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cashback websites policy
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Cashback websites policy

Cashback websites policy

Some of your staff might be exploiting cashback websites for their own advantage when making business purchases or bookings. Our policy prohibits the use of cashback websites when ordering goods, facilities or services online for the business and it makes breach a disciplinary offence.

Online shopping

TopCashback, Quidco and similar cashback websites allow users to earn cashback from their online shopping and bookings with listed retailers and suppliers. The registered user selects a retailer on the cashback website and then clicks on a link button to open the retailer’s website in a new window and the visit is tracked. From there, they shop as normal and, once a purchase is made, the cashback website calculates the amount of cashback due. This appears in the user’s online account as a pending transaction until it’s eventually payable, which can take several months. Once it is payable, the user can ask for a transfer of the cash into their personal bank account or they can take the sum in other ways, e.g. retailers’ gift cards. The cashback amount varies enormously depending on the retailer and the promotions they’re running and it can be a percentage of the total purchase or alternatively a fixed amount. Whilst cashback websites are primarily intended for personal use, if you have staff who regularly order goods for your business online, such as office equipment or stationery, or they make online bookings for business purposes, such as hotels and flights, there’s a high risk they could be using these websites to earn some extra tax-free cash on the side. It’s easy for the cashback to soon mount up with regular online orders. You can even get cashback when arranging business insurance and utility suppliers.

Not in your best interests?

Although the price you pay for the goods or services is still the same using cashback websites, firstly any such cashback on business purchases and bookings rightfully belongs to you and not the employee and, secondly, the employee might not be choosing the cheapest or most favourable retailer or supplier because they’re motivated by the amount of cashback they’re hoping to get, not by arranging the best deal for you. This means they’re not acting in your best interests as they’re putting their own interests first. So, our Cashback Websites Policy tackles the problem. It bans the use of cashback websites when placing orders for goods, facilities or services online for the business and specifically prohibits the employee from attempting to earn cashback money for themselves on business purchases. It makes breach of the policy a disciplinary offence.

Another option?

There’s nothing to stop you registering your business to take full financial advantage of cashback websites and enabling one or two named employees to run your account. That way, the payments go into your own registered account. If you do this, shop around for the best deals and withdraw the money regularly. If a website goes into liquidation, you’ll lose any accrued funds that you haven’t withdrawn. Also, if a retailer doesn’t accept the transaction, the cashback website won’t be able to pay you and there’s nothing you can do about it, so treat any cashback as a bonus and not a right. This means it’s often better to use online voucher codes to get instant guaranteed discounts.

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