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How Do You Get a Customer to Refer a Friend to Your WooCommerce Store?

Posted by Joel Platini on  November 19, 2020  in WooCommerce


If you are looking for a cost-effective way to acquire new customers, then you must run WooCommerce Refer a friend program in your store.

But a WooCommerce Refer a friend program can be successful only if your customers are willing to refer your store to their friends.

So, your purpose here is not just to launch a WooCommerce Refer a friend program but also to entice your customers to take part in it to make it successful.

Don’t worry, we know the secret and we’ll show you how to get your customers to refer a friend to your WooCommerce store and increase your sales.

What is a WooCommerce Refer a friend program?

WooCommerce Refer a friend program is a process carried out by most businesses that have a loyal customer base.

It is the act of requesting the existing customer to refer their friends to your store and offering rewards to keep the cycle going.

How Refer a friend works

You can run a WooCommerce Refer a friend program in your store using a WordPress referral plugin and acquire new customers at low cost through your existing customers.

How important is a WooCommerce Refer a friend program to your store?

With the competition that is going on around us, having a WooCommerce Refer a friend program is a crucial and smart decision.

Sometimes, you might not have enough financial resources to acquire new customers, then the WooCommerce refer a friend program is what you need.

You can turn your customers into brand advocates and acquire new customers. People always trust recommendations from their friends and that’s why the Referral program is more successful than any customer acquisition method.

Referral statistics

So, now you might’ve known how important it is to have a WooCommerce Refer a friend program in your store. If you’re still not satisfied then here are few more ways the Refer a friend program can benefit your store.

  • Offering rewards for every successful Referral will boost your customer retention rate.
  • As new customers get first-order discounts, it will motivate them to drive repeated sales.
  • Minimizes customer acquisition costs.
  • Increases your engagement with customers and helps you foster customer loyalty.
  • Boosts the credibility of your brand.

These reasons might show you how important the refer a friend program is to your store.

This is why you must run a WooCommerce refer a friend program in your store if you want to increase your sales without spending much.

Do you want to acquire new customers without spending much?

What are the best WordPress Referral plugins?

To run a Refer a friend program, you need a Referral plugin. And there are many WordPress Referral plugins available, but choosing the right one will make the difference.

So, to ease out we’ve listed some of the best WooCommerce Referral plugins that will help you run a Referral program.

  1. ReferralCandy
  2. Retainful
  3. Gratisfaction
  4. Coupon Referral Program
  5. Referral System for WooCommerce

ReferralCandy

Referral candy

ReferralCandy is one of the most popular WooCommerce Referral plugins. It is an automated plugin that can run a Referral program and reward your customers without any manual assistance.

You can offer any type of rewards like cash rewards, store discounts, or custom gifts and increase engagement with your customers.

Premium Pricing

  • Free – 30-day trial
  • Premium – $49/month
  • Enterprise – $3999/month

Retainful

Retainful

Retainful is one of the best WooCommerce Referral plugins that lets you create and run a Referral program within minutes. You can offer a Flat amount discount, percentage discount & Free shipping coupon as rewards.

Retainful is an automated WordPress Referral plugin, once you’ve enabled the program the app itself will interact and reward the customers after they make a successful Referral purchase.

If you’re looking to run a formidable Referral program then Retainful is the right WordPress Referral plugin for you.

Premium Pricing

Free – Lite Version
Starter – $15/month
Growth – $39/month
Professional – $159/month

Gratisfaction

Gratisfaction

Gratisfaction is quite a different plugin in this list, it is a one-stop plugin for everything. It is a loyalty, referral, instant win, birthdays, anniversaries, promotions sweepstakes and giveaways plugin.

You can create custom text and images for your customers so they can invite their friends by sharing the images on Social media. With Gratisfaction, you can run multiple, double, or single-sided Referral programs.

If you are looking for an all-in-one plugin then Gratisfaction is the right one for you.

Premium Pricing

  • Free

Coupon Referral Program

Coupon Referral Program

If you want to bring in new customers to your store and boost your relationship with your existing customers then you need a Coupon Referral program. It is one of the trusted WooCommerce Referral plugins, vouched by more than 500+ customers.

You can offer sign-up discount coupons, Specify coupon types for both referrers and referrals, Set expiry date for the coupons and many more using the Coupon Referral program and increase your sales.

