I prefer to do my holiday shopping locally, which is why you would have found me out buying gifts in Bucks County last Friday night. I purchased gift cards to local shops, bottles of locally made olive oil, and shopping bags full of toys from a year-old toy store with locations in New Hope and Frenchtown, New Jersey.
Sometimes, though, what you want to get you can’t get in the corner shop. For example, magazine subscriptions. You have no choice but to call a toll-free number or to order them online.
Which is why I recently had to go online and purchase a magazine subscription for one of the people on my gift list. But I didn’t go to the magazine’s website to make my order. I started my shopping at Ebates, the online portal where you’ll get cash back for a percentage of your purchase.
I ended up finding a great deal on subscriptions, via Ebates, on Magazines.com. And in that single Christmas present purchase, I earned $30 cash back.
Here is what I’ve written about Ebates in the past:
Most commonly I will shop through Ebates.com. In the past few months I have purchased skincare products, shoes, and big-and-tall shirts for my husband via links on Ebates.com. Thanks to those purchases I’ve had more than $50 deposited in my PayPal account as my cash back.
Actually, since writing that post in July, I’ve done more online shopping through Ebates. And as of today my total cash back in 2012 is $183.02–for purchases I was going to make anyway! And that doesn’t yet include the aforementioned $30 cash back, since Ebates deposits the cash back free money in your PayPal account quarterly and I received my last “payment” in November.
My only “complaint” about Ebates? Not every site where I like to shop online participates. For example, Zappos isn’t on there, and only certain categories of Amazon.com qualify for cash back. And clearly if you want to shop locally, you likely won’t find the little guys on Ebates.
However, if you like this idea of earning free cash back when shopping online, I have included an Ebates widget at the top of this post to help you see current cash back offers and to make it easier to shop on the site.
Full disclosure: Ebates does share a little bit of money with me if you click through to the site and shop.