Online shopping is becoming increasingly popular as more people prefer to avoid the hassle involved with having to go to a physical store.
Online shopping is more convenient because it can be done in the comfort of your home.
Also, most online stores have a favorable return policy that allows you to return something if it does not meet your expectations.
In addition, online shopping allows you to save both time and money.
If you are keen on saving money while shopping online, there are several online platforms that allow you to do so.
One such platform is Rakuten.
Take a look at this Rakuten review.
Rakuten Review: What is Rakuten?
Rakuten is an online app-based affiliate marketing company.
The platform allows its members to shop at their preferred online stores through a link that is accessible on the Rakuten website or Rakuten app.
The respective online stores and marketplaces then pay Rakuten a customer referral fee.
Rakuten then pays you, the customer, a portion of this payout.
With Rakuten, you get cashback when you make a purchase, allowing you to save money on every purchase you make.
Rakuten allows you to earn anywhere from 1% to 40% cashback on almost every purchase you make through their website.
The company has partnerships with more than 2500 online retailers.
This includes popular retailers such as Amazon, Nordstrom, Walmart, Target, and Sephora.
Is Rakuten legit?
Most companies whose business model involves giving out free money are usually met with a lot of skepticism.
This usually raises a red flag in our minds since most businesses with such models are scams.
Sometimes, however, there are legitimate businesses that can actually help you make money online or save money.
One such business is Rakuten. Rakuten is a legitimate platform that uses legitimate ways to give you cash back.
How does Rakuten work?
Rakuten is popular not only because of the great deals offered by the platform but also because of how easy it is to use.
The first thing you need to do is to create a Rakuten account by signing up.
Once you’ve created an account, you can then log in to access the names of the online shops you like. Rakuten provides the names of the online stores in alphabetical order.
There is also a search bar that you can use to look up a specific store. Once you have found your desired online store, click on it.
Clicking on the link takes you directly to the specific store’s website.
You can then start shopping at the store of your choice.
Basically, shopping through Rakuten gives you the same user experience you would get from shopping directly from the store’s online site.
The only difference is that, when accessing the store through your Rakuten account, you’ll be getting cash back on qualifying purchases.
The best way to use Rakuten is by pairing it with a credit card that gives you rewards or cash back when shopping at your favorite shops.
For instance, if your credit card earns you 1% cashback on your purchases on Amazon, you could pair it with Rakuten for more cashback offers.
How to earn with Rakuten
Signing up with Rakuten is free and only takes a few minutes.
Once you have signed up with Rakuten, you are given a cash bonus of $10. However, you do not receive the cash bonus immediately.
You’ll first have to make purchases worth $25 or more through the platform within the first 90 days of signing up.
Apart from the cash bonus you get after signing up, there are 2 ways of making money on Rakuten.
- You earn by shopping at any store that is affiliated with Rakuten.
- By referring your friends or colleagues to shop through Rakuten. $25 per referral
How to shop through Rakuten
Once you have signed up, look up the online store you normally shop at on Rakuten’s search bar.
If your store of choice, for instance, is Amazon, type “Amazon”. When Amazon appears on the search results, click on it.
If you are unable to find the shop you normally use on the search bar, then unfortunately the store is not affiliated with Rakuten.
This, however, should not be a worry since there is a very high chance that Rakuten is affiliated with at least one store that you visit on a regular basis.
Once you click on your online store of choice, in this case, Amazon, you’ll see the store’s logo and beneath it, the cashback percentage you’ll get from your purchase.
Clicking the shop button will redirect you to the store’s site. Once you have been redirected, you can now shop normally.
Once you have completed your purchase, Rakuten will redirect the cash back to your Rakuten account within a week.
However, you won’t be able to access the cash credit in your account for at least 3 months.
Rakuten enforced this policy so as to avoid the inconveniences experienced when people buy and return items.
After the three months are up, you’ll be able to access our cash back.
You can choose to receive your cash credit through PayPal or as a physical check.
Rakuten cash back visa card
Rakuten also has its own credit card product known as the Rakuten cash back visa card.
