27 Astonishing Referral Marketing Statistics
Referral programs are no longer a trend – they are a necessity. After all, this low-cost advertising method can influence consumers and boost lead acquisition in a simple and straightforward way.
Whether we praise or punish, we all lead brand-related conversations every once in a while. By doing so, we influence others to make purchasing decisions, whether we are aware of it or not. For that reason, brands and businesses should harness the power of referral advertising. Of course, referral marketing statistics can be of great help as well.
Therefore, let’s dive deeper into the exciting waters of word-of-mouth marketing.
Top Facts and Stats on Referral-Based Advertising in the US (Editor’s Pick)
- 88% of marketers in the US are using referral marketing tools
- 78% of B2B advertisers say that referral marketing creates good-quality leads
- 81% of purchasing decisions in the US are influenced by friends or family
- 83% of customers are willing to refer a business after a successful purchase
- 39% of consumers provide feedback via social media.
Statistics About Referral Marketing in the United States
1. 65% of new business opportunities come from recommendations and referrals.
Even though modern advertising tools can boost visibility and target audience, it seems that word-of-mouth still plays a big role in the world of business. According to a study by the New York Times, as much as 65% of new business deals come as a result of referrals.
2. 82% of small business owners admit that referrals are their main source of new business.
More and more small businesses in the United States are taking a hard look at technologies and tools that enable referral marketing activities. In fact, referral statistics show that as many as 82% of small businesses depend on recommendations and referrals. Without this type of advertising, many small businesses would not survive for long.
3. 27% of sales reps say that they get more than 50% of new clients, thanks to referrals.
In today’s world, marketers use all sorts of methods and tactics for customer acquisition. Judging by referral-based marketing statistics, referrals seem to be a powerful ally as well. In fact, a large study by Gigaom Research discovered that almost a third of marketers receive half of their new deals thanks to referral marketing tools. This data shows that word-of-mouth marketing can cut through the noise and bring compatible parties together.
4. 88% of marketers are implementing referral programs in their strategies.
For a long time, referral marketing was playing the role of the dark horse when it comes to advertising in the United States. However, things are starting to change, and businesses in all sorts of industries are implementing referral programs. From retail to service industry – advertising teams are tapping into the referral framework on a regular basis. As a matter of fact, referral marketing statistics show that as many as 88% of marketers are using referral programs.
5. 60% of marketers claim that referral marketing generates a high volume of leads.
One of the main advantages of referral programs is its simplicity. In other words, it is easy to set up such a program. On top of that, referral tools can also boost the number of leads. For instance, research shows that 60% of digital marketers feel that referral programs generate a high volume of leads. Needless to say, leads are a precursor for conversions. In the end, this data showcases the importance of adding a referral program to your marketing agenda.
6. 78% of B2B owners say that referral marketing generates good-quality leads.
When it comes to cost-per-lead, referral marketing is one of the most affordable advertising channels. In a way, marketers are already aware of this fact. After all, 54% of them admit that referral marketing is a low-cost option. At the same time, this type of advertising can result in leads that are ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ in quality.
To clarify, 78% of B2B owners agree that leads generated by referrals are of satisfying quality. Of course, marketers should be aware that getting leads is just half of the battle. Thus, referral programs need to be integrated into an attractive marketing strategy.
Referral Rates and Consumer Behavior in the US
7. 78% of consumers are influenced by the posts of the brands and businesses they follow on social media.
Recently, social selling has seen a dramatic rise in popularity. More and more marketers are using social media in their advertising strategies. After all, social selling statistics show that this type of marketing is effective and easy to use. Closely related, referral marketing also relies on social networks. In fact, 78% of consumers admit being influenced to buy a product after their favorite brand recommended the item on social media.
8. 81% of purchasing decisions in the United States are influenced by friends’ social media posts.
It goes without saying that the so-called influencers have the biggest reach when it comes to social media. According to recent market research, 8-10% of consumers could be classified as influencers.
