Is Rakuten Legit or a Scam? (Review)

This post may contain links from our sponsors. See our disclosure for more information.

Is Rakuten Legit

In the world of cashback sites, many pose the question, is Rakuten legit or a scam? In case you didn’t know, Rakuten used to be known as Ebates. So in this review I will use the two interchangeably.

In the world we live in, everybody is shopping online. With sites like amazon even offering same day delivery it’s just flat out convenient. And then you factor in an opportunity to earn cash back on your shopping and you’ve really got my attention.

But with the boom in online retail, also comes some questionable platforms. And not everything is what it seems.

In this review, I will take a deep dive into the Rakuten platform to let you know my 100% unbiased opinion on it. Ebates, now Rakuten, is one of the biggest sites of its kind.

Let’s get into it and see how it stacks up.

What is Rakuten?

Rakuten is a popular cash back site that was initially known as Ebates. The company was acquired by Rakuten in 2014, and in 2019 they decided to change their name officially to Rakuten.

Ebates was originally established in 1999 and is headquartered in San Francisco, CA. The company currently has more than 10 million users. Since its establishment, it has paid out more than $1 billion in cashback rewards.

The site has a great reputation. Most of the people who have used the platform report that it is one of the best cashback sites out there.

How Does Rakuten Work?

Ebates is free to join and lets you earn money on any purchase that you make online. You first need to sign up on the Rakuten website and then get a link that directs you to your favorite shopping stores where you make purchases.

Is Rakuten Legit

The company then rewards you with a percentage on any purchase that you make in your account. Instead of giving you a discount on the purchases you make, they reward you with a percentage back, which is deposited in your Ebates account.

Ebates is the middleman acting as affiliates for the over 2,500 stores that they work with. They earn a commission from the stores when you go through them to make a purchase and you don’t have to pay a dime. They then pay you cash back from those commissions earned.


Once you earn $5 in your account the company pays you out. This is the minimum payout amount and anything less will remain in your account until you reach that $5 threshold.

All payments are made through PayPal or Check sent directly to you via the mailing address you have on file. They also pay you a $10 Bonus just for signing up.

The Rakuten Mobile App

For those who like to earn cash back from anywhere, Rakuten has created an app that you can install and use on your mobile device. The app allows you to shop on the go and is available for download on iOS and Android devices.

Is Rakuten a Scam

To get started all you have to do is download the app and then sign up using your email address, Facebook, or a Google account to start earning rewards whenever you shop.

How to Make Money With Rakuten

Aside from earning up to 40% on purchases, there are other ways that you can increase your earnings on Rakuten. These include:

1) Installing the Rakuten Browser Extension

There is a browser extension that alerts you whenever you visit a shopping store that is eligible to earn you cashback via Rakuten. The extension also tags your online search results through Yahoo, Google, Bing, and other search engines to allow you to earn cashback.

2) Referrals

Rakuten rewards you with $25 whenever you refer a friend who makes a purchase worth $25 or more. This is a nice way to increase your earnings and put some extra cash back in your pocket.

3) Double Cash Back

There is a section on the Rakuten platform that directs you to affiliates stores that offer double cash back. Double cash back offers come regularly so you should make sure you look out for this as often as you can. These are basically promotions that are offered during holidays like Black Friday.

4) Use the Rakuten Cash Back Visa Credit Card

By signing up for the Rakuten cash back Visa card, you give yourself more opportunities to cash in.

This includes 3% on all qualifying purchases you make through Rakuten and a 1% cashback for the shopping you do elsewhere using the Visa card. You also earn 3% cash back on hotels, flights, rental cars and more when you travel.

You can also be rewarded a $10 bonus on your first purchase. Rakuten members have earned over $7 million cash back with the card.

Is Rakuten Legit or Scam?

Rakuten is not a scam. It is a legit program and is trusted by millions of users. Over 10 million to be exact. Also, the company works with most big stores like Amazon and has been in operation for nearly a decade.

The company is accredited with the BBB since 2016 and has an A+ rating. It is definitely legit. And if you like to shop online, it makes perfect sense to give Ebates a shot.

Pros and Cons of Ebates


  1. It’s free to join Rakuten.
  2. Earn a $10 welcome bonus just for signing up.
  3. Earn cash back at more than 2,500 stores of up to 40% on purchases.
  4. The company has paid out over $1 billion and counting.
  5. The Rakuten app makes it easy for you to earn on the go.


  1. Not all purchases qualify for cash back
  2. It’s hard to earn a fortune with the site. Probably not going to earn you a full-time income.
  3. It takes a long time to get paid out on your cash back. Some users have complained that it takes 3 months. So quarterly payouts.
  4. Rakuten isn’t available everywhere. Only available in the US, Canada, China, Japan, Singapore and South Korea.


If you’re in to reward type sites, Rakuten is a no-brainer. Not only is it a legit site, but it offers so many different ways to earn and a robust platform, that your earnings will add up before you know it.

No site is perfect. But the nice thing about Rakuten is it allows you to earn money back while spending money which adds up in the long run.

With over 2,500 stores, there’s enough out there for everyone. Be sure to kick the tires on this one for yourself to see if it’s right for you.

Click here to join Rakuten and start earning today.

Leave a Comment