Welcome, Good Morning America Now Viewers!

October 15, 2008 · 1 comment

I want to welcome all of my new site visitors stopping by after the interview on Good Morning America Now! Glad to have you here! I’ve been running CompareRewards.com for seven years and I’ve been using rewards programs to save and earn money online since 1997, when I left my job to become a stay-at-home mom and was looking for ways to stretch the family dollar. This may be the first you’re hearing of these programs, but they’ve been around since back then! (They’re not that big of a secret, though — some rewards programs have nearly 10 million members!)
I could have filled several entire shows with information to help you make the most of your tightening budget, but with limited time I had to just give you some guidelines and mention a few online stores you may not have heard of before that offer outstanding bargains. If you’ll take a few minutes to read this post, I’ll give you a lot more information that will help you save and maybe even EARN real money online.
A rewards program is just a fancy term for a website that gives you something back for doing something online.
Shopping rewards programs, the kind I talk about most here on CompareRewards.com, are like big electronic malls. They collect links to many online stores and put them in one place. Instead of going directly to, say, Walmart.com to shop, if you first go to a rewards program’s website, then click through THEIR link to Walmart.com, the rewards program will get a commission, which they share with you in the form of a cashback rebate or points (similar to frequent flyer miles) that you can redeem for gift cards or merchandise. A couple of extra clicks to shop through the rewards program’s link to your desired store instead of going directly to the store’s site can mean up to 30% in cash back! AND, when you can combine cash back with other promotions, like coupon codes for free shipping or 20% off your order total, plus whatever sales the store has going on at the time, you can see how the savings add up!
Here are a few of my favorite online shopping rewards programs, sites I can recommend to you with NO hesitation. They are totally free to join, they have great shopping rebates, and they pay reliably.
Ebates.com : Great cash back for shopping, plus $10 when you join and make your first purchase with their link to one of over a thousand participating stores. Get paid quarterly by check or PayPal when your shopping rebates are over $5. They provide coupon codes for you to combine with their cash back rebates and they feature a daily double-rebate merchant and a shopping blog. They’ve been in business since ’99, have 6 million members who’ve spent over $1 billion through the site’s links, and the company’s got a good BBB report…that pretty much says it all.
QuickRewards.net: In its sixth year of operation, QuickRewards.net (don’t forget it’s a .net!) also offers very good shopping rates, a little lower than Ebates.com but the trade-off is that you don’t have to wait a quarter to get paid — you can shop, request your cashback to be paid to your PayPal account, and receive it all within a week. If you’d prefer a physical gift card, you can choose cards from stores like Walmart or Disney, or request electronic gift cards to stores like Amazon.com! Great shopping finds are posted daily to their deal blog by yours truly, too. ;) AND, QuickRewards.net provides ways for you to earn besides just shopping, for instance, by completing surveys, entering contests, even playing games. An exclusive promotion for GMA viewers: join QuickRewards.net before Sunday at this link and either place one shopping order, or if you’re short on cash, complete one survey on the site, and they’ll give you a bonus $3 to your account. Request it right away to PayPal if you’d like, and see how fast they pay!
RewardShopping.com: Although the shopping component of the Superpoints Network is relatively new, their search-and-win site LuckySearch has been up for a year. RewardShopping is growing fast, though, as they’re adding dozens of merchants a day. Unlike Ebates and QuickRewards.net, here you’ll earn points per dollar (instead of a % cash back) when you shop through the site’s links to your favorite stores. You can then cash the points in for gift cards or merchandise like Wii’s. Their rates are still very good when you calculate out the value of the points. While they don’t have coupon codes available on the site yet, they’re working on it! Also, you can supplement what you earn from shopping if you’re randomly picked to win points while using their search engine (and if you refer the site to a friend, and they search-and-win, you win, too) and you get 15 points (worth 15c) each time one of your friends shops. This is another site that pays FAST: shop, cashout, and they’ll send out your gift card or merchandise prize within a week or so.
To summarize: join a shopping rewards program website (a giant electronic mall) and click through THEIR link to Walmart.com or your favorite merchant instead of going to the store’s website directly, and you will earn a reward — cash, gift cards, or merchandise. That’s the bottom line.
If I can provide any additional information or recommendations, or if you have any questions at all about how these programs work, PLEASE don’t hesitate to ask! I was new at this stuff once myself — just send me an email and I will get right back with you. We’re all in the same boat, trying to get more bang for our buck. And with Christmas right around the corner, now is the best time to join an online shopping rewards program!
In about two weeks I’ll be releasing my annual shopping rebate comparison chart that will tell you where to shop to get the best cash back at specific merchants this holiday season! To get a reminder when it’s posted, plus a twice-monthly summary of the best tips, news, and reviews posted on CompareRewards, email me with “Subscribe” in the subject line and I’ll set you up to receive the CompareRewards Insider!

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{ 1 comment }

Becky October 16, 2008 at 4:49 am

I don’t want to overwhelm the new folks here but I did want to make a brief follow-up to mention a couple of other sites I like a lot but didn’t make the top 3 cut:
– Other Rewards Programs I Can Recomment With Caveats –
MrRebates: http://www.mrrebates.com?refid=173702 and Extrabux: http://www.extrabux.com/refer/4064961 — similar to Ebates, both offer great rates, provide coupons, and hold cashback for 90 days before you can get paid, but they have a higher minimum to receive your reward ($10 vs. $5)
Microsoft Live Cashback: http://search.live.com/cashback — Great to sometimes AMAZING rates, thousands of stores represented but some huge name stores don’t participate so it’s not a one-stop shopping mall; $5 minimum and 60 day pending period to receive your reward
FatWallet Cash Back: http://www.fatwallet.com/tmm/rewards.php — great rates, awesome deal forum, and no minimum for PayPal but a lengthy 91-121 day pending period before receiving your reward
BondRewards: http://www.bondrewards.com/welcome.jsp?campaignid=CR1 — best rates overall two years in a row but confusing in that you have to halve the rates posted on the site because they’re based on the future, doubled value of a savings bond; high $25 minimum to receive cash instead.

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