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Cash Back Q&A: Guide to Smarter Shopping and Saving

What is cash back shopping?

This is the first question that always comes up: what is cash back? Is this like the cash back I get when I’m at the grocery store? Kind of, but way better. Everyone is familiar with a cash refund from a returned purchase, but most aren’t used to keeping a purchase and still getting cash back. Let us break it down for you in the simplest terms possible - when you decide to shop online, every single brand in the world wants you to shop on their website. So much so that they will actually pay you to buy from them. Yes, you can actually get paid to shop! Who doesn’t love that? Sign me up. So when people ask us: what is cash back? Our natural response - and the one that is 100% true - is that cash back shopping is by far the smartest way to shop on the internet. Period.

Why should I care about cash back?

Because if you are reading this then you are clearly trying to be the savviest and smartest shopper you can possibly be. And you absolutely will be after you sign up for free with Hoopla ;) Let’s get something straight: you my friend are definitely not cheap. Not even close. You just love a great deal, you love the best deal you can find. You’re that person who ditches your shopping cart to scour for active coupon codes and take one more look around a website just to make sure you didn’t miss out on free shipping or adding your name to an email list to save even more. Wear it with pride! More likely than not, you’re also going to make this purchase on a cash back credit card that gives you rewards so that you can get even more for making a purchase. So congratulations, you are well on your way to becoming an online shopping Jedi and you’re about to add the force of cash back to your arsenal.

Who uses cash back?

There are millions of customers around the world that use cash back, and they use it for every single purchase they make online. It doesn’t matter if it’s shoes or kitchen gear or groceries or travel for vacation, their customer journey starts with a website like Hoopla that curates over 60,000 deals daily. Resellers also love cash back shopping because cash back boosts their margins beyond just a deal or free shipping - it directly increases their profits. You know who else loves cash back shopping? Brands. Not just any brand, we’re talking about the biggest brands in the world and probably all of your favorite brands. Hoopla has over 5200 brands and growing fast. They all love cash back shopping too because it means more sales for them. They don’t want to make that new T-shirt or cool laptop for it to just sit in their warehouse - they want it in your hands and they want you to be as happy as possible with their product. And they know that some extra cash in your bank after you buy the product will deliver even more happiness.   

How does cash back work?

Ok, we were kidding earlier… this is the #1 question we get everyday. We absolutely understand the confusion. But it is one of those things that seems super complex until someone pulls back the curtain to show how the business works and just speaks in plain English. (Btw, If you don’t speak English then please feel free to copy and paste this into Google Translation). How can Hoopla pay me to shop on another company’s website? It just seems weird and maybe even a little gimmicky. Well, the truth is, cash back is totally legit, and we’re going to break up this question point by point so it’s abundantly clear how cash back shopping works. Let’s use Nike as an example:

Step 1

Nike manufactures sneakers, apparel and basically everything we wear on weekends or when we’re playing sports. Their profit or margin is how much money they can make between how much it costs to make the product and how much a person or company is willing to pay for it. Nike loves when you buy through Nike.com because it means that they make the most profit on their products. But that also means they’ve got a little wiggle room to make it even more enticing for shoppers to shop with them. 

Step 2

Nike decides they will pay a commission to companies like Hoopla that can send customers to their website. The amount may vary, but for this example lets say that Nike has decided to pay Hoopla 10% of all purchases that we send them. We work really hard to curate the best deals and keep our coupon codes active by updating them over 5x a day (!), but it doesn’t make sense for us to keep all 10% of the commission. After all, you are the one making the purchase from Nike.com.

Step 3

So Hoopla has decided to split the 10% commission with you. That’s right, we are cutting you into this deal. We are going to throw you 5% of that commission in the form of cash back simply because you’re a member of Hoopla (which is free fyi!). What can we say… we like you and want to hook you up. Simply put, we’re able to pay you cash by sharing our commissions from retailers with you. Like two waitstaff splitting a tip (high five).

So think about this for a minute or a second or however long it takes to process really awesome news… you are still going to get the 40% off and free shipping deal from Nike.com, but now you are officially making it the best deal on the internet because you are also earning cash back on top of those deals. The best deal on the internet you say? Yes sir or ma’am! Stacking coupon codes and cash back is the best way to maximize your rewards when shopping online!

Is cash back really worth it?

Good question, only so many hours in the day, right! And we don’t want to waste your time. Using coupons and cash back when you shop online adds up quickly. Here’s some quick math just to prove we’re not lying:

There are two ways you can traditionally shop and save online:

1. You can get those new Nike sneakers for $100 minus $40 (40% OFF) so you’re paying $60.


2. You can shop through Hoopla and get those same Nike sneakers for $100 minus $40 (40% OFF) plus add in your 5% cash back so you’re paying $57.

Literally, nothing has changed other than the fact that you started your shopping journey at Hoopla. You still bought it on Nike.com and you still had it shipped by Nike. And you still are going to get crazy compliments… check out Sarah with those new Nike kicks! (We don’t know if your name is Sarah, probably not, but if it is Sarah… Hi Sarah). Those shoes are going to feel even more comfortable knowing that you have cash back coming to you and that you definitely, unquestionably, without a doubt, got the best deal you possibly could get on those Nikes.

Now imagine applying this cash back experience to everything you buy online… your new pots and pans for your kitchen, your trip to Hawaii, your new laptop, your kids school supplies, your gifts, your jewelry, you name it. That cash back will really pile up, and with Hoopla it will automatically be paid to you via Venmo or Paypal. There are some people we pay hundreds of dollars to on a monthly basis!

Is cash back safe?

Cash back shopping is completely safe, but you should be sure you’re making your purchases through an accredited website like Hoopla. Some people wonder why cash back takes so long to process. We have a 90-day return window from our brand partners that we must adhere to. This is added protection for the brands and stores just in case someone tries to purchase a product, get the cash back and then immediately return the product. After 90-days, the retailer is confident that the purchase is final and reports directly to us to pay your cash. We’d love to make it happen faster, but all it took was a couple bad apples to try to scam our brand partners and we had to set up a safer system for all.

Anything else about cash back that I need to know?

That about covers it. You are officially a cash back expert now. The same way you know someone who is a points expert with Amex or the dividing-a-tip-12-ways expert or the find-the-best-dress-on-the-sale-rack expert. If someone asks you about cash back, just tell them you earn money while you spend money and the best way to save money is when you combine coupon codes with cash back from Hoopla! All we ask is that you become the cash back pied piper. Tell your friends and family about cash back. When they buy something ask them if they bought it through Hoopla? And if they didn’t, just flash your Nike sneakers and give them a wink. Keep calm and shop on.

So what are you waiting for? Sign up for free today and start getting paid to shop.


The Hoopla Team

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