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March 17, 2023

Improving B2B SaaS Conversion Rates With This Complete Guide

b2b saas conversion rate

In this blog post, we will discuss how to improve B2B SaaS conversion rates. Understand the difference between opt-in and opt-out free trials and how to optimize each strategy to increase conversion rates.

Sara Rendón
Content Strategist

Developing a SaaS platform is the simple portion. Converting and retaining new consumers is the most difficult aspect of scaling any SaaS platform. Learn how to improve your B2B Saas conversion rates.

Saas are typically subscription-based tools that facilitate customers' business and personal daily activities. In this era dominated by technology, an increasing number of SaaS companies are emerging with innovative solutions. What is a decent conversion rate for SaaS?

How can you, as a new SaaS provider, demonstrate to new customers that the solutions you offer will be beneficial? A complimentary trial is one of the most effective marketing strategies.

Imagine you are a baker who sells homemade, delectable cherry pies, but your business has just begun and you need to disseminate the word that your pies are the best on the market. You decide to offer free samples of your cherry pie to new consumers.

Some individuals appreciate the sample and become addicted! They eventually become recurring consumers. Others are not persuaded that your pies are worth purchasing. You've squandered time and resources by giving away your pie. Applying the same logic to SaaS.

What now? You must take the time to persuade more people to purchase your pies after they have tried a complimentary sample. They recognize that your tarts are the best, so you must assist them in becoming invested. Give them that extra incentive to complete the transaction.

This analogy is frequently encountered by SaaS platforms with rapid growth and a free trial option. By providing a free trial of your software, you can demonstrate to prospective customers that your services are superior.

Strategy for SaaS Complimentary Trial Marketing

By offering a free trial, it is essential to know what you're entering into. To increase free trial conversions, you need a robust SaaS marketing strategy. While SaaS trials lack an event-based trigger, offering a free SaaS trial is highly effective at encouraging bottom-of-funnel leads to begin testing to determine if your SaaS platform satisfies your company's requirements.

The modest victory in this segment of your lead generation efforts is when leads are sufficiently committed to your software to sign up, provide their contact information, and in some cases, provide their credit card information. They have also committed to evaluating the various features and functions of your SaaS platform on their own time. You have already piqued their interest, making them qualified leads for your marketing efforts.

Similar to selling cherry tarts, the ultimate objective is for these trial users of your software to recognize its value and convert into paying customers.

How can you ensure that you are taking the appropriate measures to increase your SaaS trial conversion rates? In this blog post, we will discuss the various free trial options and the best conversion optimization strategies.

1. Opt-In VS Opt-Out Free Trials

Free trials differ. They are not created equally and will not result in a high conversion rate. For this reason, it is essential to have a strategy in place and to choose what will perform best for your business.

In addition, it is essential to note that combining Free Trial and "Freemium" will make it challenging to monitor and evaluate your free trial conversion rate metrics. What is commonly known as "Freemium" is when software offers a free version of its services and an upgraded version for additional fees.

Free trial strategies for SaaS typically fall into two distinct categories: opt-in free trials and opt-out free trials. Understanding the distinction between these two types of trials will enhance your ability to convert prospects into customers. Similarly to what we mentioned earlier regarding Freemium, these two types of trials should be measured independently in order to determine your genuine conversion rate.

2. Offer a Complimentary Trial with Registration

During an opt-in trial, a prospective customer can begin a subscription without a credit card by supplying payment information during or after the trial. While there is less of a barrier preventing prospects from signing up for this type of trial, you'll still need to put in a lot of work to attract them to it in the first place and even more work to ensure that they rapidly understand the benefits of becoming a paying subscriber.

3. Cancel The Complimentary Trial

In contrast, a prospect can only begin an opt-out free trial by providing their credit card information in advance. The user must then log in and cancel the subscription, or they will be charged after the trial period ends.

Today's prospects are less likely to divulge their payment information than they were in the past, making it difficult to get them to sign up for an opt-out free trial in the first place. Newer companies will need to exert a great deal of effort to attract the interest of prospects, pique their curiosity, and gain their trust. This may be easier for well-established brands.

While this has the potential to convert a prospect into a paying customer, prospects frequently use the free trial and choose to terminate their subscription without paying a dime. Even though you have their credit card information, you must still exert significant effort to convince them that becoming a paying customer makes the most sense.

The distinction between opt-in and opt-out free trials can help you determine what is lacking in your SaaS free trial marketing strategy and low conversion rates.

Tips for Increasing the B2B SaaS Conversion Rates 

Now that we are aware of the various types of free trials that can be implemented, the true question is how to convert free users to paid users.

We will now discuss the six most effective strategies for converting free users to paying customers. Let's immediately dive into B2B SaaS conversion rates best practices and rapidly implementable SaaS conversion strategies.

1. Replace opt-out with opt-in

We recommend beginning with the Opt-In free trial if your SaaS business is newer. This will give you time to demonstrate your value to your free users and establish their trust.

We recommend reconsidering your SaaS free trial marketing strategy if you are already utilizing an opt-out free trial. Keep in mind that switching from opt-out to opt-in and removing the credit card wall that may be discouraging potential consumers may initially decrease your conversion rates for saas companies.

But the total number of paying clients may increase substantially! A larger number of leads will sign up for your free SaaS trial if you do not require a credit card, some of which may not be a good match for your prospect matrix. However, an opt-in free trial coupled with the appropriate inbound marketing strategy positions you to attract more qualified leads and convert more leads into sales through efficient conversion rate optimization.

