[Opinion] The difference between "30 day free trial" & "30 day money back guarantee"?

15 replies
Hi everyone,

I would love to hear your opinion on the difference between '30 day free trial' & '30 day money back guarantee'?

The reason I ask this is because I recently visited a website with a pretty impressive product and I was basically referred by someone I trust. I went to the site and noticed that their website offers a 30-day free trial. Now I use allot of SaaS products as I work exclusively online and I am used to the fact that '30 day free trial' means that you pay nothing in month one with your first payment then being deducted when your 30 day trial lapses.

Anyway I proceeded to checkout and noticed that my Paypal did not state the $0 charge for a 30-day trial but wanted to take my money right away. I decided not to go further and instead check with the owners first, as I assumed that perhaps their 30-day trial was no longer available and that they have just not updated their website yet.

I received feedback from the owners that '30-day free trial' means that we can test the product for 30 days and get a full refund if we feel the need for one during the 30 days. This in my opinion is not a '30-day free trial' but a '30-day money back guarantee'.

To me '30-day Free Trial' means you pay your first payment in 30 days and '30 Day Money Back Guarantee' means you pay now and can get a refund should you not be happy during your initial 30 days.

What do you all think?
#30 day free trial #difference #opinion
  • Profile picture of the author MNord
    I think the offer is misleading. If they have your money it's not free. They could say "risk free" if they want to use the word "free".
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
    You have it right.

    That vendor is either ignorant, naive or playing games. Either way, would you still trust them to deliver on anything else they claim if they can't get this right?
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnRowe
      Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

      You have it right.

      That vendor is either ignorant, naive or playing games. Either way, would you still trust them to deliver on anything else they claim if they can't get this right?
      Hi John,

      This is my thinking exactly. Can they be trusted with anything beyond this point, and for myself, the answer is that finding out is simply not worth it for me. Although their product looks impressive this one little thing stopped me from going forward with my purchase.
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    • Profile picture of the author datingworld
      This is misleading.
      Once you make a payment, it's no more free.


      Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

      .
      That vendor is either ignorant, naive or playing games. Either way, would you still trust them to deliver on anything else they claim if they can't get this right?
      John is right.

      I think you better stay away from him. I would turn back from him as soon as I see this.
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  • Profile picture of the author Katie Rich
    They lied. A free trial does not access a payment until it is done. Dodgy marketing. They can't have much faith in the product if their 'free trail' has to be paid for.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lurk
    The difference is there is no difference just wordplay.
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    • Profile picture of the author MNord
      Originally Posted by Lurk View Post

      The difference is there is no difference just wordplay.
      Not true. There is a time value of money--even if you get the original amount back, you lost 30 days of opportunity to use or invest that money. That is a cost.
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  • Profile picture of the author gluckspilz
    Could not be any more misleading. "Risk Free" is definitely the term that should be used for that theory of the vendor..
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  • Profile picture of the author NK
    Free trial means you get to test it for free. No money involved. If, after that, you want to continue using it, then you start paying.

    What they have is a money back guarantee.
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  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    Technically it's not a trial but practically speaking it serves as one. The problem comes from the confusion and sometimes resentment the customer has with the confusion, which I believe is valid.

    From a merchant's point of view, I feel you'll get more sales to stick with a guarantee rather than a trial. I think there are lots of people on this forum that buy WSOs and other stuff who treat the guarantee as a trial. So it goes...
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  • Profile picture of the author RogozRazvan
    30 day trial - will get charged after 30 days if you've submitted your CC ...
    30 days guarantee - you can request your money back after 30 days ...

    Yes, I know that there are sites that say "30 days trial" and they charge you upfront, however, this is the exception, not the rule. I guess the golden rule is "will it charge your CC now or not?"

    The Amazon prime membership for example is a trial. You can use a CC with zero funds on it and it will not charge you anything for a while. On the other hand, copy like "try it for free for 30 days, if you are not satisfied, let us know and we'll refund you ..." is misleading.
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by RogozRazvan View Post

      30 day trial - will get charged after 30 days if you've submitted your CC ...
      30 days guarantee - you can request your money back after 30 days ...
      .
      30 days refund guarantee - you can request your money back within 30 days of purchase
      not after 30 days
      that`s how they work.

      and in my opinion - the free trial that the OP alluded to is misleading.
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  • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
    Either they think they're being clever or they're too stupid to understand the implications of their misrepresentation.

    Either one is enough to safely conclude you should pass on the offer and remove them from your known universe.
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  • Profile picture of the author Crictionary
    Once they get hold of your money, It doesn't remain free for you doesn't matter if it is for a limited amount of time. Misleading info by the vendor here
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  • Profile picture of the author Davidconstable
    I have found these write some where,

    A. "30 day free trial" that means you can use the trial version for 30 days only. such as if you install the IDM free version, you can use it 30 days only without any payment, after 30 days you need to buy, otherwise you will not be able to use it. On the other hand.

    B. "30 day money back guarantee" That mean you need to pay now, if you think the application does not work properly, you need to complain against the apps. then the authority will refund the money.
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