Thursday, November 1, 2007

You Really Can Get Paid to Shop

It is true you can get paid to shop! In fact, there is more than one way to get paid for shopping.

One method is from affiliate payouts. Now if you sign up as an affiliate for a company it is generally against the rule for you to shop your own affiliate links and many times a cookie on your computer will tell that if you are doing it. But there are Malls and Stores that you can set up that will share a portion of their affiliate revenue with you for shopping their affiliate links.

MyPowerMall is an example of the mall version where you can open your own personal mall for free and shop at hundreds of stores. You get a portion of what you spend back. Another option with MyPowerMall is to open a business mall. With the business mall you will still get a portion of your spending back but it is a smaller percentage. The up side to this is that you help others open their own MyPowerMall and you will earn money off of their shopping too.

Zlio is the store version of being paid to shop. At Zlio you can open your own free store and select the products you want in it. You can give your store a certain theme such as electronics or baby gear or you can set it up more like a department store and offer a little of everything. Then shop at your store and get others to shop at your store and you’ll earn money. Help others open their own stores and you can make money from them too.

Credit card rebates and dividend is a second method for being paid to shop. Many credit cards today offer cash back, airline miles, or reward points for making purchases with their credit card. But make sure you read the fine print and understand what the interest rate and penalties will be if you fail to make a payment in full. The only way to truly benefit from the credit card rebates is to pay the full balance of the card each and every month. If you can do this then use your credit card to pay for the items you buy in your mall or store and you’ll get paid twice for the same purchase.

The third method of being paid to shop is the infamous Mystery or Secret Shopper. Mystery Shoppers really do exist, Pacific Research Group is one employer. It is a form of market research and quality control where you are evaluating a retail store, restaurant, bank or other business for customer service and appearance. To be a mystery shopper you must have a good memory and attention to detail. You must also have excellent communication and writing skills because after your visit to a location you will be required to fill out a detailed report. A background in hospitality or customer service can be helpful. It is ok to take a spouse or older child along during your shop because they may be able to help you remember details but it is very important to look like a regular shopper and not some secret agent spy!

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