Jeremy Osborn: Designer, Educator, Writer

Sep 03

Techsmith does software trials right

Techsmith is a company that makes useful software for folks like me who spend a lot of time documenting what happens on the computer screen. I have paid for multiple licenses and numerous upgrades for different applications over the years and never felt any regret. In addition to the quality of the software, I have always respected how easy their website makes it for anyone to find and install their products.

Here’s a case study. I have a new system on which I need to install Snagit, their screen capture software. After going to the home page I see a clearly marked link for Snagit. I click on it and am presented with a group of three links, the second of which is labeled “Try for Free”.

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Clicking on this link presents me with a big ol’ button labeled “Download Snagit Trial”. Clicking on this button starts the download immediately.

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Three clicks = software download. To extend the experience, my Snagit trial is fully functional for 30 days. No export limitations or crippled functionality. Depending on the speed of my connection I can download, install and be using the application in about 3 minutes.

This is the way all trial software web sites should work. I don’t want to fill out a form. I don’t want a salesman to contact me. I don’t want a link sent to my email. I want the software up and running as soon as humanly possible. All companies should make it this easy for me to give them my money. My only criticism is that the site isn’t always consistent, for downloads to Camtasia for Mac, you need to go through the extra step of submitting an email.

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Jeremy Osborn's Blog

This is the weblog of Jeremy Osborn, a designer, educator and writer living in the Boston area. I write here about design, technology and other matters. Subscribe to the RSS feed and follow me on Twitter.

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