Did you know that you could get paid to buy stuff online? This includes online arbitrage sourcing too! In this post, we’ll talk about earning money via online buying through Rakuten (formerly Ebates). But first I want to give you a hypothetical sourcing scenario. Let’s say you have a BOLO (Be On the Look Out) list of great items to buy from a local Walmart, and all you need to do is go to Walmart and buy these items to send in to FBA. You only have time and money to go to one Walmart today and get this shipment sent in, and there are two Walmarts equal driving distance from your house. Both stores have the exact same items in stock in sufficient quantities for you to buy and make a great FBA shipment. The catch: One Walmart has prices 5-10% cheaper than the other. Which store would you choose? No question, you’d choose to source at the Walmart with the cheaper prices.
Now, we all know this is a hypothetical situation because Walmarts in the same geographic area typically have the same prices, so set that component of this scenario aside. I’m just trying to get you thinking about this concept: if all other factors are the same, every one of us FBA sellers would choose to source items at a lower price. If we didn’t, we would be wasting money and leaving profits on the table.
This exact scenario is the choice you face every time you make an online purchase and don’t use Rakuten as you complete your purchase. If you use Rakuten, you could potentially be earning a percentage of cash back on every purchase – so essentially, if you don’t use Rakuten, you’re paying a higher price for your purchases than you need to.
How Rakuten Works
Rakuten is a cash back program that allows you to earn a percentage of money back on every online purchase you make when you visit websites through the Rakuten link. Online stores pay Rakuten a commission for sending customers their way, and Rakuten shares that commission with you, the customer.
Are you more of a retail arbitrage reseller? Rakuten lets you link your credit/debit card to your Rakuten account so you can earn cash back with RA purchases too!
It’s so simple – you shop at your favorite stores (over 3500 to chose from), you accumulate cash back in your account, and you get paid through a check or PayPal once a quarter. You don’t need to do anything differently with your online purchases other than make sure you’re visiting online stores through the Rakuten link. It doesn’t take long for your cash back total to start adding up to a nice Big Fat Check (the name Rakuten gives the checks they send out once a quarter). Be sure to read to the end of this post to find out about a $10 welcome gift for new Rakuten users.
Benefits of Using Rakuten
- Increase ROI on resale purchases – For us, the number one way we earn cash back from Rakuten is through our online arbitrage purchases. We do a significant portion of our FBA sourcing through OA, so we get a large chunk of cash back every quarter on those purchases. Earning cash back is one way to increase your ROI (return on investment) and make more money in your FBA business. Connect your credit/debit card to Rakuten to get cash back on your RA purchases too!
- Cash back on your business supplies and travel expenses – You can also use Rakuten to earn cash back on business expenses, such as office supplies and travel expenses. Rebecca uses Rakuten to book our hotels and flights on websites like Travelocity and Priceline, and the percentage discount for our travel can add up quickly.
- Cash back on personal shopping – We also use Rakuten for our personal online shopping as well, whether we’re looking for clothes for the kids or gifts for various occasions. This time of year (Q4, as I write) is when Rakuten can be golden – all your holiday gifts and Black Friday purchases can be earning you cash back!
- Simple process if you use the Chrome extension – The Rakuten concept is already pretty easy – just go to the Rakuten site, search for the store where you want to shop, then click their link to begin shopping. But the process becomes even easier if you use the Rakuten Chrome extension or Safari button. With one click of the extension, you can activate Rakuten on your purchase directly from an online store, without having to navigate to the Rakuten website first. What could be easier?!
- Coupon codes when available – Rakuten also does the boring work of looking up coupon codes for you. Once you’ve activated the Rakuten extension and you’re getting ready to complete your purchase, Rakuten will give you a notification if there are coupon codes available for that online store. You can save even more money with Rakuten’s help with coupon codes!
- Triple cash back opportunities during special events or holidays – During certain times of the year, stores will offer an even higher percentage off for Rakuten customers, as a way to encourage shopping on their site. You should be on the lookout for percentages as high as 15% cash back around Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and both double and triple cash back on other big online shopping days.
Negatives of Using Rakuten
There really is no good reason not to sign up with Rakuten and start earning cash back now. In fact, if you check the comments below for this blog post, everyone is singing the praises of Rakuten! The cash back process really works and is so simple. I seriously see no downside of using Rakuten!
Personally, our family loves earning cash back from Rakuten and saving it to go towards our family vacation each summer. One summer we used Rakuten to take our kids to their favorite vacation spot in the Davis Mountains. Another year we used our Rakuten cash to take them on an unforgettable trip to the Grand Canyon. Each year, Rakuten helps us go on vacations.
Get $40 Bonus from Rakuten?
Are you already using Rakuten? If not, you should sign up today! Don’t let any more shopping get by you without starting to earn cash back. As a welcome to the program, Rakuten is offering a $25 gift if you sign up through this link. That’s free money on top of free money, and you can’t beat that.
Are you using Rakuten? If so, let us know in the comments below how much you’ve enjoyed your Big Fat Checks!
The Reseller’s Guide to Online Arbitrage
Using Rakuten is just the tip of the iceberg of the amazing strategies we teach in our popular OA course. If you want to add or improve your existing online arbitrage (OA) sourcing skills, then check out our course: The Reseller’s Guide to Online Arbitrage: Grow Your Amazon FBA Business With Online Sourcing Profits.
The course is a combination video course (5+ hours of OA training) and a companion 100+ page ebook. The videos and book both share the exact same content (so you can pick the format you most like to learn from). The course also comes with six time-saving and money-making bonuses all at no additional charge!
Jo Ann Zimmerman says
Rakuten is fantastic! I use it in-store as well as online for my business AND personal purchases. Four times a year I get a BIG FAT CHECK just for buying things I was going to buy anyway! I used my last Rakuten check to buy my daughter in Savannah a plane ticket so she could fly home for the holidays, which is priceless! I mean, who WOULDN’T want to get cash for shopping, especially when it is so easy.
I love Rakuten because there is no down side to it. Im shopping anyway, and now I get cash rebates to do it!! Now they also have in store Rakuten, so its a win win. I will use the money to buy gifts for my friends nieces and nephews this Christmas. She passed away in October and I want them to know their aunts friends love them too.
You’re an angel!
Rakuten is fantastic! It’s extremely easy to use and I have received thousands of dollars back for inventory and personal shopping.
Diane Mashburn says
Love Rakuten! It’s great especially since you can get cash back both in-store, online, and now I’ve discovered getting it on pick up in store orders too! As I get bigger into OA, I think it’s going to be even better for me.
This last time it was time to get my “Big Fat Check”, I received it instantly and even upped the amount I got because I turned it into an e-gift card for a store I already do RA at so BONUS!
Matt Feato says
Rakuten is probably the best one to use overall as it consistently pays out. Other sites can delay payments, or not even track and pay properly.
JoAnna DuBose says
I love Rakuten! I use it for all of my online purchases whether it’s for resell or personal. I’ve set up my account to have Rakuten deposit my “big fat checks” directly into my PayPal account, which makes it super easy for me to use right away to purchase more inventory.
Cheryl Harp says
Rakuten is a great help. I did not know I could link my card! I do a lot of RA….Thanks Stephen!