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Lead magnet ideas for web designers (and how to use them)

Discover the best ideas for lead magnets in our latest blog! Plus, learn how to use them & how to nurture leads so you get more paying clients to your website. Read today!

Abby Wood


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Abby Wood

Abby Wood

The Content Lab

Originally from Cambridge, England, Abby now lives in Ireland with her partner Nick and their border collie Bosco. A content strategist and copywriter for over 12 years, she's founder of The Content Lab (a white label content agency) and Content Goodies (providing white label content templates for agencies). She's also co-founder of Ireland Website Design (a full service eCommerce agency) and LearnRight (a white label LMS solution).

Lead Magnet
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Chances are, if you’re reading this you already know just how useful lead magnets can be for building up a solid database of potential leads to sell to. The problem is: what is a good lead magnet for a web designer? If you’re anything like me, you probably have a downloads folder full of freebies that sounded great but never got used. 

A truly great lead magnet provides actual value to the person downloading it. A great lead magnet not only gets you the initial email address and the in to their inbox, it also gives your reader an insight into just how great you are at the work you do. 

Today I’m going to show you some ideas for your lead magnet that will help you attract leads and build rapport with them, setting you up as the expert in your field and the only choice for their project. 

Let’s get started! 

What makes a great lead magnet?

To avoid the fruits of your hard work getting buried in your leads’ download folders, you want to create a great lead magnet. But what makes a great lead magnet? Here are three things to set you on the right track. 

1. It’s relevant and useful

Sounds simple, right? But so many lead magnets fall at this first hurdle. A great lead magnet is relevant to your reader, your reader’s problems, your industry, and your end goals. No mean feat, eh? 

Here’s an example of a good lead magnet and a not-so-great lead magnet: 

Imagine you’re targeting realtors in Texas with social media marketing packages: You want to give them something that helps them sell more properties in Texas. 

A good lead magnet would be giving away a free content calendar or social post schedule as part of your download. Why is it a good lead magnet? It’s useful (they can use the free template themselves) and it’s relevant to what you’re trying to sell (social media marketing).

A not-so-great lead magnet would be a list of 10 web design mistakes realtors make. While their website is an essential tool in their online strategy, this lead magnet a) won’t sell you any social media marketing packages and b) won’t give them solutions to implement – just reminders of how their website sucks.

Great lead magnets always fit into the reader’s ultimate goal – with the idea they’ll hire you to take the implementation off their to-do list. 

2. It has a clear call to action (CTA)

One of the main reasons you might not be getting a lot of conversions from your lead magnet could be that you need a clear CTA included. 

If you don’t spell it out for your audience, they won’t understand what they’re meant to do after downloading your freebie or signing up for your email course. 

You must follow up with them and show them that you have the solutions they need to make their lives easier. 

3. It highlights your USPs

Your lead magnet has multiple uses, the primary benefit being that it provides your audience with something valuable, but it should also highlight your company’s unique selling points. 

You want your audience to engage with you and realize, “Wow, this company is amazing, and I should work with them for my next project.”

If your lead magnet makes your audience feel like this, you’ll have no problem nurturing them with a dedicated email campaign. 

What are the best lead magnet ideas for web designers?

The best lead magnets can take a lot of forms, and some work better than others, depending on your target audience. I’ve put together this list of lead magnet ideas and examples to show you what you can make for your agency, based on some truly great, effective lead magnets my clients have created. 

1. Webinars & online events

Webinars or online events like a live podcast or walkthrough of a problem/solution are great options for your lead magnet.

Not only will you attract a crowd and have the opportunity to interact with them in real time, you’ll also enhance their trust in you. 

If you don’t fancy the idea of real time delivery, webinars don’t have to be live; you can also have pre-recorded webinars as your lead magnet where your audience can download and watch them in their own time. 

With webinars and podcasts, you can get other experts or known industry leaders to come and chat with you – just check out The Admin Bar’s podcast for an example. 

During your webinar, make sure you discuss the topic you promised and provide your audience with helpful tips and unique insights. Open the floor to questions and get people involved. Answering client questions is a great way to engage with attendees, so they remember you and your company going forward. 

Tip: Your lead magnet could include a free spot in your next webinar, plus access to all the recordings of previous webinars. This will appear incredibly valuable to clients, and they’re more likely to give over their email for a bunch of content than just a singular webinar. 

2. Templates 

I love templates! I even use them myself as a lead magnet. Why?