Nonetheless, it seems that the human psyche is wired in a way that ‘accepts’ recommendations from our social circle. Referral statistics show that 81% of purchasing decisions are made under the influence of friends’ posts on social media.
9. 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust referrals from friends or family.
Nowadays, the “number of likes’’ plays a big role in the decision-making process, especially when it comes to younger generations. Yet, studies show that the so-called experiential word of mouth can also sway the customers. In a way, the term experiential is self-explanatory. And such reviews seem to be in high regard when it comes to consumers in America.
As many as 88% of consumers say that they give equal credibility to online reviews as they would to the referrals made by friends or family members.
10. 70% of customers in the United States put more trust in consumer-created reviews than in the professionally-written content on the internet.
According to digital marketing experts, the time of blogging is over. Those experts believe that the world of advertising now looks elsewhere for inspiration. And it seems that referral marketing statistics can back up such theories.
For instance, 70% of consumers in the US put more trust in online reviews than in the other forms of written content on the internet. Namely, guides and comparisons are playing second fiddle to consumer-created reviews and referrals. Also, 56% of customers trust consumer-consented emails.
11. 84% of people in the US trust recommendations from people they know.
In a way, experts and peers are the dominant source of inspiration for consumers in America. As such, these sources play a major role in the purchasing process. Moreover, 84% of consumers in the United States trust referrals from people they already know. According to an extensive study by Nielsen, people are four times more likely to buy a product after it was recommended by a close friend.
Social Referral Marketing Stats and Facts
12. 91% of people in the US would share exclusive offers and good deals with friends and family.
With or without incentives, many consumers in America are eager to share their findings when it comes to exclusive offers. As a matter of fact, 91% of consumers would share exclusive offers with their loved ones. Clearly, this is a great opportunity for marketers, as well. Suggestions and referrals from friends can be quite influential.
13. 73% of Americans love to learn about brands from friends and family.
Speaking of referrals from loved ones, it seems that consumers in the United States enjoy hearing about new brands and products. In fact, more than two-thirds of consumers in America love having brand-related conversations. Needless to say, this form of advertising can boost brand awareness and increase brand visibility.
14. 61% of Americans say they prefer to learn about new products and brands directly from the brand itself.
Referral statistics in marketing show that 61% of consumers would rather go to the source in search of information. In other words, they prefer learning about products and services from the brand itself. In most cases, this means visiting the company’s website or checking its social media profile.
15. 83% of consumers say that they are willing to leave a referral after a positive experience.
Humans are social creatures, and our nature ‘forces’ us to share stories with others. So it does not come as a surprise that 83% of Americans are willing to recommend a business after having a positive experience.
As they say, a happy customer is a loyal customer. Therefore, loyalty programs and referral marketing should be a part of every advertising strategy. After all, you can set up a functional ref program in less than 10 minutes. Yet, not all consumers will follow through with the referral process. In fact, only 29% of them actually leave a referral.
16. 39% of customers will provide your business with feedback on social media.
In recent years, social media has slowly but surely taken over our lives, and business is no exception. For instance, more than two-thirds of customers in the United States provide feedback via social media. In other words, they post a status update praising or punishing a brand or a product. This type of referral stats shows that the situation in referral marketing is changing and evolving. Thus, marketers need to keep up with the trends.
17. 58% of consumers share positive experiences and talk about brands on social media.
Positive or negative status updates on social networks can have a profound impact on prospective clients. Since there are 4.39 billion people on social media, both positive referrals or negative reviews can reach a massive audience.
Luckily, consumers mostly share ‘good news’ and positive experiences via social media. To be precise, one of the referral marketing statistics from 2017 shows that 58% of consumers share positive experiences about brands and businesses via social platforms.
18. 71% of customers will recommend a business if they are satisfied with the quality of customer support.
Customer satisfaction plays a major role in any line of business. At the same time, satisfied customers can influence others to try out a certain product. Therefore, it is imperative that all their needs are met.
