Activity: refer-a-friend

Referrals are proven to be a successful way to increase customer acquisition whilst keeping loyal customers engaged!

Success team avatar
Written by Success team
Updated over a week ago

In this article: 

Setting up the Refer-A-Friend Rule

In this section:

Start your setup

1. Login to your LoyaltyLion account

2. Click on the tab Manage

3. On the left find Activity rules and click Create new rule

4. Find Successful Referral

The refer-a-friend rule contains two sections:

  • The first section relates to the existing customer, 

  • The second section relates to the referred friend (new customers).

Existing customer offer:

The existing customer will earn points each time a successful referral takes place with their link. You can also set a minimum spend so that the existing customer will only receive the points if the referred friend spends over the minimum spend on their initial purchase.

Success tip: If you're wondering how many points to give, we recommend giving your customer enough points so that they can claim a reward OR 15% of your minimum purchase value. For example, if that's £30, give 450 points (worth £4.50). Customers will only be able to use these points after they've been approved, so we recommend a 14 day approval period (or to match your returns policy) just in case they want to return the item.

Friend offer

Scroll down and fill the "Friend offer" section:

You can increase the chance of a referred person converting to a paying customer by providing them with a voucher to use with their first purchase. You have the option to give them one money off, percentage off or free shipping* voucher that they can then apply to the checkout page with their order.

Please note that the free shipping incentive voucher is not compatible with ReCharge. If you're using ReCharge integration, you must choose the 'voucher' incentive instead.

Please note that if you're using our Custom site solution, you will need to import the referral codes into the program.

Collection restriction (Shopify and Shopify Plus)

You can restrict referred customers to use the discount only with a specific collection of products. In order to do that, find the collection in Shopify and paste it in the correct place within the Refer-a-friend rule:

When you set a collection restriction on referrals, customers will automatically be redirected to this collection on your site when they click the referral link.

Avoiding self-referrals

You can restrict referrals from taking place when the referring customer and referred customer have the same IP address.

An IP (Internet Protocol) address is a unique number that identifies a device based on its' network and location. Every request you make online includes your IP address, which means we can see when two requests have been made from the same IP address and can flag that referral as suspicious.

One IP address may cover more than one device. For example, an average household may have two laptops and three mobile phones. If they're all sharing the same WiFi, they will probably have the same IP address - as will an office full of colleagues sharing their internet. This means that if referrals are being made on the same WiFi network, they are likely to have the referral blocked.

This feature is designed to block customers from referring themselves, however, please be aware that it may result in true referrals being blocked as well.

When the customer follows the referral link, the setting is turned on, and we deem the referral to be suspicious, then the customer is shown a message ("Oh dear! It looks like this referral has been unsuccessful. Please contact us to resolve the issue.") explaining that the referral was unsuccessful.

Both the heading and the message are translatable from the Languages tab.

Refer-a-friend email

This is the email sent from your existing customer to their friend. You can customize this email by going to Manage > Activity Rules > View Rules > Refer a friend > Customise referral email.

If you want to be a pro at LoyaltyLion emails, you can read our documentation on customizing emails here!


Q. Can I set the minimum spend to $0?

No. The customer needs to place an order for the referral to be considered successful. 

Q. [Custom site] Is there a way to upload referral voucher codes via API, or does it have to be done manually?

At present, the only way to upload referral vouchers is to do it manually.

Q. [Magento] My customers are unable to use the vouchers in the checkout and receive this error message:

It is possible that your current coupon set-up for referral coupons is not allowing customers to claim the voucher. Please to go you Magento admin > Marketing > Cart price rules > select [LoyaltyLion] Referrals flat and scroll down to Uses per coupon and Uses per customer. Make sure that your settings look like this:

If the problem still persists after you amend this, please reach out to our Support team so we can investigate this for you further.

Q. Why are the referral vouchers usable up to 5 times (once per customer)?

We increased the number of uses to reduce:

- Polluting the store with too many unused codes.
- Referred people getting codes that don’t work.

- To decrease the number of uses in order to reduce abuse.

The codes don’t cycle until they’re used. For example, if I share my referral link in a group chat and three people all click it at roughly the same time, they’ll all get the same code. If the codes were single-use, two of those people would receive an error at the checkout.

This is not something that’s currently adjustable.

Q. What happens if the referred friend makes a purchase of $75 (minimum spend) but then returns some merchandise during the 30 day approval period that we are putting on receiving the points. Does the referring friend still receive their points?

When the referee makes a purchase the referrer's referral activity will be created with a pending state and linked to that event in the customer admin from the referrals tab and the referring customer's page.

The points will only be approved when the purchase points are approved as well, so if the referee returns the order and doesn't get the points the referrer will not get points either.

Q. Scenario: the referring friend visits the website through the referral URL and doesn't purchase anything. However, they come back to the website later in the day/week by just typing the URL into the browser (not through the referral URL) and then apply their coupon code to purchase. Will the referring friend still get points if other conditions (minimum spend) are fulfilled?

Even if the referred friend comes back through a different link and browser session the referrer will get the points if "their" code was used.

Q. What happens if I have a collection restriction in place and a referred customer adds a product from outside of the collection to their cart?

If the referred customer has no products from the restricted collection they will see the message "[VOUCHER CODE] isn't valid for the items in your cart". See below:

If they have a mix of the products from a restricted collection and the ones outside it, the voucher discount will only be applied to the products from the restricted collection:

Q. When a customer uses referrals to share information about us on Facebook, the image displayed in the share is simply our logo. Where is the image pulling from and is it possible to change it?

Facebook creates the preview automatically from the URL given (your store’s URL and your store’s logo), therefore this cannot be customized within LoyaltyLion at this moment in time.

Q. When a customer uses referrals to share information about us on Facebook the customizable message is not showing?

We do not have permissions to write to Facebook posts or Facebook messenger so the message will not transfer across.

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