How to Get Cash Back from Shopping Online with Ebates

As the holidays draw nearer, one thing is for certain: you need to buy stuff. Whether it’s holiday gifts for loved ones, a new dress or fancy shoes for a special event, or gluten-free treats to bring to a holiday gathering, you’re certain to be doing plenty of shopping this season. So why not get a little cash back on your purchases with Ebates?

What is Ebates?

Ebates is a website where you can earn cash back for shopping. It might sound too good to be true, but I assure you, it’s totally true. I’ve been using the site for 4 years and have made over a thousand dollars through it!

How It Works

Ebates is free to join and use. (When you join, you even get to pick out a free $10 gift card bonus from a selection of stores!) Once you join, each time you go shopping at an online retailer, first log in to Ebates and see if the store you want to shop at gives cash back. If you see them listed, then on the Ebates site, click through to that store. That will open up a tracking ticket and, if you make a purchase at that store, you should get cash back through Ebates. You can see your pending cash back at any time on the Ebates website, and you get paid cash back (your “Big Fat Payment”) quarterly—you can choose to receive it as a check, a gift card to a store you choose, or via Paypal.

How You Can Save and Make Money with Ebates

  • Free welcome gift: As I mentioned above, you can pick out a free $10 gift card bonus from a selection of stores. You will receive your gift card after your first qualifying $25 purchase through Ebates.
  • Cash back: The whole point of Ebates is to earn cash back! If you’re going to shop online anyway, there’s no reason not to try Ebates. It can help you get money back each time you make a purchase at a store that’s linked up with Ebates.
  • Coupons and discount codes: When you visit a store’s page on Ebates, you may be shown some coupon and discount codes that you can use if you make a purchase at that store. So you can save twice—via cash back and a discount. Yay!
  • Referral credits: If you refer friends to Ebates, you can earn more cash back! Referral bonuses start at $5 and get much, much bigger depending on how many people you refer! It’s another great way to earn a little extra cash. Speaking of referrals, here’s my referral link to join Ebates! (That means that if you use my link to join Ebates, and you make a purchase, I get $5 for referring you. It doesn’t cost you a thing, and it’s money in my pocket.)

My Experience with Ebates

I’ve been thrilled with Ebates so far. I do a lot more online shopping than in-person shopping at brick and mortar stores, so Ebates is right up my alley. I like that so many of my favorite stores are on Ebates, and I like that I can get paid my cash back via Paypal each quarter. I also like that I can see my pending cash back at any time, and that if I think I earned cash back that isn’t showing up, I can open up a ticket and the problem is generally rectified quickly.

But of course, what I like most is the money!

Here’s a screenshot of how much I’ve earned on Ebates during the years that I’ve been using it. It also shows my pending cash back for this quarter (and that’s before I’ve even done a lot of holiday shopping!).

nikki totals

And here’s a screenshot of my quarterly Big Fat Payments that I’ve received from Ebates. All I’ve done to earn that cash back is shop online at stores I was already planning on shopping at anyway!

nikki payments

How You Can Get Started

Once you sign up with Ebates, which you can do here, all you have to do is visit the Ebates site before you shop. So just sign in, search in Ebates for the store you want to shop at, and then click through to shop there. Doing so opens up a tracking ticket, and that’s what makes Ebates know where you’ve shopped and how much you’ve spent—and how much cash back to give you.

Click here to join Ebates for free!

You’ll notice when you’re searching for shops that you see certain percentages next to store names. That’s the percentage of cash back you’ll get for shopping at that store through Ebates. That percentage often changes from day to day. For example, I frequently shop at Sephora, and I have seen Sephora offering 2.5% cash back, 4% cash back, 6% cash back, 8% cash back, and—during a special Ebates promotion—even 16% cash back one time! (If you need to make a large purchase at a store whose cash back percentage fluctuates so much, it may pay—literally—to wait until there’s a larger cash back percentage available before you buy.)

Tips to Maximize Your Ebates Benefits

Once you join Ebates, keep an eye on your email inbox. Ebates may send you alerts about new cash back amounts or special offers at store you already shop at or stores they think you’ll like.

