How to Use a Software Evaluation Agreement

software evaluation agreementA software evaluation agreement is an ideal way to protect your intellectual property while letting potential customers have a “trial” or “test” period through a license to evaluate whether your software is the right solution for them.
This is an example of risk reversal that often increases conversion rates because prospects are more inclined to buy if they’ve had an opportunity to check out software before committing to make a purchase and using it long term.
Your Internet business lawyer will have recommendations on how to customize your software license agreement to protect legal rights. Here are some key issues that your software evaluation agreement can cover…
1. How long is the trial period? Will the license expire after 30 days, 60 days, or some other time frame?
2. Will the evaluation period be a “freebie” or will you charge a nominal fee for use? If a fee is involved, how much?
3. Is the evaluation copy of your software the full version or a demo copy that has restrictions, such as disabled features?
4. Can competitors obtain an evaluation copy of your software?
5. How will you stop use of the software at the end of the evaluation period?
6. Where and how will disputes be resolved?
7. How many users are permitted per evaluation copy?
Remember that there’s no correct answer to these questions. Many of them, in fact are a matter of business judgment. You can discuss them with your Internet attorney, reach a decision on the best course of action, and have him draft a software evaluation agreement that truly meets your business and legal needs.