Software Marketing Resource Articles: TrialPay, The Interview

You wrote the code, now how do you sell it?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

TrialPay, The Interview

We spoke exclusively to Alex Rampell at TrialPay, an innovate software sales service that's seen a lot of growth over the last few years.

1. What's the concept behind TrialPay?

In a previous life, I founded a software company and ran into the problem that every software company encounters: though millions of customers may download free or trial editions, only a very small percentage of customers upgrade to the full version. I ran a few promotions where customers could get his company’s software for free by signing up for a music subscription or DVD rental service—and sales more than doubled, as revenue from these transactions paid for the software.
The success of this promotion provided the inspiration for TrialPay: a bad customer for one brand may be the ideal customer for another company. The key was figuring out which customers were good candidates for which offers. TrialPay’s proprietary optimization engine connects shoppers with ideal offers and pays the merchant out of advertising revenue. Everyone benefits from this arrangement. Merchants make more sales from their current traffic, advertisers acquire new customers on a pay-for-performance basis and shoppers get a free product with every online transaction.

2. How long as TrialPay been going?

Since 2006

3. Give us some numbers, are people really using TrialPay?

More than 7,500 online merchants use our e-commerce solutions, including AVG, McAfee, Lavasoft, Trillian and more. We also work with more than 2,000 blue-chip advertisers, such as Gap, FTD, Netflix and Discover Card. More than 30 million users from around the world have registered with TrialPay.

4. TrialPay is being used for other things beside software sales, such as subscriptions to magazines. Do you see software as your focus, or just a piece in the puzzle?

We got our start in software, which will always be an important part of our business, but we’ve since expanded to serve nearly every industry. TrialPay is an effective sales and promotions tool for any type of digital good sold online, from software to dating site subscriptions to online gaming subscriptions. We’ve also worked well in the food industry— and Papa John’s have both seen great results with TrialPay.

5. Are small software vendors seeing success with TrialPay, or is it just for the big players?

It’s not the size of the software company that determines success with TrialPay, but how aggressively and creatively the TrialPay payment option is implemented. For example, we have very successful software vendors of all sizes that offer TrialPay as a payment option to anyone who attempts to download a free version from their site. On the other hand, we have much less successful software vendors—large and small—that only offer TrialPay via e-mail to small groups of expired users. So it ultimately depends on where the software vendor is displaying the TrialPay option (i.e. on their homepage, in a download interstitial, as an in-product upgrade) and the amount and quality of traffic the TrialPay option is displayed to (i.e. to all Web site traffic or to a small e-mail list).

In particular, the “Download Interstitial” touchpoint has done exceptionally well. For example, go to and click on the large green “Download Ad-Aware Free” button at the top right. This action will take you to the “download interstitial” touchpoint. TrialPay helps Lavasoft convert customers before they have a chance to download the free version of Ad-Aware by offering a compelling way to get a full, free upgrade. Lavasoft was the originator of the download interstitial touchpoint, and pretty much every software company we work with has followed suit. The results speak for themselves! (see the Lavasoft case study)

6. Are you considering integrating your service into existing e-commerce platforms?

TrialPay works with any e-commerce system, from standard online cart solutions to in-house e-commerce systems. Our plug-and-play platform is second to none in scalability and performance.
In addition to our ability to work with any e-commerce platform, TrialPay has direct relationships with Kagi, asknet AG, Mercantec, E-junkie and more, which enables simple integration for all clients on these platforms.

7. What new innovations can we expect from TrialPay?

We will continue to introduce payment and promotional tools that help any online seller increase the probability of conversion and maximize the profit of each transaction. Our new Purchase Incentives Platform is a good example of a new initiative.

8. Will you be changing your system to move into non US and European markets?

We are already in non-U.S. and European markets. We provide local, relevant offers in more than 100 countries, and localize the checkout process in ten different languages. Also, we allow our merchants to set different price points for any region of the world without showing those price discrepancies to their customers

9. How has the economic downturn impacted software sales from your point of view?

I think the economic downturn has caused customers to look for more affordable solutions for everything they buy, including software. And through TrialPay, shoppers can get a free product with every purchase. TrialPay had its highest sales day and most profitable quarter in the midst of a holiday shopping season with the worst sales drop in four decades—which validates this claim.

10. How do you see the software sales landscape changing over the next five years?

It’s becoming increasingly hard to convince shoppers to pay for digital content. As more of these products become free (from free software included on a new computer to free content available through online media outlets), shoppers’ demand for free digital content will continue to rise.

About the Interviewee::
Alex Rampell is co-founder and CEO of TrialPay


cozy200305 said...
Awesome article. We just signed up our online backup software backazon with Trialpay. Hope to see some good results.

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