8 Try Before You Buy Business Ideas For 2019

Published on January 4, 2022
Written by
Filed under Selling Channels
Read time 15 Minutes

The days of harsh dressing room lighting are over. You may have heard some buzz around “Try Before You Buy,” the latest trend in ecommerce. According to Brightpearl, 25% of retailers globally will adopt try before you buy by 2019. There’s something special about being able to try first and buy later that make shoppers feel confident in what they’re purchasing.

The growing trend allows customers to treat their potential purchase like a tryout. By removing the friction of paying at checkout, you allow shoppers to test the waters to see if the product they’re looking at is worth their expense. After all, convenience is king for your consumers. By replicating a shopper’s in-store experience within the comfort of their own home allows you to take the customer experience to the next level.

Are you considering adopting Try Before You Buy for your business? Well, you’re in luck. We’re sharing 8 different ways you can begin to implement this model into your business, as well as examples from other successful businesses.

Free Samples

It’s no question that people love free stuff. Give potential buyers a reason to be interested by getting their hands on your products free of cost. According to GottabeMarketing, 39% of consumers say they would buy a product after being given a free sample, and 58% said they would buy after trying it. Give your products the chance to sell themselves by implementing free samples into your business.

Self-care, Food, Cologne, Makeup, Grooming, Nutrition, Soaps

Morning Recovery

The morning drink not only increases energy levels but also boosts customer confidence by giving their shoppers a free sample of their product to try.


The leading cosmetic company offers a free sample of their Pure Sugar Grapeseed Scrub by mail when you sign up for their email list.


The razor company allows shoppers to place a request for a free sample of their most popular product, the Gillette Razorguard.


The personal care company offered a free sample of their Hydro Razor in the form of a coupon that would cover the cost of buying one and then followed up with an additional coupon cutting the price of the replacement blades. Considering the razor itself comes with one blade, this method presents a risk-free way for shoppers to try the product before committing to its ongoing use.

Starter Kit

Show your shopper’s what you’re all about by sending them a free starter kit. Packed with samples of complementary products, this is a sure way to get consumers interested in knowing more. Plus, who doesn’t like freebies? Build customer trust by showing you genuinely care about the future of their investment into your products. To assemble a starter kit select sample sizes of your most popular products and pair them together in a bundle for your interested shoppers.

Grooming, Self-care, Toothbrush, Cologne, Food, Candles, Nutrition, Supplements, Vitamins


Specializing in men’s grooming products, Brickell offers shoppers the chance to try their products risk-free by mailing a Natural SkinCare and Grooming Sample Starter Kit.


The healthy monthly subscription box service offers the first box free by sending sample sizes of their snacks.

Honest Company

The all-natural baby care company offers a free sample box of safe diapering essentials including 7 diapers and 20 wipes.

Augmented Reality

Replicate a shopper’s real-life try on experience through the convenience of their screen. With augmented reality technology, you can create a virtual fitting room for online buyers. By helping your shopper visualize their potential purchase, you ease the stress of the buying process. Developing an augmented reality app takes time, and is by no means a simple task. But by taking steps towards implementing this into your business, you are guaranteed to win over customers and place your business ahead of the competition.

Home Decor, Furniture, Electronics, Apparel, Eyewear, Makeup

Magnolia Market

Operating one of the most well-known Texas retail destinations, and starring in their show Fixer Upper, Chip and Joanna Gaines bring the next big thing to ecommerce. Delivering the offline experience to their online shoppers, Magnolia Market uses augmented reality to allow shoppers to view the company’s products virtually placed within their own home, using their phone screen.


The well-known retailer for prescription eye-glasses credits augmented reality for their boost in sales since 2010. Shoppers can now upload their own photo and virtually see what the glasses look like on their face. According to Roy Hessel, CEO of the company, their sales increased by 200% during the 2010 holiday season in comparison to the previous year, with overall sales increasing by 100%.


The personal care and beauty retailer has implemented augmented reality to let their shoppers try on different makeup looks. Users can upload a selfie and digitally apply Sephora makeup products to their face.


The ready to assemble furniture company has integrated augmented reality to help shoppers visualize how their home would look fully furnished. Michael Valdsgaard, the Leader of Digital Transformation at Inter Ikea Systems B.V shared “You see the scene as if these objects were real and you can walk around them and interact with them, even leave the room and come back. It’s really magic to experience.”

Home Try-On

Bring the dressing room to your shopper’s home by offering a home try-on option. By removing the pressure of commitment to their purchase, you give shoppers peace of mind when it comes to shopping. Even if customers aren’t initially satisfied with their purchase, because of your commitment to a customer-friendly experience, shoppers will be more inclined to browse your website until they find what they’re searching for. Check out the following examples to gain inspiration on how to implement this into your business.