2. Provide a Briefer Complimentary Trial

Another frequently asked query is how long a free trial should last.

While many SaaS companies provide a 30-day free trial (with the assumption that this gives prospects more time to become acquainted with and fall in love with their app), we recommend a shorter duration. Why? Because giving a consumer too much time to consider may result in them forgetting about it.

Focusing on your freemium conversion rates, you should limit the length of your free trial to less than 14 days to improve your SaaS free trial conversion rate, as trial user engagement tends to occur in the first 1-2 weeks, before fizzling out and users move on to evaluating your competitors.

A 14-day trial is an excellent starting point! The majority of clients who sign up for a free trial decide within the first few days whether they like or dislike the software. Moreover, by giving them less time to decide, you are unnecessarily applying pressure, which causes prospects to feel compelled to make a choice.

3. Personalization for Lifecycle Marketing

As mentioned previously, once you've piqued a prospective customer's interest to the point where they sign up for a free trial, they become a qualified lead. Now is your opportunity to engage with them in strategic and personalized ways to help them see the value not only in your product, but also in your company's messaging and service.

Lifecycle marketing is a useful and effective strategy for delivering the appropriate messages to prospects at the appropriate moment, based on where they are in the sales cycle. This is accomplished through conversion rate optimization, so the content of your web pages and landing pages will actually alter based on the industry, lead status, lifecycle stage, referral source, or device type of the target audience. Using HubSpot SMART content, HubSpot CMS enables a level of content personalization as detailed in the image below.

With lifecycle marketing, you can address the following phases:

  • Free trial enrollment
  • Activation\sOnboarding
  • Re-engagement
  • Conversion Account administration

With the appropriate content, such as case studies or informative blogs to establish your thought leadership, you can develop personalized outreach strategies to attract prospects who have just begun their free trial or decided not to opt-in.

4. Utilize Triggers to Increase User Success

To increase the average conversion rate of SaaS and ensure that free trial users will convert to paying customers, it is also beneficial to assist them in achieving success with your software. Implementing triggers that increase the likelihood of a prospect adopting a particular behavior in your product will assist you in achieving this objective.

These triggers have the potential to make your product "sticky" if your users appreciate your product and are motivated to use it. In other terms, users develop an emotional attachment to your product. However, triggers may also be irritating and counterproductive.

It is essential to comprehend the distinction between internal and external triggers for this reason. Both can aid consumers in acquiring and maintaining a new behavior.

External conversion triggers include emailing a user to remind them to use your software or targeting a prospect with a conversational marketing tool when they visit your website. These triggers are significantly simpler to manage.

Internal triggers, on the other hand, require more time to manifest in a prospect's consciousness and have a significantly greater impact. A habit forms an internal stimulus, such as a weekly report being sent on the same day each week. A prospect using your free trial to submit the report will automatically launch your software.

We suggested relying on external triggers in the initial phases of a prospect's product usage. As a lead becomes more acquainted with your product, they will begin to develop their own internal triggers. You can then use behavior and activity reporting to evaluate their utilization so you can provide them with a better experience.

5. Make your pricing straightforward

The fewer stages required for a prospect to become a paying customer, the better. We recommend that you simplify your pricing as much as feasible for this reason.

Analyze the customer's journey from beginning a free trial to entering payment information and becoming a loyal customer. Remove any obstacles that prevent them from concluding their purchase.

6. Establish Standard Conversion Actions (CCA)

According to Lincoln Murphy's Common Conversation Activities (CCA) metrics, it is essential to identify the activities and behaviors that all or the vast majority of your paying consumers engage in during your free trial. Discovering these key patterns through historical data and reporting can help you predict the behavior of your trial's new users.

This strategy enables you to comprehend what a potential consumer who registers for your trial will likely require in order to convert into a paying user.

Chargebee identified the following CCAs through analysis of their own free trial conversion process:

  • Performing account creation
  • Investing significant effort in the app
  • Making API requests
  • Inviting additional users
  • Attempting out the test configurations for the payment gateway
  • Using the customer portal login
  • Configuration of a bill
  • Setting up a hosted page

This is an excellent starting point for establishing your own CCAs, despite the likelihood that they will differ significantly from those listed above. Remember that CCAs can be extremely specific or more general. With a comprehensive list of CCAs, you can tailor your strategies to actively advance trial users through these steps and incorporate this information into your lifecycle marketing strategy.

Request Feedback from Free Trial Users Who Do Not Convert

One of the best methods to determine why a prospect did not sign up for a full-fledged subscription is to ask them! You'd be astonished at how willing individuals are to share their experiences and how instructive this feedback can be.

You can solicit feedback through an automated email and survey, or you can take a more personal approach. Simply pose the appropriate questions.

The key is to look for patterns of behavior in the responses you receive and resolve the most common issues by refining your marketing or saas free trial to paid marketing strategy.

Final Thoughts

Increasing B2B SaaS conversion rates is a crucial aspect of scaling any SaaS platform. Offering a complimentary trial is one of the most effective marketing strategies for new SaaS providers. However, a robust SaaS marketing strategy is crucial to increasing free trial conversions. 

There are two distinct types of free trials, opt-in and opt-out, each with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. The key is to understand the difference between the two and to choose the one that works best for your business. Ultimately, by providing a high-quality product or service, developing a robust marketing strategy, and understanding your audience, you can improve your B2B SaaS conversion rates and scale your business.

By understanding your audience and providing a high-quality product or service, you can improve your B2B SaaS conversion rates and take your business to the next level. Don't wait - schedule your strategy call today!

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