Shopkick Review: Earn Free Giftcards and Rewards

Rating as of based on a review of services June 16, 2021.

(Money Under 30 Rating)



Shopkick is a rewards app that allows customers to earn rewards for in-store actions and purchases. You can then redeem these rewards for gift cards from top retailers.

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Mobile app




Redemption options




Best for:


  • Free rewards
  • Many redemption options
  • Smartphone users

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Trying to earn a little extra money on the side? If you do a lot of in-store and online shopping, Shopkick could be a great way to earn some extra spending money at top brands like Target, Starbucks, PayPal, and many more. 

Using Shopkick, customers can earn points (called “kicks”) for performing in-store actions (like walking into stores, scanning items, and purchasing products) and making purchases online. Kicks can then be redeemed for gift cards from over 40 different retailers. It’s an easy way to earn money on the shopping you already do, whether you’re shopping in person or from the comfort of your own home.

What is Shopkick?

Shopkick is a rewards app that enables customers to score free gift cards to top brands. Customers earn points called “kicks” for online and in-store purchases, as well as actions like entering a store or scanning items.

According to Shopkick, most users earn enough kicks for a free gift card in a week or less.

How does Shopkick work?

First, customers must download the free Shopkick app on their phone. This app enables you to take advantage of a variety of different ways to earn kicks both in-store and online.

Shopkick Review: How Using Shopkick Can Help You Earn Money - Life, rewarded

Once you download the app, you’ll be prompted to sign up. You can create an account with an email and password, or you can sign up using your Apple, Google, or Facebook account.

Shopkick Review: How Using Shopkick Can Help You Earn Money - Create account

After you’ve created an account, you’re all set to start earning kicks and redeeming them for gift cards!

How much does Shopkick cost?

Shopkick is free to use, and there’s no extra cost to download the app or redeem gift cards. Just shop like you normally would and earn free gift cards!

Shopkick features

Shopkick features plenty of ways to earn, along with tons of gift card redemption options and a simple, easy-to-use mobile app.

Earn kicks with walk-ins

One of the handy things about Shopkick is that you can earn kicks without ever having to spend a cent. As long as you have the app downloaded to your phone and Bluetooth enabled, you can earn kicks just from in-store visits to participating retailers.

Shopkick Review: How Using Shopkick Can Help You Earn Money - Shopkicking is easy and fun!

Earn kicks by scanning items

You can also earn free kicks by scanning items around the store. This turns your shopping trip into a fun scavenger hunt and allows you to earn even more points without spending any money.

Earn kicks with in-store purchases

You can also earn points if you make a purchase at participating retailers. You can earn these points either by scanning your receipt or by making a purchase with a linked card. This is a great way to earn a little extra on purchases that you would have made anyway.

Earn kicks with online purchases

If you shop more online than in person these days, there are still plenty of ways to earn with Shopkick. You can make money online by earning kicks from the comfort of your own home. When shopping through Shopkick’s online tab, you can earn kicks on every purchase you make. Just make sure that you’re browsing in-app in order to be eligible to earn.

Shopkick Review: How Using Shopkick Can Help You Earn Money - or from the comfort of home

Earn kicks in the Discover tab

Shopkick’s app also features a Discover tab with even more opportunities to earn. You can earn additional free kicks by watching videos and interacting with pieces of content. These kicks refresh daily, so there’s unlimited earning potential.

Redeem kicks for gift cards

So what do you do with all the kicks you earn? You redeem them for free gift cards! You can redeem kicks for gift cards from popular brands like Best Buy, Sephora, Barnes and Noble, and more. Most rewards are instantly ready to use in your Shopkick profile, while others are emailed, snail-mailed, or require you to use a special redemption code online.

Easy-to-use app

Shopkick’s sleek mobile app is easy to use and makes it fun to earn kicks and redeem rewards. While the app can sometimes encourage you to spend more money than you mean to in order to earn kicks, there are also plenty of ways to earn free kicks without spending a dime.

Inviting friends

Have friends and want to share the wealth? You can earn up to 25,000 kicks from inviting up to 100 friends. All you have to do is share an invite link, and Shopkick will automatically keep track of which of your friends signs up. If your friend walks in a store or scans an item within seven days of joining, you’ll be rewarded with 250 free kicks.

