5 Best Extole Alternatives for Referral Marketing
Looking for alternatives to Extole? Find a referral marketing solution that best fits your business needs.
Extole is one of the leading referral marketing platforms for large enterprises. Launched in 2009, the venture-funded company now counts Seamless, Intuit, Xoom, and Ulta Beauty as just some of its clients.
But Extole isn’t for everyone. With an average starting price of $3,500 a month, its services can be a bit expensive, especially if you’re a small or starting business. Customers have also expressed complaints about the platform’s reporting and uptime issues.
The good news is there are a lot of referral marketing platforms out there. To help you find the best alternative to Extole – one that fits both your business and budget – we put together a list of the five most popular platforms below:
- Referral Rock
- Referral SaaSquatch
As one of the new names in referral marketing, Referral Rock was founded to give businesses an easy and convenient way to get started in referral marketing. The company’s platform is built to create campaigns for all market sizes and industries, and can be easily customized to grow alongside your business.
Overview of Services: Referral Rock is focused on creating a referral marketing platform that best meets your business needs. From a personalized onboarding service to integration with various third-party tools, the company provides a range of plans and services to choose from.
- Starter: The perfect introduction to referral marketing. Includes one active program for 500 members, as well as all the tools you need to get a campaign up and running.
- Starter Price: $200 per month
- Growth: For growing businesses who need more advanced features and automation. Includes three active programs for 5,000 members, and even more integrations and reward features.
- Growth Price: $400 per month
- Established Business: Gives businesses increased flexibility and customizations for their marketing campaigns. Includes five active programs for 10,000 members, as well as custom branding, customer segmentation, and comprehensive third-party integration.
- Established Business Price: $800 per month
Good For: Businesses of all industries that want a simple way to get started in referral marketing. All Referral Rock’s plans come with a dedicated success manager and are month-to-month, which allows businesses to easily upgrade as they go.
Not so Good For: Companies looking for an all-in-one marketing solution beyond referral campaigns.
Ambassador is another referral marketing company that’s been around for a while. It had its start in 2009, helping brands create and track referral campaigns. After being acquired by global technology provider Intrado, it’s now part of a larger software suite that enables clients to grow their business.
Overview of Services: Ambassador enables users to run programs for referral, affiliate, influencer, partner, and advocacy marketing all on one platform. With options to customize and automate different functions, the platform can be built to fit a number of business needs.
Plans and Pricing:
- Starter: For startups and small businesses in need of simple marketing campaigns that they can self-manage through a visual editor
- Starter Price: Not listed online and customers must contact Ambassador for a quote. One review site reports the Starter Plan is about $800.
- Professional: For mid-to-large size businesses to maintain one or more marketing programs in their existing tech stack
- Professional Price: Not listed online and customers must contact Ambassador for a quote. One review site reports the Professional Plan is about $1,500.
- Enterprise: For large-scale and global businesses who want to unique experiences for all different customer and affiliate segments on a custom, omni-channel platform
- Enterprise Price: Not listed online and customers must contact Ambassador for a quote.
Good For: Companies who have a sizable customer base and need an all-in-one platform to run several campaigns at once.
Not so Good For: Those with simple campaigns or don’t have much tech or platform experience. Ambassador users have noted difficulties with integration and deployment, which may be overwhelming for smaller companies.
ReferralCandy built its business on word-of-mouth marketing for ecommerce. Merging two rising trends at the time – online sharing and online shopping – the company began offering referral reward solutions in 2009. ReferralCandy still offers the same core service today, but with plenty of added integrations, analytics, and templates.
Overview of Services: ReferralCandy is focused specifically on the referral marketing needs of ecommerce stores. It seamlessly integrates with all major ecommerce platforms, as well as email and payment plugins. Aside from creating campaigns, ReferralCandy also helps you design, automate, and analyze your marketing efforts across different channels.
Plans and Pricing:
- Premium: The first and most popular plan for online stores, with referral campaigns and reports for an unlimited number of customers. Takes just 10 minutes to set up and comes with a free 30-day trial
- Premium Price: The price is split into two parts – a base fee and commission on referral sales. The base fee for a Premium plan is $49 a month, while the commission is tiered, at 5% on the first $1,000, 3.5% on the next $10,000, 1.5% on the next $100,000, and 0.25% for anything above. (Note that commission is only charged on the first three purchases made by any new customer through ReferralCandy.)
