Refer, a powerful word of mouth marketing tool

Building Refer from the ground up; seeing an idea through design to execution and implementing a go-to-market strategy.

Refer App on a phone


Refer is a word of mouth marketing application that rewards users for sharing their favourite local businesses with their friends. Refer makes the referral concept that has been so successful in applications such as Uber and Airbnb accessible to all businesses.

Our Baby

At Drafteq we design apps day in and day out, but every once in a while an opportunity comes along where we invest our own time and capital in a product that we really believe in. Drafteq is a sweat equity partner on Refer and contributes all product design, UX design, UI design and front-end development time to the project. Refer was launched at the end of 2015.

Two phones with Refer App

How it Works

Step 1 Image


Add refer cards from your
favorite small businesses.

Step 2 Image


Refer your friends with a text
from within the app.

Step 3 Image


You both get a credit on your
friend's first service.

Design Process

This project is made up of different components that each needed to be wireframed and designed, so it was important that the design process look at them as a whole and how they fit together. The product has undergone several iterations to reach the level of simplicity of its current state. After an extensive product design and wireframing phase, we built it, took it to market, gathered feedback and then headed back to the drawing board to make some significant changes.

Refer Design Process

App Icon

One of the core extensions of the brand is the mobile application, therefore it's important to have a consistent brand feel when it appears in the app stores. 

Mobile App Icon

Mobile Screens

The consumer app is the main touchpoint for any users referring businesses. Here’s where they find businesses to refer, easily invite their friends and get rewarded when their friends’ referrals are successful.

Mobile Screens

Merchant App Designs

Business owners get access to a special section in the application that allows them to see how many people have enrolled in their referral program, how many referrals have been made by those people and what the conversion rate is. An important feature of the app is that it acts as a lead generation tool where businesses can proactively contact people that have been referred but have not yet visited their stores.

Merchant App Design

Consumer and Merchant Marketing Site

The website consists of both a consumer-targeted and merchant-targeted section. On the consumer side we've explained how it works and made it very easy to sms a link to your device and get going. On the dedicated “For Business” page we've elaborated on the benefits of the platform to businesses and made it possible for merchants to sign up in only a few minutes. 

Merchant Marketing Site

Merchant Portal

Any businesses that use Refer can access the business portal to view their referral stats, do bulk invitations of users onto the platform, update their listing and manage payment details. We focussed on a simple UI that makes it easy for even non-tech-orientated business owners to kickstart their referral campaigns. The interface mimics the card-based display that users experience in the application.

Merchant Portal

Icons & Illustrations

The brand identity is embedded throughout the app when we communicate updates, warnings, errors or next actions required with custom iconology. The icons are focussed on rewards and sharing with a playful style. 

Mobile App
Mobile Icons

Print & Collateral

The first touchpoint most people have with Refer is a printed QR code on a keychain or an in-store slant back that enables them to initiate the referral process. These act both as a quick way to find a business's listing on your device and as a marketing element for the Refer application. 

Print Collateral