Getting web design clients is hard. When I first setup my web development business, one of my goals was to build a system that would generate leads for me almost on autopilot. I achieved this, and you can read my step by step guide here, but in this article I want to share my tips on getting clients fast.
Of course, the caveat to getting new customers quickly is that you’ll need to invest either some time or money (or both) to see any results. You don’t build a sales funnel without a little expense of resources, but these 4 methods have always worked for me when I’ve needed an injection of new projects.
#1 Offer free website audits
This is a wonderful way to add value early and quickly, and generate new web design leads without too much effort. Here is my exact process:
- Create a time limited offer that promotes a free website audit
- Push the benefits of this offer: get my expert input on your website and learn how to get more sales, etc
- Capture the prospect’s details (email address and first name are crucial)
- Produce a screen recording reviewing their website, and extract the key points into a branded document
- Turn this around within 48 hours and send back to the prospect, including a call to action offering my follow-up services.
This sounds like a lot of work, but with practice you’ll be able to turn this around in about 15 minutes. I have won a number of new clients by doing this, and it works because: a) your expertise comes through well, especially in video, b) you’re offering a huge amount of value for free and c) your follow-up call to action will directly address the issues that you’ve highlighted in your audit.
Offering a free website audit is a total no-brainer if you need to win web design clients fast!
#2 Send PPC traffic to a targeted landing page
Do you design websites for specific demographics? If not, you should do. Having a niche makes producing content far easier, and it also enables you to create dedicated landing pages for specific audiences.
Let’s imagine that you want to build websites for vegan businesses. Veganism is a growing market, and so there are plenty of new startups that will need your creative services. Spend half a day putting together a landing page dedicated to this audience. Then, run some Facebook and Google Ads to drive traffic to it.
Important: be sure to focus your efforts on a handful of keywords and phrases. Phrases like “web design for vegan business” might seem quite narrow – but the small amount of traffic that comes through will be hot.
Running intermittent, targeted PPC campaigns when you’re having a dry spell can give you web design business a much needed shot in the arm.
#3 Host a webinar
Hosting a webinar to promote yourself as a web design freelancer is a great way to not only reach new audiences but to strengthen your authority within your existing networks. Again, I have done this myself, and it works.
Depending on your confidence and how accustomed you are to presenting to an audience, hosting a webinar might sound like a great idea or your worst nightmare. When I first ran one, I was literally shaking. That’s after putting on workshops and doing talks in real life! There’s something unknowing about talking to people through a screen. You can’t quite gauge their reaction, but the reality is that you undoubtedly have valuable knowledge that others would love to tap into. And giving a webinar enables you to do just that.
There are a number of ways to host web design webinars, such as Zoom or GoToWebinar. I personally use Demio, but what really matters is your content and call to action.
Once you’ve given your webinar be sure to follow up with your attendees. This isn’t guaranteed to produce results immediately, but it will definitely bolster your reputation with those viewers, and who do you think they’ll come to when they need some web development work doing?
#4 Approach your existing clients
When work feels like it’s drying up, our instinct is to go out there and try to find new web design clients. But it often helps to look a little closer to home. Spend some time reviewing the status of your current client base. What’s missing? Where can they improve? Is there a new product you know about that could help them in some way?
The key here is to approach your existing clients to create additional value for them (i.e. don’t just email them asking for work). There are probably plenty of ways you can enhance their business with only a small investment. It’ll get you back on their radar, and probably earn you some pocket money too. And the best thing about this? You already have a relationship, so you don’t have to find new clients!
When time is of the essence, resourcefulness is key
I wrote about resourcefulness as one of the core personality traits of web designers, and I’ve shared just four ways to get clients fast here. In reality, there are many, many more ways to grow your web design business quickly. I’ll share more in the future, but in the meanwhile it’s important that you get creative, be resourceful and go out there to win!