'The Money Wand'

Where the Magic of All Things Money Begins

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Who wouldn’t like to earn a little dough doing nothing? Count me in…

I am going to review 5 different apps that you can download on your cell phone to earn money or rewards (usually in the form of gift cards). With some apps all you have to do is download app, sign in to your accounts, and then sit back and collect the rewards, which can equal money.

While they may not make you rich, it can add an extra night out each month.


Ibotta – Get paid to go shopping.

Ibotta is a free coupon and cash back mobile app. Ibotta pays you to go shopping. Earn rewards on everyday purchases.

Users download the Ibotta app to their smartphone. Users will earn cash back on in-store and mobile purchases with receipt and/or purchase verification.

Your cash back rewards are deposited into your Ibotta account within 48 hours. You can redeem for gift cards or cash once your account balance reaches $20.

Compatible with Android and IPhone

How does Ibotta work?

3 Ways to Earn

  1. Send Receipt
Send Receipt


2. Link your Loyalty Cards

Link Loyalty Card


3. Mobile In-App Purchases

Mobile App Purchases


What I like about Ibotta.

I like that there are around 298 stores/merchants that have partnered with Ibotta. Bonus for me is they offer a variety of products from healthy foods to trash bags.

Things I use every day. Another bonus, is they offer generic and store brand discounts. Plus, you can do all this with a Team.

What I don’t like about Ibotta.

There is a learning curve and a lot to learn before getting the most benefits from Ibotta. They do provide a training guide in their FAQ page to get you started.

They offer you tips and tricks to save even more money. Once you get the hang of the app, then the money starts rolling into your account.


Shoptracker – Amazon’s Sidekick.

Do you shop at Amazon? Are you a Prime Member and would like to get even more savings a month? Have you met Amazon’s sidekick? Well, download Shoptracker and you can earn rewards for doing nothing.

The Harris Poll, one of the oldest and most prestigious polls in the world, facilitates ShopTracker.




Compatible with Android and IPhone

How does Shoptracker work?

Once the app is downloaded and you sync your Amazon account (you can sync up to 3 accounts) you will have a Visa Gift Card code in your inbox within 48 hours.

Want to keep earning rewards? The longer you participate, the more rewards you will earn. After your initial sign up bonus, every month you will continue earnings points (HI Points – which are the same as through Harris Poll Online), as long as you keep the app installed on your devices.

Once you have enough points, you can redeem your points balance for a variety of different rewards from a catalog of items including gift certificates, donations to charity, and more.

What I like about Shoptracker.

You can download it and forget. It will run in the background making you money while you shop. You don’t have to worry about security of the site because they are run by Harris Poll Online, which is a reliable company.

What I don’t like about Shoptracker.

I was just recently made aware of this app while doing research for this post. I downloaded the app about 7 hours ago and I haven’t received any notifications or my $3 Visa Card. It does say it can take up to 48 hours.


ShopKick – Wants to become your favorite rewards app.

Shopkick is a free smartphone app that lets you earn points for shopping.

It was founded in 2009 and started gaining significant attention in 2013. The company has received positive feedback from Forbes, Inc. Magazine, World Economic Forum, and Huffington Post.

It’s also been featured on Oprah.com and About.com. They are on a mission to become everyone’s favorite reward app.

Compatible with Android and IPhone

How does Shopkick work?

Shop, earn, and reward. It’s that simple.



  1. Simple walk into a store/ visit online stores
  2. Scan bar codes of select products/view online products.
  3. Purchase with linked card.
  4. Redeem Kicks and Enjoy!

What I like about Shopkick.

To use the app is 100% free and very user-friendly. Once you read the guide, you will be shopping and having fun. Kicks are easy to earn ( you can even earn Kicks by watching videos ) and you can redeem for a large selection of gift cards.

Another bonus with Shopkick is you get deals from stores that you might have otherwise missed.

What I don’t like about Shopkick.

It can take a long time to accumulate points. When you do accumulate the points, it take a large amount to get a small valued gift card. You can only redeem Kicks for gift cards, not money.

The app requires a lot of permissions when you download it. You allow it to access your identity, contacts, location, SMS, phone, media, camera, microphone, and more.


Drop – The app made for Millennial.

Drop is an easy-to-use app that lets you earn gift cards for shopping as you normally do. It’s almost like having a credit card with rewards but, without the monthly bill. Want rewards but, don’t want a credit card? Let me introduce you to Drop.

Derrick Fung, the CEO of Drop, noticed some obvious traits in millennial spending habits.

Millennial are willing to spend more money on frivolous things like Starbucks and Uber, but they’re also more likely than previous generations to switch loyalty if that means saving some money.

Compatible with Android and IPhone

How does Drop work?

Download app, swipe, tap, or scan and you are set to earn rewards with every purchase.



What I like about Drop.

If you have a credit/debit card that earns rewards, with Drop you get even more rewards. After the initial setup, everything is automatic, so there’s no extra work required on your end.

Speaking of rewards, you get an additional 1,000 bonus points when you invite a friend to Drop.

What I don’t like about Drop

It takes a large sum of points to be able to redeem. It is 5,000 points for a $5 gift card. You earn around 1-2% in gift cards for every dollar you spend. If you’ve chosen brands where you spend a lot of money anyway, you can expect to earn a reward about once a month.

During sign-up you ONLY get to chose 5 brands and no more. When choosing brands you cannot change them once you select them, so take this time to choose your favorites.


Ebates – Shop, Save, Get Paid.

Founded in 1998, Ebates gives you cash back for shopping. Ebates gets a commission from stores when you make a purchase, and instead of keeping it, Ebates share it with you.

You can get up to 40% cash back at over 2,500 stores when using the Ebates app.

Compatible with Android and IPhone

How does Ebates work?



What I like about Ebates.

I love that Ebates sends you real money straight to your PayPal or by check.

There are several ways to earn cash back from In-Store cash back to referring your family and friends.

You can shop at major stores to earn your cash back and they have the option to add an extension to chrome to assist you with shopping. They will find you the best deals and even apply coupons if you are shopping online.

What I don’t like about Ebates.

Finding a real flaw with Ebates was hard for me. I mean it is free to join but you do have to do the work to find your cash back. It isn’t automatic like other reward apps.

I guess the only down fall I see is you have to wait 90 days to receive your cash. They only pay out quarterly but hey, I can live with that since my debit card doesn’t have a rewards program.


Final thoughts



Final Thoughts…

I have to honestly say I am addicted to Ibotta right now. I am still in the learning curve and reading the users guide but, I think with every thing I have read from other online reviews, this will be my go to app for savings.

My recommendation would be checking every single one of these out and see which ones work best for you and your life style. Not all lives or phones are created the same. So what may work for me, may not work for you.

Remember a few of these you don’t have to do anything but, download, set up, and just let it run in the background of your devices.

While you may not get rich off these apps, it will still put enough dough in your pocket for a night out on the town now and then.

Would you like to line your pockets with a little more cash? Check out my article on Making Money in Your PJs.

TTFN and Happy Money Making…


If you have other apps or websites to recommend that gives a good return on the time invested on them, please drop the information in the comments section below.


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