Earn Huge Cash Back Savings With These Two Free Apps
A good cash back card is like a friend who never lets you buy anything at full price.
An even better friend makes it incredibly easy to find great deals, earn more cash back, and stack rewards like a pro – that’s where a cash back strategy comes in.
By learning how to stack rewards on the stuff you purchase, it’s easy to potentially earn double – or triple – cash back on a regular basis!
How to Stack Rewards
Getting cash back on every purchase can be extremely rewarding and once you get the hang of how it works, you'll be hooked.
1. You’ll need a cash back credit card
Step one is self-explanatory – to earn cash back, you’ll need a cash back card. There are several to choose from, which can be stressful, but do your best not to get hung up on this step.
As a general rule of thumb, the best cards offer a high rate of return for little to no fees. Some may throw in a sign-up bonus offer or even a redemption rebate when you cash in rewards.
Either way, the more money you can earn, the better!
We like the Barclaycard CashForward™ because it offers all the best cash back rewards with absolutely no annual fee. Besides being an all-in-one type of card, you’ll also receive a $200 cash rewards bonus when you sign up and spend $1,000 in the first 90 days.
$200 cash rewards on a card with no annual fee feels like...
Spending $1,000 to earn a sign-up bonus may seem unfeasible, but with the holidays and new year approaching, it’s a perfect time to start stacking rewards and stop paying for everything at full retail price.
2. Sign up for Ibotta
Ibotta makes it incredibly easy to earn cash back on everyday purchases.
Whether you like shopping at Target, Walmart, or a large-chain supermarket, using this app along with your cash back card increases your earning potential instantly.
Stacking Rewards with Ibotta
Say you’re at Target to pick up bread, milk, and cereal, and you swing by the wine aisle to grab something for guests you have coming over in a few days.
On your way to the checkout, you pass the snack aisle and convince yourself to try a few things you saw on TV (plus, you have a coupon…#winning).
All in all, a typical trip to Target. You pay for your stuff with your cash back credit card and head home.
When you get home, scan Ibotta for discounts on the items you purchased and earn rewards by uploading an image of your receipt to prove you bought them.
In this example, there’s a discount on every item, and the beauty is, you can stack these earnings with coupons, as well!
Let’s do the math:
Just imagine saving up to an additional ~$10 every time!
You can also scan Ibotta’s deals before heading to the store if you want to use this strategy in reverse. That way, you’ll know the best deals before you begin shopping.
Tip: One of our favorite Ibotta rebate offers is the “anything” rebate which can be used on – you guessed it – anything. It could be a t-shirt, a new pair of earbuds, even a bag of popcorn.
3. Sign up for Ebates
Ebates also offers discounts on everyday purchases but in a slightly different way. By downloading the app or desktop extension, you're able to earn money simply by ‘activating’ your cash back.
Besides offering unbelievable discounts, you can also stack rewards, which is why we love it so much.
Here’s an example:
Ebates is offering 9% cash back on Groupon purchases for a limited time. To take advantage of the deal, all you have to do is click the ‘activate’ button and make the purchase the same way you always do.
It’s exciting to save an extra 9% on a purchase by adding in one small step that takes seconds to complete!
Let’s take it a step further and stack the rewards:
Say you activate the 9% cash back offer from Ebates to Groupon’s page, and then make a purchase using your cash back credit card.
Not only could you get 9% cash back on your Groupon deal, you could also earn more by paying for it with your cash back card.
We’re using the Barclaycard CashForward™ in these examples because of its high rewards rate of 1.5% cash back on everything, no annual fee, and unlimited rewards.
How to Stack Rewards with Ebates
Using the Ebates → Groupon → Barclaycard CashForward™ method, here are three examples that show big saving potential:
Example 1: Brewery Tour and Tasting at Barrel of Monks Brewing
- Normally costs: $45
- You pay: $18 with Groupon
- Save $1.62 with Ebates
- Save $0.27 with your cashback card
After saving $28.89, your total is $16.11
Example 2: AMF Night of Bowling
- Normally costs: $54.70
- You pay: $19 with Groupon
- Save $1.71 with Ebates
- Save $0.29 with your cashback card
After saving $37.70, your total is $17
Example 3: Sam’s Club Membership
- Normally costs: $55
- You pay: $30 with Groupon
- Save $2.70 with Ebates
- Save $0.45 with your cashback card
After saving $28.15 (over half off), your total is $26.85
Cash Back Strategy Recap in 60 Seconds
Step 1: Find a cash back card that suits you and begin earning rewards
Step 2: Sign up for Ibotta to find deals on items you plan to purchase
Step 3: Sign up for Ebates and activate cash back before making purchases
Step 4: Use both tools with your cash back card to stack rewards like a pro
Step 5: Celebrate!
Stacking cash back rewards can change the way you shop for everything!
Using a combination of tools and the right credit card, getting an incredible deal can become a regular occurrence and add up to a mountain of savings over time.
And, like any great friend, be sure to share how you did it!