- You must have set up a Referral Factory account. Sign up for a free trial here.
- You must have created a campaign and have made the campaign live. Read more here.
- To use Zapier webhooks you need a ‘Starter’ account or higher. Check Zapier plans here.
- You will need a Google Spreadsheet; a template can be downloaded here.
The goal of this help guide is to provide the information you need to set up an automated referral program - including the issuing of rewards.
A fully automated referral program is like a marketing channel that works for you while you sleep. If you don’t have one in 2022, you’re missing out.
Every good referral program has rewards - these can be for the person that's doing the referring, or the person that's being referred (otherwise known as an incentive). Issuing rewards doesn't have to happen in real time, what most of our customers do is create an automation weekly or monthly that notifies them of who needs to be rewarded.
This will help you not get overwhelmed, it will help you keep an eye on how your referral program is going, but also make sure you are paying the right reward to the right person.
Below we will discuss 3 ways to automate your referral program
1. Create Outbound Webhook Using Google Sheets and Zapier
In the next section I am going to take you through the following steps:
- Setting up Zapier
- Setting up an outbound webhook in Referral Factory
- Showing you what information you need to put where to make sure your referral program is automated
- Creating that neat overview inside of a Google spreadsheet
At the end of these steps you will end up with a neat list of people you need to reward for referring and a neat list of people who were referred; in case you want to reward the person referring and reward the people that were referred to you.
Each line of the spreadsheet will include both the new customer and the person who referred them (like a pair). This will make it super easy to see who referred who.
It will look like the screenshot below:
Step 1: Go to Zapier and select ‘Create Zap’.
Step 2: Give your Zap a name and select ‘Webhook’.
Step 3: Select ‘Catch Hook’ as your trigger and click ‘Continue’.
Step 4: Copy and save the webhook given by Zapier, then hit ‘Continue’.
Note: For the next few steps login to Referral Factory.
Step 5: Go to the ‘Settings’ tab inside Referral Factory and click on ‘Go To Outbound Webhook’.
Step 6: Select the campaign you want to create the webhook for and click ‘Next’.
Step 7: Click ‘Create Outbound Webhook.
Step 8: Enter the endpoint url from Zapier in the ‘Endpoint URL’ field and click ‘Next’.
Step 9: Select ‘Fire Webhook when a user converts’ and hit ‘Next’.
Step 10: Use access keys if you need to, if not, then leave this as is and click ‘Next’.
Step 11: Select ‘Post’ or ‘Get’ request. You can leave this as is and hit ‘Next’.
Note: POST request sends the users information inside of a body. GET sends user information inside the URL. Some website host providers do not allow access to the body of a request. If that is the case, then select GET.
Step 12: Select what information you want to receive to verify someone is due a reward and click ‘Next’.
Selecting these fields will get me the information of the person that needs the reward, but also the information of the person he rewarded. Giving me the ability to check and verify.
Step 13: Name your webhook and click ‘Save’.
Step 14: Open Zapier again.
Step 15: Click ‘Continue’ on the test trigger.
Step 16: For the ‘Action’ select ‘Google Sheets’.
Step 17: Select ‘Update Spreadsheet Row’ as the ‘Action Event’ and click ‘Continue’.
Step 18: Select your Google Sheets account, or connect your account and click ‘Continue’.
Step 19: For ‘Choose the ‘Spreadsheet’, ‘Worksheet’, and ‘Row’.
Important: Download my spreadsheet example here. You can upload the downloaded spreadsheet to your Google drive. Then when you enter the spreadsheet below, select the example spreadsheet that you just uploaded. This will make sure it looks just like the example above with the two neat sections that create a neat list and overview.
Step 20: For ‘Row’, select ‘Custom’, then select ‘Add Search Step’.
Note: This will make sure that data does not get overwritten, but added on the row below.
Step 21: Then select which value should go in which column and hit ‘Continue’.
Note: Match the name of the field to the name of the headers. If you need help with the spreadsheet feel free to download the example here.
Step 22: Test the Zap.
If you go into Referral Factory and click on the ‘Users’ tab, manually qualify someone.
Step 23: Then click back into Zapier and ‘Test’ your Zap.
If the Zap was successful, then you’ll see the following:
Step 24: Select ‘Turn on Zap’. Your Zap is now live and ready to receive data from Referral Factory.
What happens now?
Any time a referral becomes qualified the webhook you created will feed the selected data of the person who referred them, and the person who was referred into the Google Spreadsheet.
Check the spreadsheet as often as you want, check for the updated information, and payout the rewards according to your normal process.
Pro tip: Mark the people who have been rewarded in a certain color, or put a ‘Done’ in one of the columns so you know who's been rewarded and who has not. This will keep people from being rewarded multiple times.
2. Automating Your Referral Program Using The Referral Factory API
Our API documentation can be found here.
On the ‘User’ tab you have the user data available to see who needs to be rewarded. With the API you can pull this data out of Referral Factory and send it to a CRM, Stripe, etc. from which you can then issue the reward.
- Our API documentation can be found here.
- The ‘Users’ tab data can be found here.
- The examples for automating your referral program can be found here.
Most people using our API to automatically qualify referrers and issue rewards will focus on the following data:
Step 1: Get Qualified Users.
Here is a request example on how to pull all qualified referrals through the API. A qualified referral is when a referred user has successfully converted (a conversion could be a sale, a contract signed, an account opened, etc). You can qualify your referrals manually, or using an integration, or using a script, or using our API. Read more about this here.
This example code will show you how to easily see all referred users, who have qualified in a certain time frame.
Step 2: Get Users Who Have Converted Referrals
Here is a request example on how to pull all users who have converted referrals. In most cases, these are the direct users who are due a reward. If a user has a converted referral, that means they referred a friend and that friend became a qualified referral. Read more about this here.
What happens now?
Now that you have the right users to reward, create the automation to payout the reward. Depending on the reward you have decided on, you can create an integration to another platform to pay out the reward.
- If your reward is paying out in credits / discounts - you can then build your own automation to issue these.
- If your reward is paying out cash - you can setup your own internal system for payouts.
- If your reward is a gift card - you can setup your own internal system to issue gift cards.
3. Using the dashboard and email notifications to automatically send out rewards.
- Must be on the Basic or Pro plan.
- Best practice is to use a general coupon for a discount, or voucher code that can be applied to all customers who are due a reward.
Step 1: Open your campaign and navigate to the ‘Email Notifications’ at the bottom of the screen.
Step 2: Make sure the conversion email is enabled in the campaign settings.
Step 3: Click on ‘Email Notifications’ in the bottom navigation bar.
Step 4: Inside the email paste a general coupon, or voucher code that can be used by the person who referred the new business to you.
When a referred user is qualified, the email will trigger automatically and the user who invited them will get their discount coupon sent to them in that email, automatically.
- Use a general coupon that multiple individuals can use (once, or multiple times).