Successfully reported this slideshow.
Your SlideShare is downloading. ×

How to increase free trial conversions of B2B SAAS Products


Check these out next

1 of 35 Ad

More Related Content

Slideshows for you (20)

Similar to How to increase free trial conversions of B2B SAAS Products (20)


Recently uploaded (20)

How to increase free trial conversions of B2B SAAS Products

  1. 1. How to increase free trial conversions of SaaS products Anuradha Sridharan Product Manager, Flipkart Ex-MindTickle, Ex-HealthifyMe
  2. 2. Scenario #1 • Inbound lead • Bottom-up initiative • Clear need, high on problem awareness • Demo given • Engaged free trial prospect • Tried all relevant flows • Asked many questions on product capability • Deal didn’t go through Reason Busy with other priorities, will get back in next Qtr Adam, Sales Manager
  3. 3. Scenario #2 • Inbound lead • Bottom-up initiative • Demo given • Strong need, Aware of their problem and the solution that will work • Keen on trial • Tried for 3 days • Deal wonKyra, Sales Enablement Manager
  4. 4. Scenario #3 • Referral lead • Curious about the product • Top-down initiative • Demo given • Trial never started, even after multiple follow-ups • Trial period ended, mail sent. Came back again to extend the trial. Didn’t start even then • Asked for another demo for other stakeholders after 3 months. Yet free trial never kicked off Arthur, Co-Founder of a growing startup
  5. 5. Free trial - Important step in the buyer decision making process But treated as a line-item in the product rollout plan just before launch
  6. 6. Free trial - Sign up, Figure out, Explore
  7. 7. Purpose of free trial Perceived Value Actual Value
  8. 8. Engage through Lifecycle Communication Help prospects achieve their Desired Outcome Design an engaging Onboarding flow Enforce a free trial Lead Qualification process 4-step process Define, Instrument, Measure and Analyze relevant metrics
  9. 9. Free Trial Qualification
  10. 10. "Free Trial conversion rates are – to a very large degree – dependent upon the quality of your top-of-funnel activity. Low quality leads in, low conversion numbers out.” - Lincoln Murphy (
  11. 11. 1. Customer development interview Open-ended, unbiased questions on problem / need WITHOUT pitching your offering 2. Customized product demo Based on the need of the prospect 3. Internal Discussion with sales, marketing and customer success to qualify the prospect for free trial and identify the success criteria (Use qualification questions for reference) Qualification Process
  12. 12. Sample list of Qualification Questions • What's the prospect’s goal? What are his responsibilities, motivations and challenges? • How does it align with organization goals? • Are they clear about their need? Was there a need to evangelize the idea/concept? • Why are they looking for a solution NOW? • Is it a top-down or a bottom-up initiative? • Who else need to be convinced to make it happen? • What is the success criteria to arrive at a decision? • Who all are part of the buying process? • Is there a budget allocated/available? • What was the prospect’s journey in the inbound marketing funnel? • Who all participated during the demo? • What parts of the demo interested them? What questions were asked? • Which use-cases interested them the most? • Has pricing been discussed? What was their reaction? • Who will be evaluating the trial? Who will be driving the trial? • What would make this free trial a success for the prospect? Customize this list depending on whether you belong to buyer-persona or JTBD camp! 
  13. 13. Completely Unaware Problem Aware Solution Aware Product Aware The Most Aware Higher chances of free trial conversion Source: Breakthrough Advertising by Gene Schwartz Framework #1 to qualify prospects for free trial
  14. 14. Framework #2 to qualify prospects for free trial Highly Qualified Urgency Low High Importance Low High
  15. 15. Onboarding
  16. 16. Image Source:
  17. 17. Onboarding Product Tours / Tutorials
  18. 18. “It’s dangerous to assume everyone can work everything out themselves” will - Des Traynor (Co-founder, Intercom)
  19. 19. Identify 3-4 use-cases relevant to your prospects and design your onboarding flow for each of these use-cases MindTickle - Admin view screenshot
  20. 20. MindTickle - Admin view screenshot Non-intrusive nudge to get started with the product (short product tours, in- context video tutorials)
  21. 21. Handle new user state / empty state Trello – onboarding steps using the product
  22. 22. Desired Outcome
  23. 23. Identify Desired Outcome as part of onboarding What's the single most important thing you are trying to achieve using {product name}?* *More crucial if the free trial signup is self-serve
  24. 24. The moment of value-realization “Wow” / “Aha” moment Identify the success path - steps to complete in order to reach the “Wow” moment
  25. 25. MindTickle’s “Wow” moment Desired outcome => Easy rollout of relevant content to sales teams Use-case => Ease of creating a structured course and publishing it to learners Select course creation Give a name and desc Create an outline Upload available content Preview & Publish Invite Learners Roadblock Sample course created and uploaded (Internal Content team)
  26. 26. “Is your Wow! to work ratio high enough?” - Brian Halligan, CEO HubSpot
  27. 27. Lifecycle communication
  28. 28. Goal of Messaging Directional Tone - “Here’s what you should do right now to get the maximum value out of your free trial”
  29. 29. Lifecycle communication – best practices • Plan for 4 - 6 emails during trial • Keep it personal – send from a human email account (and not admin@ / support@ types) • Trigger – event-driven (and not time-driven) • Have a clear Call to action • Mobile-optimized • If no activity, send a casual “just checking out” email with specific tasks to get started • Send an email before trial ends, emphasizing the access will get revoked automatically • In-app notifications to guide the prospects towards next steps
  30. 30. Onboarding welcome email from Drift Asking for the prospect’s desired outcome Source:
  31. 31. Clear steps on what a new user should do next “Next steps” email from Asana
  32. 32. Summary High Free Trial Conversion Rates Qualified prospects Onboarding to help experience desired outcome Engaging Lifecycle communication
  33. 33. For further exploration, David Skok’s articles on SaaS - Onboarding Teardowns by Samuel Hulick ( ) Tools - Intercom, Appcues, MailChimp (for drip lifecycle emails), Totango, GainSight
  34. 34. Thank you! Twitter - @anura

Editor's Notes

  • Once the free trial prospects sign up, they are left to explore on their own.
    Expectation that they will try out all the product features during the 14/30 day free trial period and come out with a positive decision.
  • Create a compelling experience that maps customer needs to product / platform capabilities
  • Top-down initiative (mandate from the upper management to fix certain issues/achieve certain goals) or a bottom-up initiative (a manager trying to solve one of his key challenges).
  • is the Wow! powerful and exciting enough to pull them through the work you are asking them to do?