What is ibotta and how does it work? The Beginner's Guide to
How to Use ibotta below will help you to easily understand this free app,
so that you too can start saving money with it. ibotta is a cash
back app that lets you earn cash back when grocery shopping, dining out, on some entertainment, and when shopping at select retailers. It works on your Android or iPhone as well as most tablets with cameras, and many features also work on your computer. Ibotta can be used at stores like Target, Walmart, CVS, Walgreens and RiteAid. There are hundreds of other authorized stores on their list. Certain offers require you to purchase at a specific store (i.e., Target) to redeem the offer.
Like most other cash
back apps, you can use ibotta in addition to using paper manufacturer
coupons, store coupons (paper or electronic), store offers (i.e., BOGO), store
loyalty cards, and even other Cash Back Apps, like Checkout 51, SavingStar, or Snap by Groupon! It's yet another form of
"stacking" and you can save big and even make money on some products
by using multiple means of saving, such as these.
The cash back
items/offers are not additional coupons that you have to take to the grocery
store; so if you hate to clip coupons, you can still save by using the cash
back apps! But, you'll definitely save more money by combining (stacking)
your savings by using the apps in addition to paper and other electronic
coupons. One of the best parts about using many of the cash back grocery apps,
is that they often offer cash back for items that you almost never get regular
paper coupons for, such as: fruits, vegetables, and dairy (milk, eggs,
cheese...)! So dive in below and start saving!
How to Use Ibotta Ibotta How it Works
How to use ibotta:
You can Join ibotta on your computer or mobile device, then download the free app to your Android or iPhone phone. You can also download the app directly to your phone, and then join.
When you first open the app on your cell phone, it will run you through a brief introductory "How to use" session.
When you open the app any other time, it automatically takes you to the "Rebates - All" offers" tab and page. Click on the store that you intend to shop at. Before or after your shopping trip, check ibotta's list of available items to see if there are any items on their list that you intend to purchase (or have just purchased).
If they list products that you want, intend to purchase, or just purchased; then you'll need to do one to three tasks to get the cash back offer. You can complete these tasks before your shopping trip, or after you come home. Why must you complete tasks? Because ibotta requires you to earn "unlock" rebates/offers before you can use them. You do this by completing easy tasks (many take only a few seconds) for each offer that you're interested in. The tasks include "liking" a company on Facebook, watching a video to learn about a product, taking a poll, playing trivia, learning a fact about a company/product, or testifying about a product (telling them how you like it).
Note that you can purchase as many "different" ibotta items/offers as you'd like, but each individual item is limited to one rebate/cash back offer. For example, if they're offering .50 cents off milk, you can only redeem cash back for one milk, no matter how many milks you purchase.
Go shopping (if you haven't already).
You do not need to take your cell phone with you on your shopping trip, but if you want to make certain that the item that you are about to purchase is the approved product for the offer, then take your phone. ibotta has a neat little feature that will validate the product. Here's how to use it: Look for the "Verify Product Barcode" at the bottom of the grocery item offer and tap the area. Your screen will then turn blank, because it is in scan mode. Hold the barcode here. Then scan the UPC code of the product in question. If you have the correct product, "Matches Offer" and a green checkmark will appear.
Once you've completed your shopping trip, you'll use your cell phone to take a photo of your receipt(s) and upload them to ibotta. If the receipt is very long, you should take 2 or more photos to cover the entire receipt. You do this by hitting the "Add Section" button. Note: your receipt can contain items that were not purchased for the ibotta app as well. They will only pick out the ones that apply to them. You have up to 7 days from the date of your receipt to submit your materials (receipt and UPC) to ibotta.
You then need to scan the UPC bar code for each product on the receipt that you purchased and previously unlocked rebates for. Providing the bar scan insures ibotta that you purchased the correct product that was listed in the rebate offer.
Your earnings will appear in your account within 24 hours (although it normally takes less than 1 hour).
Once you've earned $5 or more, you can cash out and have your cash back savings deposited into your PayPal account or Bank Account, or you can donate your cash.
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As the Founder and Publisher of Sunday-Paper-Coupons.com and Discount Fanatics LaTiahna Nelson shares her money saving techniques and knowledge to help you to save money in everyday life. In 2014, she was named an America's Smartest Shopper Finalist by "All You Magazine", and has saved countless individuals money with her advice over the years. She is also an Artist and jewelry-maker with a store on Etsy.