How to KEEP a Freelance Client

How to KEEP a Freelance Client


5 min read

Congrats on landing your freelance client!

Here are some tips to make them a repeat buyer. Miss Business Piggy

Trust is Your Foundation

Trust is vital to any working relationship, especially in business. A client may have hired you because they trusted your skills or past performance and it will be up to you to show them that you are reliable, transparent, and always work hard to exceed their expectations. This is how you keep your clients coming back for more.

Let's look at a list of ways to build trust with clients, and ways to lose it.

Then we'll go into detail about each point.

Ways to Hurt Your Client's Trust

Sad Office

  • Adding fees without telling customers, and changing prices without notice.

  • Changing your attitude over time.

  • Speaking negatively about other clients.

Ways to Gain a Client's Trust

Fresh Prince Dance Party

  • Make yourself easy to contact and easy to hire.

  • Give a little more than you promise.

  • Remember previous conversations.

Example 1

Added Fees

Adding fees without telling customers, and changing prices without notice. The problem with adding charges to a client's order is not the money, but the communication issue. If you plan to offer any extra services or products, you should inform your client about it before signing a contract. When freelancers realize they haven't been properly paid, they sometimes make last-minute changes to try to feel like they've been paid a fair price.

Freelancers sometimes get a bad rap for charging less than industry standard prices. It's important to do your research and find out what the going rate is for your business so you don't price yourself out of the market. You should also practice your negotiating skills and be willing to accept a higher fee for your work.

The key takeaway is to value communication with your client before, during, and after the project. Avoid surprising them with an invoice or extra charges that weren't previously discussed.

Example 2

Happy Surprised

Changing your attitude over time.

When you work with a client, you want to keep your behavior on brand. If you start out with enthusiasm for a new client, maintain that enthusiasm. If you start out being responsive to your client, try to stay responsive. While you can't please everyone, you can be consistent in your behavior. This will help make your clients feel connected to you and likely to come back again or even recommend your services to a friend.

Example 3

Tea Spill

Speaking negatively about other clients.

Clients can be challenging to work with. I know what that's like. But try not to speak negatively about clients—especially to other clients. It teaches other clients that you could potentially speak negatively about them as well. This is an instant trust breaker for many people, so keep this in mind when dealing with others in your professional sphere. A good reputation as a trustworthy business man or woman will make you successful in the long run.

Example 4

Here We Are

Make yourself easy to contact and easy to hire.

A huge killer of client retention is accessibility. When working with a client, iterate over and over the best method to contact you, and vice versa. I always accommodate my client with their preferred method of communication. Phone call, email, text message, snail mail.

Some businesses thrive with strict communication guidelines. They have a very specific system for dealing with clients. It's best to do research on the operation model that works best for you. The most important thing is to try a system for some time and be prepared to shift directions over time if you don't get the results you seek.

As a freelancer, you should also make yourself easy to hire and be prepared to take payments from clients. Some forms of payment include cash, credit card, direct deposit, PayPal, Venmo and Upwork billing. Be aware of what you can handle, and let your clients know if you don't accept certain forms of payment.

If you're a freelance worker, make sure you consult a lawyer and a certified tax professional about matters relating to contracts and finance through your business.

Example 5


Give a little more than you promise.

If you want to get noticed, you need to go above and beyond what you promise. I know it sounds counterintuitive, but it works. People will appreciate your efforts and be more willing to go out of their way for you.

Example 6

The Snap

Remember previous conversations.

When you feel like a conversation went well, use a note system to jot down important points and refer to them in future interactions. It will help your client know that you listened and valued what they shared with you.


Finding new clients can take some time and effort, but retaining your clients and building a referral network will keep your business fresh with new assignments. Your talents will be a huge part of keeping a client, but paired with that is your trustworthiness, character and soft skills. Building a healthy professional relationship with a client can keep them an ally for years.

If you found this article helpful, consider sharing it with a friend. Also be sure to add a comment below and let us know what your favorite strategies are for cultivating trusting relationships with clients.