Microsoft has revealed its plans for ad-funded cash rebates to customers who find and purchase products through a new Microsoft Live Search cashback programme.

Key partners including eBay, Barnes & Noble.com, Overstock.com, Sears, Zappos.com, among many others.

Microsoft says the complete Live Search cashback product portfolio includes more than 10 million product offers from more than 700 merchants, including more than 13 of the top 40 US retailers.

"We believe search can offer much more value to consumers and advertisers than it does today, and we see Live Search cashback as an important opportunity to deliver additional value", Bill Gates said.

"Our goal is to make Live Search the most rewarding commercial search destination on the Web. Live Search cashback will help advertisers drive more online sales while giving consumers a new way to stretch their dollars."

The scheme works on a cost-per-action business model, where advertisers pay when a customer makes a purchase, merchants to pay Microsoft a CPA fee each time a customer completes a sale through Live Search cashback.

The fee is a percentage of the retail price, and when that transaction is complete, Microsoft returns that fee to the consumer in the form of a cash rebate.