  • Low maintenance
  • Loved by all
  • Valuable
  • Easy to create 
  • Easy to use

Templates are a win-win situation for both you and your audience. They’re an incredibly popular lead magnet choice, and there are so many different types to create, including:

  • Email templates 
  • Social media templates
  • Blog templates
  • Landing page templates 
  • Spreadsheet templates
  • Project management templates
  • And so many more!

Depending on your target market, you’ll want to consider the type of template they’ll get the most use out of. Take some time to think about what they really need to help them save time on a particular task. 

A CTA for this kind of lead magnet could include something like the following:

“Want to get *** off your plate completely? Hire us today.”

3. Checklists & guides

Checklists are a great lead magnet option because they’re easy to create – especially if you’ve already got instructional blogs on your website. 

That’s right; you can reuse content you’ve already created to create a checklist that will wow your audience. Take the points you’ve listed in your blog and make a list that can be downloaded.

Remember to make it look nice, too, with some checkboxes and your company’s branding.

Another option to go separately or along with your checklist is a guide. By creating a guide and a checklist, you can give your potential client the information they need to succeed and a checklist to help them keep track of everything. 

4. Email courses

Email courses are fantastic and can easily be adapted from online courses you’ve made in the past, so you don’t even have to create extra content.

Email courses are free resources for your potential clients, and they nurture them at the same time – what more could you want?

An email course includes a series of emails covering the same topic. Depending on how long the course is, they’re sent to your user over a couple of weeks. 

It’s a fantastic option for a lead magnet because it’s more than a simple downloadable resource that gets lost in your lead’s downloads folder. It’s a daily reminder that your digital agency provides brilliant services. 

People constantly check their emails throughout the day, and an email course will provide valuable educational content they can learn from. Plus, they’re usually short and simple tips that are easy to consume – any modern-day user’s favorite media type! 

Tip: Remember to end your emails with a CTA telling them they can get even more help by working with your company!

5. eBooks & downloadable content

eBooks and downloadable long-form content are a great place to start if you already have a series of blogs posted relating to one topic! In fact, eBooks are the most popular type of lead magnet to create with 27.7% of marketers using them regularly.

If you’ve got a blog post series already, compile it into a neat PDF file decorated with your company colors and a sweet ‘about’ section with a CTA added. Now you’ve got the perfect eBook for your audience – and you didn’t even have to spend too much time on it. 

Having all your blogs in one place makes it easy for your audience to find what they’re looking for instead of scouring your resources page. Remember to break up your text with images, graphics, and data too! 

How to nurture leads from a lead magnet

Many agencies struggle to nurture leads once they have them, and that’s completely natural – especially if this is your first time using a lead magnet! Out of the 50% of companies that capture emails from their lead magnets an eye-watering 40% don’t use them, and around 10% aren’t sure what to do with them. 

Here are a few tips you can use to nurture leads and get more paying clients for your company. 

1. Set up an email campaign

The easiest way to get clients on board is to follow up with them using an irresistible email campaign that goes out, for a couple of weeks after they’ve downloaded your lead magnet. 

Remind them who gave them access to those beautiful freebies in the first place. Ask them how they got on with your course, eBook or checklist, and check to see if they need more help with their problem. 

2. Send out regular emails 

If you’re still waiting for bites from your initial email campaign, send out regular emails containing free advice and tips relevant to their needs. 

End these emails by showing them how you can help them with the problems you just helped solve.

The idea is to stay top of mind, always. 

Note: Don’t spam. Regular emails should be spaced out, one every week or month. If you continuously email your list (especially without offering any real value) you might just end up with a few ‘spam’ reports. 

3. Stay on top of your analytics

Unfortunately, sometimes a lead just isn’t going to convert, and there’s nothing you can do about it. 

When sending out your emails, check your analytics to see who’s opening what and whether your emails are doing what they’re supposed to. 

If you notice that you’re not getting the desired results, it may be time to shake things up and change your approach. 

Staying on top of your analytics will let you know what’s working and what needs to be improved, so you understand what your audience likes and doesn’t like. 

Go forth and magnetize those leads

Lead magnets are complex. I’m not going to deny it. But, once you get it right, you’ll be able to find your groove and get a pile of clients through the door. 

I really hope this blog has given you some lead magnet inspiration – and once you have that lead magnet up and running, head over to The Admin Bar Facebook group and share it: I’d love to see how you get on! 

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Abby Wood

Abby Wood

The Content Lab

Originally from Cambridge, England, Abby now lives in Ireland with her partner Nick and their border collie Bosco. A content strategist and copywriter for over 12 years, she's founder of The Content Lab (a white label content agency) and Content Goodies (providing white label content templates for agencies). She's also co-founder of Ireland Website Design (a full service eCommerce agency) and LearnRight (a white label LMS solution).

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