The Problem: Addressing an Ineffective Trial Software Campaign

Like many software companies, PTC knows that nowadays, promises and stories are not enough and prospects want guarantees and proofs. PTC provided a real software experience to customers with a trial download of the industry’s leading 3D CAD software Creo. It didn’t take long to realize they had a few issues.

The largest problem was the size of the installer download. At 4.18 GB, many prospects would abandon the 25+ minute download altogether and never even install the product. Other prospects would not validate they had suitable system requirements leading to failed installations. Sales staff from PTC would follow-up with prospects to find they either never got the product working or were so frustrated with the installation they were no longer interested in the product.

Overall the campaign was not producing the results that PTC had expected with a less than 50% success rate. Instead of leading to sales, it was creating support issues and increasing costs. On average the trial was resulting in 2.58 support tickets per week as well as increased development costs to build the trial experience.

The Solution: Cloudpaging

PTC needed a solution that allowed users to quickly and easily begin using PTC Creo. They also needed some insight into how successful the installation of the product had gone and how much the user was actually using the product. Finally, they needed some way to ensure users could not use the product for more than 30 days unless they purchased a full copy of Creo.

PTC replaced the full download on their website with a Cloudpaged version of Creo, from the Cloudpaging CDN, Numecent’s worldwide Cloud platform. Trial users receive a small download and are able to start using the product within a few minutes with no installation or configuration required. Cloudpaging technology works by only delivering execution pages for what is needed to run the application and fetches the pages in the background. Once fully fetched the application can be used offline without the need for access to the cloud. For Creo, only 180 MB was needed in the initial delivery payload.

End-users receive a small download and are able to start using the product within a few minutes with no installation or configuration required.

Cloudpaging Provides Usage Data, Allowing for Better Decision-Making

Utilizing the metrics available from the Cloudpaging solution, PTC can determine if the user was able to launch the Creo product and how long they used it. They are also able to collect any errors the user experienced and proactively route that information to their Support team to assist the potential customer and ensure their trial of Creo is successful. Usage information is routed to the Sales team who can adapt their conversation based on the customer usage patterns.

Proprietary Cloudpaging technology enforces a 30-day trial, regardless of a system clock change. Cloudpaging of Creo ceases after 30 days and the application “disappears” from the end user’s machine. This eliminated the needs for one-off versions of Creo to be implemented.

The Benefits

  • PTC was able to almost entirely eliminate abandonment and installation issues with the Creo trial.

  • Prospects are able to immediately utilize the product and are proactively contacted if they run into issues.

  • The success rate of trials increased to over 80%.

  •  Sales teams know more about the customer and are better able to convert a prospect into a customer.

Numecent’s Cloudpaging technology has provided our prospects with an improved user experience, enabling PTC to radically improve the success of the Creo trial program, leading to an increase in new customers.”

Jim Barrett-Smith, Product Management Director at PTC

The sales process for software has changed significantly over the past decade. Distribution models shifted from physical media methods to online downloads. Customers now expect low touch and low friction software trials. Any roadblocks will quickly send them to another vendor’s site. Numecent Cloudpaging technology has enabled PTC to provide their prospects with the best trial experience in the industry, setting them apart from their competition and significantly growing the success of their trial program.”

Doug Pfiffner, CTO of Numecent

About PTC

PTC has the most robust Internet of Things technology in the world. In 1986, the organization revolutionized digital 3D design, and in 1998 we were first to market with Internet-based PLM. Now its leading IoT and AR platform and field-proven solutions bring together the physical and digital worlds to reinvent the way its customers create, manufacture, operate and service products. With PTC, global manufacturers and an ecosystem of partners and developers can capitalize on the promise of the IoT today and drive the future of innovation.


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