When spending money online whether it be shopping for gifts or insurance companies are looking as big a slice of the pie as they can get.  Affiliate marketing is big business, you will have likely heard of it in some capacity but if not no worries you’ll learn all about it here.


What is affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is where a “merchant” or retailer will give a percentage of a sale to an “affiliate” for recommending that sale.  Most retailers use affiliate networks, for example www.cj.com, some have their own “in house” affiliate programmes, e.g. Amazon.co.uk.  The rates that merchants pay can significantly vary, some will pay 2% for each sale made, some will pay 5% or 10%.


Where do cashback sites come into this?

Cashback sites give the money they make as affiliates to their users, due to the sheer size of these sites the larger cashback sites top this up with revenue from sponsored ads and from retained profit, if they do take any cut it is extremely marginal.


Are cashback sites safe? 

Cashback websites are very safe, you do not pay cashback websites, they simply drop a cookie onto your computer and when you make a purchase from a retailer through the website that sale will be tracked.  The sale will then appear in your account and you will be credited a percentage (cashback) within a certain timeframe.

TCB and Quidco have both been recommended by Martin Lewis of Moneysavingexpert, British press and have been used together by millions.


Why should I use cashback sites?

By using cashback websites you can get back 5-10% on average of the cost of your shopping online.  When buying gifts online you can save some serious cash, TCB and Quidco have very high success and satisfaction rates, TCB tells you how long each retailer/product type will take to track and how long to get paid, an example might be 1 hour to track and 2 months to be paid.  Most have 98% satisfaction rate or higher based on 10,000 or more ratings each.


Some cashback examples for specific retailers (Last checked 25/05/2021)


  • Boots - Up to 8% cashback
  • Very.co.uk - Up to 7% cashback
  • Firebox - 8% cashback
  • Finemeagift - 10.1% - 12.12% cashback


Cashback does vary from time to time and goes go up quite often especially at peak promotional periods such as Christmas.  Of course the biggest sales period of the year for most retailers is Christmas and so the commission they give to their affiliates often goes up.  Cashback sites like TCB and Quidco then pass that increase onto their members.


What cashback sites would you recommend?

The team behind Giftshuffle have been using cashback sites for some years now, occasionally we’ll forget to use them, we don’t always make a big deal about using them but they do come in handy and they provide a nice little surprise a month or two down the line when you’ve got a few extra quid in your pocket.


We would recommend the two top cashback websites, Topcashback and Quicdo.  Both having been heavily promoted in UK media and even television, radio and by moneysavingexpert himself Martin Lewis.