The Ultimate Review of the Ibotta Cashback App
I’ve always joked that becoming a mom has made me an “extreme couponer” LOL. I haven’t really gone to any extremes, but I do enjoy simple apps like this that help me earn a little extra cash!
Whenever I’ve looked up ways to earn extra money or how stay at home moms make money, apps such as Ibotta seem to come up a lot. After hearing about this app for years, I decided to finally see to what the hype is all about.
A lot of people want to know, is Ibotta legitimate? How does it work? In this post, I am going to answer all of your questions regarding Ibotta! Stick around until the end for a special treat from me to you!
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What is Ibotta?
Ibotta is an app that has been around for a long time! Simply put, it is an app where you take a picture of your receipts and can earn cashback on items you purchased.
More Than an App
Ibotta is more than just an app for your phone! You can download the browser extension for when you are shopping on your desktop and earn cashback.
Check out the “How it works” tab on their home page and select “online shopping” for more infor.
How Ibotta Works
Before you go shopping, select which store you will be shopping at and browse the cashback offers listed.
For example, if you are going grocery shopping at Jewel, you would select in-store shopping at Jewel.
Then, you would go through each category and add items to your list that you plan to buy. Each item will be listed with how much cashback you can earn.
A side note: you can add your favorite stores to the “favorites” section for quick access, as pictured above.
After your shopping trip, you will take pictures of your receipt through the app. The app will then scan for the items you added to your list. It will tell you how many matched offers it found and how much you earned on that shopping trip.
How to Redeem Your Cashback
There are a few options for redeeming your earnings. You can withdraw the money in the form of gift cards or have the money deposited into your account.
Tips For Scanning Your Receipt
After using Ibotta for a while, I’ve learned how to ensure I receive all of my cashback for the items on my shopping list and how to get it right the first time.
My first tip is for taking your receipt photos. The three main things that need to be captured are:
- The store name
- The Date
- The Time
When taking pictures of your receipts, be sure to take clear images so that it’ll be easier for the app to scan the items on your list.
If you have a long receipt, you are able to take multiple images. Take advantage of this! It’s better to take a few clear, close up pictures than one blurry image of the entire receipt.
What If An Item Is Missed?
Did you add an item to your list, but it wasn’t included on the cashback? When this happens, you select “verify more offers” on the review of your cashback.
You can then select the items that were on your list that were missed.
You will either be asked to scan the barcodes of those items or simply asked “did you buy __ amount of __” in which you would select “yes.”
IMPORTANT TIP: Read the fine print on the offers!! Sometimes, you can only get the cashback if you buy X amount of that item.
See the image below as an example. You can earn $1.00 on the single Chobani Flip yogurts ONLY if you buy 4 of them, not just one.
I have missed out on cashback in the past when I didn’t pay attention to how many need to be purchased. Always confirm!
Dangers of Ibotta
Okay, maybe “dangers” sounds a bit extreme. But there is reason why people ask, “is Ibotta legitimate?”
It can be tempting to add items to your list just to see your cashback add up. As a result, people can end up overspending. Be smart and only use it for items you know you’ll ACTUALLY use.
Remember: This isn’t meant to make you hundreds of dollars each week. This app is nice for some side cash and if you are smart and intentional with using it, you’ll have a nice little chunk of change on the side!
You don’t want to end up losing money by trying make as many redemptions as possible just to earn cashback.
How to Get the Most out of Ibotta
To piggyback off of the previous point, don’t go out of your way to buy brands or products you know you won’t use.
Yes you might earn a little cash back but ultimately you could end up wasting and spending more money than necessary.
To make it easier on you, create your meal plan & grocery list first. Then, browse through the app to see what lines up with what you were already planning to buy.
You may end up finding additional items you want to add. That’s okay as long as you’re being intentional and only adding what you know you’ll use.
Some weeks, you may find tons of options and other times you may only find 1-2 items that you know you’ll use.
Don’t overthink it and don’t become obsessed with trying to make as many redemptions as possible. Again, this is meant to provide you with a little side cash and not to replace your income.
Additional Perks to Ibotta
Aside from the usual cashback you can earn on a regular basis, you can earn even MORE with bonuses.
For example, there will be promotions where you can earn an extra $5 if you redeem X amount of items. There is usually a deadline when you need to make these redemptions. Always read the fine print!
Other bonuses can be for certain brands. An example of this can be redeeming a Chobani offer 3 times, almost like a punchcard. Once you reach your 3 redemptions, you can earn an additional $1.00. (This is a hypothetical example, but you get the idea)
Lastly, I recommend taking advantage of “any receipt” or “any item” redemptions. Some weeks, you can earn an additional, say, $0.15, just for snapping a receipt. It’s small, but it’s still something!
There is also a category called “any item” where you can buy any brand of certain items and earn cashback. For example, instead of having to buy a specific brand of dog treats, there is sometimes the option to earn cashback on ANY brand of dog treats.
What to Consider
As mentioned with these extra bonuses, there is a set amount of redemptions you need to make and a deadline. Again, you should not just add items to your list simply for the cash back.
Only add items you know you’ll truly use. Don’t be pressured into making extra purchases to earn an additional bonus.
The Bottom Line: Is Ibotta Legitimate?
So, is Ibotta legitimate? I could easily see how some would think something like this is a scam, because you know people may become obsessed with trying to make as many redemptions as possible.
Then as a result, they end up spending more money than actually earning money.
My honest opinion is that apps such as Ibotta are worth it when you are smart and intentional with your purchases.
If the items listed on the app are brands and products you were going to buy anyway, then why not take advantage of earning some money back?
Ready to Get Started with Ibotta?
I promised you a special treat at the end! When you use my referral code to sign up, you will earn $5 when you submit your first receipt!
Sign up for Ibotta with this link and use my code to receive $5: HTAGIOE
What are your favorite apps for saving or making money? Share in the comments below!
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