How it works: Formerly known as Ebates, Rakuten was one of the early pioneers in online cash-back rebates. Customers who shop through the Rakuten website or with the Chrome browser extension can automatically earn cash back on qualifying purchases from participating retailers. The mobile apps also offer these rebates as well as cash back for in-store purchases. “By partnering with thousands of brands across the most categories like apparel, health and beauty, travel and electronics, as well as grocery, on-demand services, subscription boxes and more, Rakuten helps members get more from the things they already buy,” say Kristen Gall, president of Rakuten Rewards.
Benefits: Rakuten has an extensive network of partnering retailers, which makes it possible to earn rebates on purchases in almost any category. Plus, with the mobile app, consumers can earn 5% cash back at restaurants well as rebates on Lyft rides. The Chrome browser extension will automatically apply coupons for additional savings. New users are eligible for a $10 welcome bonus when they spend $25.
Drawbacks: You can’t combine Rakuten with coupons found outside the site. Doing so will make a purchase ineligible for cash back.