Email Templates that will make your Freelance Web Design Business an Instant Success

In the earliest days of marketing, the number one tool for many salespeople was the cold call. They had to physically reach out to hundreds, sometimes thousands, of prospective customers through calling them and offering up various products and services.

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If you are familiar with the practice, then you know that reaching out to strangers with the express purpose of selling them stuff is a numbers game. If those sales people of old wanted to reap any benefits, then they had to call a huge number of people and hope that some of them said yes.

Well, thank goodness for technology!

The internet has brought about the evolution of the cold call into the cold email. This has made the outreach process easier, and sales teams around the world are thanking the marketing gods for it.

That is not to say that cold calls are not effective (because they are). But the fact remains that some of the stigma surrounding cold calls has been transferred to cold emailing. What else could explain why many freelancers are shying away from cold email today?

But this should not be the case.  Over the years, many entrepreneurs have attributed their success to cold email. According to recent studies, many businesses generate at least 10 percent of their sales from cold email. And it gets even more interesting: your chances of getting new clients are 40 times better with email than with other social channels like Facebook and Twitter combined.

The truth of the matter is that cold emailing is one of the most effective lead generation channels available to marketers and freelancers alike.

So, what does that mean for your business? We all know that writing emails is not a fun process. It takes up a lot of time and requires lots of proofreading and rewriting. But as a freelance web designer, it is a necessary part of running your business. Every aspect of your business – from communicating with clients to receiving instructions and feedback – is handled via email.

So why not use it to get new customers?

And if your goal is to streamline the whole emailing process, there are ways that you can do that too. Making emailing easier will free up a lot of time that you can then use to build your brand, generate new business, and offer better support to existing clients. But to do all this, you will have to excel in one thing – email templates.

Every successful freelance web developer knows that the only way to run a successful outreach campaign while still taking care of their business is by using a web design email template. But that does not mean that every cold email template is effective!

For the best results, you need a number of templates that cover a variety of scenarios. Maybe you are dealing with a tricky situation with a client and you’re not sure how to guide the conversation in a meaningful way. Or you would like to decline a project but don’t want to close the door on future projects with your client.

Email templates will help you navigate any difficult situation you meet in your freelancing career. Do you want to learn the tricks that will make your open and response rates soar? Are you ready to take your freelancing business to the next level?

Here are 10 email templates that will give you a great head start.

Email Templates To Make Your Freelance Web Design Business an Instant Success

Table of Contents

Web Design Email Template #1: Applying for jobs

If most of your business comes from referrals and other organic means, then your freelance career is in pretty good shape. Unfortunately, that is not the case for most freelance web designer. They have to rely on job board listings or cold pitches to get new clients into the stable. If the second scenario sounds familiar to you, then this template will be quite helpful:

Subject: About your listing for a freelance web designer

Hi (First name)

I am a freelance web designer specializing in the (specific mention) niche. I’ve worked on X+ projects over the last X years.

I just came across your listing for a freelance web designer on the (specific mention) job board. It seems like the perfect project for me.

I am the best fit for this job because:

  •    Reason 1
  •    Reason 2
  •    Reason 3

You can check out some of my work, case studies, and testimonials on my online portfolio (provide a link). If you have any questions or would like to see a no-obligations proposal, feel free to get in touch.


(Your name).

It is always a good idea to personalize every email based on the specific requirements of each job. A quick look at the job listing will give you all the information that you need to do this. After reading through the requirements, select the top three that represent your strongest points. You can then turn them into your strongest hiring points and include them in your email.

Web Design Email Template #2: Following Up

We have said this before and we’ll do it again: just because a potential client has not gotten back to you does not mean that they do not want to work with you. Maybe they got really busy to reply, or they simply missed your email. That is why it is important to always send a follow-up email.

Experts recommend that you send up to seven follow up emails. 33 percent of all your responses will come between the fifth and eighth email. So if you are not sending at least that many emails, you could be missing out on some great leads.

