TrialPay is a particularly unorthodox payment option. It pairs merchants with advertises to boost sales for both and offer consumers a chance to get products they're looking at for free.
Here's how it works: Merchants enlisted with TrialPay give away their products for free when a shopper completes an offer from one of TrialPay's client advertisers, who then pays the merchant a bounty that equals or exceeds the product price. The system works best for software and online services vendors that can offer instantaneous digital delivery.
TrialPay has worked with more than 2,500 merchants. You can see it in action at WinZip and Skype. Vendors can use TrialPay's shopping cart system or integrate it with any other existing shopping cart.
"Once you get the set-up done, it's all hands off," says Rick Trefzger, vice president of sales at Boynton Beach, Fla.-based iS3, which sells StopZilla anti-spyware software. "TrialPay's reporting is great -- you get a link that tracks each campaign and TrialPay will track it in real time."