- Enterprise: A second plan especially for large-scale businesses with a high volume of sales. Comes with all the features of the Premium plan, with added account management and premium support
- Enterprise Price: $3,999 a month, billed annually, with no commission fee
Good For: Everything ecommerce. No matter what you sell, if you’re selling it online, ReferralCandy can help grow your customer base.
Not so Good For: Companies that don’t prioritize online selling. ReferralCandy does its work when integrated with an ecommerce platform, and won’t be of much use if most of your sales come from another channel.
Friendbuy started out providing referral marketing services to fellow startups, such as ClassPass, Dollar Shave Club, and Glossier. Although it now works with larger corporations, Friendbuy still positions itself as the modern choice for marketers.
Overview of Services: The Friendbuy platform is focused on referral and reward marketing. This service alone comes with a lot of features, including customizable campaigns, segmentation, templates, and third-party integration.
Plans and Pricing:
- Starter: The essentials to help you get started, including unlimited campaigns, third-party integrations, and email support. Recommended for companies with up to $50,000 in total monthly sales.
- Starter Price: $249 a month
- Deluxe: Additional flexibility and support for companies that want API access and more support through email and phone. Recommended for companies with up to $100,000 in total monthly sales.
- Deluxe Price: $749 a month
- Enterprise: A completely tailored referral program for your needs. Recommended for companies with more than $100,000 in total monthly sales.
- Enterprise Price: Not listed online and customers must contact Friendbuy for a quote.
Good For: Established direct-to-consumer businesses looking to implement an easy-to-use referral platform. Although Friendbuy has a set price that’s relatively affordable, it’s still a monthly expense that requires steady sales each month.
Not so Good For: Businesses just starting out or those looking for an all-in-one marketing solution.
Referral SaaSquatch was founded to help digital businesses build “a bigger customer footprint.” From its headquarters in Canada, the company offers a single customer referral platform that links a customer’s journey across all different channels.
Overview of Services: Referral SaaSquatch is focused on digital solutions, specifically on-demand services, subscription services, mobile programs, and online marketplaces. Its robust software is cloud-based and customizable for a friction-free customer experience.
Plans and Pricing:
- Pro: The starting plan that allows businesses to run three active programs with 20,000 members. Includes set-up support, coaching, and the ability to create campaigns through a drag-and-drop editor
- Pro Price: $1,250 per month
- Enterprise: Allows businesses to run unlimited active programs with 200,000 members. Includes a named coach and coordinator and campaigns with custom designs.
- Enterprise Price: Not listed online and customers must contact SaaSquatch for a quote.
- Managed: Includes all the same features as the Enterprise plan, but with the addition of an active program manager.
- Managed Price: Not listed online and customers must contact SaaSquatch for a quote.
Good For: Mid- to large-scale online businesses with a large customer base. Referral SaaSquatch is also a good option if you’re looking to outsource your referral marketing management to a third party provider.
Not so Good For: Smaller starting businesses who are still building their customer base. With the base plan already being over $1,000 a month, the price may not be practical unless you already have a good number of active customers.
Which Extole Alternative is Best For You?
|Extole||Referral Rock||Ambassador||ReferralCandy||Friendbuy||Referral SaaSquatch|
|Starting Price*||Not available||$200/month||Not available||$49/month + commission||$249||$1,250|
|Active Programs and Members*||Not available||1 program and 500 members||Not available||Unlimited members||Unlimited programs||3 programs and 20,000 members|
|Ease of Use Rating||3/5||4.4/5||4.2/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.4/5|
|Customer Service Rating||3/5||4.9/5||4.6/5||4.9/5||5/5||5/5|
* For starting plans
** From Capterra
If you’re looking for an Extole alternative that better fits your business needs, there are a lot of good options.
Ambassador and Referral SaaSquatch provide the same enterprise solutions at similar price points. Friendbuy is a great middle-ground option for direct-to-consumer companies, while ReferralCandy specializes in referral marketing for ecommerce stores.
For a more affordable solution you can start right away, Referral Rock is a great choice with its easily customizable platform and dedicated customer support. Click here for a Referral Rock demo or free 14-day trial.