Cashback sites – Make money when you shop online (Money tip #151)

1 min Read Published: 29 Nov 2011

shop online How do cashback sites work?

When shopping online, or signing up for financial products, if you shop via a cashback site rather than going direct then you can save money.

You will need to become a member of your chosen cashback site, which should be free, then you can check if the company you want is listed and just click the link to start shopping.

When you complete the purchase, the online retailer will credit your cashback account with the discount. When these discounts reach the level set by the cashback site then that amount will be transferred to your bank account.

Also some sites have referral schemes where you can earn extra cash by directing friends and family to the site.

How do cashback sites make money?

Cashback sites use special links called 'affiliate links' which allow the retailer to track where traffic is coming from - and then pay the cashback site for the lead.

Are cashback sites safe?

There are no guarantees regardless of what they may claim, so make sure you never leave cash in your 'cashback' account. If the site goes bust you will have no protection but will  just join the long list of creditors.

What are the most popular cashback sites?

The most popular sites are Quidco and Topcashback

Are there any pitfalls with cashback sites?

Firstly, make sure you read the terms and conditions of any selected site.

Also, I would recommend reading forums on the internet covering this subject which give some great tips and info.

Yes, there have been cashback sites that have gone bust, but if you do your research you should be able to save yourself some much needed cash.
Image: Stuart Miles /