Offering a free consultation is a favorite way for service providers to bring in prospects and book new clients—but there’s an art (and science) to converting sign-ups and closing the deal. If your business depends on selling your services to high-value leads, perfecting how you market and offer a sample session is absolutely critical. Let’s look at 7 real-world business owners who nailed it and help you build on their best-in-class examples.
A free consultation is a great way to attract qualified leads who are actively seeking the type of services your business provides and offers multiple benefits both to you and your prospects.
First of all, as with any lead magnet, it’s an effective way to capture the contact details of prospective clients, which allows you to build out your email list, develop a relationship with your leads, and ultimately convert more of them into paying clients.
But free consultations also come with some unique advantages. A prospect who books a sample session with you will tend to be closer to making a buying decision than someone who, for example, just reads one of your blog posts. After all, if they’re eager to spend time interacting with you one-on-one, chances are they think you might hold the key to help them achieve their specific goals. A free consultation, therefore, presents an excellent opportunity to nudge an interested prospect into becoming a new, long-term client.
Free consultations are an especially effective tactic for coaching and consulting businesses looking for new, high-quality clients. These businesses often depend on establishing strong relationships with their customers, and so a sample session gives you the chance to gauge in advance whether the prospect is someone you’ll want to work with (and vice versa!).
And even when a free consultation doesn’t result in a sale, it can still offer tremendous benefits for your business. When you generously provide value to people for free, you foster positive word-of-mouth that spreads throughout your target market and works to your advantage as a referral engine.
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What is a free consultation?
A free consultation is a one-on-one interaction, conversation, meeting, or interview given freely to share one's thoughts and discuss possible opportunities of working together.
Despite their obvious appeal, successfully marketing a free consultation isn’t as easy as it sounds. Unlike other lead magnets, the barrier for entry for free consultations is high. The prospect isn’t merely exchanging their contact details for a free download or piece of content, they’re committing to spending time and energy speaking with you. For this reason, prospects will often require a little more convincing before they’re willing to book a session.
That’s why it’s crucial to craft a conversion-optimized consultation page. If you’re going to convince leads to sign up, you’ll have to prove that the consultation will be worth their while. This means optimizing your consultation page so well that prospects simply won’t be able to pass up on the opportunity to learn more about what you can do for them.
So to give you a helping hand in building the perfect opt-in page for your own free consultations, we’ve collected 7 gorgeous examples to get those ideas flowing.
1. Free design consultation from Enlightened Landscape Lights
Source: Enlightened Landscape Lights
Enlightened Landscape Lights’ free consultation page succeeds in finding the perfect balance between being visually appealing and full of vital information.
Here are some key takeaways:
- Crystal clear expectations. The page does an excellent job of explaining exactly what prospects can expect from their free consultation, from receiving a property evaluation right through to getting a personalized landscape plan. This ensures that no one hesitates to sign up just because they’re unsure what the consultation will involve.
- Emphasis on quality. By highlighting some key benefits and features of high-quality outdoor lighting—safety, security, long-lasting fixtures—the page reminds prospects of what they stand to gain from doing business with the company.
- Visual reinforcement. The page features some beautiful example images of what the business can offer, which serve to magnify the sense of quality and professionalism the brand is trying to convey.
2. Self-schedule a free consultation with BlkBld.Co
BlkBld.Co’s free consultation page is simple and to the point. But what really makes this page stand out is the action-driven scheduler and the way it blends in seamlessly with the rest of the company’s website.
What can we learn from this kind of free consultation page?
- Use a scheduler. Using an appointment scheduler tool not only makes it easy for your visitor to schedule the consultation, it also helps push conversion. Too frequently, someone will sign up for a free consultation but then fall off the radar when it comes to actually setting a date and time for the session. But with a direct appointment scheduler, the prospect is putting you straight in their calendar and will generally feel more committed to following through with the session. And the more people who show up to your free sessions, the better your chances of conversion!
- Consistent branding. When you compare this page to the rest of the BlkBld website, you notice how it matches the color scheme and minimalist design of all the other pages. This is a good reminder that every lead-capture page you have should be aligned with your wider website design and goals. You can learn how to define your business and website goals here.
3. Free photography consultation with Misty Enright
Source: Misty Enright
While Misty Enright’s free consultation page is pretty simple, it’s also bursting with personality. This is especially important for freelancers and solopreneurs, where the appeal of your business is as much about you as an individual as it is about the services you provide.
Here some things that stand out about Misty’s page:
- Approachable headshot. The first thing you see on this page is a photo of Misty holding a camera. Putting a face to your consultation helps build trust with prospects, which makes them feel more comfortable about signing up. The fact that Misty is happy and smiling also creates a level of warmth that implies the consultation with her won’t be too sales-y.