My experience researching Shopkick

While researching Shopkick, there were several features that caught my eye. It was super easy to download and use, without any sign-up hassle. The app automatically looked for participating stores in my area and allowed me to choose what kind of gift card I was interested in upfront.

I also appreciated the fact that you can earn free kicks without making a purchase. This is a great way for even cash-strapped customers to earn a little extra spending money.

That said, the in-store earning options are limited to participating stores in your area. Depending on where you live, there may not be too many places you can easily earn points. For instance, the only stores available near me were 7-11 and CVS. As much as I loved walking to my local 7-11 to buy snacks, it would be nice to have more options.

Plus, while Shopkick gives customers the option to earn kicks for free, it also incentivizes you to make purchases that you might not really need, which could hurt your budget in the long term.

Overall, Shopkick is a handy money-making app that’s easy to use and has the potential to earn you a few extra dollars a week.

Who is Shopkick best for?

Customers who want to earn extra spending money

If you want to earn a little extra cash to spend on fun purchases from top retailers, Shopkick is a great option. While you won’t make enough to cover essential expenses, you can definitely save a few dollars on purchases from popular stores like Target and Best Buy.

Customers with free time

Shopkick is easy to use, but it does require a little bit of time and effort in order to reap the maximum number of rewards. It’s a good fit for customers who have some extra time on their hands to navigate the app and visit stores in person.

Customers on a budget

Since you can earn kicks even without spending any money, this is a great rewards app for customers on a tight budget.

Who shouldn’t use Shopkick?

Customers who don’t shop at participating stores

Only certain stores participate in Shopkick’s program. These tend to be big-box stores like Target, T.J.Maxx, and Old Navy. If you frequent smaller boutiques or independent retailers, there’s probably not a lot of earning potential with Shopkick.

Customers without a smartphone

While it may seem like everyone must have a smartphone in this day and age, it’s worth mentioning that Shopkick only works on an Apple or Android smartphone.

Customers with privacy concerns

Like many other apps, Shopkick does require permission to access certain information and features on your phone, including your camera, location, contacts, and more. This means that it may not be the best fit for customers with privacy concerns.

Pros & cons


  • Earn rewards for free — You can earn kicks without ever having to make a purchase using the app.
  • Easy to use — Shopkick’s app is easy to use and features multiple ways to earn rewards.
  • Many redemption options — You can redeem kicks for gift cards from many different top retailers.


  • Can take a long time to earn a little — With 250 points equal to $1, it can take a while to earn enough to make a difference, especially if you’re only earning points through the free methods.
  • Only applies to participating stores — You can only earn kicks through Shopkick from participating retailers, which means that the app may not be worth it depending on where you shop.

Shopkick vs. competitors

Earning optionsEarn rewards for in-store and in-app actions and purchasesEarn for shopping, completing surveys, and searching onlineEarn for shopping, completing surveys, and watching videos
Redemption optionsGift cards from over 40 major retailersGift cards from Amazon, Walmart, Target, and Visa or PayPal cashGift cards from over 70 major retailers, travel miles, or PayPal cash


SwagbucksHow Using Shopkick Can Help You Earn Money - Swagbucks is a popular survey app that lets customers earn rewards for everyday activities.

Using Swagbucks, you can earn money by making purchases, completing surveys, and even just searching the web. There aren’t quite as many redemption options to choose from when it comes to gift cards, but you can also redeem for more flexible Visa or Paypal cash.


MyPointsHow Using Shopkick Can Help You Earn Money - MyPoints is another similar app to Swagbucks and Shopkick that allows customers to earn rewards for shopping, completing surveys, and watching online videos.

MyPoints definitely has the edge over the other two when it comes to redemption options, with over 70 different kinds of gift cards to choose from. MyPoints also allows you to earn points and save money by downloading and applying coupons.


Shopkick is a great way to have fun and save money on everyday spending. While you won’t become a millionaire using this app, it’s still a simple way to earn a little extra spending money just by using your phone. With most customers able to earn enough to redeem a gift card in as little as a week, it’s also an app that can quickly pay off.

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About the author

Total Articles: 33
Margaret Wack is a writer based in Honolulu, Hawaii. Her writing on personal finance has appeared in venues including The Simple Dollar and She has degrees from Smith College and St. John's College, and enjoys good tea, dead languages, and bad weather.