Why Free Trials May Not Be Enough for Saas Startups

Why Free Trials May Not Be Enough for Saas Startups

Bhaavika Joshi
December 13, 2022
5 Mins
min read

SaaS startups often offer free trials thinking that potential customers will see the value of their product through a 7, 14, or 30-day free trial period. Free trials come with a nuance — they can work for startups depending on factors such as their positioning, business model, goals, and conversion rate, to name a few.

Limitations of free trials

When a SaaS startup is in the initial stage of acquiring its first 100-200 customers, most of its time and resources will be used to improve the product, fix bugs, and get on calls with prospects. With a small team wearing multiple hats and working on different areas in the company, they may need help to create free trials for every prospect in their pipeline. 

  • Offering a free trial to potential customers does not guarantee:
  • Understanding the value of the product
  • Discovering all the product’s features 
  • Knowing how to use the product properly
  • Being interested in exploring the product during the free trial

Prospects may even abandon the product during or after the free trial. Relying solely on free trials may not be a wise move. 

What are interactive demos? 

Interactive product demos give your prospects a hands-on experience of how their workflow will look when they incorporate your product into their system. 

They get to test-drive your product immediately as opposed to getting through the friction of signing up and sometimes, having to wait till their free trial has been activated. One of the best parts of interactive demos — can be repurposed and customized to fit a prospect’s use case.  

You can have various guided demos embedded on different pages of your website that can cater to a specific audience. 

Why demos can be beneficial for SaaS startups

Using a demo creation platform to create demos demands minimal effort, time, and fewer resources. For a startup, efficiency and effectiveness are key when building the initial momentum to convert prospects into customers. 

Add to that, you can personalize product demos you want to send to prospects that effectively show how your product works and adds value to their company. When prospects can understand how your product works, you get to see a better conversion rate and more revenue in your pipeline. 

How Storylane can help SaaS startups convert prospects into paying customers

Storylane, a no-code demo creation platform not only helps startups create interactive demos, but also makes it easier to automate this process, and for different functions as and when your company starts to scale. 

Generate more leads

For startups, the most important goal (apart from improving their product) is to get more leads flowing into their pipeline. An easy way to fast-track this process is to embed a product demo on your website. This will help prospects better understand your product and its features and they would be more likely to sign up for a trial. 

Using Storylane, you can quickly build an interactive product demo in minutes and embed it on your website — without having to do any coding! You also have the option to add guided tooltips such as images, audio clips, and videos in your product demos. 

Qualify prospects quickly

When you have enough (and hopefully more) leads in your pipeline, not all of them will fit your target audience. When prospects interact with your embedded demo on your website and sign up for your product, they are showing clear interest. 

Once they give you their email address, you can set up an email nurturing campaign to send them relevant product information through these emails. This is where Storylane can help add value to your email marketing. You can create multiple guided demos that can be personalized for every prospect, and create separate links for demos shared via emails. 

Storylane will help you see how prospects interact with these guided demos through demo analytics which gives you in-depth insights into your product demos. With this, you will be able to qualify prospects quickly and focus your efforts on them rather than all prospects in your pipeline. 

Get better conversions

Once you have qualified your prospect, you need to show how valuable your product can be for their company. You can set up a live demo environment where you get to create a unique buying experience for your prospect. 

Post the demo call, you can send them a summary of the demo call through a personalized demo as a sales leave-behind. By sending a personalized demo using Storylane, you make it easier for them to revisit and re-experience your product and its capabilities — compared to sharing generic presentations or PDFs with them. 

Examples of startups using Storylane demos on their website

  1. Propelo
Propelo interactive demo
Interactive demo embedded on Propelo's website

  1. Betterlesson 
BetterLesson guided demo
BetterLesson's guided demo on their website

  1. Toplyne
Toplyne guided demo
Guided demo embedded on Toplyne's website

Exploring interactive product demos as an option with or without a free trial is a good way to see which method works best for your startup. There is no right answer — it’s about understanding which option(s) will work best for your startup at its current stage. 

If you’re curious about how Storylane can help you get more leads and improve your conversion rate, schedule a call with us!

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