Premium Pricing

  • Single site – 29.00$/year

Referral System for WooCommerce

Referral System for WooCommerce

Referral System for WooCommerce lets you increase your sales by Word-of-mouth marketing. It is one of the WordPress Referral plugins that help you skyrocket your revenue.

Easily integrate with any WooCommerce points and rewards extensions using the Referral system for WooCommerce. You can offer fixed and percentage discounts as Referral rewards when customers sign up for your store.

This plugin offers one of the best real-time support and helps you increase your sales exponentially.

Premium pricing

  • Single site – 49.99$

Getting Customers to Refer their Friends

Alright, we saw the importance of the Referral program and the WordPress Referral plugins that can help you run a WooCommerce Referral program in your store.

But, is that it?

Customers are crucial in making your Referral program successful. If they don’t refer their friends your Referral program will meet its end.

So, how to make them refer their friends?

Here are some of the ways you can use to encourage your customers to refer their friends.

Offering the right incentives

If you want to motivate your customers to refer your store to their friends, then the first thing you must do is grab their attention.

How?

Simple, by choosing and offering the right Referral incentives.

Yes, Referral incentives will act as a catalyst and motivate your customers to refer their friends to your store to earn the reward. It is one of the best ways to increase your WOM sales organically.

Referral Incentives

Moreover, Referrals should be a recurring process, the cycle must keep going. Sometimes your customers might Refer their friends for free.

But that will happen only once, if you want them to keep Referring their friends again & again then you must reward them with incentives.

Alright, there is something you must know before you select your incentives.

Look, offering random incentives won’t work. You must research your audience and build buyer personas to know their interests. Only after that, you must choose your Referral incentives.

What is the point in choosing the right incentive?

Refer a fiend email

Alright, here is a Referral program that offers 15% flat cash as a reward.

Now, imagine if your store has many overseas customers. The one struggle for every overseas customer is the shipping costs. So, if you offer a 15% cash discount they will not be motivated.

So, instead of offering cash, if you offer a Free shipping coupon as a Referral reward your customers will be encouraged to refer their friends.

Retainful is one such plugin that has a well-balanced Referral incentives in its Referral program. Retainful offers,

 Type of reward
  1. Flat Amount discount – Suitable for new customers to drive repeated purchases.
  2. Percentage Discount – Suitable for loyal & repeating customers.
  3. Free Shipping Coupon – Suitable for overseas customers.

Offering the right rewards like these is the best way to motivate all kinds of customers to refer their friends to your store.

Reach out to your loyal customers

Be it asking for Referral or any other thing, you must always start with your loyal customers. Because they are the ones that have traveled with you for a long time.

Loyal customers know how your store works, they have already built trust in your brand. So, they’ll be ready to refer their friends.

Loyal customers

Another factor that influences Referrals is reputation. New customers will not know much about your credibility so the chances of them Referring their friends is less.

They might think of it as a scam. But loyal customers know very well about your credibility so the chances of them referring is high.

So, always start with your loyal customers.

Do I have to offer rewards even for my loyal customer?

Yes, you must reward your loyal customers too. Sometimes your loyal customers might refer their friends for free because of the love they’ve for your brand.

Loyal customer stats

But it can only last for some time, so if you want to keep them referring their friends you must offer rewards and motivate them.

So, the best way to get your customers to start referring is by reaching out to your loyal customers and through their Social proof other customers will follow them to your Referral program.

Easy Referring process

Having ever heard the term ‘Hiding in plain sight”?

If you have, you’ll know what we’re trying to explain here. Most stores that run Referral programs don’t even realize it.

They sit for hours to analyze why their Referral program is not converting. But they fail to see that the answer they are looking for is right in front of them, their Referral process.

Yes, most Referral programs have complex Referral processes that confuse customers.

Even if the customer decides to refer his friend, he quits midway because of the complex Referral process.

 Dropbox

This Referral program example is from dropbox, look how simple the Referring process is. All that customer has to do is enter his friend’s email to invite them.

This is how you must design your Referral program, simple & straightforward.

If there is too much navigation in your Referral process the customer will get repelled from it and end up not referring to their friends.

Send Referral Emails for Encouragement

Remember, previously we said that you must reach out to your loyal customers in order to get your Referrals.

Well, how will you reach out to them? What medium of communication will you be using?