Fashion & Apparel, Eyewear, Jewelry

Amazon Prime Wardrobe

Amazon has introduced its latest feature, Prime Wardrobe. The program allows shoppers to try on the clothing, shoes, and accessories of their choice. Shoppers have a seven-day trial period to discover their best fit at home, and check out or return what they don’t want.


For a $40 styling fee customer’s receive 7-12 pieces of stylist-picked clothing at their door. Shoppers can try on the clothing from the comfort of their home, purchasing what the love, and returning what they don’t within 5 days. The stylist fee goes towards their final purchase at checkout.

The Black Tux

The online tuxedo and suit rental service send customers an outfit to try on for free for 48 hours.

Four Mine

For those about to be engaged, Four Mine gives customers three days to try on three different engagement rings at home. The test rings are made with metal instead of gold or platinum and use a fake diamond to help it look like the real deal.

Rent Before You Buy

Help your shoppers decide which product will be their next purchase by offering a rental fee on your products. This allows shoppers to try your products at a fraction of the cost.
By offering products as rentals, your business can generate additional revenue before ever making a final sale.

Fashion & Apparel, Tools, Equipment, Cameras, Electronics

Rent The Runway

The online service offers designer dress and accessory rentals. Shoppers can rent the dress of their choice for 4-days. Plus, members get exclusive discounts and try to buy options.

Money Back Guarantee

Give customers peace of mind when it comes to their shopping experience. Mitigate the risk of buying by communicating to your customers a money-back guarantee at checkout. Implementing this guarantee into your business policy can be a trust builder for your shoppers. These three words may be the factor that converts an interested customer into a paying consumer.

Consumables, Disposables, Food, Cleaners, Soaps, Health, Supplements


The grease-fighting power dish soap says if you’re unhappy with the cleaner the company will give you two times what you paid for it.

Nature Made

Committed to overall health and well-being, the pharmacist approved supplements and vitamins offer a money-back guarantee if a consumer is dissatisfied with a product. No returns necessary.

Subscription Boxes

Subscription boxes give customers a recurring experience with your products by mail. By charging a monthly fee, you mail customers a variety of items that they may not otherwise know about or seek out themselves. This provides greater product exposure, and the opportunity for shoppers to decide what is worth their investment. Receiving a package of goodies each month is an exciting experience for your customers. The thrill alone makes it much more likely for customers to keep investing in your business.

Food, Makeup, Apparel, Self-care, Grooming, Gaming, Nerd/Geek, Culture


The fashion resale website sells secondhand clothing online. For a monthly fee, customers can receive a “Goody Box” of 10 to 20 items that are chosen based on a shopper’s preferences. The customer can keep what they like and return what they don’t, with their $20 going towards any purchase.


When signing up for a monthly membership, customers are sent three pieces of jewelry they can keep and wear for as long as they want. When they’re ready to exchange, they can send them back to trade them in for different items. If a customer likes a specific item of jewelry they were sent, they can buy it at 20% off the retail price.


The beauty subscription box service sends customers a personalized mix of makeup, hair, and skincare samples for $10 a month. If a shopper loves a product they’re sent, they receive $1 back in loyalty points for every $10 spent.

Free Trial Period

Offering a free trial is the easiest way to get your products to sell themselves. By avoiding the upfront cost, customers are able to invest time into your product without the risk. Give shoppers the opportunity to take your product for a spin without the direct concern of an initial expense. If you’re considering offering a free trial for your products, our best advice is to start small. Test customer responses to the deal and see if you receive an influx of potential business from the offer. Make sure the trial period is long enough for users to try and understand your product, but not so long you lose a potential buyer.

Fashion & Apparel, Technology, Software, Services, Mattresses, Newsletters, Magazines


Shoppers can purchase a mattress risk-free from Casper. Customers do have to pay the upfront cost of the mattress but are offered a 100-night trial at checkout. A customer can return the mattress if they aren’t satisfied, receiving free pickup and a full refund.


The Amazon store offers a wide selection of books, magazines, and audiobooks to choose from. Offering an initial 30-day free trial period, shoppers can try the service before committing to the monthly cost.


The popular music-streaming service offers a 60-day free trial period.

What Try Before You Buy Means For Ecommerce

It’s time to surpass competitors and join in on the latest ecommerce trend. As you can see, there are multiple ways to begin incorporating try-before-you-buy into your business. Find the best fit for your industry or products and begin implementing this up and coming business trend to attract more potential customers.

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Written by

Breana Cooney

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