Here is a great example that you can use:

Subject: Great web design tips

Hey (Client’s name),

Just thought I’d follow up and see if you’re still interested in working with me on the (specific mention) project. If so, I have a couple of great ideas that I thought you would work well for this project.

In case you’re interested, just shoot me an email with any questions or concerns you have.


(Your name).

Web Design Email Template #3: Onboarding Clients

Once you have landed the project and are ready to start on it, it is time to send the onboarding email. Simply put, this is your chance to tell the client what to expect going forward. It gets rid of unnecessary email exchanges that commonly happen when the client does not understand every technical thing that you are doing. And if you use any project management software, you can then invite the client to keep track of your progress through it.

Subject: Getting started

Hi (Client’s name),

Thank you for picking me to work on this project. I am thrilled to dig in and begin.

Seems like I have all the information I need to begin. But just in case I need more details, I’ll get in touch with you. Otherwise, you can expect an update on my progress on (specify a date). Hopefully, I will also have the first version ready for your review.

Here’s a link to the detailed project report (provide a link). Also, you will get an invite from (the project management tool) shortly. If you could get on board, that would be awesome. This tool will make it easier for you to keep track of every aspect of this project.

If you have any questions, you can always email me. Thanks again for trusting me with your project.


(Your name).

Web Design Email Template #4: Scheduling Calls

If there are any big changes or development in the project, this will usually lead to a lot of back-and-forth communication with the clients. This will often happen over calls or Skype, but rarely through email. But it is still a great idea to confirm call schedules over email.

Subject:  Call at (mention specific day and time)?

Hey (Client’s name),

Just checking in to see if you will be available to get on a 30-minute Skype call with me on (mention day) at (mention time).

I wanted to discuss a couple of things to do with the project, specifically:

  •    Point 1
  •    Point 2
  •    Point 3

Please let me know if the timing works for you.


(Your name).

Highlighting the agenda of these calls helps the client know if they can reschedule the call or if it is urgent enough to tackle immediately.

Once you get off the call, it is a good idea to jot down all the important things that have been discussed and shoot it off as a quick email to the client. And if you are not great at note-taking, simply record the call. But before doing so, make sure to let the client know about it!

Web Design Email Template #5: Reporting Submission Delays

You will definitely get into this jam from time to time. Sometimes, the project seems simple during planning but quickly gets more complex during its execution. Or you could run into other difficulties along the way.

The important thing is to inform the client as soon as you realize that you are going to miss a deadline. Simply apologize, shoulder the responsibility, and work on fixing the situation as fast as possible. And if the delay causes some major inconveniences for the client, it may be best to give up some of your fees to make up for it.

Subject: Important notice and apology

(Client’s name),

I know this isn’t the type of email you expected to receive from me. Still, I’d like to deal with the situation as it is and find a solution ASAP.

So, here goes: I’m sorry, but the design will not be delivered on time. There are a couple of reasons for this:

  •    Reason 1
  •    Reason 2
  •    Reason 3

The earliest I can get (expected output) to you is by (revised deadline). Is it possible for you to accommodate this new date?

To rectify the situation, I have (action 1), (action 2), and (action 3). This will help get the project back on track. I’m also taking steps to ensure that we won’t go through this type of situation again.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss any concerns further, please don’t hesitate to let me know.


(Your name).

Web Design Email Template #6: Seeking Referrals

Testimonials and reviews are some of the most effective marketing tools available for a freelancer. They give potential customers proof of your skill and credibility. With a few testimonials from some of your past clients, you will be able to build a solid reputation within the industry in no time.

The best time to send ask for this is right after the client has received the completed project. If they are happy with it, they will be very receptive to any email requesting a testimonial.  Also, avoid generic testimonials as these do not show potential clients what you can do.

Instead, make sure that these testimonials focus on specific problems that you have helped clients solve. A great way to do this is by adding some sample text into the email that the client can then use to write their testimonial.

