Offering free trials for SaaS products is quite common. Free trials aren't required, but sometimes they are expected by the market (WorkClout falls under this category for SMB/mid size customers) or they are a competitive advantage because the competitive market doesn't offer one.
I took a look at some of the WorkClout free trial data for the first 45 days of 2022.
A couple of things popped out to me:
The entire funnel can improve
- Average conversion rate for an opt-in free trial (no CC required) is 14%-25%. (source from Sixteen Ventures) The 1.5% conversion honestly isn't the most alarming component because we start somewhere and find ways to get better. That's not a problem. However, it made me curious about the "top of the funnel" metrics.
- Average response rate for a cold email is 17% with personalization (source from Woodpecker.co). The 6.25% for a 5-touch email campaign is too low. Even if you remove the unqualified trials the bump is minimal (~10%). The CTAs on the emails range from a call, to feedback, to offering a free inspection transcription (a value metric), depending on what touch they are in the campaign. Either the email content isn't resonating or the timing of them are off (or both).
The Activity Metric or "Feature Adoption Rate" makes me question offering a free trial
- WorkClout has 3 value metrics that are most important: form templates created, inspections started, and documents created. The feature adoption rate should reveal the quality of the free trial. None of the 3 metrics are seeing any level of significant adoption even within the 14-day window. This needs to be addressed.
2. I went back and looked at users added per trial. Astounding, not a single trial added a secondary user. (The 1 conversion actually did add a user, but the added user also created a trial account)
Day-to-day users of WorkClout are not the decision maker nor are they creating the free trial accounts. No data. No usage. And no value. This could be a source of the disconnect.
Free trials are an incredibly powerful way to generate top of the funnel momentum, and I do not want to completely remove this option, especially when the market expects it.
However, I need to reconcile the current disconnect between the quality manager who values data and the day-to-day users of WorkClout who value reliability, ease of use, and time saved.
I'm tweaking a couple things on the website:
- Changing ALL of the CTAs to Schedule a Demo on every page EXCEPT the pricing page, so I can propose a trial with a day-to-day user involved in the trial process.
- Testing some different language on the trial CTAs to suggest a need for investment to conduct the free trial.
3. Suggesting a meeting the very first time a trial user logs in. Intercom shows us that 81% of users open the chat message, so I want to include my Calendly link to test the engagement.
Free trials are great for lead volume. Free trials are great for creating those AHA! moments for users to see value. Unfortunately, free trials will struggle when the time-to-value is dependent on someone other than the trial owner.
WorkClout creates AHA! moments everyday for its users. Making a couple of these tweaks to the customer experience and advocating for qualified free trial accounts to involve the right users will increase feature adoption rates and overall trial-to-paid conversion rates as well.