Referral Fees Ultimate Guide – Updated 2019

What is a referral fee, and how can you use it to improve your business income? A referral fee is what keeps new customers flowing into your business which means more clients. You can create a network of individuals who will take money for referring your business to others.

The payment will be fixed, and that is what is known as a referral fee. 

When a person has successfully brought a sale to your business, then he has officially earned his commission with your transaction. This person is then responsible for bringing more clients to do business with you.

The referral fees are often paid for spreading introduction about the business, but most often it is done as a commission for making sales. 

Why Should You Choose Referral Fees? 

What is the reason that you should rely on referral fees? There is a simple answer: the majority of people are unable to trust traditional ads. The era of printing ads has long gone.

The thing which is trendy now is digital ads. But the reality is that these ads can sometimes get pretty annoying and people end up blocking this software or ads instead. We can also admit that the cost of advertisement is also going sky high.

So what you can do here is use the help of a peer for advertising as customers will be able to trust your business more. They will also be able to trust any recommendations that are done through a powerful tool of marketing which is used these days. The reason why referral fees are liked this much is that they use a strategy to get more sales.

They give a reward to the people who share your brand and help in bringing more clients to your business. In this way, a strong recommendation is done, which brings along positive and great results. 

You might be wondering how a referral fee can help you in generating further sales? The answer is in this article. 

Fundamentals of Referral Fee

The concept of referral fees is surrounded by offering rewards to people who are talented in bringing constant revenues and potential customers. Due to their experience, these people have comparatively more reach to the right clients than any other business. For example, you often take help from a realtor to find the right apartments for you that haven’t been exposed to the market.

The experience of a realtor will help you in finding potential contacts that you could never reach if you were on your own. If you own a business, then you can consider hiring an advocate of a brand whose sole purpose would be to drag more sales and increase the revenue of your business. The structure of hiring a brand advocate is similar to that of an agreement of a referral program.

But the difference is that these individuals are super talented in sales and boosting businesses that would otherwise be quite difficult to handle. When you realize this, it is essential to give commission to these advocates and fees should be given to them as well. 

Are Referral Programs Actually Effective? 

With the help of a referral program, any business can create a network with different clients. Many experienced business people have succeeded in creating these networks and brought potential customers their way. It is recommended to create a list of a salesperson who is effectively increasing the revenue and give them their referral fee for bringing more customers. 

Nonetheless, it is better to think about the fact whether a referral fee is recommended for your business or not. You have to make sure that your brand is worthy of taking the help of a referral fee. For this purpose, you need to check the quality of the material you are selling, make sure that the products you are offering are top-notch. 

It is also essential to analyze the overall performance, success, and fame of your brand. So, first of all, you need to check if your brand is showing the same excitement as any other brand. After this, you can go on with a referral fee. It is crucial to spread awareness about your business and then go for a referral fee program.

You need to make people more excited and keen to try your products and then, later on, you can go ahead and start a referral fee program. 

Who Is The Payer of a Referral Fee? 

The person responsible for paying a referral fee is the one who starts the whole process in the first place. In most cases, the seller who is doing the advertisement duty for a business’s services and products hires a person to search for potential buyers, but this is not always necessary. Some platforms use the method of services of lead generation.

This process involves paying the individual a percentage of the income they have earned from any new customers of the business. 

How Does the Process of Paying Referral Fees to People Work and How the Amount Shall Be Set 

Before you begin working through a referral fee, you need to consider some facts and ask some questions from yourself, which will be mentioned soon in this article. Whenever you have to pay a referral fee to an individual who has helped you in generating profit, you need to keep in mind that the amount of this referral fee can vary. It depends on the experience level of that referrer and how many potential contacts he has that could help you in grooming your business. 

The majority of referral fees is based on the percentage of profits earned. However, you don’t always have to go with the formula of a percentage. You can always fix specific fees or margin that will help you in achieving significant profits in your business.

If you have thin margins then paying a flat fee is very recommended if you have a referrer in addition to a salesperson. However, this does not mean that you can hire just anybody at any price; you have to be considerate of being fair to the referrer and other parties. For example, if the purchase of your business is high, and you are paying a small fee to the referrer; then they are more likely to choose someone else who has cheaper purchases. 

