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Thread: Why haven't cashback sites gained more traction?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2012

    Why haven't cashback sites gained more traction?

    Cashback sites defined as cpa affiliate marketing sites that kick back a portion of the commissions they earn to the members of the cashback site.

    An example in the UK is Quidco. I won't list the names of US sites because it's not my intent to advertise on their behalf.

    In it's theoretical perfect form, a cashback site offers users the opportunity to save anywhere from a percent or two to over 10%, just by initiation on the cashback site a purchase they would have made anyway. Couple that with the coupons and offers listed on cashback sites, and the savings can be even greater. This is a pretty frictionless way to save money, but people don't seem to do it.

    Even the merchants still win, because they benefit from moving brick & mortar sales online -- no one is really getting scammed.

    Contrast this with cashback credit cards. I know plenty of people happy to discuss for hours on end the merits of different points vs cashback credit cards, and devote serious time to researching the "best" cards. But in reality, benefits fall in a very narrow range (~1% -2%), whereas cashback sites can save you much more.

    So why the low traction? Is awareness low? Are they seen as spammy? Is there a fear of identity theft from providing details to questionable websites?

    Very interested in thoughts from the community.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Scotland, UK
    In my world everyone uses them - mainly because I've told everyone I know about Quidco!

    It's amazing if you're moving house and are changing energy supplier, broadband supplier etc. but for most people I think they don't care enough about the 1-2% saved on most ecommerce sites, especially on small-value orders. Some won't even earn enough to cover the 5 admin fee. I think the biggest thing is the drop-off though; most people will sign up and forget to ever use it again when purchasing.

    I use it at every opportunity I get, even if I'm only saving 5p!

  3. #3
    Moderator chrisJumbo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Near Sacramento, CA
    So why the low traction? Is awareness low? Are they seen as spammy? Is there a fear of identity theft from providing details to questionable websites?
    No, Yes, And Yes.

    I've seen a few deal sites here in the US (other than LivingSocial and Groupon) and they did look spammy, thus I did not want to provide any personal info.
    cd :O)

  4. #4
    It's all about marketing exposure. The word is spreading, and more and more people will start to shop via cashback sites.

  5. #5
    The problem with them is that you are forced to shop for some time in order to make minimum payout. Most people like to shop free even if they spend more money.
    I would say that is the problem with this kind of sites.
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  6. #6
    I would say it is all about exposure. I'd never heard about Quidco, until this thread. Mass marketing is expensive, and there isn't that much money in it for these affiliate sites, really.
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  7. #7
    Moderator C0ldf1re's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Quote Originally Posted by ROiBOT View Post
    ... it is all about exposure... Mass marketing is expensive...
    Sad but true. The best deals for consumers make too little profit to afford mass marketing. Only those firms making large gross profits (i.e. poor deals for consumers) can afford mass marketing. So the public tends to hear most about the worst deals!
    'It is perseverance and not genius that takes a man to the top.' - Cicero (attrib) *** 'Oh, yeah? That's easy for a genius to say.' - C0ldf1re.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    I think people are lazy and also don't trust giving all their personal details to get the cashback, discount codes seem to work a little bit better because they're applied instantly when you type the code name and buy the products.

  9. #9
    Administrator LD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Unless the OP requests the thread be reopened, it is now closed.
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