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Credit Card Issuers Hoping you Shop with Them

Online Credit Card ShoppingLooking to benefit from online sales this holiday season it looks like a couple of credit card issuers are raising the stakes when it comes to making purchases online. These issuers (Discover and Wells Fargo, so far) have recently announced rewards such as double cash back and reward points just for shopping with them and using your credit card to make the purchase.


In Discover’s case during this holiday season, cardholders who use their cards to make purchases will now earn double cash back anywhere they shop but will receive additional benefits for shopping online at "ShopDiscover". Those that shop online can receive the following:

  • Up to 20% Cashback Bonus or double miles
  • Ability to shop at over 150 online retailers
  • Extra holiday Cashback Bonus at over 35 retailers (limited time)
  • Weekly specials (free shipping, discounts, exclusive offers)

In Wells Fargo’s case it is more of enhancing a shopping portal in which their cardholders can now earn more reward points. The portal known as the "Earn More Mall", gives its rewards program members the opportunity to earn bonus points for purchases they make at participating online retailers in a variety of categories including apparel, gift cards, electronics and more.


Wells Fargo Expands Home Loan Credit Card Rewards

Wells Fargo Cash Back Credit CardAs homeowners are trying harder than ever to pay down debt and save, it looks like one credit card issuer wants to help out in the best way it knows how. That issuer is Wells Fargo, and it was recently announced that they will be expanding its Wells Fargo Cash Back Card program to give cardholders the ability to pay on their home equity loan principal by simply using their credit card.


So how does it work? Under this program all eligible purchases made with either the cash back card or Wells Fargo Home Rebate Card earns cardholders a 1 percent rebate which goes toward the mortgage’s principal. This rebate is then applied in $25 increments and has no cap on the amount of rebates cardholders can earn.


For Wells Fargo, cardholders using rewards they have accrued to go toward their principal on their home mortgage loan is nothing new. In fact since 2007, when their Home Rebate Card was first introduced, more than $10 million has been applied to home loans. This recent expansion however is something new as they look to capitalize on the growing amount of cardholders who now have home equity lines of credit, which have skyrocketed due to historically low interest rates. 


What is your opinion on a credit card that puts cash back earned toward your mortgage?


Debit and Credit Cards Take Hold of Virtual Coupons

Credit Card DiscountsFrom something that started off very slowly, virtual coupons are now trying to find their way in to every Americans’ pocket book. In recent news, an Atlanta based company called Cardlytics has teamed with a couple of banks to offer their consumers a way to save money before they even use their card. These coupons can be used both in a store or when a cardholder shops online.


So how do "virtual coupons" work? With virtual coupons, merchants place rewards and discounts where cardholders can view them once they log-in to view online bank statements. Once a cardholder chooses which coupons they want loaded on their card, they can go and shop. These discounts will be deducted when the consumer uses the card to make the payment.


So why are virtual coupons such a big deal? In my opinion, this is a win-win situation for all parties involved. For consumers, you will start receiving discounts on the places you shop most, and don’t have to go looking for coupons or discounts. For banks, it offers a cost free rewards program to their cardholders as merchants pay fees to put their coupons in front of potential buyers. For merchants, it is a way to stay in front of competition as consumers migrate toward saving money in every aspect of their lives. It also gives them a way to track consumer spending to create relevant rewards and target different user groups.


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