Combining basic Rakuten rewards together with the Rakuten credit card will allow you to earn more cash back.
You can track all your cash back from your Rakuten account.
With Rakuten, there is no limit to the amount of cash back you can earn.
Travel and vacations
Apart from offering cashback on basic purchases, Rakuten also offers cash back on purchases that are travel-related.
This includes hotel reservations at Choice Hotels, IHG, and Holiday Inn.
You can also get discounts on travel sites such as Expedia and Booking.com and tourist attraction sites such as Busch Gardens.
You can also make money with Rakuten through their referral program.
Rakuten offers to pay you $25 for each referral. Your friends will also get $10 for signing up.
However, you’ll only be able to access the money earned from referrals after the person you’ve referred to has made their first purchase through Rakuten.
1. Ease of use
Rakuten is very easy to use. The platform can be accessed on its website, a browser extension or through the Rakuten app.
The browser extension is especially convenient. The extension is installed for Google Chrome.
When visiting stores that have a cashback offer, the extension sends you a pop-up notifying you of the cashback offers available at the stores.
The browser extension makes it easy for you to see the cashback offers available. If the store does not have any cashback offers, Rakuten will try to redirect you to a store that has them.
The Rakuten app can be used on both Android and iPhones. The app allows you to check on offers with ease.
The Rakuten app is much more convenient than having to use coupons.
With the Rakuten app, you can click on your preferred retailer to see the best offers available, including both in-store and online cashback deals, sales, among other discounts.
2. Cash back
This is, perhaps, the most important benefit of Rakuten.
Rakuten allows you to save money on the purchases you make online. With Rakuten, you get to save without having to change your shopping habits.
3. A large number of stores choose from
Rakuten has partnered with more than 2500 stores to make cash back offers available for everyone.
4. Rakuten is free
Creating a Rakuten account is free. In addition to being free of charge, you are also given a $10 welcome bonus.
The referral program also allows you to make more money with the platform by offering you $25 for each referral.
1. Cashback checks are paid quarterly
Rakuten takes a long time to pay out cash back rewards. The rewards are paid out on a quarterly basis.
The platform also has a threshold that you need to surpass in order for you to be eligible for the payout.
Rakuten has a minimum withdrawal requirement of $5.
2. May encourage impulse buying
Experts think that the rewards offered by Rakuten may encourage people to spend more money because they think they are getting a good deal out of their purchase.
This may result in impulse shopping and overspending.
It’s best to stick to your shopping plans instead of buying something just because it is on sale.
3. Some products are not available for cash rebates
Most of the stores featured on Rakuten have several products that are not available for cash back.
It is, therefore, advised that you should look at your store’s list of exclusions before making your purchase on Rakuten.
Rakuten isn’t the only company that offers amazing cashbacks. There are other cash backs apps that help you save even more money. They include:
MyPoints is one of the best alternatives to Rakuten.
You earn points for taking surveys, shopping online, watching videos, playing games, and more.
If you have enough MyPoints, you can redeem them for gift cards or cash.
MyPoints also offers up to 40% cashback on online purchases when you use it to shop.
Dosh is a mobile cashback app that allows you to make money online whenever you shop or dine in participating outlets.
You can make money with Dosh in several ways:
- When you link your card: You earn $5 for linking your card for the first time and an extra $1 for every card you link.
- Shopping in participating stores: When you shop or dine at any of the outlets affiliated with Dosh, you earn up to 10% cashback
- The Dosh referral program: You earn $5 for every new user you refer to the Dosh app.
- Referring new businesses to the app: If you refer a local business to the app and they sign up using your link, you’ll get a whopping 20% of what the company earns from Dosh for the first two years they partner with Dosh!
- Hotel booking: You’ll get $25 for booking a hotel for the first time through Dosh
Final Thoughts on Rakuten Review
Rakuten is a legitimate platform that gives you money when you shop.
It is safe to use and will help you save a significant amount of money when shopping.
Although it may take months before seeing a check for your earnings, our Rakuten review has established that it is absolutely worth it.