Referrals Reference

The referral feature functions just like Advanced Billing’s coupon feature. The referral feature provides a mutual discount to subscribers in the case of a referral. Additionally, we provide a report of the history of your referrals for reference.

The referral feature is intended to be a two way / mutual referral program that benefits both the referrer and the customer that’s referring. However, if you’d like to not credit either of the subscriber, simply set the credit to $0.00.

In order to set up the referrals feature, you’ll need to define the following:

  • The discount for the referring customer
  • The discount for the new customer that’s been referred
  • When to delay the credit
  • Whether or not to limit the discount
  • If the credit should be recurring.

The screen grab below depicts how to edit the referring customer discount and the coupon discount for the new customer.

Please note that if you select the Edit button for either options below, you will arrive at the same edit screen. There are not individual controls for the referring or new customer.

View referral settings for your site

Referral Criteria

Please note that the referring subscription must be in the active status in order for the referral discount and credit to be applied. In addition, an invalid referral code, either in the ref parameter, or entered into the “Referral code” textbox, will fail validation, and the subscription will not be created.


Configure Referral Settings

Configure referral settings

One Time Credit for Referring Customer

Subscribers will receive a one-time credit applied to their subscription when a new customer signs up using their referral code. The credit will be given immediately, regardless of whether the new customer’s subscription has a trial period or is free.

The referring subscription must be in the active status in order to receive the referral credit. To phrase it another way, only active subscriptions can generate valid referral codes.


Delay Credit

When a credit is available for the referring customer, you have two options:

  1. Apply credit immediately at signup, regardless of trial periods or free plans.
  2. Only apply credit once the referred subscription is active and a payment has been made.

In most cases, you’ll want to make sure that the subscription that has referred transitions to the active state before applying the credit to the referrer. The intention here is to ensure that the referred subscription has accrued revenue for yout site. However, in an effort to be as flexible as possible, Advanced Billing gives you the option to delay the credit or apply it immediately.

Decide when the credit should be applied to the subscription

Coupon Discount for the New Customer

Please note that the referring subscription must be in the active status in order to receive the referral credit, whether at signup, or later, if the credit is delayed.

New customers will have a coupon applied to their subscription when signing up with a valid referral code. Here you’ll define the Coupon Discount for the New Customer. This is the discount that anyone signing up with a referral code will receive. The discount works exactly like our existing coupon functionality.

  • Discount: Specify a percentage discount for the new customer
  • Flat Dollar Amount: Specify a dollar amount discount for the new customer
Decide to give a percentage or a dollar amount as discount

Limit Discount

For the new customer, you can limit the amount of discounts that are applied.

  • Limit discount (discount may not exceed total of the charges)

Example: Karen uses her referral discount for $100 on a $10 product. She receives a discount of $10 and the remaining discount is discarded.

  • Do not limit the discount (credits will carry forward to the next billing)

Example: Karen uses her referral discount for $100 on a $10 product. She receives a discount of $10 and the $90 remaining discount is placed as a negative balance on her subscription for use in the future.

Recurring Discount

For the referred new customer, Advanced Billing gives you the option of designating the referral coupon to recur, or not. The simple choices below will allow you to reward your new subscriber again and again, or give them a huge discount up front for purchasing your product.

  • Apply the discount only at signup
  • Apply the discount at signup and every renewal
  • Apply the discount at signup and for X renewal periods?

Excluding Discount On Mid Period Allocations

This option specifies whether or not the coupon should apply to component allocations that are generated mid period.


If you have defined multiple currencies for your site, you will be able to define how the referrer credit and coupon (for amount-based coupons only) will convert in non-primary currencies. You will see the option to either “Use Definitive Pricing” or use the site level exchange rate. If you choose to use definitive pricing, you will see the option to define a specific discount amount for each currency that is defined on the site.

Select specific pricing for each defined currency

If you choose to use the site exchange rate, we will either use the custom rate that you defined on the site currency, or our hourly cached exchange rate to calculate the amount based on the primary pricing. For amounts using the site level exchange rate, you will see a preview of what the amount would be right now by selecting “View Converted Prices”.

Discounts calculated based on site level exchange rate

Enabling Referrals

  • Once your settings are saved, click the ‘Enable Referrals’ button on Setup –> Referrals.
Enable referrals on your site

How To Obtain Referral Codes

Once referrals have been enabled, a unique referral code will be created for every subscription. You can obtain the referral code by visiting the subscription summary page for the subscription, or by fetching the subscription from the API.

Location of referral code on subscription summary

Using Referral Codes in Email Templates

Referral codes can also be inserted into the emails that Advanced Billing sends to your customers by using the subscription.referral_code field.

For example, in the signup email, you might want to provide a signup link that your new customer can give out to their friends. You can do this by appending ?ref= and the referral code to the URL of any one of your Public Signup Pages:

Alternately, you may want to append the referral code to a URL on your own site, and then pass it back to Advanced Billing after the customer selects which product they would like to subscribe to.

Referral Signup Flow via URL Parameter (Public Pages)

Either a referral code or a coupon code may be used. If valid codes for both are supplied, the referral discount will be applied and the coupon will be ignored.
  • A user navigates to a Public Signup Page with a referral code tcj3r9 in the URL.

For example:

The customer is shown a preview of the referral discount that will be applied to their subscription.

Subscriber successfully validates a referral code on a Public Signup Page

Advanced Billing "Thank you" page which is shown after a subscriber completes the purchse and the referral discount is applied.

A one-time discount is applied to the referring subscription

The referral appears in the "Referral History" view in the application

Referral Signup Flow via Signup Form (Public Pages)

For a given public page, enable “Display referrals” in your Public Signup Page settings

  • A user navigates to a Public Signup Page. For example: The customer can enter their referral code and validate it, while seeing preview of the referral discount that will be applied to their subscription.
A subscriber will enter the referral code manually

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