Frequently check your pending cash back. If you think you didn’t get credited with cash back for a shopping trip, go to “Help” and then “Where’s my cash back?” Then fill out a ticket with the information for the order you don’t think got credited to your account. Ebates is pretty quick to check these tickets and make sure the money gets to your account.

I recommend choosing Paypal for your Big Fat Payment. Here’s why. If you choose a gift card to a store, you’re essentially spending, not saving, your hard-earned cash back. And if you’re sent a check, it’s really easy to misplace or lose it. By getting your payments through Paypal, you ensure that you’re getting cash (not gift cards) back that you can use any way you like, and since it’s all electronic, you don’t have to worry about losing some little piece of paper.

If you’re planning on doing any Black Friday shopping online, sign up now for Ebates and check out the site! That way, you can be familiar with it before you go into hardcore shopping mode next week!

Popular Stores that Are on Ebates

Wanna see if your favorite store is on Ebates? Click here to view all the stores that are on Ebates, or look through the stores below—I compiled a list of some of the most popular stores that you may be interested in! (Or click here to see a full list of stores.)

1-800-FLOWERS, A Pea in the Pod, Advance Auto Parts, Aerie and American Eagle, Amazon, American Express Gift Cards, Ashley Furniture, AT&T and AT&T Wireless, Athleta, Babies ‘R Us, Banana Republic, Bark Box, Barnes and Noble, Bass Pro Shops, Bauble Bar, Bed Bath and Beyond, Best Buy, BJ’s, Brooks Brothers, Budget Rent-a-Car and Budget Truck Rental, Cabela’s, Callaway Golf, Canon, Carter’s, The Children’s Place, Coach Handbags, Coldwater Creek, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Crate and Barrel, Crocs, Current Catalog, Days Inn, Dell Consumer & Dell Small Business, Disney Store, DKNY, Dooney & Bourke, Dress Barn, Dyson, Easy Spirit, Eddie Bauer, Elizabeth Arden, Enterprise Rent a Car, Estee Lauder, Etsy, Expedia, Express, FedEx Office, Food Network Store, Game Stop, Gap, Gordon’s Jewelers, Groupon, GUESS, Guitar Center, Gymboree, Hanes, Helzberg Diamonds, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn, Home Depot, Hot Topic,, Hush Puppies, J. Crew, JCPenney,, Jockey, Justice, Keds, Keurig,, Kohl’s, L.L. Bean, Lady Foot Locker, Lands’ End, Lane Bryant, Lee Jeans, LEGO, Lenox, Levi’s, The Limited, LivingSocial, Lord and Taylor, Lowe’s, Macy’s,, Melissa & Doug, Michael Kors, Motherhood Maternity, National Geographic Store, Naturalizer, Neiman Marcus, New Balance, New York & Company, Nike, Nine West, Nordstrom, The North Face, Oakley, Office Depot & Office Max, Old Navy, Orbitz, Osh Kosh B’Gosh,, Petco, PetSmart, Pottery Barn, Priceline, Puma, Quality Inn, QVC, Radisson Hotels & Resorts, Ralph Lauren, Reebok, Rockport, Sam’s Club, Samsonite, Samsung, Saucony, Sears, Shutterfly, Sleepy’s, Snapfish, Staples, Stride Rite, Sunglass Hut, Talbots, Target, Things Remembered, TOMS Shoes, Travelocity, TurboTax, Under Armour, Vera Bradley, Victoria’s Secret, Walmart, White House Black Market, Wilsons Leather, Zales, Zipcar, Zulily

Stores that Sell Gluten-Free Food

Cheryl’s,, Groupon, Jelly Belly, Legal Sea Foods, Omaha Steaks,, Stash Tea, Vitacost

Stores that Sell Gluten-Free Beauty and Personal Care Products

Amazon, Avon,, The Body Shop,, Juice Beauty, Sephora, Tarte Cosmetics, Ulta

Happy shopping—and happy saving—with Ebates this holiday season!

Note: This post contains my referral link for Ebates. If you click and join Ebates through my link, it costs you nothing, and I could earn a little money. Earning money through referrals for sites I personally love and proudly endorse, like Ebates, helps me cover the costs of running Cheap & Easy Gluten Free. Remember, I don’t promote stuff on this site unless I love it and feel good about recommending it to you!


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