A to Z: A Glossary Of Terms Used In Referral Marketing

Visakan Veerasamy
Visakan Veerasamy
April 15, 2015
2 min read
A to Z: A Glossary Of Terms Used In Referral Marketing

In this article

(Last updated April 2015)

The following terms are used as applied to ReferralCandy. They're primarily intended to help our own clients familiarize themselves with the referral process and troubleshoot any problems or concerns they might have.

That said, we believe they'll also be helpful to anybody thinking about referral programs. As you'll see, referral marketing can get remarkably complex!

Add-Ons: These are paid features that you can activate to provide additional functionality for your referral program.

  1. Multiple Language Add-On – Allows you to run your referral program in multiple languages at the same time.
  2. Remove Branding Add-On - Allows you to remove the "Powered by ReferralCandy" branding at the bottom of your emails and pages.
  3. White Label Add-On - Allows you to fully customize the design of emails and pages in your referral program by giving you the ability to edit the HTML & CSS.

Admin Email Address: Please refer to entry on "Email Address".

Advanced Integration: Please refer to entry on "Integration".

Advocate: Please refer to the entry under "Customers".

Campaign Status: There are 3 types of campaign statuses in your referral program that you can toggle between:

  1. Active - Your campaign is running. Emails inviting new customers to your referral campaign and reward emails are being sent out.
  2. Paused - Only emails rewarding advocates for referring their friends are sent out. Invite emails are not sent out. This means that advocates who have already been invited to your referral campaign will still be rewarded for successful referrals. However, new customers will not be invited to your referral campaign.
  3. Stopped - No emails are sent out. You should use this option before customizing your campaign to prevent partially edited templates from being sent out to customers.

Commission: The percentage of the final invoice amount of the referred purchase that ReferralCandy takes as a fee for facilitating that referred purchase.

Customers: There are 3 main types of individuals commonly described as "customers" and it's very important to understand the distinction between each type as described in the referral program:

  1. Advocates – An individual who has been enrolled into your referral program. This individual is sent a unique referral link to share with their friends. An advocate may or may not have made a purchase at your store.
  2. Customers – An individual who is not necessarily an advocate or a referred friend. Typically used to describe anybody who's made a purchase at your store. We recommend that you encourage your past and existing customers to become advocates.
  3. Referred Friends - An individual who is sent an advocate's referral link. Once they make a purchase, we can call them a "Referred Customer".

Dashboard: The interface that you see when you login to your ReferralCandy account.


It provides information about your referral program along with the various details of the friend offer, referral reward, emails & pages, integration, and payment details.

Emails (sent by ReferralCandy): There are 3 types of emails that are sent out by ReferralCandy as part of your referral program:


^ A simple, unformatted template of a referral email

  1. Referral Email: Referral emails are sent out to customers to invite them to participate in your referral program, at which point they become advocates. They are sent:
  2. Automatically after customers make a purchase at your store (customizable - "immediately" or they can also be queued up to a 100-day delay).
  3. Manually via the in-app invite tool.
  4. Reminder Email: Reminder emails are sent to advocates at fixed intervals (customizable from 1 to 12 weeks frequency, and it can also be switched off) to update them on the latest offerings from your referral program and to keep your business top of mind.
  5. Reward Email: There are 3 sub-categories of reward emails:
  6. Successful – sent to advocates when a referral they made becomes eligible for a referral reward.
  7. Pending – sent to advocates when a purchase is made at your store through the advocate's referral link but has yet to meet all the requirements required to earn a referral reward. Meeting these requirements might mean waiting for the referred purchase review period to be over as well as accumulating a minimum number of referrals before a referral reward is paid out.
  8. Ineligible - sent to advocates when a referral they made that was pending review, is cancelled or the associated purchase was returned.

Note: You are able to edit the subject and content of each email template. You can also edit the HTML & CSS with the white label add-on.

Email Address: There are 2 email address settings in your referral program:

  1. Admin Email Address - This is the email address that you use to log in to your ReferralCandy account and is the email address that ReferralCandy sends various administrative alerts or emails to. This includes invoice emails, coupon expiry alerts etc. Please ensure that this email address is kept updated.
  2. Sent-From Email Address - This is the email address from which automated referral program emails will appear to be sent from. It should be from your store's domain to reduce the likelihood of it being marked as spam and should be kept updated.

Embedded Sharing Panel: Please refer to entry on "Widgets".

Friend Offer: The friend offer is an incentive that you can offer to a referred friend to encourage them to make a purchase at your store.


When a referred friend uses the referral link shared with them by an advocate, the referred friend is directed to a landing page with a coupon code (that you've defined) that can be used at your store to enjoy the related incentive on a qualified purchase (subject to your conditions).

Front Page Signup Widget: Please refer to entry on "Widgets".

In-App Invite Tool: You can use ReferralCandy's to send referral program invite emails to past customers. You can do this individually or as a batch via a CSV upload.


The in-app invite tool is accessible via your campaign dashboard.

Integration: The process of connecting your online store to ReferralCandy so that referral activity can be accurately tracked. There are 2 types of integration:

  1. Standard Integration - which most merchants use
  2. Advanced Integration - if Standard integration is not possible for any reason

Invoice Email Statuses (for emails sent to ReferralCandy): There are 6 different statuses for invoice emails that you send to ReferralCandy as part of the referral program integration:

  1. Unprocessed – System has received the email but relevant information has not been extracted yet
  2. Processed – Relevant information has been extracted from the email
  3. Pending Review – System was unable to successfully extract relevant information from the email. A ReferralCandy support engineer will be looking into it.
  4. Missing Information – ReferralCandy support engineer has flagged invoice as lacking relevant information. We will contact you if any action is required on your part to correct this.
  5. Ignored – ReferralCandy support engineer has set the system to ignore this email (will not be processed) as it is likely not an invoice email.
  6. Dropped – ReferralCandy system automatically dropped this email (will not be processed) because it was received while your campaign was stopped

Javascript Tracking Code: Please refer to the entry under "Tracking Code".

