How does the Coinbase referral program work?

Aug 20, 2015

The Coinbase referral program lets you earn free bitcoin!


How it works:

  1. Start by visiting the referrals page. From this page you can copy your referral link or send an invite email to a friend.
  2. Your friends can click the referral link (or the link in the email) and sign up for a Coinbase account.
  3. They will then complete their account and buy bitcoin in one of our supported countries.
  4. If your friend visits coinbase.com/buys and purchases $100 USD or more (or 100 EUR, or 100 GBP) of bitcoin, you will receive $75 (or 75 EUR, or 75 GBP) of bitcoin when the buy completes. Buys can take up to 4 business days to complete.

More details:

  • In just one click you can share your referral link via Facebook, Twitter, or Email.
  • You can also import contacts from your email provider. When you import your email contacts, we don't store your password, and your contacts are secure. You can choose which contacts to send an invite to.
  • Referral links look just like a link to https://www.coinbase.com except they have special code on the end to identify your account.  For example: https://www.coinbase.com/join/YOUR_REFERRAL_ID
  • When someone clicks your link, you will get credit if they sign up any time in the next 90 days from that computer, even if they close the browser and come back later.
  • There is no limit to the number of friends you can refer, although we do reserve the right to adjust or change the referral program rules in the future.

Advanced details:

  • The standard referral link goes to a page with a URL similar to https://www.coinbase.com/join/YOUR_REFERRAL_ID. However, you can create referral links to any page on the coinbase.com site (exchange.coinbase.com and other subdomains will not work) by putting "?r=YOUR_REFERRAL_ID" on the end of any URL.
  • For example you could create a valid referral URL to https://www.coinbase.com/?r=YOUR_REFERRAL_ID or https://www.coinbase.com/buy-bitcoin?r=YOUR_REFERRAL_ID
  • There is also download a report of all your referral history by visiting the reports page, clicking "New Report", and then selecting "Referral History" as the type.

Why did my referral bonus not show up?

There are a few possible reasons:
  • The referred customer must have signed up after clicking your referral link (and if they clicked multiple referral links they must have clicked your link last).
  • The purchases must take place on coinbase.com/buys, the referral program does not keep track of exchange volume.
  • Referral bonuses are only paid if the person you referred verifies their account and buys $100 of bitcoin or more. The buy has to complete (meaning the bitcoin is delivered). Buys can take up to four business days to complete. The amount can be a cumulative $100 (it can happen over multiple purchases). The payout will typically arrive about 10 minutes after this.
  • It can take some time for payments to go out, and they may not arrive immediately.
  • We check for duplicate or fake accounts and don't pay out referral bonuses on these accounts.
Unfortunately we can't guarantee payout on every account you refer due to the limitations mentioned above and risk of fraud, but we make a good faith effort to do so whenever possible.

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