Early in 2017 I was looking for ways to save extra money for a big trip. One thing that I discovered was Shopping Portals. There are quite a few Shopping Portals available to choose from. You may find that there are even some attached to other Rewards programs you are signed up for. The process to use them is really quite easy so why not take advantage of the Savings and Rebates that they offer you.
A Shopping Portal is a Website that offers incentives when you use their Referral Links. By clicking through their site to the online merchant you will be making a purchase from, they make a small commission. The Shopping Portal passes a portion of that commission on to you.
I like to keep things as simple as possible. Therefore, I have chosen to stick with Ebates and Ibotta for Shopping Portals. This means less places to keep track of for me. Since I already have a relationship with Ibotta for Grocery Rebates, I use them as a secondary Shopping Portal if they have a better offer or Bonus than Ebates. But I prefer to use Ebates as my primary because they provide better Tracking for Rebates and the Payout Plan for Online purchases is more predictable (with less double checking required) than Ibotta.
Some of the best Rebates my friends have used on the Ibotta Portal.
- A $42 sign on bonus from Blue Apron
- A $39 Rebate from Expedia
- A $17 Rebate from IHG Hotels
- A $15 Rebate from Priceline
- A $20 Rebate from Groupon
Make sure you understand and plan for the Processing Time for any Rebate you are about to use. For some rebates it may only be only a few days, while others are weeks or months down the road. If the Rebate is based on a travel reservation, the clock usually starts after the travel has been completed.
As I have used the Portals, I have also discovered many ways to increase my earnings.
- Stacking Deals – Using the Portal to purchase from a site already offering a Deal or Discount allows you to get both the Rebate and the Discount.
- Bonuses – The Portal may offer a bonus for a certain kind of transaction on their site (Recently there was a $5 Bonus for any Mobile Shopping order on Ibotta). Just make sure to follow the transaction through to make sure you get the bonus when the offer has been completed.
- Coupons/Promo Codes – If you are making a purchase through a Portal, you are usually still able to use any merchant coupons or promo codes that you might have. (I recently had a 20% coupon of my entire order from a Merchant and still got the 10% Rebate from the Portal)
- Promotions – Especially near the holidays, watch for all types of promotions from the Portals to entice you to shop through them. High Rebate Percentages, Free Shipping, or Bonuses for making a particular number of purchases.
- Knowing when to Shop – Ebates has a Category called Travel Thursday. If I am looking to book some kind of travel, I check their website on Thursdays to see if there is a higher Rebate Percentage available. If you have the advantage of not being in a rush to purchase, check back daily over the course of a week to see if a higher Rebate appears.
- Order online/Pick up in Store -Need your item right away but still want a Rebate? Buying a large or expensive item? See if the Merchant has an Order online and Pick up in Store option. By utilizing this feature, you still qualify for a rebate and can have your item the same day. (I did this at Lowes when I ordered a $400 grill for my husband and scored a $40 rebate. But I have also used it for items I needed that day from Kohls or Target)
If using a Shopping Portal sounds like something that interests you, research them online to see which program fits your needs the best. Check to see if there is a sign on Bonus with a spend requirement and try to complete the spend in time to capture that free bonus money.
Here are my Referral Codes, if you sign up with they I will get a small bonus and you will get a $10 sing up bonus once completing your initial spend requirement.
Don’t overlook travel deals. Travel vendors will be putting out huge sales over the holidays too. Plan your 2019 trips and make your Reservations taking advantage of Merchant Deals stacked with Portal Rebates! Save your money to spend on the fun stuff!
Last holiday season was the my first year using a Portal and I earned over a $100 in Rebates by utilizing the Ebates Shopping Portal.
Get signed up soon so that you can take advantage of Black Friday and Holiday deals that will be happening from the end of November through Christmas.
Make a list of things that you know you will be purchasing and Merchants you may shop at. Start matching the items on your list to the best deals from the Merchants on the Shopping Portal that you choose. Have fun and hope you can save a ton of money.