In business, people have a way of wording things to make it sound more exciting than it really is. The commercials say "I got paid $1,000 by shopping on ebates.com." This is not entirely true. She got $1,000 back. Which technically isn't getting paid, it's saving money.
How it works is you visit websites like Barnes & Noble, Amazon.com and many other online stores, but you must visit those stores through ebates so they can track the purchase and give you your rebate. For example. I bought a John Grisham book on Barnes & Noble through the website and now I have 2 cents in my account! I am so excited. Once I accumilate $100 I get that money back. Yes, my own money back. I honestly prefer they give me the discount upfront so I don't have to wait months to get it back.
When I think of being paid I think of someone taking money out of their own pocket and giving it to me. In some ways this is similar. Once you pay for something, the money is no longer yours, regardless, they're not paying you, they're giving you money back.
The amount of money you get back depends on which site you visit.You can get anything from 50% back to only 1%. Some sites do give you actual money back instead of percentage, but it is for cell phone companies and such
"$95 cash back on new wireless Family/Shared plans with 5 total linesNot really worth it unless you have 5 children. Anywho I don't want to sound like i am bashing the site. Anytime you can save money or get money back regardless of how long it takes is a good thing.