With the large number of cashback and rewards websites out there, you might wonder if RebatesMe is worth the trouble.
After all, there are other more well-known websites that may potentially offer better rewards.
This RebatesMe review will help you answer that question.
We’ll touch on what the site is, how it works, and how its earning potential stacks up against the competition.
RebatesMe is a cashback shopping portal in the same vein as more popular options like Swagbucks and Rakuten: after signing up for a RebatesMe account, you can save money by visiting the site, clicking a link to go to your retailer of choice, and then completing your online shopping as usual.
RebatesMe gets a referral fee from the merchant, and they share a little bit of that money with you.
Signing up is quick and easy. Just enter some basic personal information and then you’re ready to start earning cashback.
According to RebatesMe’s LinkedIn page, the company has paid out about $30 million in rebates so far.
RebatesMe Signup Bonus
New members can earn a $5 signup bonus by making a qualifying purchase (one that earns at least $10 in cashback) within a year of joining.
RebatesMe Referral Bonus
RebatesMe offers a $10 referral bonus. Your referrals must use your unique referral code, register for the site and make a qualifying purchase (one that earns at least $10 in cashback) before the commission is credited to your RebatesMe account balance.
RebatesMe Browser Extension
Many cashback rewards sites offer a browser extension. RebatesMe’s extension is called the “Cash Back Button,” and the company claims it can help you earn “up to 55% Cash Back at 3,000+ stores.”
While that may be true in some cases, be aware that 55% would be a major outlier. Most of the time, you’ll earn a cashback rate far lower than that (as we’ll discuss later in this article).
Using the RebatesMe browser extension is easy. Once installed, it will alert you whenever you visit a merchant that’s offering cashback, providing a link to activate the offer.
The RebatesMe app functions identically to the RebatesMe website, but offers a more modern and streamlined interface and is helpful when shopping from your mobile device.
How Much Can You Earn?
To help you compare RebatesMe to other sites, we sampled cashback offer rates from a handful of popular retailers.
These numbers were collected in October 2021, and represent the same merchants we’ve used in our other cashback portal reviews.
Note that RebatesMe offered the best cashback rate for just one store (Macy’s), besting TopCashback by 1%. The portal’s other rates are all over the map, ranging from worst to second best.
In other words, there’s a high likelihood that you can find a better cashback offer on a different site.
Number of Merchants
Another way to compare these popular cashback sites is through the number of retailers they offer.
RebatesMe has a solid stable of partnered merchants.
|Number of Stores||2,957||2,750||2,829||4,901|
Time to Credit and Getting Paid
The cashback you earn on RebatesMe typically shows up in your account within seven days.
|7 days||1 day||7 days||30 days|
That’s quick compared to many other sites (the four listed above have some of the faster payouts in the industry).
The minimum cash-out amount is $10. However, RebatesMe’s terms and conditions state that this minimum does not apply to your first withdrawal. In other words, there’s no minimum for new members.
Members can choose from a variety of payment methods including paper check, gift card, prepaid Visa card or PayPal.
Users can also select Alipay, which is a Chinese payment processor similar to PayPal.
Note that if you choose to get paid by paper check, the minimum withdrawal amount is $1,000. Additionally, the maximum you can withdraw via prepaid Visa card is $1,500.
- Checks are mailed to the name and address in your account and can take up to a month to reach you.
- Prepaid credit cards can take up to a week to reach you.
- PayPal transfers are completed within 48 hours.
- If you opt for a digital gift card, it will be emailed to your address on file.
Cashback Protection Policy
RebatesMe introduced its “Cashback Protection Policy” in June of 2020 via a press release.
However, this policy is not unique in the industry or particularly valuable for users.
Simply put, the policy outlines steps that members can take if they believe they haven’t been properly credited with cashback after making a qualifying purchase.
To utilize the policy, members are required to fill out a form notifying RebatesMe that they didn’t receive the rewards they expected. Upon receipt of this note of discrepancy, RebatesMe staff will “examine the request and begin the process of getting the user the money they’ve earned.”
Beyond that, there are no guarantees.
This policy pales in comparison to the frameworks offered by other portals. For example, Rakuten makes it easy to report missing cashback directly from your account page in a process that typically takes less than a minute.
In every instance that we’ve tested, Rakuten credited us the missing cashback instantly; there was no waiting for staff to investigate (and no need to follow up).
About the Company
RebatesMe was founded in 2013 by Daniel Dai, who previously worked at PayPal. The company’s headquarters are located in Beaverton, Oregon.
That said, it’s hard to find much more on RebatesMe as a company, as it does not have an extensive public profile. In our research, it was difficult to find details about who works for the firm or how it operates.
This is concerning when dealing with a website of this nature because members offer up a wealth of data about their internet usage and shopping habits.
While RebatesMe may in fact handle that data safely and ethically, we would feel better if the company was more transparent.
On RebatesMe’s Better Business Bureau’s (BBB) page, the site has a rating of 3.8 out of 5 stars.
Most of the reviews on that page are either very positive or very negative, with at least one positive review noting that RebatesMe staff worked to resolve an issue with a purchase and awarded the member the cashback they rightfully earned.
However, it’s alarming how often RebatesMe responds to customer complaints by noting that if a retailer fails to verify a purchase, no cashback will be awarded.
This is a less helpful posture than taken by most other cashback portals, and it suggests that failure to credit may be a common problem.
Yes. RebatesMe cashback offers are separate and in addition to any rewards you earn from your credit card provider. (This is true with all cashback shopping portals.)
Yes. Entering a discount code during checkout will not invalidate your RebatesMe cashback offer. However, if you want to take advantage of promo codes, a better option might be Capital One Shopping (read our Capital One Shopping review), which crowdsources discount codes to find the best ones available.
No. When you search for a store on the RebatesMe website, you may see coupon codes. These are not exclusive coupons — they’re the same discount codes available on other sites, and you don’t need to go through RebatesMe to use them.
The site’s terms of service do not prohibit users from sharing their referral code on their own social media sites, but they expressly prohibit users from sharing them on sites that don’t belong to them. For example, you’re allowed to share your RebatesMe referral code on your own Facebook page, but you are prohibited from posting it in Facebook Groups that are managed by other people.
Rebates me only provides a referral code, not a referral link, to each member. Your referral needs to enter this code when signing up. You can find your referral code by clicking “Earn $10” in the top navigation menu.
RebatesMe is a legitimate cashback rewards site that offers hit-or-miss rates. Because it’s not as well-known as other sites that (generally speaking) offer more reliable rewards, it doesn’t enjoy the same reputation and member base.
More importantly, we think the site has an unusually combative relationship with its members.
For example, in addition to the less-than-stellar cashback “guarantee” detailed above, the site’s terms and conditions include the following stipulation:
Users who have not earned cashback for more than 12 months may be subject to a $4.99 per month fee, which is subtracted from their account balance.
This is referred to as a “maintenance fee,” and it supposedly “recover[s] the cost of account maintenance in its normal course of business.”
This $4.99 charge recurs until you reactivate your account by earning more cashback (or until your balance is wiped out).
Since the minimum withdrawal is $10, there’s a chance you may not hit that threshold within 12 months if you’re not a regular online shopper. In that case, whatever you earned would be eaten up by the fee.