- Who are you? Misty provides a brief bio describing her background and professional interests. This helps to reinforce her fun personality and demonstrate that she’s an expert in her line of work.
- Consultation flexibility. Misty suggests a few ways a consultation with her could go so as to accommodate different prospect needs. She also leaves the door open for prospects to reach her via email if they’d rather not book a session with her. These flexible options can help make prospects more relaxed about reaching out.
4. Free consultation selling premium events and workshops
Source: Ashley Turner
As a coach or consultant, one effective way to start branching out of the traditional time-for-money business model is to start offering your audience high-ticket workshops, retreats, or educational courses. These allow you to sell your services one-to-many (rather than one-to-one) without spreading yourself too thin. But with higher-priced items comes a higher barrier to purchase.
In this example, Ashley Turner uses free consultation calls as a way to convince interested prospects to sign up for her top-shelf yoga teacher training. In order to make sure that only prospects with a genuine interest in the training book a free consultation call, Ashley includes the following message on the page:
“These 20 min calls are strictly reserved for those students who are seriously interested in attending our LIVE YPS training in Venice, CA.”
So what can we learn from Ashley’s example?
- Couple your premium events with a free consultation call: A tried-and-tested sales tactic is to build rapport with your prospects by helping them figure out whether your higher-priced services are a good fit for them. Often, the best way to do that is to jump on a phone or video call.
- Clarify your target audience: Ashley makes sure that anyone who lands on her page understands who the free consultation is and isn’t for. This means she only has to spend time on calls with prospects who actually have a high chance of becoming customers. For other people with quick questions or unrelated inquiries, you can always provide another means of getting in touch, like an email address or inquiry form.
5. Free copywriting consultation from Sophia Dagnon
Source: Sophia Dagnon
- Testimonials. Sophia begins her consultation page with a glittering testimonial that highlights her proven abilities to get results for her clients. Testimonials are the ultimate form of social proof, persuading prospects that you really can do what you say you can do.
- Results. Conversion copywriting is all about results and so Sophia makes sure she includes data-backed examples of her recent achievements to hammer home the fact that she’s the real deal.
- Form for more info. When leads click to book a consultation with Sophia, they’re taken to a Typeform questionnaire to input their contact details and project requirements. Surveys like this let you conveniently figure out whether an interested prospect is a good match before you schedule a call. Head to our integrations page to learn more about the Leadpages integration with Typeform and other sales and marketing apps.
6. Free consultation from Platinum Trading Systems
Source: Platinum Trading Systems
There’s a lot going on with this Platinum Trading Systems page. But every detail works together to ramp up the urgency of getting in on the action now.
Standout features of this page include:
- Value first. The page starts with a direct value proposition. There are five strategies, and you (“anyone, anywhere”) can learn them with this free consultation.
- Relevant videos and images. The video sells you on the academy’s benefits short-term and long-term. It also uses urgent language to encourage you to sign up right now.
- CTA above the fold. You see the first contact form before you even start scrolling. It also pushes conversion using exclusivity-based language like “claim your session”.
- Show that you’re popular. This page offers social proof in two forms: the news outlet features and client testimonials.
- Use long-form copy when necessary. This page delves deeper into the five strategies you’ll learn in your session and what they mean for you moving forward. This further encourages hesitant customers to make the call by guaranteeing specific information and value.
7. Free consultation from Imperative Concierge
Source: Imperative Concierge
Imperative Concierge provides personal assistant and virtual assistant services to clients in the Detroit area. While the free consultation page keeps things simple, the inclusion of an educational video gives prospects value at a crucial juncture.
Here’s what we like most about this page:
- Educational video for better-qualified consultation. The company’s owner, Jessica, includes a video in which she explains the difference between independent contractors and employees and why this is relevant to anyone considering hiring a virtual or personal assistant. By clearing up what’s likely to be a common question in the minds of potential clients, Jessica demonstrates her expertise and gives a reassuring indication of what you can expect from a consultation with her.
- Acuity Scheduling embedded in pop-up form. Prospects who click to book a consultation are presented with a calendar where they can directly schedule a session with Jessica. As we saw earlier, direct scheduling makes prospects feel more committed to the consultation and reduces the likelihood of no-shows.
5 Simple Ways to Improve Your Free Consultation Offer
Now that we’ve seen a variety of free consultation page examples, let’s look at some general principles you can use to start boosting your own free consultation conversion rate.
1. Set clear expectations
Anyone who’s thinking about booking a free consultation with you should have a clear understanding of what the session will involve. If this is just left up to the imagination, you risk losing potential leads.
Make it obvious who will be running the consultation. For example, if it’s you, include a high-quality, approachable photo of yourself and pair it with an “about” section explaining who you are. Better yet, embed a short video of yourself explaining to viewers what they can expect from a session with you.
