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eBay Tests CashBack Program with FatWallet

Shoppers love cashback programs, and many people were disappointed when eBay suspended the cashback component of its affiliate program in 2011, impacting firms such as Ebates, BigCrumbs, FatWallet and KickItBack.

And while eBay Partner Network (ePN) has not resurrected the old cashback program, it is running a test with one of those firms.

EcommerceBytes learned on Tuesday that FatWallet.com reinitiated cash back for eBay shoppers. “Members now have access to this exclusive rewards offer found only on FatWallet.com. Except for a short list of collectibles which include restrictions of $100 in cash back per purchase, shoppers can add cash back savings to most purchases of new and used items. An increase in eBay offers shared in FatWallet’s Hot Deals forum is great news as well.”

A spokesperson for the eBay Partner Network affiliate program confirmed it had not brought back the cashback program, and told EcommerceBytes, “This specific example is not something we are promoting to the larger publisher community, rather it’s an isolated pilot ePN is running with Fatwallet.”

A spokesperson for FatWallet said Tuesday its forums have an active eBay contingent. “We’ve seen a measurable increase in user-generated content and home page offers since the promotion rolled out last week.”

Many people expressed excitement about the cashback deal in a thread on the FatWallet boards when announced on February 15th. Some also griped about recent changes to eBay Bucks, and a couple of shoppers bemoaned the fact they had just spent a few hundred dollars on eBay prior to the test being announced.

However, all purchases and winning bids must be placed through a Cash Back link: “Find an eBay coupon to get the best prices on your favorite products.” So the cashback program does not appear to be open to all purchases, and the “coupons” all lead to eBay Daily Deals or items such as a “Jockey Double Breasted Jacket” for sale by the Official Jockey Store on eBay.

That likely means that the majority of “regular” sellers will not benefit directly from the cashback program.

Be sure to review the restrictions – such as the $100 cap on any single transaction in seven categories including Coins & Paper Money, eBay Motors and Jewelry & Watches. It also excludes eBay gift cards, real estate and Giving Works.

See more information on FatWallet.com.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.