Product trials allow the consumer to check if your product is really what you say it is. But trials can have another effect as well.
Psychologist Daniel Kahneman illustrated the property effect:
If a person owns something, he tends to overestimate its value
In his experiment there were two groups. One group who were told in advance that they got a coffee cup as a present, then they had to give a price for which they would be willing to sell their cup.
The other group had to tell the price they would be willing to pay for it, without getting the cup as a present.
The first group, the owners, wanted an average $ 7.12 for it while the second group was willing to pay just $ 2.87 on average for it.
So what does this mean?
Giving people ownership or perceived ownership over your product will increase the perceived of it, thereby making a purchase more likely.
Trial versions let people experiment, but also own the product.
On more expensive equipment like televisions, another type of trial is possible. If you use a system of monthly payments, the television already feels yours but isn't. But because its yours it will increase the value you get from it and make you continue the payments.
Does this make sense to you?