be_ixf;ym_202205 d_17; ct_50
Text Size A A A

CESI Financial Blog

Get Debt Consolidation Options

Call Now! (866) 484-5373

Online Rewards Programs: Do They Really Work?

do online rewards programs work?

If you’re on the Internet frequently, you’ve probably heard about all the rewards programs that promise to give you cash for making searches or shopping through their site. Many of them sound too good to be true, and sometimes they are. But some of these sites are legitimate and actually do reward you for using them.

But how do they work? Many of the rewards sites are paid by online retailers to drive traffic to their sites. The rewards site offers users a discount, points, or cash back for making purchases with participating retailers. They keep a share of the money paid to them by retailers, and pass the rest on to the user. You won’t get rich off any of these sites, and many of them take time to build up points, but it’s nice to get paid for things you’re already doing online. Here are some legitimate sites I use myself or my family recommended.

MyPoints. This is my personal favorite, as I’ve been a member for around 10 years. Members receive email offers that allow you to simply visit the advertiser’s website once to earn points. If you make a purchase, you receive even more points. You can earn points for shopping at thousands of online retailers, playing games, making searches, or taking surveys. You then exchange points for gift cards. Over the years, I’ve gotten gift cards for gas, GameStop, Kohl’s, and most recently a $50 Target card and $25 Chili’s card.

InboxDollars. This is similar to MyPoints but it pays cash. They send email offers that earn money, and you can take surveys, print coupons, and sign up for free offers. You can cash out once you’ve earned $30. Without doing online shopping, it may take 3 months or so to receive a $30 check, but if you spend time taking the surveys or do your online shopping through InboxDollars, it’s worthwhile to check out.

Swagbucks. Earn “swagbucks” by watching online videos, taking surveys, shopping, playing games, and performing searches. Referrals are key on this site as you can earn a lot of swagbucks for every friend that joins and earns points. Redeem points for gift cards, electronics, and home products. It can sometimes take awhile to earn swagbucks, but I’ve found that the trick is to keep an eye out for high value surveys to build your points up quickly. Last holiday season, I would take a few surveys each night and earned enough for a $5 gift card every 2-3 days.

eBates. This site gives up to 25% cash back for online shopping. They also offer coupons and special discounts that you can combine to get great deals, plus you can earn referrals and a bonus just for signing up. They pay quarterly by check or PayPal if you have more than $5 in your account. You can also choose to send your earnings to a charity or family member.

VocalPoint. This is one of my favorites, although it’s not exactly a rewards site. VocalPoint is an online community for women where members can receive coupons and free product samples. Members are asked to provide feedback in exchange for the sample or coupon. The more products you review, the more free samples you receive. I’ve received free laundry detergent, snacks, toothpaste, and more.

Some rewards programs can be time-consuming, so pick out the ones that best suit you and wait for your rewards to roll in!

Image source:

1 Response to Online Rewards Programs: Do They Really Work?

  1. […] Several of our readers have mentioned using rewards programs and survey sites like MyPoints and Swagbucks to earn cash or gift cards. You can check out our past blog reviewing a number of rewards programs. […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Consumer Education Services, Inc. empowers people to overcome their financial challenges and lead financially-healthy lives.


Debt Consolidation

Financial Education

Homeownership Center

View More of Our Services »


Financial Information about this organization and a copy of its license are available from the State Solicitation Licensing Branch at 919-814-5400. The license is not an endorsement by the State. 

Follow Us

Registered 501(c)(3). EIN: 56-2106758

Consumer Education Services, Inc. © 2022