Here’s a great template that you can use when requesting for a testimonial:

Subject: Can I get a testimonial?

Hey (Client’s name),

It was such a pleasure working with you on this project. I’m happy that you liked the final result.

Because of that, I was hoping that you would be up to giving me a testimonial. And to make it even easier for you, I’ve prepared a template that you can use for this:

I contacted (business name) because ______________. (Contact person at business name) helped me out by _______________. The result was _____________. One thing I liked most was their _________. The whole experience was  ____________.  I would recommend (business name) to anyone who needs __________.

Of course, feel free to edit it as you like!

If this testimonial is okay, can I get your approval to feature it on my website? It would make a great addition to my portfolio. Also, could you please send me your testimonial and photo by (specify date and time)? I would really appreciate it.


(Your name).

Of course, you should always be on “testimonial mode.” If a client sends you some positive feedback in the course of the project, immediately jump on the opportunity to use that as a testimonial.

At that stage, you could send this email:

Hi (Client’s name),

Thanks for the kind words! I’m happy that you like the work so far. Could you give me the go ahead to use this feedback as a testimonial on my website?


(Your name).

Web Design Email Template #7: Featuring as a Case Study

Case studies are the latest trend to shift how businesses interact with potential customers. This is because they work – and very well at that. While a testimonial helps clients share the experience of working with you, a case study allows you to go into the nitty-gritty of exactly what you did for a particular client. What challenges did you have? How did you solve them? What resources did you use? A case study will show potential clients the breadth of your skill and the quality of work they can expect from you.

Subject line: Can I feature you as a case study on my website?

Hi (Client’s name),

The subject line pretty much says everything, but I’d like to ask again. Can I feature you as a case study on my website? I think our project had a lot of high points and I’m excited to spread the word about our work together.

If you’re okay with this, you can fill out this form – it will take you less than 10 minutes. And as a token of my thanks, I’d like to give you a special X% discount on your next project.

Once I’m done writing it, I’ll email you the case study for your approval. And if you’re happy with it, I’ll publish it on my site soon after that.


(Your name).

Remember that a lot of clients participate in case studies because they are happy with your work and want to help you out. So you can avoid promising follow-up links or exposure for their businesses.

Also, do not add case study in the body of the text. This can lead to a lot of confusion when the client is trying to reply to your message and answer questions at the same time. Instead, you can use free online tools like Typeform or even Google Docs to create beautiful questionnaires.

Web Design Email Template #8: Seeking Referrals

Have you ever noticed that sales people always ask for a referral as soon as they close a deal? Well, you should take a leaf out of their book and adopt this approach because it works. During the project handover process, make sure that the last step is to send an email request for a referral from all your clients.

You could even do a little snooping on their LinkedIn page and other social media profiles to see who they interact with. This is an easy way of finding out if they know anyone that could use your services and boost your business. That way, you could simply ask for an introduction to specific people in your email.

Another tip is to plug in a brief example of the text your client can use in their introduction email. This will reduce the work they have to do, making it easier for them to actually recommend you to people within their networks.

Here is a simple template showing you how to add all these elements to create one awesome email:

Subject: Know anyone I could help?

Hi (Client’s name),

As you probably know, referrals are a great source of new clients for freelancers. So I thought I’d check in and ask if you could recommend me to anyone you know that could use my services.

If you do, I would really appreciate an introduction. In fact, I was checking out your LinkedIn profile and noticed that you are connected with (Name of desired contact). It would be great if you could recommend my work to him/her, or anybody else you can think of.

Here’s a short introductory email that you could send them:

“Hi, (your friend’s name). I want to introduce you to (my name). (He/She) designed my website, and (he/she) is great to work with. I think you could get a lot out of getting in touch with (him/her). Here’s (his/her) contact details: (my phone number, email address, website).

Thanks for your help with this (Client’s name).


(Your name).

