Cashback Site Guide

This is our guide to cashback sites, explaining what they are, how they work and what criteria we use to we rate them with on The Cashback Express. Do take a few mintues to familiarise yourself with this cashback site guide, especially if you are new to cashback sites and are not really sure if they are trustworthy or not.

What is a Cashback Site?

These are sites that allow you to shop online as normal at many of your favourite retailers and receive cashback or other rewards such as points for doing so. It is a simple process and all you have to ensure is that when you shop online you do it through the cashback site, because if you don't you will not receive your cashback!

These cashback sites and online reward programs receive commissions from the retailer when you click and shop (buy something) through these sites. Once the retailer confirms your purchase (and if you do not send what you bought back) the cashback site receives that commission from the retailer and passes a proportion or all of it onto you as cashback or rewards. In a way using a cashback site is a bit like using a loyalty card giving you better value for your online shopping. You could call it an online loyalty scheme.

We have been using cashback sites for over three years now and have received payments and points from many of them. We have seen some sites fall by the wayside, as well as some very poor ones which we could not put our trust in. Either way, in our experience, earning cashback for shopping online is a great way to save money on things you are going to buy anyway, and as long as you use the best sites, you should always receive that cash back!

Recently some cashback sites have actually introduced a new method of earning even more rewards. They allow you to regsiter your credit and debit cards with them and then you can receive cashback when you shop at participating retailers on the high street too. This is a relatively new feature so it will be interesting to see how it develops.

How to use a Cashback Site

Initially you have to register with the cashback site (or sites) that you wish to use. Read the reviews on The Cashback Express first before deciding which site(s) interest you. When registering you must use your real details as these are needed to pay you. Once your registration is confirmed you can start to use the site and do your online shopping through it so that you can start to earn cashback or other forms of reward.

You have to log in to your account with the cashback site, find a retailer from the lists on the site whom you want to buy from, then click through to that retailer. Upon purchasing your goods, once that sale is confirmed, the cashback website will receive its commission and then pass some or all of it onto you. Transactions can sometimes take a while to be confirmed and you will have to wait between 30 and 90 days before receiving payment from the cashback site.

Cashback sites will reward you for a variety of things. You can receive cash for shopping online as per normal at popular online retailers in a huge range of categories. So even if you just buy your CDs and DVDs online you can still earn cashback rewards by doing this.

Most cashback sites also reward you when you complete other actions such as opening up a new bank account, or change electricity supplier, or sign up to and fund a new gaming account, which are just a few examples.

Some cashback sites also allow you to receive free cashback or points for conducting genuine price comparisons with their preferred price comparison site (i.e. you must conduct a valid and genuine comparison search and click through options you are interested in). Some site also reward you for using their preferred web search too.

The important thing for you to remember is that each time you want to buy or search for something online, you must do it through the cashback site in order to receive your cashback rewards. You must also ensure that your computer settings allow your transactions to be recorded properly and many cashback sites have tracking checkers that can confirm this is the case.

How to Choose the Right Cashback Site

There are a plethora of cashback sites and reward sites on the net today and we aim to review as many as possible for you, and from these, listing those that, in our experience, are the best. With so many choices available to you it is important you do a little research to find out which are the better cashback sites to join and which are those to avoid.

One of your first considerations will be how you would like to receive your cashback. Most sites offer their members their cashback as money, however there are some good sites that will offer cashback as points (which may or may not be exchangeable for cash or other gifts and prizes). You may also wish to take into account how much cashback you need to earn before the site will make payment to you. Some sites will pay you whatever small amount of confirmed and payable cashback you have accrued in your account once you request it, others, however, will stipulate that you have to wait until you have a specific sum in your account before paying it to you.

You may then wish to look at the promises made by the cashback sites with regard to their cashback rates and how much cashback you will receive. Some state they will pay you 100% cashback, others may offer you different cashback offers and deals.

Thirdly, you will want to know how many retailers a cashback site has as those with more offer you a greater choice of who you can shop with and earn cashback. Many sites will allow you to browse their retailers before you choos eto join them, or you can sign up and check them out afterwards. Even if you sign up, you don't have to use that site, you can always choose to use another which suits you better.

You will also want to know how a site will deal with any missing transaction enquiries you may have (you will almost certainly have to chase a transaction up at some stage if you are a regular online shopper with these sites). Some have good support, others do not.

You may want a sign up bonus, although you should be aware that these sites usually offer lower cashback rates than those that don't give you such a bonus. As such we always recommend joining several cashback sites and then comparing rates so that you obtain the best deal for you.

There are a lot of considerations so the aim of The Cashback Express is to assist you in making a decision by providing comprehensive and independent reviews of many of the cashback sites available to you today. In the next section we explain some of our criteria in deciding what makes a good cashback site and what makes us wary of a cashback site so that we avoid it.

How do we Rate Cashback Sites?

One - The one position we do not want to find ourselves in is having earnt lots of cashback only for the cashback site to suddenly disappear. Therefore, one of our criterion is that the site is established, or at least shows signs of being professionally run with the potential of attracting enough new users to make it a sustainable site for the future. There are many indicators of a poorly run site or one that is not established and never going to be, such as for example, broken links, a poor site design and navigation, or one that is clearly a clone of another.

Two - The number of retailers and cashback offers a site has can be a sign of its viability as a successful cashback site both today and in the future. We also consider, of course, the cashback rates offered and whether any administration fees are charged and/or sign up bonuses paid. It is important to understand that cashback sites exist not only to earn you rewards and cashback but also to earn their owners a decent wage, otherwise there would be no point in them running such a site. There is a lot of competition amongst cashback sites and we believe that this is pushing some new sites to the limit in trying to attract new users, in terms of what they are offering you and what they receive themselves. It is important to bear this in mind because a cashback site that returns all the commissions it receives needs a large number of users to make it a viable venture. When there are a lot of cashback sites promising the same thing it is arguable that some are certainly doomed to fail.

Three - Another important feature of any cashback site is their 'help' facility and any helpdesk or ticket support they provide. If you become a regular user of cashback sites you will almost certainly encounter a moment when you notice a transaction has not appeared in your account and you will probably want to know why not. A good cashback site will have a responsive 'help' or 'ticket' system which will do its utmost to obtain the commission from the retailer. Such systems can be tested in a number of ways, not just for missing transactions, although that will be their main function.

Four - Once you earn your cashback (or points) you may want to get your hands on it as soon as possible (or exchange those points for something more useful). We look at the payout and redemption levels of these websites and seek to inform you of those. How a site will pay you too may be important in your choice of site so we try and include these in our reviews too, although these can change and often do!

Five - Finally in determining whether a cashback site is good or not so great we use a number of other factors such as originality, whether the site owner has provided other sites in the past or whether they are involved in other sites in the present amongst other things.

As you can see, we hope that our reviews are quite comprehensive and that you can have confidence in them. All are based on experience of using cashback sites for over six years. In the end though it is your decision of course which site you are happiest using and we hope that you enjoy the cashback site ride!

Cashback Sites in Your Country

Please find below links to cashback site reviews in your country:

United Kingdom flag UK Cashback Sites

American flag US Cashback Sites

Australian flag Australian Cashback Sites

Canadian flag Canadian Cashback Sites

EU flag European Cashback Sites

If your country of residence is not yet listed above, please check back regularly as we are constantly updating our records.

If you know of any cashback sites which are yet to be included on The Cashback Express please let us know more about them.