eBay Main Street Sign

Last month we reported that eBay was apparently making changes to its long-time loyalty program eBay Bucks. Now it’s official, as eBay sent out an email update on the program and the company changed the information on its eBay Bucks page. Here is what is changing and what it may mean.

On or before March 31, 2021, all eBay Bucks members will continue to earn 1% in addition to any Bucks Bonus Promotions that eBay may run on all qualifying purchases.

After April 1, eBay will retire the 1% earning but will continue to offer limited-time eBay Bucks Bonus promotions for earning eBay Bucks. All Bucks earned on or after April 1st, 2021, through the Bonus offers will now be valid for 12 months.

Previously, eBay Bucks certificates had to be used within 30 days and that still applies to Bucks earned before April 1. After that, it appears eBay will continue to issue certificates quarterly, but now with a 12-month redemption window, or will they?

There is some ambiguity in the wording as eBay says Bucks earned from April 1 are valid for 12 months now. But historically, the program has been based on certificates issued quarterly, suggesting the ‘new’ certificates would be valid for 12 months from the date of issuance. This begs the question, is eBay continuing to accrue eBay Bucks into quarterly certificates or issue certificates when the Bucks are earned, which the first wording seems to imply?

But what is the future of the eBay Bucks program really? In the same email updating members about the changes to eBay Bucks, the company is promoting its eBay Mastercard which has its own rewards program.

While eBay says in that email, “We’re working to create more valuable benefits and evolve the Bucks program,” it just seems the future for rewards on eBay will be with the eBay Mastercard program. Maintaining two rewards programs just seems confusing and unnecessarily complicated.

And putting the final question about the long-term existence of eBay Bucks out there, on the eBay Bucks page, it still says, “Enrollment in eBay Bucks program is currently closed.” If that continues that way, how long will eBay keep a “closed” program alive?

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