Microsoft's Cashback failing to pay for holiday purchases

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Is Microsoft's Live.com Cashback search engine offering living up to its promise? Maybe not.

The idea of the service is to give you a percentage back from purchases made at qualifying merchants. Since the service launched, it has become very popular for offering deals of up to 30% off at eBay during the holiday season. The promotion promised to credit shoppers' Paypal accounts within 60 days for qualifying purchases but there are resounding reports coming in that suggest Microsoft is having trouble making the payments.

Affected users have been greeted by the following when they log in to check the status of their transactions:

"We've encounterd[SIC] a problem depositing your cashback reward into the Paypal account that you used for your eBay purchase. But we will keep trying."

This unhelpful and frankly ambiguous message fails to let shoppers know who is at fault for the delay or what steps customers should take to get further assistance. Users who have emailed the Cashback support team haven't fared well, with many reporting waits of over 72 hours without an email response.

These problems are not isolated to a specific subset of shoppers or stores within the Cashback network. Many users have reported receiving payments from Live.com's Cashback to their Paypal account in the past -- a few as recently as this week.

When WalletPop reached out to Microsoft for a comment the only response we received was, "We're actively looking into the issue, but don't have anything to share at this time."

There isn't all bad news; apparently Microsoft has been keeping their CSRs updated and they are a bit more forthcoming than corporate. Almost the days after I sent them a request using this form I did receive a response and was delighted to learn that the delayed payout issue for all users should be corrected by the end of the week with funds showing up in Paypal accounts by February 9.

It is unfortunate that Microsoft couldn't add that to the initial error message which currently greets users. Seeing a, "We're working on it", instead of the despair riddled, "Failed", would go a long way to reassuring those who are affected by these delayed payments.

WalletPop will continue to follow this story as it develops and provide you with directions from Microsoft to receive your cashback if they are made available to us.

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