Creating subscriptions with a free trial

Free trials allow you to take payment information during registration, but delay billing for a chosen period (like one week). This allows customers to try your service for free for a specified period of time before they need to start paying.

This article will walk you through how to setup a free trial for a subscription level.

Navigate to Restrict > Subscription Levels in your admin panel and edit an existing subscription level or create a new one. There is a field for Free Trial Duration:

To add a free trial, enter a number in the box and select your unit ("Days", "Months", or "Years"). This is the amount of time the member will have free access until they're billed.

Note: In order to activate a free trial, the regular "Duration" field and the "Price" field must both be greater than 0.

For example, say you enter the following values:

  • Duration: 1 month(s)
  • Free Trial Duration: 7 day(s)
  • Price: $30

The registration form would look like this:

If paying by credit/debit card, the customer would be asked to enter their card information immediately. If paying by PayPal, the customer would be taken to PayPal to authorize their subscription. However, in both cases, payment will not actually be taken until the trial expires (in this example, after 7 days). When the trial expires, the user will then be billed $30 automatically once every 30 days.

What happens after the trial period ends?

When the trial period ends, the customer will automatically be billed through their payment gateway. They will continue to be to be billed on the schedule you've specified in the subscription level settings.

What happens if a customer cancels their membership during the trial period?

The payment subscription is cancelled with the gateway and the member is not billed (assuming they cancel before the trial period ends). When the customer's account reaches its expiration date, they'll lose access to any restricted content.

Can a customer sign up for more than one free trial?

No. Each customer is allowed to sign up for one free trial. If a customer has already completed a trial, then tries to upgrade to a different subscription level that also has a trial period, the customer will not be invited into the trial and will instead be charged immediately during the registration.