Everyone knows that I’m a big fan of cash back apps and reward programs. I never go shopping without using one. What I’m not a fan of is the threshold or limits you need to reach before you can actually redeem what you earn. You need to have earned atleast $20.00 before you can cash out from Ibotta, 300 points before you can earn an Amazon gift card on Swagbucks, and $5 to earn your big fat check from Ebates. Sure earning all that cash and those gift cards are great, but it really does no good if you have to jump through hoops and wait forever before you can take advantage of it. It’s even worse if you are in a bind and really need the money to help ends meet.
While you do need to earn a certain amount before you can redeem any points for cash or gift cards, I don’t usually have to wait too long to meet the requirement. On average, I’m able to redeem about $25 to $50 in reward each month from following some simple tips. No it’s not that much but any amount helps.
- Pick one and stick to it
So we all know that there’s a plethora of cash back apps and sites. Chances are you have signed up for a few of them and downloaded them on your phone. However, having a bunch of them doesn’t mean you need to use all of them. Pick one or two and stick to it. Since you can’t get credit from more than one cash back site on a single purchase, it makes sense to stick to just one favorite. The amount of points needed to accumulate will be reached must faster if you are loyal to just one or two. In my case, it’s Mypoints for online purchases and Ibotta for in store grocery purchases. (Many people like Checkout 51 too, but I’ve never used it.) However, if there are no rewards offered for the store purchase of my choice, I use Swagbucks as my secondary choice. Stay loyal to one brand and you’ll certainly see points needed for redemption much quicker.
2. Take advantage of in-store pick up
Ever notice how most of those cash back sites are only good for online purchases? Sure I love the excitement of waiting for a package to arrive, but I’m not in the mood to pay for shipping all the time just to earn a few cents in cash back rewards. If you’re like most people, you’d much rather go to the story and pick up that facial cleanser you love so much rather than pay for shipping and wait days for it to arrive (unless you have Amazon Prime). The good news is for some retailers and cash back sites, you can still earn points for in-store pick up. So let’s say I’m in need of purchasing my husband’s favorite Gold Bond for Men body lotion. Instead of just going to the store to buy it right away, I first visit Mypoints, redirect to Target.com from there and order the lotion for in-store pick up. It’s a win-win situation. I get my product without shipping fees and still benefit from earning points on my app or site of choice.
3. Read all the emails
I know your inbox is already cluttered with a bunch of emails from several retailers you don’t remember signing up for, but you need to read the emails sent from Ibotta, Mypoints, Swagbucks, Checkout 51 or whatever your cash back rewards of choice is. Those emails keep you in the loop on when you get double points from shopping at certain stores or even provide extra coupon codes. Of course, staying on top of those can help you earn more points and redeem for money and gift cards much faster. Plus, if you are a member of Mypoints, you get points for just reading the emails and clicking over to a site. That means earning “cash back” without spending any money. You’d have to a be a fool to not take advantage of that.
4. Do the extras
Speaking of emails with coupon codes and double points, sometimes they include other things that help you accumulate points. Whatever they are, you need to do them! For example, sometimes Swagbucks advertises new polls, surveys and contests you can enter to earn more points. Sure you don’t have to do them, but it would be a good idea if your goal is to redeem your rewards much quicker.
5. Refer, refer, refer
The easiest and fastest way to earn enough to redeem points for cash or gift cards is to simply tell everyone about it. And you don’t need to do it in a pushy salesperson way, but if it comes up in conversation, let it. Whenever I have a friend tell me she is looking for new ways to save, I may let her know that using Ibotta has really helped with my monthly budgets. Once you find one you like and it truly helps you out, don’t be afraid to let everyone now the same way you would tell everyone about your favorite tv show or your favorite food. Referrals earn you lots of extra points/cash, plus the person you referred normally benefits with perks as well. All you you need to do is give out your referral code or link. It’s simple, costs you nothing and normally earns the most points.
If you find yourself saying that all those programs are a waste of time and you’re not earning anything, give my suggestions a try. And before you ask, it’s not time consuming at all. They really only take a few minutes. Give a try and watch all those points and rewards roll in!
Do you have any tips for earning points for redemption quickly?