Asked on 20 Jul 2019
Hi there. There's a lot going around about Shopback but it still sounds too good to be true and I am uncertain about using it. Anybody have any drawbacks to share with me about the platform?
Hey there friend! I felt the exact same way as well before I tried it around 3 years back haha.
When things are too good to be true, it probably is. However, the whole digital internet economy has changed abit of that.
And in the case of ShopBack, it's in the idea of affliate marketing.
Sounds like a complicated term to understand, but to explain it in simple english:
John wants to buy a Macbook from Apple
The Macbook costs $2,000
However, if he goes through ShopBack (online portal) and clicks through
John will still pay $2,000
Behind the scenes:
Apple will pay ShopBack 5% = $100 as a "marketing referral fee"
ShopBack will rebate 2% = back to John as "cashback" = $40
ShopBack earns the balance of 3% = $60 as revenue
Hope that answers your question and yes, Apple still makes a good amount of money after netting off that referral fees that they paid ShopBack because of the high margins of the products.
That's pretty much it! And I would say the only draw back is having to remember to click through the online portal and some people are simply very lazy to do that.
But personally I have saved $800 in cashback, yes in pure, hard, cold cash. And Seedly, being part of the ShopBack family, we see a HUGE and INCREASING trend of online shoppers using ShopBack to get savings off on a daily basis via LAZADA, Shopee, ZALORA, and online groceries like Fairprice Online, Cold Storage online etc. Super interesting indeed.
To use shopback is actually no cost to you so no harm trying.
Shopback basically gives you cashback for using them since they are paid a commission for driving sales to their partners.
Below is my cashback history and the money that i have received. It is literally free money given to you when you spend through Shopback.
Besides using it for online shopping to get cashback, you can also use it to get cashback for offline spending from many F&B with their newest product "ShopBack Go"
I have "saved" alot of money using ShopBack Go when eating at restaurants that they have partnered with.
You can actually stack it with other rewards and wrote an article to show how it works. ( https://justbeingernest.blogspot.com/2019/07/best-payment-method.html )
Shopback in a way is just sharing their revenue with you.
The vendor pays show back a percentage of fee say 5%. For example 150 dollars for a 3k product. Shopback then shares 2% back to you and keep 3% to themselves as revenue. So you can back 60 dollars etc.
Its a new form of marketing and company loves it to an extend since they might not have to pay until They make.
No catch :)
you just need to remember to go through their app every time (sometimes i forgot to!)
Other than troublesome to click thru, sometimes didn't get track need to file it. or Taobao need to clear shopping cart then click thru shopback and search item in shopback bar to buy, not so bad.
For big items, sometimes totally free 100% cash back item, it's literally free $$$$. So if willing to pay the effort, then get the Cashback! :)
To each his own! :) Cheers!
Sometimes if you use shopback you're not able to get specific discount provided by merchant directly. For example if you buy car insurance from fwd, you cannot use both fwd promo code and shopback concurrently.
If you don't use the promo code, your insurance amount will be like 1600 with 45 cashback from shopback.
But if you use promo code from fwd, your premium is about 1200
That's the huge disadvantage
I would say the only drawback of Shopback is having to check and calculate that you are getting the right amount of cashback based on the rate displayed. My cashback was not the right amount only twice in the few years I have been using the platform. And Shopback corrected the cashback without issue. So take note of the cashback rate when you make the purchase.
There is also an opportunity cost in the form of miles rewards such as Krisflyer Spree. So for your online shopping, you need to choose if you want to get cashback or miles. I would calculate between Shopback and Krisflyer Spree and see which one is more worth it. Most times, the cashback is more worth it. For example, if cashback is $15 and miles reward is 25 miles, cashback is more worth it (miles are valued at about 1.9 cents per mile). But if cashback is $3 and miles reward is 70 miles, I'd go for miles.
Haven seen any drawbacks so far.. in fact, with the recent addition of shopback go, the cashback earning mechanism just got better i feel.. I always try to clickthrough because it really doesn't hurt to just click through shopback, used to forget that step but with the shopback button, it's much easier when it comes to online shopping via browser. I'm not really a fan of shopping through apps so for some shops that are only available on app, there's a high chance that I will miss out those cashbacks..
in summary, i personally dun see any downside to using shopback. it has helped me saved some money for some of the online bargains.