Whenever you shop online, you should do two things before a check-out:
Find Online Coupons and Online Shopping Portal
Online Shopping Portals are referral sites. They refer merchants and coupons. When you click links and use coupons on their websites and make a purchase, they get a commission from merchants for driving traffic. And then they share a commission with you. Cash back rates vary from portal to portal. You need to find the best portal for a merchant you are going to shop. You can compare cash back rates on these websites. cashbackholic, cashbackmonitor
Chase, Citi, and Discover credit cards offer a usage of their own portals. (Chase Ultimate Rewards / Citi Bonus Cash Center / ShopDiscover) Among them, ShopDiscover has better cash back rate. Plus, they have various and better options to redeem the rewards. Please read the post “Discover it Card Review” for more details.
If you don’t have any credit cards that have online shopping portals, don’t worry. There are a lot of portal sites offer the same or even better cash back rate. They are free to join. You don’t have to wait at all. Just create an account and start earning cash back today! Here are some featured portals.
BeFrugal offers better cash rates on many merchants. That’s why I earn the second most cash back (ShopDiscover is the most.) The design of the sites is very neat, so you can track your click history and cash back activity. Most importantly, they describe cash back terms of each merchant very clearly. As long as you follow the rules described in terms, your cash back is guaranteed. Sign up through this link and make your first purchase, you will get $5 bonus.
- Better cash back rates
- Detailed cash back terms
- Takes 30 to 90 days to confirm cash back
Featured Merchants: American Express Gift Card 3%, Cardpool 2%, CardCash 2%, Raise 2% (as of Aug, 2014)
Topcashback also has better cash back rate on many merchants, but as compared with BeFrugal, it has fewer merchants and equal or less cash back rate. Cash back terms are described as detailed as BeFrugal. Plus Tracking Stats, which is on the right-hand side of each merchant detailed page, is very helpful. Sign up through this link and make your first purchase, you will get $10 bonus.
- Relatively better cash back rates
- No threshold to request payment
- Covered fewer merchants that BeFrugal.com
Featured Merchants: American Express Gift Card 3%, Cardpool 4% (when you sell), Raise $1.50 (per list for sale) (as of Aug, 2014)
BigCrumbs Cash back rates of BigCrumbs are very low. However, you should know about this site if you buy gift cards on eBay. BigCrumbs pays 0.5% cash back on eBay purchase in ALL categories, even gift cards. There is no sign up bonus. Click here to visit BigCrumbs.com. Pros 0.5% cash back on eBay purchase in ANY categories Cons Very low cash back rates for most merchants Featured Merchants: eBay 0.5%, Newegg 2.4% (as of Aug, 2014)
Poor design of the whole website, it is hard to find whatever you are looking for. Cash back terms lack details. QuickRewards Network is the only website that offer 1% cash back on GiftCards.com purchases. I bought many discounted gift cards at GiftCards.com, but QuickRewards never paid cash back. The terms don’t say, but it seems that discounted gift cards are not eligible for cash back. I didn’t bother to call and ask. I just stayed away and thought it would never use this site again……. until I found that they paid 2.5% cash back on a purchase of gift cards at Staples.com. There is no sign up bonus. Click here to visit QuickRewards.net.
- 2.5% cash back on gift card purchase at Staples.com (e-gift cards are also eligible)
- 1% cash back on Visa gift card and other full price gift cards at GiftCards.com
- Earned cash back are available to redeem very quickly
- Lack of details on each cash back term
- Poor design of the website
Featured Merchants: Staples 2.5%, GiftCards 1% (as of Aug, 2014)
Active Junky has only outdoor gear shops. And they offer very good cash back for all merchants. When you shop through Active Junky with online coupons, you can get a great discount. There is no sign up bonus. Click here to visit Activejunky.com.
- Better cash back rates
- It has only outdoor gear shops
- Payment quarterly only
Featured Merchants: Eastern Mountain Sports 12%, Patagonia 6%, backcountry.com 14%
These are all sites I am regularly using. There are tons of other sites on the internet, and I have used some other sites, but I keep using only sites introduced above. Happy Saving!