Let us suggest, Emails. Because experts say that email engages with the customer better than any other medium. You can also create a personal & emotional impact through an email.

That’s why you must send Referral emails to your customers and encourage them to take part in your Referral program.

Bombas referral email

Here is a Referral email example from Bombas. They’ve meticulously explained what the program is about, how it works and what benefit a customer will get for Referring their friends.

This makes the customers curious and the highlight of the email is the customer doesn’t need to go back to the store to refer their friends.

‘Refer a friend’ CTA is located right there in the email thus making the Referring process easy for the customers.

But make sure you include Social sharing options in your emails to make it easier for the customers to share with their friends.

Turn your Referrals into Referrers

In this article, we are talking about the ways you can motivate your customers to refer their friends. And what easy way is there than turning your Referrals into Referrers.

Ecommerce experts say that the customers who were referred to your store are 4 times more likely to refer their friends.

So, turning your Referrals into Referrers will pave the way for more customers joining your store.

Alright, how can I turn my Referrals to Referrers?

Pretty simple, run a double-sided Referral reward.

 Double sided referral program

If you are wondering what a Double-sided Referral reward is, then allow us to explain the 3 major types of Referral rewards.

  1. One-sided Referral rewards – Only the advocate gets a reward.
  2. Double-sided Referral rewards – Advocate & Referral gets rewarded.
  3. No Referral rewards – No one gets a reward.

Offering a double-sided Referral reward will motivate the Referrals to refer their friends.

How?

Because the new customers/Referrals have experienced your Referral program, they know it works. Previously they might’ve thought of it as a scam but now after receiving a reward they’ll know that you are legit.

So now your Referral will willingly start referring their friends to your store and keep the cycle going.

And that’s how you turn your Referral into Referrers.

Leverage your Credibility

Credibility has a huge role to play in the success of your Referral program. It directly influences the customers to whether or not to refer their friends to your store.

Mostly customers fear that what if I refer a store to my friend and they end up not liking it. This is called a Reputation risk which you must overcome.

Also, nowadays customers are being spammed with online scams. So, they get defensive with these kinds of programs.

Customers think that their reputation might get affected if they refer to a fraudulent program to their friends and families.

So, how will you overcome all of this?

Maybe these tips will help you out,

  • Showcase your Referral reviews and testimonials to make your customers comfortable.
  • Use trust signals or badges to prove your credibility.
  • Meticulously explain the Referral program details.
  • Keep the Referral process simple. Usually, the scam involves a lot of navigation.
  • Make your site secure.
  • Provide customer support.

Doing these in your store will make the customer build trust in your brand and they’ll start referring their friends comfortably.

If your store has great credibility then there is no need to encourage your customers to refer their friends. They’ll start referring automatically.

Credibility is key to your Referral campaign success, so make sure you build it.

Make your Program automated

Not every activity can be done manually, especially the Referral program. Keeping track of Referrals and Referrers performance can be a tedious process if it’s done manually.

Customers nowadays are not that patient, they need the results quickly, in this case, it’s the Referral rewards.

If you have an automated Referral program, it’ll track the successful Referrals and their purchase effortlessly.

Retainful activity

It will also offer rewards to customers automatically. But imagine if all of it was done manually. Before you could determine whether it is a proper or a fraudulent Referral, the customer will be long gone.

Automated Referral program can also send post-purchase Referral emails to customers who rightfully completed a Referral purchase.

Email notifications

Remember, when we talked about making the Referral process easy, this is what we meant.

Having an automated Referral program will not only benefit the merchant but it’ll also make the customers Referring job easy.

Customers will be referring their friends only if you are able to keep the cycle running seamlessly. And to achieve that you need to automate your Referral program.

Conclusion

Referral programs are a cost-effective way to acquire new customers. But it can only be successful if the customers actually refer their friends. That’s why we did our research to devise some of the best ways that can help you motivate your customers to refer their friends.

The methods discussed here are tested and proven to be producing great results. So, do you want your Referral program to be successful?

Then it is time for you to employ these methods in your store.


Author Bio
Joel Platini 
Joel Platini
Joel is a content writer that loves to think outside the box. He has an immaculate experience on eCommerce platforms and written articles on customer retention strategies, Shopify app, WooCommerce plugins, etc. Joel is also a whizz in motion graphics as he has a great eye for elegance and finesse.

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