Okay, work at home friends, who has tried Ibotta?
Do I see your virtual hands raised?
Maybe you are like me and you did it for a while, but it was tedious, so you got over it.
I mean, it is a great idea, but scanning all those barcodes got old, right?
Well, let me tell you something.
Oh boy has it ever changed and now it is easier than ever.
Of course, if you have used it before, you know that Ibotta is more of a money saving app than a money-making app, but that doesn’t really matter because we all know a penny saved is a penny earned right?
What is Ibotta?
Ibotta is an app that you download to your phone or other mobile device.
Once downloaded, you can use it to earn rebates at your favorite stores.
One of the best changes that has taken places over the course of its existence is the expansion from groceries to various other types of stores.
For example, Jo Ann Fabrics, Groupon, and various restaurants are included now as well.
As you earn rebates, the amount is credited to your account, and when you are ready, you cash out.
How do I Earn Rebates
First, you pick your store.
This can work a couple of ways.
I tend to look for rebates right before I walk into a store, because I live on the edge like that.
The better way is probably to take a few minutes in the school pick up line or waiting at the doctor’s office and see what’s available at all the places you shop.
Once you see a rebate you are interested in, you click on it.
You may get a poll, a short video, or just an ad.
Once you view it or answer it if it is a poll, you will be able to unlock the rebate.
How Long Does it Take
This is another really great change.
Before, it always seemed to take too long to unlock rebates.
Of course, this could be because I was doing it at the last minute instead of taking care of business, but now it doesn’t matter!
You unlock rebates by watching short videos, seeing an advertisement, or answering poll or survey.
The videos have gone from around 30 seconds to around 12 to 15 seconds, and the polls and surveys are faster as well.
Polls are only one question and I haven’t gotten a survey since the change at all.
There is no way to know what unlocking a certain rebate will require until you click on it.
These changes make me much more likely to knock out a few here in there when I have a couple of spare minutes.
How Much are the Rebates?
The brand specific ones are usually at least $.50.
I have seen them up to $2 before, depending on the product.
They are in line with most manufacturer’s coupon amounts.
How Much Can I Make?
It all depends on how many rebates you are willing to sit and spend the small amount of time it takes to unlock, and which products you buy.
If you buy a ton of products that you have unlocked rebates for, you could stand to get $10 or more back in a month.
A Tip to Save More
By stacking coupons, sales, and multiple savings apps, you can save even more.
It really just depends on your shopping habits.
How do I get the Money?
Here’s how it works.
- Unlock rebates.
- Go shopping.
- Scan your receipt.
That last one is the biggest, and I think the best, change.
Before, you had to scan your receipt and barcodes for each of the products for which you had rebates.
Now you just scan your receipt, and the system finds the rebates you have unlocked and credits your account.
If it misses one, you still have the option to scan the barcode to be sure you get the credit.
Once you have $20 in your account, you can cash out. Cash is paid through PayPal or Venmo.
There is also a gift card option, with Walmart and Amazon cards currently starting at $25.
What Types of Rebates are Available?
It changes regularly but there is always a large variety.
These are rebates on those items found at grocery stores.
Branded rebates are typically more, but often non-branded rebates for bread, milk, eggs, and other common general products are offered.
Most of the time these are $.25.
There are plenty of rebates of various alcoholic beverages.
Hotels.com is a new addition, as is HomeAway!
There are a large number of rebates for all types of restaurants.
There are rebates for Groupon, Amazon Prime, Amazon video rental, and even overstock.com.
This is just a taste. There are so many the only way to see them all is sign up.
Plan of Attack
It is perfectly fine to just unlock a few rebates here and there and then use them as you buy the things you would anyway.
However, if you want to get the most from the app and are super organized, there are some strategies that can help.
Try these tips, and adjust them to fit your specific life and shopping needs.
When you first download the app, spend some time getting acquainted.
Watch the tutorials and read all the FAQs.
Then, browse the stores and add the ones you frequent to your favorites.
You will still be able to see the others whenever you want, but your favorites will be easier to get to.
First of the Month
At the beginning of the month, carve out some time to think about any special purchases you have coming up.
Do you have several birthdays for which you need to buy gifts?
Does anyone in your family need new shoes, or do you need to buy supplies for a project?
Make a list, then look for rebates that relate to items on your list.
Go ahead and get those rebates unlock, and look for the expiration date.
You could even have an “Ibotta Notebook” with these items listed, rebates available, and the dates they expire all in one handy place.
Do this monthly, as things are always changes, but don’t limit yourself to items you need to purchase for that month alone.
Go ahead and list things you know are coming up for as far out as you can.
This way, even when a rebate pops up for a purchase you don’t need until few months down the road, you can be prepared to go ahead and take advantage of it.
This is where the rubber meets the road ladies and gents.
Are you serious about saving money?
- Check the sale papers.
- Plan your meals based on the sales.
- Check for Ibotta rebates that match any of the items on your list.
- Gather coupons that can be used for items on your list and do a little dance anytime you match a coupon, Ibotta rebate, and a sale item!
- Go back to the sale paper and look for items that you like to keep in stock. This could be toiletries, paper goods, canned goods, or other non-perishable items or items with a long shelf- life.
- Look for Ibotta rebates that match the stock-up items that are on sale.
- Match coupons you have to stock-up items on your list.
- Take the time to unlock your rebates.
- Hit the stores.
- Scan your receipt using the Ibotta app and watch the money pile up.
It is obvious all of this takes time.
However, if can get it done on a regular basis, you will eventually be able to streamline the process.
You could also end up with a nice chunk of extra change at the end of the year.
If you do not have time to do all of these things, just do the steps you can.
Whatever you do, don’t skip the part about matching your list to related rebates and unlocking rebates, or scanning your receipt!
That is where it the money is at!
Is Ibotta Safe?
They take security very seriously, and I haven’t seen any complaints about it.
They seem to keep things shipshape over there.
Is Ibotta Legit?
I know people who have cashed out personally.
I haven’t, because I was lazy.
Once I saw what my friends were doing though I was all over it again.
I can’t wait.
There really are a ton of great offers and I just had to tell you all.
Have you used Ibotta?
I would love to know your experience!