How To Improve Free Trial to Paid Conversions

Oct 6, 2022
min read

Want to rake in more revenue than ever?

Of course, you do! 😁

That’s why you’re looking for tips on how to improve free trial to paid conversions!

Free trials can be tricky to perfect. 

One wrong move, and you’re looking at insanely long sales cycles or worse – high churn rates.

Want to rake in more revenue than ever?

Fortunately, you don’t have to sweat it!

We’ve got seven awesome tips to help you skyrocket your trial conversion rate. 

We’ll even introduce you to an insane tool that helps you identify and convert leads instantly!

Let’s jump in!

Seven Brilliant Ways to Improve Your Free Trial to Paid Conversion Rate

SaaS companies commonly use two options when letting a user try out their products for free:

  • Free trials: Give a user access to almost every feature available on the paid subscription for a limited time.
  • Freemium products: Offer a free tier users can use forever but with limited functionality.

Here are seven ways to improve your paid conversion rate if you use a SaaS free trial model. 


Even if your SaaS product uses a freemium model, you can still use some of the tips we mention here to boost your trial conversion rate. 📈

1. Optimize Your Free Trial Period  

Contrary to popular belief, bigger isn’t always better….at least when it comes to free trials for SaaS. 

Optimize Your Free Trial Period

Your free trial should be long enough for a user to derive value – but short enough so they feel a sense of urgency to give you their credit card information and discover all your product’s awesome features. 💳

A 30-day free trial period is way too long for a straightforward SaaS product. 

Instead, opt for a 7-day or 14-day trial, depending on your product’s complexity. 

Remember, a shorter trial can increase engagement and even shorten your sales cycle for each potential customer. 

Don’t believe us?

Take it from the project management tool, ProdPad.

They experimented by removing their 30-day SaaS free trial and adding a self-extending 7-day trial. 

A user would start with seven days, but every time they used a new feature, a few extra days would be added to the trial period. 

The result?

ProdPad tripled its paid conversion rate. 

Pro tip: A/B test trial lengths and use Toplyne to determine your ideal trial period. 😉

Another way you can optimize trials to boost customer numbers is by using pre-signup and post-signup checklists. 

2. Personalize Your User Onboarding Process

Free trial subscribers don’t fall for mass-market customer onboarding templates anymore.

They demand personal attention. 🙅

Personalize Your User Onboarding Process

Tailor your content to each individual user to increase engagement and boost your customer base. 

But how do you know what type of hyper-personalized content to use?


Rely on Toplyne’s user persona data! 

With it, you can identify how every user interacts with your SaaS product and determine how to get them to convert into a paying customer. 

For instance, you can send targeted walkthrough emails to a new user who hasn't taken high-value action in the last seven days. 

ClickUp is a brilliant example of a SaaS company with an excellent customer onboarding process. The tool has a personalized, comprehensive user onboarding procedure for when a new user signs up - that shows them around the entire tool. 🧑‍🏫

Want to go a step further?

Try concierge onboarding!

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Concierge onboarding involves reaching out to every new customer personally and guiding them through your product. 

This is especially useful if you have a complex SaaS product with lengthy set-up times. 

Concierge user onboarding is also ideal for:

  • New companies with a small user base. 
  • Attracting enterprise-level clients. 
  • Highly-qualified leads. 

3. Ask for Feedback

Asking free trial subscribers for their opinions is an easy way to determine if you’re meeting a high customer success rate

For every new user who converted, send a welcome email and offer to help with any concerns. 

Also, ask those paying customers why they decided to convert. 

This helps you develop and promote those unique selling points to acquire even more paid subscribers.

What about those free trial customers who didn’t upgrade to a paid subscription plan?

Ask for Feedback

Just because they didn’t give you their credit card details to sign up doesn’t mean you can ignore them!

Gathering feedback from any trial subscriber who churned can show where you need to improve to ensure high customer success.

If trial subscriber churn is high even after discovering your value proposition, you could be attracting the wrong users – or catering to the wrong audience!

You’ll have to experiment with your messaging on social media, blog posts, email marketing and other channels to address the pain points of your prospects. 

Some free trial customers may not have discovered your value proposition at all. 

This could be because the customer onboarding process was unclear or the product was too complicated. 😵‍💫

If you suspect your SaaS product is at fault for your low customer success rate, you should look to improve things for prospective customers - like limiting wait times caused by poorly optimized software. 

Either way, you should reach out to any churned trial user through automated emails a couple of days after the end of the trial. 

Your email should feel personal and have a signature from someone on the leadership team. Additionally, include several ways respondents can provide feedback (surveys or scheduled calls).

Consider incentivizing respondents with gift cards for helpful feedback, and always respond to any replies you’ll receive. 

4. Stay in Touch with Users During the Trial

Look – everyone knows almost every SaaS business sends out a series of onboarding emails whenever a new trial user signs up. 

But that’s JUST NOT ENOUGH! 😱

You need to do MORE!

Like what?

Providing self-help resources, organizing sales calls, and sending out surveys to convert every possible free user into a paying customer! 

Stay in Touch with Users During the Trial

But how do you do it?

Simple – use product usage data from tools like Toplyne to identify high-potential users. 

Then, use the above methods to communicate everything about your product to the potential customer – like the free trial period, pricing, features, and what happens to customer data when they upgrade or cancel after the trial. 

