Best cashback sites: how to get your refunds

24 January 2018

Making money online is a question that has always been in the focus of all Internet users seeking for freebies and short paths to cash: they click on the links, participate in the surveys or test some games for small rewards. Some users opt for combining the useful with the pleasant: get cashback on making purchases. This is where cashback websites become necessary.

What is a cashback website?

Cashback websites are developed for customers shopping online and looking for some rebates or refunds for purchasing selected items. Unlike special refunding or cashback programs offered by retailers, which cover only specific types of goods, cashback websites usually offer access to refunding for the whole range of products sold on the website of a participating online retailer.

Cashback websites derive their profit from the affiliate program: they drive the traffic to their member retailer, and the retailer pays some commission for attracting new customers. Thus, cashback websites share some part of that profit with online shoppers.

Tips from experts

Experts recommend treat cashback websites not as sources of guaranteed rebates or returns, because the websites may also be unprofitable if the retailer fails to pay the commission for their services. That is why customers are strongly advised to view the cashback promised by such websites as a potential bonus.

Besides, it should be noted that cashback offerings do not automatically turn into real cash unless it is transferred to the customer’s bank account. Here comes another trick with the cashbacks: they may be claimed and withdrawn to a bank account only upon achieving the established threshold. Customers will have to wait until their cashback amounts will accumulate into a larger amount to be eligible for withdrawal.

Experts also recommend consumers to be wiser and use their analytical skills, researching the items offered by the retailer on other websites, because high amount of cashback may in fact turn out not worth powder and shot. Some cashback websites may try to trick customers to purchase a mobile phone on a website for a $50 refund if they pay $350 for the device, while another retailer may be offering the same item for just $250.


eBateseBates is one of the most famous cashback websites known today. It is based in San Francisco and operates as a portal for online shoppers to access coupons, rebates and refunds from major retailers in the United States. eBates has over 2,000 online retailers subscribed to its platform. The website was repeatedly featured on the New York Times, CNN and The Wall Street Journal. eBates offers one of the highest cashbacks at the rate of 40% for its select stores. The website owners reported that they have paid over $100 million in cashback to customers to date.

In 2016 eBates introduced a new feature called ‘In-Store Cash Back’, a program allowing customers shopping at physical retail locations affiliated with eBates, to access refunds and rebates. In their account with eBates users link their eligible credit card to the offering available with physical retailers and when they make purchase and pay with that card at the checkout the purchased is traced back to the information in their account and a customer gets a refund. provides one of the most generous cashbacks online for purchases made with more than 3,000 online retailers, including major networks such as Walmart, Kohls and others. After a shopper reaches a threshold of $20 on their account on the website of ShopAtHome, the cashback website sends a check by mail.

Marc Braunstein, CEO and founder of ShopAtHome, noted that the website is all about helping their customers to save money. ShopAtHome provides access to over 120 thousand coupons from over 50 thousand stores apart from cashback, exclusive deals and rewards for shopping activity.


SwagbucksSwagbucks, an El Segundo, California-based online reward website, offers consumers to get access to refunds for their online shopping activity, which among other things includes searching, participating in surveys, mini-games and shopping, of course. Customers get points accrued on their accounts for their activity and after reaching certain limit, they may redeem these points into gift cards, money sent to PayPal account or other types of rewards.

According to the data available as of September 2017, Swagbucks is serving over 12 million members with over $200 million paid in rewards to the members so far. Swagbucks is available for consumers in the United States, Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, Germany and India. In 2014 Ernst and Young awarded Josef Gorowits, founder of Prodege, a firm operating Swagbucks, the Entrepreneur of the Year award in the Advertising Category.


TopcashbackTopcashback is a UK-based online reward company providing cashback, vouchers and product comparison instruments to customers shopping from the United Kingdom, United States and India. Topcashback website virtually in all cases pays the whole amount of cashback bonus provided by participating retailers, making profits on generating large volumes of sales for the merchants. There are two membership categories for online shoppers: they may select the free membership or a 5 pounds membership dubbed ‘Plus membership’. With Plus membership online shoppers get a 5% bonus on the top of the standard cashback offering. Thus, a 100 pounds cashback deal will in fact net 105 pounds for a Plus member shopper.

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