But the days of paper contracts are pretty much gone;online contracts reign supreme. If you’ve never sent a digital contract to a client before, you might not know what to do. And we’re here to help!
We hope this goes without saying, but what the heck, we’ll say it anyway. The first thing youmustdo before you send your contract? Check that it’s both accurate and complete. And that means you should read it at least twice. No, three times.
Read your contract carefully to check that it has all the necessary and correct information. You may use a contract template from our shop that can be reused for new clients, but it doesn’t hurt to review each new version!
You might find spelling errors, missing or incorrect names, outdated pricing for your services, or that your contractneeds to be updated in general.
If you skip this step and send out your contract with a mistake in it, that could make you look unprofessional and sloppy. You’ll also waste your time and your new client’s time. Not a good start to your professional relationship.
Psst…Our Client Contract Checklist walks you through everything your contract needs. No guesswork involved!
Don’t just send the client your contract with no accompanying message, or worse yet, noinstructions on how to sign or what steps to take. Write out a quick message that explains:
Try to think of the process from your new client’s perspective. If they’ve never signed an online contract before, what would they need to know? What problems or frustration might they face?
For example, sending a contract as a PDF can be a hassle because PDF programs usually require special software to add signatures. Your client may get fed up because signing is more complicated than it has to be. Consider using an e-signature program to make things easy.
Pro tip: This is why we at The Contract Shop® useHoneyBook* ourselves! Honeybook is more than just an amazing CRM. They make it easy for you to create and review client contracts, plus send them securely to clients to sign.
*This is an affiliate link. We may earn a commission if you choose to buy a HoneyBook subscription. But you do not pay any more and you can also get a free trial by using our link!
There’s no hard and fast rule for how much time to give a client to sign. Google something along the lines of “how long should I have to sign a contract” and you get results anywhere from 48 hours to 21 days! It depends on the type of contract: new job offer, severance agreement, independent contractor agreement, and so on.
We can’t tell you how long “enough time” is exactly, so use good judgment. Consider how long it would take you to read and absorb your contracttwice. That may be three days or it may be two weeks. In either case, don’t make your client feel rushed.
On that same note, do ask your client to return the signed contract by a certain date in your accompanying email. Your client will know how much time they have to review and ask you questions before signing.
These steps may seem kinda boring, and you’re probably excited to get started on your new project with this client. But sending your contract to the client properly is an important part ofproviding an exceptional client experience. It may be a small task, but you have a chance to show off your professionalism and attention to detail here. Don’t waste it!
Wanna create an even better client experience before your work even gets started? Use an e-signature tool likeHoneyBook* to send your contract off!
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