You should also make it clear to prospects when slots are available and how long each session will last. With Leadpages, you can easily publish your availability directly on your consultation page using a scheduling app like Calendly or Acuity. Of course, the duration you set for your sessions will depend on the amount of time and resources you have available, but anything between 15 and 20 minutes is pretty standard. That said, you might want to consider offering slightly longer sessions to distinguish yourself from any competitors that offer similar freebies.
Similarly, you should also clearly communicate what format the consultation will have. Will it be held in-person, on a call, through online chat, or via video conference?
Finally, be conscious of the fact that some prospects may feel anxious about jumping on a call or meeting you in person. If you frame the session as a no-pressure consultation and manage to convey a friendly persona, prospects will feel more comfortable about signing up.
2. Emphasize the value of the consultation
Once a prospect visits your free consultation page, they should be able to tell what value in it is for them.
The key here is to be specific. Your prospects will think twice about signing up if the benefits of the consultation are too vague. This is true even if your prospects don’t doubt that you run a legitimate business operated by expert professionals. To truly convince prospects that opting in for a free consultation is worth their time, you need to show that your business can help them with their specific pain points.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you have to list out every conceivable way you could help a prospect on your consultation page, but it does mean that your copy—especially your CTA —should hone in on a specific problem area that you can help solve. For example, instead of a basic CTA like “Sign up now for a free consultation”, try something more targeted like “Sign up now for a free consultation and I’ll share my 3 top strategies for achieving [specific goal]”.
Another great way to highlight the level of value prospects will get from a free session with you (and any business they do with you in the future) is to place relevant testimonials on your consultation page. This will help drive conversions by establishing more credibility and trustworthiness on your part.
You can also amplify the perceived value of a free consultation by leveraging urgency and exclusivity. Prospects are more likely to book a session with you right now if they feel like their opportunity to do so is short-lived. Phrases like “claim your session” and “only 10 consultation spots left” will help encourage sign-ups. You can even use a countdown timer—set to a specific date after which the free consultation offer expires—to ramp up the level of urgency.
3. Explain the long-term benefits of working with you
Remember that you aren’t just selling your prospects on the chance to get a free consultation, you’re also trying to convince them that your business is the right fit for their needs. You should therefore mention why working with you going forward would be in their best interests and give them a clear sense of what makes your brand unique. Be sure to mention what will happen after the consultation if you and the prospect decide to do business together.
Once again, having testimonials on your consultation page will help support any claims you make about the advantages of working with you long-term.
4. Nail your page design
To optimize your consultation page for maximum conversions, you’ll need to make sure your page design is on point. Having well-crafted copy won’t matter if prospects are put off by the messiness of your page.
To ensure the path to conversion is friction-free, make sure your page’s color scheme jibes with the rest of your branding, pick a high-contrast color for your CTA button so it stands out, and prioritize the most important information higher up the page.
When it comes to your copy, make use of different font sizes, subheadings, and bulleted lists, and bold, italicize or underline key text for additional emphasis. This is especially important if you have a lot of information you need to convey since a big block of uninterrupted text could discourage many prospects from reading on.
The easiest way to guarantee that your page design is up to the task is to use a template. Leadpages lets you pick from over 200 sleek and beautiful page designs and allows you to customize your copy and images to fit your unique needs.
5. Don’t forget to use other lead magnets!
We’ve already mentioned how free consultations are pretty high commitment incentives compared to other lead magnets like free guides, ebooks, and case studies. For prospects who may have stumbled upon your website by searching in Google or by following a link on social media, the idea of booking a consultation with you right away might seem a little premature.
The point here is that you shouldn’t rely on your free consultation as your only lead magnet. You need to give prospects the chance to familiarize themselves with your business before you can realistically expect them to block out time in their schedules to speak with you directly.
The best way to move prospects closer to a consultation is to start building a relationship with them. Here’s where your other value-packed lead magnets come into play. By offering free and useful content in exchange for an email address, you’ll prove that you’re able to help prospects with their problems and thereby build the trust and interest you need to get them to sign up for a consultation.
Level up your free consultation game
There’s no doubt that free consultations can be extremely useful for capturing highly qualified leads and converting them into paying customers. However, we’ve seen that when it comes to marketing a free consultation—especially when it comes to crafting your consultation opt-in page—there’s an art to getting it right. The tips covered in this post will help make sure that your own consultation page is well-placed to maximize conversions.
Remember, whichever combination of lead magnets you end up using, you’ll need to capture all your contacts’ email addresses into an email list so you can begin to nurture those leads into paying clients and customers. For a comprehensive guide on how to do just that, check out our free training, 5 Simple Steps to Building a More Profitable Email List.
Ready to create your own free consultation page? All the examples above are from current Leadpages customers. Using our templates, you can build truly effective consultation pages that get results for your business. And, best of all, you can publish one today with our free 14-day trial.
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