(ShopBack Review): How I Got Back RM 718 From Online Shopping

Do you buy stuff online?

  • Buying a new cellphone – Lazada.com
  • Getting new trendy sneakers for your next holiday – Zalora.com
  • Getting hungry at home but too lazy to go out – Foodpanda.com

You can buy almost anything on your phone while sitting in your living room. It truly is a great time to be alive! But it gets better. With ShopBack, you can make a bit of cashback every time you buy stuff online.

Who doesn’t want to save even more money? Let’s start with what is this thing called ShopBack:

What is ShopBack?

ShopBack is an online coupon company that gives you a bit of cashback only when you make online purchases through their website or app.

Shopback.my website

Here’s what the app looks like:

How Does ShopBack Work?

Shopback works on the concept of Affiliate Marketing. Well, what is that, you might ask?

Affiliate Marketing is the process of promoting someone else’s product or service online. In return for a successful sale, the marketer will earn a commission.

Let’s use a practical example:

ShopBack promotes another company or brand on their website or app. When you click on the link to be redirected to that company’s website, (let’s say Lazada) and buy something, Lazada will know that you came from ShopBack.

Lazada will kick back a small slice of the profit to ShopBack (an affiliate commission). That is how Affiliate Marketing works.

To reward you for purchasing through ShopBack and not directly purchasing to Lazada, ShopBack they will split their affiliate commission with you. 

Is ShopBack Real or a Scam?

In short, it is a legitimate business.

I can understand why it might seem like a scam as they’re a lot of negative reviews on the Google Play Store recently:

Good thing that their customer support team is reacting well to the complaints, and hopefully, the disputes were able to be resolved amicably.

Also, the overall rating is 4.6 out of 5 stars, which is still overall excellent.

My friends and I have been using it for several years, and we have cashed the money into my bank account multiple times.

So yes, it is legitimate, and I have never had any problems. I will show you my personal experiences with ShopBack in this article.

Here’s my accumulated personal cashback:

It’s quite shocking to see how much I am able to save from my online shopping over a period of 3 years.

This is by no means to promote you to shop excessively online. These are all the stuff that I needed and made a calculated decision to buy.

Let’s see what I bought to make back that RM 718:

How I Saved RM 718 Using the ShopBack App

Here are my latest transactions. Mostly the cashback is in very small values but it accumulates over time. Better than nothing right?

As you can see, some cashback are small (less than RM1) and some are pretty decent at around RM10.

Let’s take a look at my cashback breakdown:

Lazada & Shopee Online Shopping

I buy a lot of electrical gadgets and stuff for my Airbnb business on Lazada and Shopee:

I bought several things that I think are a little weird to buy online but proved to be the cheapest option, especially during a huge sale (like the 11.11 sale in 2019). Stuff that I got online:

  • Washing machine for my home.
  • New Huawei cellphone.
  • A sturdy tripod for my YouTube project.
  • Spare parts for my vacuum cleaner.

Not only online sales make the stuff that you want cheaper, but I got cashback on top of that. Here are the respective cashback:

But unfortunately, due to the cutthroat nature of these businesses competing with one another on prices, their profits are razor thin and could not afford to give a lot of commissions to affiliate marketers.

Let’s take a look at Lazada’s CashBack percentage breakdown:

The highest cashback is for new customers. In hindsight, if you’re new to ShopBack, why not compile all the stuff you want to buy so you qualify for the ‘New Customer’ cashback rates.

Just make sure you read each merchant’s terms & conditions. Here are Lazada & ShopBack T&C:

  • Cashback capped at RM18 per order
  • Cashback is capped at RM312 accumulated each month

I think almost everyone shops on Lazada especially Millennials. So for you online shoppers out there, might as well get some money out of your online shopping 😉

Accommodation ShopBack

One of the highest cashback categories is lodging (Expedia, Booking.com, Airbnb, and Agoda).

Here’s what the cashback rates for Agoda. Just a word of caution that the cashback rates change all the time. But at the time of this writing, here are the rates:

5% for hotel bookings, that’s huge! So if you book a staycation for RM220 a night (which is very reasonable in KL), you’ll be looking at a cashback of around RM 11. Pretty good!

I’ve done a bit of traveling and I made hotel bookings through ShopBack. Here are my Expedia cashback results:

Cashback for Expedia Bookings

Alright, let’s take a look at a real sample of a hotel booking I made in Janda Baik recently. Here’s my confirmation email from Agoda and the total price I paid:

Here is my Cashback for that purchase at RM 10.22:

So let’s do the math here. 10.22 over 217.36 is 4.7%. This is slightly lower than their claim of 5%. I think the cashback rate might be lower than 5% at the time of booking.