So make sure that you have considered this before setting the number of your flat fees. You must find the following points to decide the ideal referral fee: 

Consider the Business and The Price of Goods and Services Sold

Make sure you are asking yourself these questions: 

  • Are you paying a commission to your salesperson already? If that’s the case, then are you hiring the referrer to replace your salesperson or simply because you want them to send relevant leads to the salesperson? 
  • Is there any component worth consulting or any service of this sale? 
  • Is the deal you are working with a white label one? Where someone else is responsible for creating services or goods, and you are merely a provider? 
  • How much does it cost for you to go through this service, and what is the cost of material? 
  • What is the cost of the marketing efforts you are doing as well as ads? 
  • How much profit have you earned after making a sale? Check the sale margin. 

It is recommended to set a referral fee with a lower percentage if you see that the business is costing a lot otherwise substantially. Or you can always go with the option of a flat fee. Moreover, offering commissions to your referrer as well as the team of sales is a quick way to drain the profits you have earned through your business without any necessity. 

Therefore make sure that you are offering these payments to individuals who go through a referral program that is somewhat formalized. 

What Is The Time Frame of The Sales Process? What Sales Are Worthy of Referral Fee? 

There are some sales that take a lot of time while processing and their closing take a long time. How long does a referring party take to count sales? Keep an eye on how many sales you have earned by referring to someone?

Analyze how this number has grown after 6 months and the same after a year? 

To make sure that you are going great with your referral fee, all the important conditions are met and you are in a healthy relationship of referring through your business. 

When Does Your Business Receive Payment?  

In order to figure out the options of your fee, consider answering the following questions of payment: 

  • How and when are businesses paid? 
  • What is the process of receiving funds? 
  • All in one go?
  • Through installments? 
  • Is this service recurring? 
  • What is the scenario with cashback guarantees and refunds – is there a condition that the period of repayment must not expire before paying the referral fee? 

When you have determined all the answers to these questions, you can easily schedule a payment. Doing this will ensure that you are going to earn profits regardless of the methods you choose. 

How Can the Arrangements and Schedules be Determined of a Referral Fee? 

The arrangements and schedules depend entirely on the motivation you give to your referrers. There are many ways to manage the programs but have a look at the points mentioned below: 

  • Introduce competitions where the individuals whose performance is great are rewarded 
  • Increase the amount of commission depending on the referrals that are made over a while 
  • The referrer who refers first successfully will get higher compensation 

Examples of Referral Fee 

Have a look at some of the examples of referral fees. 

Sales through Software: Structure of Percentage of Referral Fee

There is a potential example which is shown by Jason Lemkin, which you could work with for your business of software. In his case, you can take help from a certain percentage that is to be paid to the referrer. It would then be depending on how much profit they have brought to the business. 

Automotive sales: Also Known as Flat Fee

The automotive purchases are typically paid to a salesperson after he or she has successfully sold a car to a customer. The amount of these fees is anywhere between $100 and $300. This is understandable because cars are expensive and are not sold every day. 

There are mainly thin margins of the flat fee method, but there are many businesses that are using this technique to earn more profit in their business. 

Implications which are Legal and Tax 

You must be aware of the responsibilities of tax that comes along with the method of referral fees.

  • If a referrer earns more than $600 per year, then he is to pay the required taxes that are received. 
  • If you are the payer of more than $600 referral fees per year, then you are responsible for collecting a W-9 form from the other party and provide them with a 1099 way. 
  • Nevertheless, if an old customer does the referring, then you must be considerate of a refund, rebate, or discount on their previous purchases. 

Moreover, the method of the referral fee is not legal for all business entities. Some restrictions must be considered if you do not wish to be stuck in a legal problem. 

  • Industries that are not regulated highly including a real estate, automotive sectors, and financial services often are run under the laws of the state, rules of license that are not allowing the method of referral fees in their business. 
  • This means that you must think twice before going ahead and starting your referral program. You will still be responsible if you start a referral fee in a business entity where it is not allowed and is caught in the process. Even if you are not aware of this fact, you will face the consequences. 

    Let us know what you think about this article on the comment section below, alsoo checkout our article about the best facebook marketing courses.

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