trials of the SaaS products

Experimenting With the Free Trials of the SaaS Products to Find the Optimal Solution

What is the reason that free trials and freemiums are so popular among the SaaS business community? They bring more revenue. They are the source of onboarding potential leads. They are one of the best ways to market your SaaS products and services. We are also part of the SaaS business market, and we agree on these facts. However, are free versions of SaaS just about revenue, leads, and marketing?

Team SubscriptionFlow is here to bust this myth. One of the primary causes of offering free versions is to introduce your SaaS product to the market. There is no way to sell, market, and earn if people are unaware of the ease that your product or services can offer them.

If you want to read more about freemium and free trials then you can consult one of our previously written blogs.

SaaS Free Trial vs. SaaS Freemium—An Ultimate Exploration of the Option That Drives More Paying Customers and How!

Many companies use SaaS subscription management software to manage their subscribers as well as free trials. But the concept of the free version is misunderstood, and you need to clear ambiguities before you experiment with it. So, ask yourself this basic question:

Freemium or Free Trial – What Do You Actually Need?

Many SaaS companies are market giants, and they do not need to use free trials or freemiums as a tactic to attract more subscribers. However, some businesses cannot thrive if they do not tag their product with something ‘free’. You must decide whether you need a trial version of your SaaS product or is it freemium that would work best for you?

For instance, Netflix used to offer free trials for its streaming services. However, last year, they removed free trials. Why? Because they already have established their position in the market and their targeted customers and their leads are already aware of their services. They are in a position to directly offer subscription packages for their customers.

One of the widely-used language-assistance SaaS, Grammarly offers a free version that you can use for infinite time (freemium). However, if you need advanced functionalities, you would need to switch to premium and get its subscription. Moreover, they have special versions for universities and other educational institutions.

Another example of another type of free version is Ubersuggest—one of the most credible and popular SEO and content marketing manager. They offer free access to their product for a week, so that a customer can understand its usage, become familiar with the feature’s ad functions, and above all, understand the value of assistance it offers. This is called free trials of SaaS products. Once the trial period is over, the user will not be able to access SaaS anymore. This creates a sense of urgency and needs to proceed to the subscription. However, in some cases, it may cut the cords.

The niche of your business and your standing in the market decide whether you need to offer free trials or not.

Also Read: What is Customer Success and why do You Need it for Your Subscription Business Model to Succeed?

Time Duration of the Free Trials

If you succeed in understanding the importance of time to offer free trials, you can become the market leader. Here you have a wide margin to play. You can test and try various things.

  • You should know the right time to offer free trials.
  • You should know the time when you need to remove free trials.
  • You should offer free trials for the appropriate time period.

HubSpot offers free trials for 14 days while HBO TV and HBO Go offer a trial period of just 7 days. It is probably confusing to understand the reason for this difference in time duration for a free trial. Some SaaS products are complex enough that the customer needs time to explore all features. HubSpot, for example, is a content marketing software offering a range of integrations and templates. It is obvious that people would need sufficient time to explore such an extensive platform.

On the flip side, it is easy to understand what HBO offers. There is also a difference in the niche of SaaS business that HBO and HubSpot run. Now, you would be able to understand the logical reason behind varying periods of free trials offered by different platforms.

Also Read: How to Plan the Best Freemium Model to Make More Users Upgrade to Premium

Post-Free Trial Planning

Free trials are like the test drive of a car. When you drive a car to test it, the sales representative do not just smile and let you go. On your way, he keeps telling you about the features and price of the car. He also provides you with a comparative analysis of other cars. After the drive, he will get your feedback. He would contact you even if you do not contact him.

You should plan your SaaS free trial in the same way, from beginning till the end. Make sure your plan ends with the customer coming on board. HBO Max does not offer free trials anymore—following Netflix and Disney. However, Hulu offers to sign up for free for seven days trial, and you can use HBO as well during the trial period. Through this free trial, HBO and Hulu expect to cater to more subscribers. See, they have clear targets and aims to achieve at the end of the trial period.

Currently, SubscriptionFlow has also experimented with its free version. So, more and more users can understand and get the benefit of the assistance it offers. Recently, we have made SubscriptionFlow free forever for the customers. After the 14 days full-fledged free trial period ends, your SubscriptionFlow free trial can be converted into freemium.

Freemium allows users to continue all the features except a few advanced payments features and functionalities. The strategy of offering free trials before SubscriptionFlow freemium is to provide the customers with a chance to get a complete overview of the SaaS subscription management product. They will be able to make the right buying decision. That’s how we have reinvented the old concept of free trials in a new way—ending our free trials at freemium.

Also Read: Psychological Aspects to Know to Level Up the Recurring Billing with Free Trials and Freemium

Metrics to Monitor the Performance of Free Trials

When you are testing a free trial strategy, you need to monitor some metrics to know the effectiveness of your strategy.

Firstly, you need to keenly observe the trial conversion rate. It will help you see if your plan to enhance brand awareness and bring more leads onboard working the way you want or not.

If the trial conversion rate is improving, your Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR) will also improve. This improvement is a clear indication of the success of your free trial strategy. MRR will directly affect Annual Recurring revenue (ARR).

If you observe these metrics or KPIs, you can find out whether your free trials strategy works or not. There are certain scenarios where companies rather than using the free trial strategy to launch their SaaS product or to bring more customers on board, make free trials a source of revenue. They offer paid trials instead of free trials. It is the best strategy to filter out potential leads from freeloaders. You can only use paid trials when your customer and leads are well-informed about the services or the product that you are offering.

It has become a norm to offer free trials and freemium. Whether you are a tech entrepreneur or a well-established SaaS enterprise, your free trials should be planned with well-defined targets. Once you achieve the target, you need to experiment and come up with something different.

Stop jumping on the bandwagon!

Understand this, free trials are an effective business strategy if you use them wisely. Those who are interested in SubscriptionFlow free trials can contact our team. We are hopeful that offering the freemium when the free trial ends will bring ease for our clientele. You will be able to use the basic functionalities of our platform. And for a whole subscription package, we are all available.

Also Read: Trial Management System