Next time, make sure you don’t forget to book your next accommodation through ShopBack.

To maximize your cashback, you can even offer to reserve on behalf of your friends and family.

Maxis Home Internet Registration

Amazingly, ShopBack also gives you cashback for a new sign up for home internet package.

When I was running my Airbnb business, I had 10 unit studios that obviously needed internet access.

At the time, ShopBack was promoting free 1-month cash back if you sign up for Maxis home package with a 2-year contract.

Good news, the coupon is still running as of this writing:

So, I had at least 3 studios that I wanted to install an internet source and each application through ShopBack gets a free 1-month cashback:

For those with a sharp eye, you’ll see above that the top request was ‘rejected’.

From what I can remember (this was back in 2018), is that at that time, one of my application forms was filled up wrongly and I had to cancel and resubmit a new one, hence the rejected status.

Also, back in 2017, the slowest internet package cost me more at RM129.71 a month. It was right after the General Election 14 is when all of sudden home internet packages became affordable.

So check Shopback before you register for a new internet package for your home.

Food Delivery

I order food deliveries a lot. Sometimes more than I should.

Not only can you order food on your phone while lazing about, but you can also earn a bit of cashback. Awesome!

I order food exclusively from either FoodPanda or GrabFood. Just because I am comfortable with their service.

Unfortunately, GrabFood is not a participant of the ShopBack program, so you can’t earn any cashback from ordering with GrabFood. Which makes FoodPanda my default go-to food delivery company of choice.

Here’s my embarrassing Food Panda order history & its cashback:

It’s crazy to think that you won’t get any cashback if you dine in at the restaurant. But you do get cashback if you buy the same thing to get it delivered to you through the ShopBack app.

Prepaid Phone Top-Up

For those of you who use Prepaid on your phone, stop purchasing your top-up at 7-Eleven.

Because you can make some money every time you top-up your prepaid phone plans through ShopBack.

During 2017, I started to use 2 sim cards (1 for business and 1 for personal) and I had to recharge my top-up every month. I think I bought an RM30 top-up to get this cashback:

Overseas Shopping – AliExpress

Sometimes if you want to get things in bulk and get the absolute cheapest price, you have to buy directly from wholesalers in China.

That’s why AliExpress is awesome. Buy stuff in bulk from AliExpress and save a tonne of money. The only downside is that it takes time, usually around two weeks for your stuff to arrive in Malaysia.

I usually get supplies for my Airbnb business and also replacement parts for my cleaning equipment.

I use Kaercher brand vacuums and steam cleaners. Being the German brands that they are, their spare part prices are high.

With a little bit of Googling, I found out the manufacturer of their spare parts in China and able to buy from them directly at a much lower price through AliExpress:

Here are the cashback for my AliExpress purchases:

Not bad! ShopBack even works with international companies and not just tied to local companies.

Let’s take a look at their full list of participating E-Commerce websites below:

Full List of E-Commerce Websites that Work with ShopBack

There’s a whole spectrum of E-Commerce websites that works together with ShopBack.

Here’s other online shopping that you can generate cashback through ShopBack:

  • Shopping for cosmetics
  • Purchasing online bus tickets
  • Buying new tires for your car online (of all things)
  • Getting grocery delivery
  • Buying books online at Kinokuniya
  • Online flower delivery

The possibilities are endless so make sure you visit Shopback’s website and app before you make any online purchases.

When & How Can I Withdraw from ShopBack?

You can’t get the cashback money right away. I’m not sure the exact day number, but for me, It’s typically after three months of a successful purchase.

Three months? That’s so long! Why does it take so long to get my cashback?

It’s because to prevent any abuse. When you purchase an item online (let’s say on Lazada), most merchants provide some return guarantee.

Assuming that you don’t make any returns, Lazada will confirm with Shopback that you have received your items and pass the return policy. This is why it takes three months.

Here’s my cashback history after waiting three months from the day of my purchase:

How do I Get ShopBack?

You can go to their website at www.shopback.my and register with them.

If you use my link here to register, you’ll get RM5 to kickstart your cashback journey 🙂

So make sure to install the app on your phone too because sometimes ShopBack says that cashback is only granted if you make the purchases on their app:

Wrapping it All Up

There you go, a comprehensive review of the ShopBack app and website to earn cashback from your online purchases.

So make sure you check the ShopBack website and app before you make any online purchases, or you might lose out on money!

Helmi Hasan

Hi, I'm Helmi Hasan, the founder, and writer for the personal finance blog, Balkoni Hijau. Read more in the 'About Me' page or follow me on Twitter.

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