Use in-app alerts and prompts to notify each user about important features, events, and updates. You can even share tips and templates with users to keep them engaged. 🤓

For any trial user who hasn’t converted into a paying customer yet, try these things to give them a small nudge:

  • Send a reminder via email about the trial end date.
  • Offer a discount on a paid plan for a limited time. 💲
  • Provide a trial extension for them to change their mind.

5. Provide Value-Adding Content

Here’s something SaaS companies tend to forget: 

You’re not selling a product. 

You’re selling a solution to a problem your customer has. 

Provide Value-Adding Content

Our point?

Providing content that helps users solve their problems is essential for boosting your free trial conversion rate!

Consider documenting case studies and how-to guides that provide context to your product - so users know exactly what problems it can solve. 

You can send weekly newsletters to help them discover new features or provide tips to streamline users’ workflows so they can complete tasks efficiently.

For any user struggling to find value in your product, use personalized videos to direct them toward your value proposition and turn them into paid customers. 🧭

You can also use your platform’s product analytics data to anticipate where users struggle and provide proactive support.

Our point?

And don’t forget!

Many of your users will keep visiting your blog, social media and other assets to learn more about your product - and your company.

Here’s how you can keep prospects happy. Before they sign up, you can:

  • Enact consistent messaging across every touchpoint, including social media and your blog. 
  • Establish credibility with social proof and testimonials on your website and platforms like YouTube. 

6. Build a Product-Led Sales Strategy

If you work in SaaS, you’ve probably come across the term Product-Led Growth (PLG) several times a day, right?

In case you haven’t, PLG is a growth model where the product is the star of the show. 

And since the product is the primary source of customer acquisition, there’s minimal intervention from the sales and marketing teams. 

Product-Led Sales is a sales strategy that’s being adopted across almost every PLG SaaS company. 

How does PLS work?

PLS helps sales teams identify product-qualified leads (PQLs), resulting in higher trial signups - which lead to an increased trial conversion rate and less friction within the sales cycle. 

Once you know your SaaS company has a killer product, leverage free user behavior data from Toplyne and identify every user with a high potential lifetime value (LTV). 

Then, it’s up to your sales team to guide them through the trial conversion process to make them a paid user. 

Additionally, ensure your SaaS free trial showcases your product’s best features. 

This way, free trial users can make a purchase decision quickly. 🤝

If you want to boost your free trial conversion rate, you’ve gotta shift over from your traditional sales model to PLS. 

It’s what all the cool kids are doing. 😎

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7. Use Toplyne to Identify Users Most Likely to Convert

You can try every trick you know, but if you’re not pitching to the right people, you’re gonna miss out on sales targets for your paid subscription plans. 😩

Luckily for you, that’s where Toplyne comes in. 

Toplyne is a tool that helps companies boost conversion rate optimization. Toplyne identifies high-intent free trial users and the best GTM strategies to convert those leads into paying customers.

You won’t have to spend time chasing every trial subscriber- only the best ones that will lead to huge boosts in your free trial conversion rate. 📈

With Toplyne, you’ll never miss out on the right potential customer. 🎯

Here’s what you can do with Toplyne:

  • Integrate with product analytics tools like Amplitude and Mixpanel as well as sales and CRM tools like Hubspot and Salesforce.
Here’s what you can do with Toplyne:
  • Identify leads with the highest potential for conversion. 💰
Identify leads with the highest potential for conversion.
  • Create personalized experiences that encourage users to invite their teams for collaboration. 🤝
Create personalized experiences that encourage users to invite their teams for collaboration. 🤝
  • Provides sales reps with all relevant free user information so they can close sales more efficiently - and boost your trial conversion rate. 🤓
Provides sales reps with all relevant free user information so they can close sales more efficiently - and boost your trial conversion rate.
  • Use conversion strategies like remarketing, automated messaging, sales-assist motions, and in-product nudges to drive your free trial users towards your paid customer pool. 🤑
automated messaging

Think about it.

With Toplyne, your sales team will never chase down a bad lead again. 

The only problem now is deciding where all that money you save will go. 🤔

Pool party, anyone? 🏝️

Think about it.

So now the question is: 

Does a free trial really give you a higher chance of making a sale?

Let’s find out!

Do Free Trials Actually Increase Sales?



Free trials are like double-edged swords. ⚔️

Make it too long, and prospects won’t feel the urgency to upgrade. 

Scrap it out entirely, and you will lose out on potential free trial customers. 

SaaS customers can’t always be convinced with sales calls and presentations. 

They need to try out your product to grasp its value proposition. 

Free trial subscribers get access to almost every feature so they can understand how your tool can solve their problems. 

Without a trial, prospects will have to pull out their credit card and commit to a paid trial of a tool they don’t know - and many won’t take up that offer. 

So, to answer the question - yes, free trials can actually get you more paid customers.

Free trials get you more signups. 

And when your product satisfies their needs, these free trial users will convert to paying customers. 💰

Go From Free Trial to Subscription Today!

You might feel like free trial users rarely convert into paying customers - but all you need are a few tips to improve your free trial conversion rate.

Ensure you use the correct free trial model and follow the tips we’ve mentioned above to see a significant uptick in trial conversion numbers. 📈

Use a tool like Toplyne to help your team focus entirely on red-hot leads and turn them into paid customers. 

What are you waiting for?

Sign up for Toplyne for free and watch your free trial conversion rate skyrocket!

Sign up for Toplyne for free and watch your free trial conversion rate skyrocket!
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