As much as 71% of customers would recommend a business if they are satisfied with the quality of customer support. In other words, companies and organizations should pay attention to this element of their business.
19. Only 14% of customers who visit a referral page actually take action.
Even though referral statistics in marketing are highly important, they can also be misleading at times. For instance, many consumers can say that they would recommend a business or a brand. Yet, few of them have the patience or the willingness to actually send a referral message. To be precise, only 14% of consumers who get to the referral page will complete the process and recommend a business.
20. Referred customers have a 37% higher retention rate.
Aside from acquisition and conversion, retention is one of the pillars of running a successful business. In simple terms, we all want to keep our customers as loyal as possible. Well, referral marketing can help with this process. Clients who are referred by other customers have a 37% higher retention rate than the ones who stumble upon your website accidentally. On top of that, referred customers are 18% more likely to become a life-long client.
Healthcare Referral Marketing Statistics
21. 84% of patients rely on both online and offline sources when researching hospitals and medical facilities.
Word-of-mouth marketing is present in different aspects of our lives, including health and medical care. In other words, we all want to gather as much information as possible about a hospital before undergoing treatment or surgery. When it comes to referrals, 84% of patients research the hospitals by collecting information both online and offline. When patients perform the research on mobile devices, 44% of them end up scheduling an appointment.
22. 89% of millennial women trust recommendations from friends and peers more than online referrals.
Even though online reviews are an important source of information, the old-style methods are given more credibility. For instance, women aged 18-34 put more trust in referrals from friends, peers, and family members than online referrals.
Direct Referral Marketing Groups Statistics
23. 91% of B2B prospects admit being influenced by word-of-mouth marketing.
The majority of B2B organizations are aware of the power of referral marketing. Admittedly, not all of them use formal referral strategies. Nonetheless, word-of-mouth marketing manages to send the message across. For instance, 91% of buying decisions in the B2B world are influenced by word-of-mouth tactics.
24. Word-of-mouth advertising can increase marketing effectiveness by 54%.
It goes without saying that ROI is the cornerstone of every B2B organization. Every company wants to improve the efficiency of its advertising strategies. Studies show that word-of-mouth marketing can drive sales and increase effectiveness by a whopping 54%.
25. 89% of B2B marketers believe that customer testimonials are a powerful marketing tool.
According to a journal of marketing referral statistics, B2B marketers are fully aware of the power of customer testimonials. To be precise, as many as 89% of sales reps agree that referrals are the most effective marketing tactic. Likewise, 62% of marketers see their referral program as “very important to their company’s success.”
26. Only 30% of B2B organizations implement a formal referral program.
In theory, the majority of B2B owners understand the importance of referral marketing. On the other hand, the practical application of referral programs is surprisingly low. An extensive survey has shown that only a third of B2B organizations have a formal referral program in place. The reasons for such a situation are diverse and multi-faceted. Yet, it is clear that B2B businesses without a referral program are missing out on a big opportunity to boost lead acquisition.
27. Loyalty program fraud grew by 89% in the past year.
One of the reasons why only 30% of B2B organizations are using referral programs could hide in the increase in referral marketing fraud statistics. Loyalty programs are under constant attack from fraudsters.
For that reason, the referral fraud grew by a staggering 89% in the last 12 months. In general, the rates of ecommerce frauds have increased by 12% when compared to 2018. Clearly, current fraud prevention measures need to be revised and upgraded.
Why Should You Use Referral Programs?
The world of marketing is evolving as we speak. The rise of the internet and social media has changed the way we do business, including the way we advertise our products and services. Yet, old-fashioned word-of-mouth marketing manages to survive and thrive.
As you could see from our collection of referral marketing statistics, word-of-mouth advertising works! It produces measurable results. Among other things, referral programs can help influence consumers, boost brand visibility, and increase lead acquisition.
So don’t let the opportunity pass you by! Integrate a referral program into your marketing strategy as soon as possible.