Referral program update

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A referral program is a way to increase sales of an e-commerce site by sharing a fraction of profits with users who send you more buyers.

Each registered user gets their own "referral link" to share with their friends. When someone clicks that link, the referrer ID is stored in a cookie on the referred person browser, and when they make their first purchase (and the deal is tipped), the referrer gets their bonus paid.

Getsocio had the referral program built in from the very beginning. And it proven to be quite a popular and widely used feature. The referral link is used by default in widgets and Facebook "Like" and "Send" buttons.

But there was an issue with referral program. Some users were abusing the system – creating several accounts and "referring" themselves to earn a bonus. When a person refers themselves instead of spreading the word it clearly defeats the purpose of the referral program.

Recently we reworked the referral program in Getsocio. We added more visibility for the site owner into referral system. Now it is easy to see for each user who and when referred them and whom did they refer in turn.

Most important, from now on the referrer bonus is not paid automatically. Instead, site administrator gets email notification and then either approves or rejects each bonus. In other words, referral payments are now pre-moderated by the site owner.

Overall the changes will allow daily-deal sites built on Getsocio to use referral program in larger scale, further increasing their sales, while being safe from referral abuse.

Related posts