Implementation: Improve the Free Trial Sign-up Flow for GitLab.com
Problem to solve
The current free trial sign up process is inefficient and can prevent users from being able to test features that interest them, if they fail to complete a step in the process.
- @matejlatin attempts free trial video
- User 1 signs up for free trial video
- User 2 signs up for free trial video
This is relevant to users who sign up for a free trial on GitLab.com.
Remove 2nd email confirmation in flow (ideal state)
In GitLab.com, provide a link to the pricing tier or a tooltip that explains why the user should sign up for Gold
- After registering for GitLab, users see a banner encouraging them to "Start your trial." In a recent usability study, two users questioned why they should sign up for Gold and asked for more context. This is likely important for users who start creating an account by clicking on "Register" on about.gitlab.com compared with those who explore the homepage first.
On the free trial landing page, include a note that the user has been taken to GitLab Subscription Manager
- Both users were completely unaware that they had been taken to a new website. This led to confusion when they were asked to confirm their email address again.
Indicate that the confirmation email will come from
salesand is separate from the GitLab.com email.
- The following error
You have to confirm your email address before continuingappears on the GitLab Subscription Manager landing page, after users click the "Start your trial" button. This can lead to confusion for those who do not think to check their inbox again.
- The following error
- Other suggestions?
Current onboarding user journey
Comment: It takes 37 actions from users to sign up for the free trial.
Problems to solve
- the process for signing up is a pain. Users go through a rollercoaster of shifts in their goodwill to eventually land on a welcome page (or even just the billing page in case of free trial sign up)
- email confirmation in the sign up form
- email confirmation (almost there)
- trial sign up asks for things we already asked for + additional info, it’s split into two pages (the second step seems unnecessary)
- After sign up, we send them to the User profile > billing page
- Users receive an email from sales, thanking for the purchase (free trial). This could be confusing and should probably be handled differently.
- Users don’t receive a welcome email that would also provide links to educational content, showcase our features, encourage further actions from the user
We need to make sure that the users are still excited about GitLab by the time they sign up for the free trial. As of now, that excitement probably fades as there are a lot of frustrating moments in the process/flow.
State of mind of users as they complete the free trial sign up flow:
Other questions to think about
- What happens before users sign up? What pages do they view? What convinces them to sign up? Could their motivation for signing up affect the onboarding later on?
- How many users drop out of the sign up process?
Future onboarding user journey
Comment: In 39 actions (almost equal to the 'current onboarding journey') users sign up for the free trial, find out how issues work and create a new label and add it to an issue (through guided onboarding).
Signing up for the free trial only takes users 12 actions
Permissions and Security
What does success look like, and how can we measure that?
- Users are able to sign up for the free trial in 1 minute or less
- Reduce interactions that users need to make from 37 to ~ 15
- Reduce the number of screens/pages that the users navigate through from 10 to ~ 4
- Users are able to successfully sign-up for free trials at a higher rate.
All the flows for signing up for a free trial can be broken down like this:
The self-hosted trial sign up flow and the one where a user already has an account aren't problematic. The problematic flow is the one where users don't have an account yet and they want to sign up for one and activate a free trial at once. The main problem is that the two steps (registration & free trial sign up) don't communicate well with each other and are completely separate steps and the flow is very broken as a consequence.
The big orange button on the homepage says 'Try GitLab for free' so our flows should deliver what we promise through that button. Here are suggested improvements to improve the flow.
We should have a unified register + free trial flow that depends based on the intent (registering only, registering & signing up for a trial, ...) and user type (existing/non-existing) on entry to the flow (outlined on the right in the image above). The flow should be uniform and not divided into two separate flows.
Improve the contrast of the second (non-active) option on the page where users choose between self-hosted and cloud:
At the moment, the contrast on the inactive option is too low and it seems like it's disabled. It's also very easy to miss it completely.
My assumption is also that most people would like to try out the tool without overcommitting to installing it locally so the cloud option should be the default one:
On the long term, we should look to improve the IA and the layout of this page and present both options without the need for tabs. Quick mockup of a possible solution:
This would also solve the problem of tabs as they are at the moment on the mobile device screen. Moving away from tabs would allow us to transparently and more equally present the two available options:
Free trial flow (UX) + register form (UI) improvements
Flow (UX) improvements
- Go straight to Welcome/Guided onboarding after signing up
- automatically create a subscription manager account directly after user completes filling in the form
- automatically assign the free trial license to the user account that was just created through the flow
Register form improvements (UI)
The registration form as it is now, comes with many obstacles that users need to overcome to create an account. We should simplify this form so that they can create their account very quickly.
- Divide the input 'Full name' into separate 'First name' and 'Last name'
- Automatic available username generation
- Remove CAPTCHA (or replace with the invisible CAPTCHA or something similar)
- Remove 'Email confirmation' input
- Add fields for subscription manager if the user started their journey with an intent to start a free trial ('Try GitLab for free')
Replace email confirmation with "soft email confirmation"
This solves the problem of people getting stuck in the signup process and people mistyping their email and thus not receiving an email to confirm their email address.
Issue: gitlab-org/gitlab-ce#47003 (scheduled for %12.0)