How does the referral system of waiting lists work?

Our referral system is pretty simple yet some people fail to understand the mechanism.

In a nutshell, we give points to people.
When a person signs up onto the list we give them 1 point. When they refer a new person we give them another point.

We then use points to calculate the ranking and each subscriber’s position in the list.

Example:

  • Sarah has got 11 points
  • Tom has got 8 points

Sarah will be 1st in the list and Tom 2nd.

What happens if multiple people share the same number of points?

When multiple people share the same number of points, we look at when they signed up, the earlier the better.

Example:

  • Sarah has got 11 points and signed up on Monday
  • Tom has got 8 points and signed up on Wednesday
  • Mark has got 8 points and signed up on Tuesday. 

As you can see, Tom and Mark have both 8 points but Mark signed up before Tom. As a consequence, this is the final ranking:

  1. Sarah
  2. Mark
  3. Tom

How many positions do I gain when a subscriber refers a new person?

Given the architecture of our referral system, it’s impossible to answer this question. An example will illustrate this.

Based on our previous example, Mark refers a new person. He now has 9 points. How many positions has he gained? None, because Sarah has still got 11 points.

To summarise, referring a new person DOES NOT automatically mean gaining positions in the list. It depends on how many points (a.k.a. how many referrals) the person in front of you has got.

On the other hand, it also means no one is ever really out of the game. Consider this example:

On a list there are 1,000 subscribers. Some of them have referred one person, some two, some none. A new person signs up. He invites 3 friends. This person has now 4 points (1 for signing up and 3 for referrals) and is the first on the list despite being the last one to sign up with 1,000 people ahead of him!

Do you always assign 1 point for referrals? Can I give more?

At the moment, yes we always assign 1 point for referrals.

However, you can use our  APIs and create a custom referral system where you assign an arbitrary amount of points.

For example, you might want to give 3 points rather 1 to the top 100 people on the list to incentivise people to sign up early.

Or you might want to give 5 points to people who come from Facebook, etc.

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