Tracking signups from shared content


Following my question here I’m suggesting this feature.

I think shared content leading to a signup should count as an invitation

I believe users are more likely to share interesting content than send email invitations.

Each time a user lands on Discourse through a ?u=username link and then signs up, this should be counted as an invitation by @username

This could appear like this on the user profile (screen from /users/username/invited/redeemed in french )


  • Able to track influencers based on actual signups not only traffic
  • Removing steps to invite people (literally 2 clicks away on any URL)


  • Risk of fake signups (but no incremental risk compared to email invitations)

Who else is interested in this?

Any comments or ideas?


I like this idea, and I don’t think its too hard to implement.

I think if you share a link on twitter that somehow leads to someone signing up you had some influence on the account creation and this should be tracked.

I am putting a #pr-welcome on this for now, but we can revise later and see if we add it to a release.


What exactly is expected here?

From a developer’s point of view:

  • include a schema change (to add a referred_by field to table users)
  • look for the parameter that says who is the referral and store it in a session
  • change sign up mechanism to save the referral field from sessions into the referred_by field

From an administrator’s view of point:

  • dashboard with statistics that show the user that brought the most users
  • and the user who brought most visitors (did not register an account)

From a user’s view of point:

  • can he specify the name of the user that referred him even though he did not do that by giving him a link
  • should the part that is used for link sharing to be modified to also include the referral parameter

Sure, but this is stretch-goal territory.

Same as above I think, but I’m also not entirely clear on what you’re proposing here. Could you please rephrase, with a bit more detail?


Nevermind. I did not notice that ?u=<username> part in the links that are shared and thought that this is a requirement as well.


I’d love to see this feature also! This would be extremely useful. Any updates on this?


This will likely be part of this year’s GSoC. Stay tuned :wink:


Just checking in to see if there are any updates on this?

It did not get picked up for GSoC, but if @nbianca or anyone else wants to take this on we’d be happy to sponsor the work.

Not looking to go off the topic, but my question here seems not far off from this one

I want to do this.

How does the sponsorship work?

1 Like

I’ll send you a pm about it.

Did this feature ever make it into production? :slight_smile: I’m also very interested in it.


We certainly reworked invites heavily recently @sam, did you want to triage this one?


The OP is still not something that we do, the concept it is trying to get to is:

  1. I share:

  2. We store something in the session saying “Sam got this person on the site”

  3. Later this user creates an account

  4. Account is attributed to “Sam”

Technically it is not too hard to build this @codinghorror probably looking at 1 week of work to get all of the nits and UI going and consistent. Let me know if/when you want to slot this.


Oh yes thanks for the clarification, that is a bit beyond what we had in mind. I view sharing a post as an implicit invitation, not an explicit one.

Mostly I want to make sure explicit invitations are tracked if the person accepts the invitation.

1 Like