Found a bug in the referral system - People missed out on actual referred Customers and money — Bulb Community

Found a bug in the referral system - People missed out on actual referred Customers and money

edited November 2017 in Help & Support
So I've found a pretty big bug in the referral system that could do with someone at Bulb resolving or giving an official answer. I've already lost out on £100 (but they added it as a 'good will' after pretending it wasn't a problem all day - really annoyed it took that much and made Bulb look like a scam to the new customer joining).

So to re-create first:
This is in the perspective of the 'friend' (the one being referred)-
Friend mentions Bulb and can be referred in
Go to Bulb.co.uk direct and Get a Quote
Close Browser, or make a coffee or go to work or have a sleep and return the next day - Just don't clear your cookies.
*Period of hours, days or weeks later*
Friend mentions Bulb again and mentions it's now possible to get £100. Sends Referral Link.
Friend lands on it, gets offered £100 credit on landing page and goes through the process - good news the site remembers the original address/quote and it completes nice and easy.
Referral Not Logged, no £100 for Friend, No £100 for Refer

See the bug there? Because the Friend browsed Bulb previously - they now cannot be referred. This has been re-created twice now and both times it happened.

There is plenty of legit reasons this can happen-
  • Firstly you mention Bulb (say verbally) and the user browses it themselves. You tell them specifically after they are happy with Bulb and answered any concerns or question they have, they have to use your link for the £50 (or £100 for this week) and they do it from your link
  • Friend browses Bulb on own free will, doesn't take it due to cheaper, but when offered £50 (or £100 for this week) for being referred in, they consider it value for money and then complete purchase from your link
  • Friend doesn't click your link because they just took the word Bulb from say the Text Message and went on the site via PC Search Engine - but used Link again for actual purchase after friend saying that's the only way to get referral.
These are legit cases - and I'm surprised Bulb doesn't actually check the URL clicked for the FINAL part that pushed the customer from a 'Prospect' to a 'Customer'. Instead it seems they use the 'First Point of Entry' to determine - meaning people are missing out.

Can we get an official answer from Bulb? I've posted my link countless times on social media, my own website (Alexa top 10,000) and I hate to think how much I could have missed out just because a customer previously browsed Bulb but didn't convert but the referral offer and/or the reassurances and answering questions from myself put them over the edge to convert to a Customer.






Comments

  • Hi @andrew1944

    If this is happening then we definitely want to fix it. I'll create a ticket for our tech team to look into it, and I'll get back to you here with updates when they come through.

    This is a pretty comprehensive run-down of how to recreate it, so thanks so much. I'm sorry that we haven't responded to this before now. Feel free to mention me again if you feel like I haven't updated you soon enough.

    Cheers,
    Will
  • edited December 2017
    After initially being not entirely convinced by this, it appears that I was affected by it myself!

    I had researched Bulb and had a bit of a discussion with my friend about it before he referred me and despite definitely using the referral link sent to me, it appears it was never processed.
  • @mowcius I can see in your account that even though our system did not add it automatically, one of my colleagues added this one to your account. This was added yesterday.
  • edited November 2017
    @DanP at Bulb, yep as usual the team were super helpful in sorting this out for me yesterday but not everyone's necessarily going to notice, even if they were referred by a close friend.
  • @mowcius We will be looking into this, so hopefully we can find and apply the credits to people if they were missed.
  • @andrew1944 Our dev team has had a look into this and can't reproduce the problem. By design, the cache on a referral page only lasts 2 minutes, so in theory it shouldn't cause problems in the way you've described. We've tested it too and can't recreate it.

    It could be that you were seeing a different problem when you saw this bug. We did have a problem where some recruits weren't getting their referral credits, but we've fixed that since.

    Let us know if you see anything like this again and we'll take another look.
  • Ive just posted to say I only have part of the referral money but now I see it's not the referral money at all. How do I contact to get the money credited please?
  • JoP said:

    Ive just posted to say I only have part of the referral money but now I see it's not the referral money at all. How do I contact to get the money credited please?

    I've just checked for you and your switch completes today, so you'll get an email today at 8pm saying that your credit has been applied. Sit tight until then, and if you don't receive an email then, let us know :)
  • @andrew1944 Our dev team has had a look into this and can't reproduce the problem. By design, the cache on a referral page only lasts 2 minutes, so in theory it shouldn't cause problems in the way you've described. We've tested it too and can't recreate it.

    It could be that you were seeing a different problem when you saw this bug. We did have a problem where some recruits weren't getting their referral credits, but we've fixed that since.

    Let us know if you see anything like this again and we'll take another look.

    A final follow up from our engineer that looked into this:

    "The final conclusion on this. This issue was probably indeed there, but we’ve released quite a few changes related to the way we treat referral links and the issue is gone now"
  • I sent referral to four people. All switched to Bulb using my link – so they swear – and why wouldn't they for the £100 reward!
    Only one of them (the last one to switch) got the confirmation and I got the confirmation for him too. The other three are questioning what I have actually got them involved in and why as the referral simply didn't work. I have emailed Bulb with all the details on 29/01, that is seven days ago (!) and so far they did not bother to even acknowledge my email! Beginning to question whether I have not only made a BIG MISTAKE but also how my friends will trust me now ...
  • @jiri, 7 days on email is not unheard of if they've been busy (also, days or business days? - there's only a few staff on at weekends). If you don't hear anything in the next day or two, just give them a quick call (along with the names and addresses of the people you referred) to see what they can do.

    I'm sure they'll do their best to get it all sorted for you.
  • I referred my brother on 10 January, he says the switch has gone through but neither of us have had the referral fee as yet and there's no indication on my account at all, it shows no referrals have been made.
  • @stevep, this sounds like a different issue to the one discussed in this thread. You'd be best off contacting Bulb directly by phone or email with details of yours and your brother's account to get them to take a look.
  • edited February 11
    @mowcius Thanks, I emailed them yesterday.
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