Landing Page: Please refer to the entry under "Pages".

Minimum Purchase Amount: The smallest purchase amount (which you have defined) that a referred friend has to make for the advocate to be eligible for the referral reward.

Minimum Usage Fee: The base amount that is charged for the use of ReferralCandy on a monthly basis. If the accumulated commission for the month exceeds this amount, you will simply have to pay the accumulated commission (i.e. the base amount is waived).

Multiple Language Add-On: Please refer to entry on "Add-Ons"

Pages: There are 2 types of pages that are offered as part of your referral program:

  1. Landing Page: This is the landing page that potential customers see when they click the referral link sent to them by advocates. If there is a friend offer, the landing page will contain the coupon code (that you have defined) for potential customers to use at your store and obtain the associated incentive on a qualified purchase (subject to your conditions).
  2. ReferralCandy Portal: A combination of 3 pages hosted by ReferralCandy for your advocates where they are able to
  3. Login to view the current friend offer / referral reward offered by your store via the Portal Access Page
  4. Share their unique referral link with friends via email and/or social media at the "Portal Sharing Page",
  5. View their referral activity history at their "Portal Rewards Page".

You can configure access to the ReferralCandy Portal to:

  1. Existing advocates + new signups OR
  2. Existing advocates ONLY

Note: You are able to edit the content of each page template. You can also edit the HTML & CSS with the white label add-on.

Post-Purchase Popup Widget: Please refer to entry on "Widgets".

Referral Email: Please refer to the entry under "Emails".

Referral Link: This is a key part of how referrals are tracked.

It is a unique link given to each advocate when they are enrolled in your referral program. When a advocate's friend clicks on the referral link, the referred friend will be brought to a landing page which shows the coupon code (friend offer) that can be used at your store.

Referral Report: A report that shows the activity summary and key metrics of your referral program for the past 30 days.

Referral Reward: The referral reward is an incentive that you can offer to advocates to encourage them to share their unique referral link with their friends.


When a referred friend makes a qualified purchase after clicking the advocate's unique referral link, the advocate will be eligible for the referral reward (subject to your conditions about the purchase).

Referred Friend: Please refer to the entry under "Customers".

Referred Purchase: A purchase that is made by a referred friend using a advocate's referral link.

This purchase must pass fraud prevention measures and meets the criteria (minimum purchase amount, X number of purchases by referred friend) set by the merchant. (Also see related 'Rewardable Referred Purchase' entry below).

Referred Purchase Review Period: The review period after the referred purchase, during which earned referral rewards are placed on hold.

During this review period, merchants can mark a referred purchase as invalid or cancelled. After this review period, eligible advocates who have made successful referrals are sent their referral rewards.

The length of the review period is set by merchant and typically corresponds with the time period on the return policy (if applicable).

Reminder Email: Please refer to the entry under "Emails".

Reward Email: Please refer to the entry under "Emails".

Rewardable Referred Purchase: A referred purchase (please refer to entry on 'Referred purchase' above) whose referred purchase review period is over, and now counts towards a reward.

Sent From Email Address: Please refer to entry on "Email Address".

Set-Up Wizard: A sequence of dialog boxes / pages that lead a merchant through a series of well-defined steps (which require input) to set up their referral program.

Geeky sidenote: The term "Wizard" was originally derived from the term "Windowed Interactive Setup Assistance Dialog" (WISAD). Cool huh?

Sharing Messages: Sharing messages are the template messages (Twitter & Facebook) that advocates see when they click on the Twitter / Facebook sharing buttons from their referral email or Portal Sharing Page.


You are able edit the default message to suit your business. Advocates are able to further edit and personalize their message before sharing it with their friends.

Standard Integration: Please refer to entry on "Integration".

Tracking Code: The tracking code is a snippet of Javascript that needs to be inserted on the post-purchase page of your website as part of the integration process with ReferralCandy.

This code, together with the referral link, enables ReferralCandy to track and identify successful referred purchases for you.

White Label Add-On: Please refer to entry on "Add Ons"

Widgets: Widgets are free additional features that you can enable to improve your advocates' user experience and increase the effectiveness of your referral program.

The widgets that are currently available are:

  1. Embedded Sharing Panel: A social sharing panel that can be embedded in your customers' user account page. This allows your customers to directly send the referral link to their friends via email, Twitter or Facebook.
  2. Front Page Signup Widget: A feature that can be embedded on your front page (or any page you choose) that shows a popup widget in the corner of the page. This allows individuals to click through to the ReferralCandy Portal Access Page where they can sign up for your referral program, enrolling them as advocates.
  3. Post-Purchase Popup Widget: A feature that shows a social sharing panel popup immediately after your customers make a purchase at your store. This allows your customers to directly send the referral link to their friends via email, Twitter or Facebook.
Visakan Veerasamy
Visakan Veerasamy

Visa is ReferralCandy's former Blog Editor [2013–2018]. He also co-founded Statement.sg, a fashion ecommerce label selling witty t-shirts. He's mildly Internet-famous for his elaborate Twitter threads. He hopes to enjoy a glass of scotch onboard a commercial space flight someday.

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