Ebates is Rebranding to Rakuten — But Don’t Panic

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Ebates is Rebranding to Rakuten — But Don’t Panic

The other day, I was half paying attention to the television when a commercial for Rakuten came on. After a few seconds of hearing people try to pronounce the name, I looked up to realize I had seen the word before: under the logo for Ebates. So then why were they advertising Rakuten as a cash back tool instead of Ebates itself?

Well, it turns out that — after five years of owning Ebates — the company has decided to discontinue that name and move forward under the banner of Rakuten. At least to me, it seems like a pretty strange decision, leading me to worry that other big changes would be afoot for the platform as well. Thankfully (at least for now), those fears seem unfounded as much of the site is staying the same.

I actually have already been “upgraded” to Rakuten, as a message that popped up when I visited the site told me. As a result, visiting Ebates now automatically forwards me to Rakuten, my iPhone app’s icon has evolved, and the ‘E’ that resided in my browser bar is now an ‘R.’ Other than those minor cosmetic adjustments, Rakuten seems to function exactly the same way as Ebates did. This is to say that the Chrome plugin still alerts me to deals wehn I land on retailer pages, the app allows me to opt-into in-store offers, and Double Cash Back deals are still in effect. Oh, and my Big Fat Check is still due to arrive on May 15th.

Looking at Rakuten’s recent FAQ article, I was also relieved to see that the name change won’t be affecting referral links that are already out there. The company says that referral bonuses will still be paid regardless of whether the user earns cash back via Ebates or Rakuten. As for the people you’re referring, they’ll also still be able to choose between a $10 Walmart gift card or $10 Big Fat Check for their sign-up bonus.

Honestly, I’m still scratching my head as to why they’d want to do away with a straightforward and well-established brand like Ebates in favor of a name that they feel the need to educate people on how to even pronounce but, hey, what do I know? What’s important is that Rakuten will operate in largely the same way as Ebates does/did. That said, if you do still have burning questions about the rebranding, I dove deeper into the topic for an article over on Dyer News.

So, will the new name stick? We’ll just have to wait and see.


Kyle Burbank

Kyle is a freelance writer and author whose first book, "The E-Ticket Life" is now available on Amazon. In addition to his weekly "Money at 30" column on Dyer News, he is also the editorial director and a writer for the Disney fan site LaughingPlace.com and the founder of Money@30.com.

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