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Web Design Email Template #9: Declining Projects

Don’t we all wish for the day that we will have too much work to accept a new one? If you ever get to that position, a polite decline is the best way to go. This will show your professionalism and leave the potential client with a great impression. They will not be discouraged to contact you again should they need you in future.

Declining projects you cannot handle is also ideal because it opens the door for the client to start looking for another web designer to hire. This is especially important when the prospective client is dealing with a time-sensitive project. This way, you will not have to deal with tons of follow-up emails.

Subject: Sorry, I cannot take on your project

(Client’s name),

Thank you for reaching out and your (inquiry about/offer to hire me).

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to take you up on the offer at this time. I have a lot on my plate right now and wouldn’t want to give anything less than 100% to the project.

At this point, I expect to have a free period open by (mention specific date). Would this work for you? If not, I think (person’s name) would be able to help you out. I could connect you with him/her if you’d like.


(Your name).

Web Design Email Template #10: Cold Email Template

When it comes to cold emailing, your success is not really based on what template you are using. What will get you a response is research, personalization, and learning the art of writing the cold email. We have already covered all these elements in our detailed ‘how-to’ post here.

A good cold email should generally be between three and five sentences long. You do not want to overload your prospects with too much information at this early stage. You can also follow these helpful tips to craft the perfect subject line that prospective clients open and read your cold email.

Here is an example of the types of cold emails that works:

Subject: Work together

Hi (Prospect’s name),

Do you have any web design needs at (prospect’s business name)?

With our design and UX strategies, we can help you increase your sales, engagement, and conversions by X%.

If you’re interested, please email me back. I would love to chat.


(Your name).

How to Use Canned Responses in Gmail

Now that we’ve talked about the templates, you also need to know how to optimize your efforts so that you are not spending too much time and energy on daily emails. The best way to do this is by enabling canned responses in Gmail. This move will eliminate the need to copy-paste these email templates every time you want to use them.

Simply put, canned responses are Gmail templates that you can insert into any email with a few clicks. To use this feature, you must first enable canned responses on Gmail. To do this, you simply go to “Gmail settings”, click on “Labs”, and select “Canned Responses.” Then, you simply click on “Enable” and then save the changes.

After this, you are good to go. You must then save some canned responses onto Gmail. This is pretty easy to do: just copy any of the ten templates above along with the subject line, paste in onto Gmail. Then, you select “Canned Responses” and choose the “New Canned Response” option to save it as a template. Now, you can easily use the same template every time you need it.

4 Email Tools that You Need Right Now

In addition to canned responses, you should also install the following tools to give you more control over your email conversations:


Have you ever wanted to cold email a prospective client but simply could not find their email address anywhere? Well, Roojet is here to save the day! Through RooJet, you will be able to find any email address in a specific domain and add them to your cold email campaign automatically. It also helps you automate your email outreach, making it easier to keep current clients happy while landing new ones every day.

Boomerang for Gmail

Boomerang allows you to schedule emails quickly and easily. The plugin is very helpful for freelancers who serve clients in different time zones because it delivers emails during their working hours.

With the free plan, you can schedule up to ten emails. Upgrading will unlock some amazing features like more emails and unlimited tracking, and much more.


This is an extension for Google Chrome that lets you see what happens to your email after you send it. How many people open it? How many go a step further and click on the links within? UglyEmail helps you keep track of the effectiveness of any email. You will also be able to identify the emails you receive that are being tracked.


PixelBlock is an awesome tool that helps you block every attempt to track the emails you receive. It is a godsend for any freelancer who may not want a client to know you have read their email.

Wrapping Up

When you come up against difficult situations that you are not quite sure how to handle, a good email template will come in handy. We have shown you templates that are easy to customize and can be used for a wide range of situations.

With a couple of clicks of the button, you will be able to send messages that balance tact, firmness, professionalism, and friendliness in an effective way.

If you have any more tips and tricks geared towards these email templates for web designers, let us know in the comments below!

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