We're always running experiments at Buffer, trying to learn as much as possible about how people are engaging with the product. We recently ran one experiment that returned amazing results - I'd like to share it with the anyone interested in this style of design and product development!

The experiment:

On our Buffer for Business plans, users get access to rich analytics about their social media posts. These rich analytics reside in an "Analysis" tab in their Buffer dashboard.

At the moment, users who aren't on a business plan can't access this tab. We would trigger a popup modal anytime someone tried to access this tab encouraging them to try a free business trial.

This experiment's goal was to increase the conversion rate for business trial starts by modifying this flow for non-business users.

What we did:

Rather than stopping users with a popup, we decided to let users click through to the analysis tab. On this view, they would see a grayed-out version of what the rich analytics actually look like (pictured in this shot).

On top of the grayed-out analytics we placed a simple, semi-transparent box encouraging users to try a free trial of Buffer for Business. This took just a few hours to implement, and just a few minutes to design. Keeping things lean like this helps us to move faster and learn more.

The results:

Seeing any increase in conversion rates is encouraging, especially when you're working on a product with some level of scale; a 1-2% increase in conversions can make a significant long-term impact on metrics.

With this particular experiment, however, we were blown away by the results we saw. After gathering a week's worth of data, we found that the new grayed-out analysis tab was converting trial starts 75 percent better than the old popup! Over 20% of users who saw this new page decided to start a trial.

Next steps:

We're going to keep iterating on this early success to try and make the value of the business plans more clear than before, highlighting the different features that users can access by upgrading.

If solving challenges like this sounds interesting to you, we're currently looking for a product designers and front-end engineers! Check out our open jobs or apply for our product design role right away!

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