Based on the freemium business model, Acuity Scheduling offered 3 pricing plans:
The original landing page had a call-to-action button that directed users to the unlimited free trial account by default. The idea was to give customers a feel of the software and prompt them to upgrade to the paid plan within the app by making them realize the value of features that were available only to paid users.
Like every other online service provider, Acuity too wanted to improve conversions for their paid sign-up accounts. Acuity found that many users who had signed up for a free account later deleted them. A survey of such users revealed that they expected more features in the free version of the software. Despite being made aware that those services were available in the paid plans, they chose to delete their accounts.
Based on the findings of the survey, the Acuity Scheduling team hypothesized that directing visitors to a 14-day free trial of their Professional plan directly instead of sending them to the unlimited free trial account (with limited features) would increase sign-ups to their mid-level Professional ($10/month) plan.
This was a huge change for the team, especially because the site had organic leads based on articles pointing to the site’s unlimited free trial plan. Directing users to a paid plan meant a dealing with a different set of user expectations; the risk of overall sign-ups dropping was real.
Acuity Scheduling used VWO to set up and launch the test within a few minutes. In the new model, visitors signing up for the 14-day trial of the professional plan only had to enter their credit card information to continue using the software, instead of having to visit the account settings tab to upgrade their plan, as was the case earlier.
The variation increased the sign-ups for paid Professional accounts by 268.14% with a 99.99% chance to beat the original.
Although the primary goal was to track sign-ups for the paid version of the Professional plan, like any smart marketer who understands the need to track the impact of one test on multiple goals, the Acuity Scheduling team also tracked sign-ups for their Premium plan ($19/month) as well. The VWO tool made it easy to track multiple goals.
Although the result was not statistically significant, the test also showed a 77.78% improvement in sign-ups for the company’s Premium plans too.
The Acuity Scheduling team made this change based on survey feedback, so it was perhaps reasonable to expect that sign-ups would improve. But another way to explain the boost in sign-ups might be this—even in the limited period of the free trial, users got hooked to the product and its features. They saw value in the service, and so were willing to pay for it after the free trial period.
On the other hand, users who started with the free-for-life plan got used to not paying for the service. This overrode the fact that certain features were not available to them. Rather than paying for these features, they preferred instead to delete their accounts instead of upgrading.
This may be why offering a 14-day free trial of the Professional plan worked better for Acuity Scheduling than the original, limited feature, free-for-life plan.
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