Offer your customers trials of Microsoft products

Applies to

  • Partner Center

Appropriate roles

  • Global admin
  • User admin
  • Sales agent

A good way to introduce customers to new Microsoft products is to offer 30 day free trials. You can sign up for the trials in the catalog just like many other online services. All partners can participate.

Available trial offers

You can find all of your outstanding trial offers on the Customer page. This page lists all subscriptions, including free trials and paid subscriptions. (This feature is not currently available in China.)

Each customer is entitled to one free trial for each available offer. For example, they can get one free trial for Office 365 Business Premium and one free trial for Office 365 E3. However, if the customer already owns the offer, they can't use a free trial for that offer.

Available products

Free trials are available for the following products:

  • Office 365 Business Premium
  • Office 365 E3
  • Office 365 E5 with PSTN
  • Office 365 E5 without PSTN
  • Enterprise Mobility & Security E5
  • Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement Plan 1
  • Dynamics 365 Business Central
  • Microsoft 365 Business

We provide free trials for these products because they are the most comprehensive and popular business offers. We may add additional free trial offers in the future.

Currently, there are no free trials for government offers, education offers, or add-on offers.

Licenses for free trial offers

All free trials provide 25 licenses. You can't change this number during the trial. You can't add or remove seats in the free trial. After the trial is converted to a paid subscription, you can add additional licenses to the subscription.

You should assign trial licenses and seats just as you would for a paid service in Partner Center.

Sign customers up for trials

To sign your customer up for a trial through Partner Center:

  1. From Sell on the Partner Center, go to Catalog.
  2. In the catalog, from Billing frequency, click Trial offer. This enables only free trials to appear and disables other offers that are not free. Trials will show up on the Trials tab in the catalog.
  3. Select the free trial you want to offer and then select submit. All trials are for 30 days during which you will not be billed. You can also convert it to a paid subscription at any time during the trial.

Converting trials to paid subscriptions

A free trial is not automatically converted to a paid subscription. After thirty days, a free trial must be converted to a paid subscription or it will expire. Free trials can't be extended.

You'll need to convert the trial into a paid subscription yourself. You can do this using the Partner Center or through the Partner Center APIs.

Note

Customer free trials for the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program can't be converted to another program tenant (such as EA, Open or MOSP).

Convert trials using Partner Center

You can convert trials to paid subscriptions using the Partner Center dashboard as follows:

  1. Go to the customer’s subscription page, and select the free trial.
  2. Select Convert trial to paid subscription.
  3. Enter the desired license quantity and billing frequency, and select Apply.
  4. Billing for the paid subscription begins on the conversion date, and the subscription auto-renews twelve months from the conversion date.

Convert trials using APIs

You may need to alter your APIs to accommodate the conversion of a free trial to a paid subscription. For more information, see the following developer documentation:

Trials without conversions

Not all trials can be converted to paid subscriptions. Partners can use a trial that has no conversions until the expiration date. Partners can purchase compatible offers that support the same services as the trial offer. This should be done before the trial expires to ensure the newly purchased offers' services align with the trial's services.

Trial Compatible Small Business offers Compatible Enterprise offers
Microsoft Teams Commercial Cloud (User Initiated) Trial Business Essentials, Business Premium, M365 Business F3 (formerly F1) , Office 365 for Enterprise (E1, E3 and E5), M365 F1/F3, M365 Enterprise (E3)

Note

The offers above have similar service plans with similar functionality, however there may be some differences between the offers. 

Expiring offers

You will not be notified of expiring offers. You can track upcoming expiration dates using the customer view on Partner Center or by querying the API. It’s a good idea to monitor these dates frequently so you can take the appropriate follow-up actions with customers as they approach a decision point.

After a trial has expired, a customer who attempts to log into that trial will see an expiry message. However, the data is stored in line with data retention standards. After you purchase a new subscription with the same service plans, your customer's information can be accessed again from the newly activated subscription.

Billing

Annual billing and free trials are the same in sovereign clouds and the public cloud. The only difference is the trial SKUs available at the time of launch.

Billing for free trials

Free trials can be used for both monthly and annually billed subscriptions. You can select the billing frequency when you convert the trial to a paid subscription.

The subscription start date is based on the conversion date. If the free trial is converted to a paid offer with annual billing, the subscription renewal date will be twelve months from the conversion date. If the free trial is converted to a paid offer with monthly billing, the subscription renewal date will be twelve months from the billing date following the conversion date.

Invoices

You won't see free trials listed in your invoice or license-based reconciliation file. Free trials will only appear on your invoice and license-based reconciliation file after you convert a free trial to a paid subscription. The converted subscription will appear in the same way as any new subscription.

Incentives

Free trials do not have an impact on incentives.

Support

For support on free trials, submit a service request through Partner Center.