How 30-day trial is different from 30-day money back guarantee?

HappyWhen you download a trial version of a product you do not have any obligation to use or even install the product. The only your investment so far is time and traffic to download. If you do not have time to test drive the product today or tomorrow, no problem - you can download it again. If you installed it and do not like it, not a big deal - uninstall and go search for an alternative. Like it? Enter activation code and there you go!

Now you've bought a product with money back guarantee. You think "I need to try it. The more time I test it the more chance I'll catch the problem and get my money back." You do not have a single day to postpone this, you've already invested money into it. The positive case is simple - you simply continue using the product.

The negative case is way more difficult. One day you decide "This piece of software isn't worth the money I spent. Lets get them back." You start looking for the instructions how to apply for money back. You know what? No one even bothered with providing you such instructions! Developers did not want to think or probably even did not know about such feature of their product. You end up writing to sales with a claim for money back. I would imagine they reply with something like "We can offer you new updated version of our product. We are sure that if you try it you will reconsider!".

I bet you will not reconsider, they just ask for additional investment of time from you. And the money back begins! But technically and legally that is not an easy process. And I mean it. The situation is even more tricky if you bought the product from reseller, not the original vendor which offers the money back guarantee. But you go through it and get your money back.

AngryNow you get an e-mail "It is unfortunate that our product failed to meet you expectations. Blah-blah-blah. Please help us improve by telling what was wrong." Are they serious!? They've just wasted your time and probably money (shipping is not refunded) and made you go to competitor and now ask you to invest more time in helping them become better! Well, they ask for to much.

You see, this whole money back guarantee thing is not at all about you. It is all about the vendor.

Want to attract customers and make sure their bad stories do not get even worse? Offer trial versions to let users test drive your product with as less effort from their side as possible.