If you have an Ebates account, you may have noticed something new in the banner area –
Ebates is now Rakuten
Why Did Ebates Change its Name?
According to the Ebates/Rakuten website, “taking the Rakuten name most accurately reflects who we are today: a company that gives you all the Cash Back you’re used to, with even more opportunities to save.”
Frankly, I’m surprised it didn’t happen sooner!
Disclosure: This post contain a referral link, which means I’ll be receive a monetary bonus should you choose to sign up. For more information on my policies and disclosures, visit this page.
What is Rakuten?
Rakuten is a Japanese marketing company that acquired Ebates in 2014, but it wasn’t until the 2019 Superbowl that they began to really publicize the merge.
I’ve actually been a part of Rakuten for nearly as long, as it’s one of the ways I make money with affiliate marketing.
Rakuten itself was originally Buy.com (founded in 1997) but they were then bought out by the Japanese company in 2010 as an attempt to enter the American market. They actually became a very close competitor with Amazon before the buy out!
Not only that, but if you were someone who made money selling on Ebay around 2008, you may very well remember Buy.com. They formed a partnership with Ebay and quickly became their top seller, but were not charged listing fees – something that angered a lot of independent sellers.
Maybe this is my nerdy side coming out, but I find the growth of this company to be fascinating (all the more with their Ebates merge, too!)
How do You Pronounce Rakuten?
It’s certainly not as easy to say as Ebates, but it’s still just as easy to use!
Is Rakuten legit?
Rakuten is truly such a great way to make money!
If you’re new to Ebates (or Rakuten), it’s a site that allows you to earn cash back if you click through their links before shopping. Even better, they’ve recently added an “in-store” option!
The best part is that you don’t have to do anything special, you just click through and shop like you normally would.
How to Sign Up for Rakuten
First, create an account by clicking HERE! By signing up through this link, you’ll earn an automatic $10 after your first $25+ shopping trip – not bad for 30 seconds of work, yeah?
How Does Rakuten Work?
Rakuten incentivizes shoppers to go through their platform by offering a certain percentage back on their purchase. While this may seem nonsensical on the surface, it’s actually a win-win for everyone.
A customer may not be set on buying anything today, until they see that the shop is offering 8% back through Rakuten today only – a win for the shop as the buyer is now all the more eager to buy.
Then not only does the buyer earn that 8% back, but Rakuten will get a small commission from the shop as well.
Using Gift Cards with Rakuten
If you’re planning to do a lot of shopping, this is my top tip (it’s the best way to save during the holiday season!)
If you know ahead of time that you’ll be shopping at a certain retailer, be on the lookout for discounted gift cards through sites like Raise.com. Even if you don’t do a lot of online shopping, be sure to check out Raise.com – if you know you spend money on a regular basis somewhere (like a certain gas station!), why not buy gift cards for yourself and save even more?
For example, I recently purchased a $50 Kohl’s gift card for $41.90. Then I made a purchase through Rakuten for $53, using mainly that gift card and earning myself a nice $4.24 back. So instead of spending the full $53, I’m actually only looking at a total spent of $37.66.
More Rakuten Tips and Tricks
First, make sure you’ve got the Rakuten extension downloaded for your browser!
Just check out the bottom of the Rakuten homepage to download. This way you don’t even have to worry about going through the site first when you’re browsing your favorite shopping site – seriously, could it get any easier to make money with this?
Just check out the footer on their homepage for more information, but basically it allows you to earn even MORE cash back (typically an additional 3%). So in my above gift card example, if I used my Rakuten card, I could’ve only spent $36.07 on a $53 purchase. LOVE IT!
In-Store Shopping with Rakuten
Something else you can do to make even more money back is to choose to “pick up in-store” while still shopping online. This is especially great if you’re prone to impulse purchases at your favorite store or if you want to save time when running errands. Not only will you earn that cash back you wouldn’t otherwise, but you can run in, pick up your stuff, and get on your way!
Coupon Codes with Rakuten
Another great thing about Rakuten is that you can combine the cash back you’re earning with any coupons available. They even have coupon codes right there for you – no need to hunt down a mailer you got or sift through e-mails. It’s especially easy if you’re using the mobile app or the browser extension.
How to Refer Friends to Rakuten
Finally, you can of course refer your friends to Rakuten. By just referring THREE friends, you can earn $75! How awesome is that?
Rakuten Proof of Payment
Just in case you’re still not totally sold on Rakuten, check out just how much money I would have otherwise lost out on last quarter were it not for shopping with this cash back app:
So to re-cap:
- Rakuten membership is free.
- There’s no limit to how much Cash Back you can earn.
- There are no rebate forms to mail in or points to count— they just send you your Cash Back, no strings attached.
- Literally everyone should sign up!
Despite the new name, Rakuten is Ebates and there’s no catch here – so sign up today!