is.
Also – and this is kind of a biggie – if you sign up with Ebates TODAY, the day after Thanksgiving, more than 500 retailers (big ones – ones you will likely use for some of your holiday shopping anyway) are offering double cash back on every purchase made through Ebates before midnight tonight.
So there you have it; my paean to Ebates. Before I end my love letter, though, I want to be clear that this is NOT a sponsored review, nor have I ever met, heard from, corresponded with or otherwise had any contact with anyone from this company. Nope, this is just me sharing some info with y’all on a cool way to save money when you shop.
I know that Ebates is only one of the shopping rewards and coupon-finding sites out there. There are others that people seem to like as well. In the comments below, share your best online shopping saving ideas and resources, and let’s all spend less $$$ this holiday season.
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