Rakuten: An Intro Offer + Cash Back

This is the first in a series I’ll be writing over time about how to save money on your wine club subscription.

First, please meet Rakuten. If you aren’t familiar with Rakuten, it’s a pretty easy concept to understand. Many companies offer referral bonuses to websites for sending them business. It’s called affiliate marketing if you’re interested in the ecommerce terminology. Rakuten is different in that, it takes that referral bonus and shares some of it back to you. In some industries the payments are small. Companies which sell physical products tend to pay less, companies with subscription services like that wine club you’re searching for tend to pay more.

Here’s some specific examples: Target can sell anything to anybody, so they pay 1%. Walmart wants you to buy groceries from them, so they pay 2.5%. Many retailers have specials of 10% or more. Lifelock continually pays 90%, which basically means the service is free the first month.

Ok, so if you’re interested in starting with Rakuten and you use my link, yes I’ll make a couple of bucks(this number is currently $40 but is normally closer to $20), but more importantly, you’ll get a bonus of (as of Dec 1st 2022) $40 for joining and making an initial purchase.

Here’s where the fun comes in though. Let’s look at some popular wine clubs and what bonuses they specifically offer to you on Rakuten:

Ok, so let’s take the WSJ Wine Club as an example. Here’s their current initial offer:

So we’ve got a case of wine, 12 bottles for $60. Sure, not a bad deal to start. But, say you use my Rakuten link and claim the $40 bonus. Combine that with your Rakuten payment of $20 and you have a completely, utterly free 12 bottles of wine coming from the Wall Street Journal Wine Club.

Free wine is good, right?