What triggers a referral?

There are two scenarios you can choose from in which to trigger a successful referral. You can configure this in the Installation step of the Campaign Editor.

NOTE: Unless you are using the REST API, in both scenarios, a website visitor will need to visit your site using a participant's referral link (e.g, https://yourwebsite.com?grsf=participant_unique_id -- notice the grsf URL parameter that contains the participant's unique ID).

1. Sign Up

When a person submits their email address on your site, this will trigger a referral.

  • Example #1: Website visitor signs up on your website or makes a purchase
  • Example #2: Dropbox's referral program ("For every friend you refer, you’ll both receive an extra 250MB in cloud storage.")

2. Sign Up + Custom Event

When a person submits their address email on your site, then completes a custom event afterwards, this will trigger a referral. Using this method requires an additional step to tell GrowSurf about that custom event that you define (can be done via Zapier, Integromat, one line of JavaScript, or one API call). You can also manually trigger referrals from your dashboard.

  • Example #1: Website visitor signs up as a lead on your site, then converts into a paying customer later
  • Example #2: Airbnb's referral program ("Send a friend $40 in Airbnb credit. You’ll get $20 when they travel")

Custom Event referral triggers are also affected by the referral credit expiration window.


NOTE: A referral is not the same as an impression. An impression is a pageview of a participant's unique share link. For example, if a website visitor visits a participant's unique share link, this will count as one impression for the participant. To learn more, see When someone visits their friend's shareable link why doesn't that trigger a referral?

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