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Ibotta App – Background
Ibotta is an app that allows you to save cash back on everyday grocery purchases. The app offers discounts on name brand products for every aisle in the grocery store. This includes discounts on dairy, fruits, pantry items, beer, wine, magazines, cleaning products, etc. The app also offers generic, “any item” discounts that are not brand dependent. For example, you can earn $.20 cash back when you buy any brand of eggs or protein bar.
Prior to each grocery trip, you scan the app, unlock each discount (and complete the short activity to do so), and shop away. Once you complete your trip, simply scan your receipt and watch the cash hit your account! After accruing $20, you are eligible to withdraw your cash and then being investing it elsewhere!
Ibotta is also expanded the ways to earn outside of scanning receipts. You can earn cash back on mobile purchases by accessing the website through the Ibotta app. This is similar to Rakuten (formerly ebates) and Swagbucks, where you earn cash back by accessing a website through Rakuten or Swagbucks. Personally, I have never used Ibotta this way. But it is an option.
Ibotta – Update on My Earnings
I joined Ibotta in August 2016, after Lanny told me about the app. At the time, my wife and I predominantly shopped for groceries at Target and a local grocery store (which is on app). For the first few years, the cash was flowing in from Ibotta! I took a screenshot from my app to show how we have earned over $210 using the app.
$210 is a lot of cash. Some may not view scanning receipts as worth the time; however, I would argue the opposite. If taking two minutes after returning from each shopping trip put an extra $210 in your pocket, why wouldn’t you take the time. After all, you are also talking to two guys that strive to make EVERY DOLLAR COUNT on their journey to financial freedom.
I just asked myself this question. How much cash would I have to invest to earn $210 in dividend income? Assuming a 3% dividend yield, I would have to invest $7,000 in cash! You read that right, $7,000.
Ibotta – Am I Still Using it as Frequently?
The answer is, it is complicated. In the last section, I mentioned that my wife and I used to shop at Target and a local grocery store. Both of which were on Ibotta. Thus, we were able to earn significant discounts by planning ahead, building our list, and maximizing the Ibotta and Target Cartwheel discounts on food.
However, over the last few years, we have transitioned our grocery shopping habits. After a while, we started shopping exclusively at Aldi. Aldi’s lower prices beat the combination of Target + Ibotta.
While Aldi is available on Ibotta, which is huge, there is one problem. Target offers discounts on name brand products. Aldi has very few name brands (which is why we love it and the company can offer such low prices, along with other reasons). The only discounts you can earn are from the “Any Item” categories. If we purchase eggs, we can earn $.20. Mile, maybe $.25, and so on. The any item discounts on Ibotta are not how you earn a lot on the app, unfortunately. Thus, our earnings have slowed down significantly on Ibotta.
But all is not lost. I still do earn on Ibotta by scanning our Aldi receipts and purchasing goods in one other category….beer! I love the discounts that Ibotta offers on beer, as you can save a lot. Beers such as Stella, Peroni, Bud Light, Miller Light, Red Stripe, Fat Tire, can offer $2-$4 discounts on a purchase. So when I need beer for a party, or just to have some around the house, I always open up Ibotta to see where I can find the best discounts.
Despite the fact I have not used Ibotta as much lately due to my changing shopping habits, I still love the app and save money on groceries when I can. The fact that I have earned over $210 by simply scanning receipts after a shopping trip blows my mind. The best part was that I NEVER changed my shopping habits to earn the discount either. For example, I didn’t purchase a product that I had no intention of buying just to earn a $1 of cash back. Rather, I built my shopping list and then scanned for discounts on Ibotta. To me, that’s how all of these apps should be used.
There is a large population of people that do not shop at Aldi and can save some serious cash during this app. For those individuals, I would tell you that it is imperative to download the app and start saving today. Each dollar rebate, bonus earned, add up over the long run. Like me, you can save hundreds of dollars using it.
Do you use Ibotta? If so, how much have you saved since you signed up? Have you enjoyed your experience? What do you view as the major pros and cons of the app?