As I’m sure you know just about every credit card company now has their own online shopping portal (like ShopDiscover) to let their cardmembers rake up rewards.
They more or less all work the same way… you login to your account and from there, click on the retailer you want to shop at. A cookie is placed on your browser when this happens and the credit card company gets a kickback for any purchases you make on the store’s website. They then turn around and give a chunk of this money back to the cardholder. That’s how they can afford to give you such high cash back.
3 ShopDiscover Tips You Need To Know…
Being that they were among the first credit card “malls” it comes as no surprise they have one of the largest selections (the ShopDiscover retailers list is huge) and some of the highest cardholder payouts around. And if you play your cards right (literally) you can save even more money when using this program. Here are 3 tips every savvy shopper must know:
1. Use coupon codes too (but be careful)
Sure, saving 10% at 1800Contacts.com is already a nice chunk of money, but I save even more by using a coupon code in conjunction with ShopDiscover. Of course every retailer is different and I can’t guarantee this always works, but for me it has.
However you need to do this the right way! Just about every coupon website stuff’s your browser with their own cookie when you click on a store’s link (or they do it through those annoying coupon copy/paste boxes). If you did this after you already entered the store through the ShopDiscover portal, the coupon website’s cookie may very well wipe out the Discover cookie… and that would mean the transactions wouldn’t count!
So gather your coupon codes ahead of time, before accessing ShopDiscover. As an added pre-caution, it may not be a bad idea to clear your cookies before entering.
2. Check the ShopDiscover retailer list often!
If you’ve been a Discover cardmember for a while, it’s easy to just assume you already know the participating retailers (I’m guilty of that). A good chunk of the merchants – I would guess 70% of them – do remain constant. However there are some merchants that may only participate in the program as a special promotion.
For example during the Christmas season a year ago, Groupon was a special participant with a whopping 20% Cashback Bonus! I didn’t find out about it until December which was really too bad, because during the month of November I had spent $45 buying 3 Groupon restaurant deals. If I would have checked ShopDiscover first and saw that, I would have been able to save an extra nine bucks!
So as a general rule of thumb, always check their website before spending money online… you never know what new participants might pop up.
3. Don’t get screwed when you redeem!
Last but not least, how you spend your Shop Discover Cashback Bonus is also extremely important!
In order to get the maximum value for your accumulate Cashback Bonus, be careful when selecting your redemption options. If you choose direct deposit or statement credit, the rewards you get will be at face value (i.e. $100 in Cashback Bonus will equal $100). But with other options like the partner gift cards, you will be able to get a lot more for your money, since the value of the gift cards are always above the face value. Lately, Discover has started to offer more merchandise, but I still find the partner gift cards offer the most bang for your buck.
Do you have the best Discover card for 2013?
If you don’t have the brand new Discover it card, then you’re missing out! Why? Because unlike their older cards, the it card gives a full 1% on non-category spending (compare that to the More card, which only gives 1/4% on the first $3,000 spent and 1% thereafter). So if you don’t have the it card I would strongly suggest you apply for it – because if not – you’re losing out on how much cash back you can earn.
Already have it? For other spending outside of the Shop Discover program, you may want to check out my other top cash back credit cards to make sure you are getting the maximum rewards possible.