An Update on eBay Bucks and How You Can Benefit
A few years back, this blog shared some information about the eBay Bucks program. We thought it was time to update our look at the program and see what, if anything, has changed, and how you might benefit.
One thing to keep in mind is that although the typical eBay Bucks "money back" rate is 2%, eBay sometimes runs promotions where you can earn more than that. For example, just this past June, eBay ran a promotion where you could earn three times the normal amount in eBay bucks, or 6% instead of 2% on qualifying purchases.
But let's run down the basics of eBay Bucks and some of the changes over the past several years.
What are eBay Bucks?
The eBay Bucks Rewards Program is designed to reward eBay members for purchasing items on www.ebay.com, according to eBay. You need to join, if you have not already, and then, after each calendar quarter, you can rack up eBay Bucks based on your qualifying purchases (there are some restrictions; see below).
You can earn money back based on a base rate which is currently 2%. (Please see below for how that can change with promotions, etc.).
How do you join?
You can join by enrolling here, "or simply by responding to an invitation email that eBay may send from time to time."
If you earn $5.00 or more in eBay Bucks during that calendar quarter, you receive a reward equal to the amount of your eBay Bucks in the form of an eBay Bucks Certificate. You can use this Certificate to buy more things on eBay.
The program is free, so there is no downside to joining.
Changes Made to the Program
The following changes were made about January 1, 2014, to the eBay Bucks Rewards Program:
- If you do not earn $5.00 or more in a calendar quarter, then your eBay Bucks balance does not transfer to the next earn period and is forfeited.
- If you don't earn $5.00 in a calendar quarter, you cannot transfer your balance to another eBay Bucks member. eBay Bucks are non-transferable.
The eBay Bucks Rewards Program in Canada was discontinued around March, 2013.
Rewards Outside the US
- Are there any rewards programs for eBay users not in the United States?
If you are a resident of the United Kingdom, you may be eligible to earn rewards through Nectar, says eBay.
Who can participate?
You can participate in the eBay Bucks program if, according to eBay:
- You have a US address tied to an eBay account and the account is in good standing (no holds or suspensions)
- You have an eBay account registered on eBay.com
- You have a valid PayPal account or have successfully signed up for a valid PayPal account and such account is in good standing
Only one (1) eBay account per person can be enrolled in the eBay Bucks Rewards Program.
How do you earn with eBay Bucks?
You earn rewards with eBay Bucks simply by being enrolled in the program, and then shopping on eBay. Not all purchases qualify; see the restrictions here: http://pages.ebay.com/rewards/terms.html, and some below:
To qualify, purchases must meet the following requirements:
- Paid for with PayPal (Payment needs to be made on eBay's checkout system. Payments made directly via PayPal to a seller's account aren't eligible.)
- Made after you enroll in the eBay Bucks Rewards Program (can be a winning bid or Buy it Now). (That one's a no-brainer).
- Bought on the US eBay site (www.eBay.com). "Some third-party automated bidding applications (sniping tools) are actually placing their bids on international sites as opposed to bidding on the US site directly. Purchases completed by these applications do not qualify to earn eBay Bucks."
- Purchases made in these categories do not qualify ("among other restrictions"):
- eBay Motors (including Parts & Accessories)
- Real Estate
- Gift Cards & Coupons, but only for eBay Gift Cards within that category
- Coins & Paper Money, but only for Bullion within that category
- Business & Industrial
But you can still use eBay Bucks to purchase items in those categories.
How Much can you Earn with eBay Bucks?
- The base percentage rate is currently 2%. However, the base percentage can chage: "eBay reserves the right to change the base earn percentage up or down.
From time to time, "eBay may offer special promotions that would provide members with extra eBay Bucks or an additional earn percentage in addition to the base earn percentage for qualifying purchases during the promotion period. If your purchase qualifies for multiple promotions, you will automatically earn credit for the highest value promotional offer."
- How is the base earn amount determined for a qualifying purchase?
The base earn amount is calculated by taking the [item price] x [quantity selected] x [earn percentage]. Any additional fees such as shipping, handling, and taxes are excluded from this calculation; eBay Bucks are earned solely on the item price.
- Are all aspects of your qualifying purchase included in the calculation?
No, eBay Bucks are earned solely on the item price. Any other fees (including, but not limited to, shipping, handling, and taxes) are not included in the calculation of the earn amount.
Can the base earn percentage change?
eBay "reserves the right to change the base earn percentage up or down. From time to time, eBay may offer special promotions that would provide members with extra eBay Bucks or an additional earn percentage in addition to the base earn percentage for qualifying purchases during the promotion period. If your purchase qualifies for multiple promotions, you will automatically earn credit for the highest value promotional offer."
Are there any limitations on how many eBay Bucks you can earn?
Yes, according to eBay:
"You can earn up to $100 in eBay Bucks on any single eBay purchase. This means that if the eBay Bucks earn percentage is 2% and the purchase price (excluding tax, shipping fees) is in excess of $5,000, you would be restricted from earning any more eBay Bucks for that purchase beyond the $100 eBay Bucks purchase earn limit.
"You can earn up to $500 in eBay Bucks for all qualifying purchases during a given calendar quarter. This means that if the eBay Bucks earn percentage is 2% and the total value of qualifying purchases exceeds $25,000 during a given calendar quarter, you would be restricted from accumulating any more eBay Bucks beyond the $500 eBay Bucks quarterly earn limit."
When do you get the eBay Bucks posted to your account?
They are posted after you purchase and pay for your item(s) with PayPal. Note: If you make a purchase during one calendar quarter but don't pay for it with PayPal until the next calendar quarter, the eBay Bucks will be added to your account during the quarter when you pay for the item(s).
How can you check you eBay Bucks balance?
Go to My eBay, and then click "eBay Bucks" under the "Buy" heading in the left-hand menu bar.
For more information on eBay Bucks, go to the FAQ, here: http://pages.ebay.com/rewards/faq.html?&_trkparms=%26clkid%3D6800449814580359911
So, as you can see, eBay Bucks are free money...don't leave it on the table, especially during those triple-points promotions!