‘Better than saving’: How to shop online and get your cash back


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‘Better than saving’: How to shop online and get your cash back
In 2018, the highest amount a person was able to save in a single transaction was P 171,000

MANILA, Philippines – “Filipinos are more adoptive [compared to other countries] of anything ‘online,’ in general. Where we are struggling a bit is in learning how to process online payments,” said Prashant Kala, Country Manager of ShopBack Philippines.

“The Philippines internet economy is about $ 7 Billion, $ 3 Billion of which is e-commerce. However, Filipinos really don’t do big transactions online. A huge chunk of the population still prefers to see things physically than buy it online. There isn’t that much trust yet,” he added.


According to Prashant, Filipino netizens’ apprehensions in learning breakthroughs in digital payments hinder them from taking advantage of services that can help them make the most of their online transactions.

Cashbacks 101

ShopBack was established in the Philippines March of 2014. However, the online app company only started expanding its local services in 2018. Currently, there are around 2.9 million ShopBack users in the Philippines – having grown 15 times compared to last year.


ShopBack is described as the app “you go to before you shop.” With over 400 merchant partners in the Philippines alone – like Lazada, Zalora, Shopee, Foodpanda, Booking.com, Agoda & more – and with partners across 8 countries, Prashant says you can get a cashback in almost all online transactions with ShopBack.

Using the ShopBack app is relatively simple. All a user has to do is, first, sign up for ShopBack account. After signing up, you can download the app or visit the ShopBack site. Your favorite stores are already accessible within the app or website. 

All you have to do within your chosen store’s tab is to click “Activate Cashback” and make your purchase from the app/site.

Cashbacks can go up to 30% of your final purchase amount. This means, your possible cashback is computed from your total after other discounts and promos have been applied. So having a cashback does not forfeit these promos, but instead goes on top of it, increasing the money you save.

Cashbacks vs. discounts

However, one must also set their expectations. A cashback is different from a discount. And aside from differences in how they are used, there’s also a difference in how they are claimed.

As mentioned earlier, claiming a cashback does not negate discounts or other promos, but complements them. But aside from that (Prashant says this may surprise unsuspecting users), a cashback is not as instant as a discount.

While a discount code and coupon may be used instantly, deducting the cash you have to pay upon checkout, a cashback is tracked 2-3 days after purchase. 

For example, within the ShopBack app, a purchase from Lazada will give you up to 9% cashback. Say you spent a total of P 2000. Within 2-3 days, you will be a confirmation email regarding how much cashback you will receive. For this example, that’s P180. 

After the confirmation email, within 30 – 60 days, you will get a notification that your cashback is now available for withdrawal (which can then be deposited to your bank account of choice). This amount of time spent is used for verifying and confirming from the partner store that the user has received their purchase, and it didn’t go through cancellations or refunds.

According to Prashant Kala, this may go against people’s needs from instant gratification. But he says, “treat [ShopBack] as your piggy bank.” “It’s better than saving because here you don’t deny yourself; you get to shop. But then the savings come after.”

For Prashant, as a frequent traveler, he has already saved more than P 33,000 in cashback. In 2018, the highest amount saved in a single transaction was P 171,000. This year, it’s P 426,000. Both came from large group travel transactions.

Upcoming promotions

As part of ShopBack’s annual Shopfest – which celebrates the 9.9, 10.10, 11.11, and 12.12 sales – ShopBack will be giving huge cashbacks this upcoming 12.12 sale. ShopBack’s promo will run from December 12 – 14.

With their active partners Shopee and Lazada, cashbacks will go as high as 50% at certain times on December 12. Other e-commerce merchants will go as high as 20%. And for travel bookings, cashbacks can reach 12%.

On December 17, there will also be a one-day Super Cashback Day where users can get the maximum cashbacks for last-minute Christmas shopping. – Rappler.com


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