Humans have an attention span shorter than that of a goldfish, and it continues to shrink, according to a study by Microsoft Canada. Retaining the attention span of your readers is harder now than ever before. So what is the secret to attracting and engaging your audience?

The secret is an opt-in freebie. These enticing digital offerings have become the secret weapon of successful bloggers and content creators, and in this blog post, we’re going to dive deep into why they are the key to not only growing your blog but building a loyal and dedicated readership.

This post looks at how opt-in freebies can become a powerhouse of connection to your readers, increase your blog’s visibility, and nurture your current list of email subscribers.

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. Please see my full disclosures page for more information.

What is an opt-in freebie?

An opt-in freebie, also known as a lead magnet or blog freebie, is a free and valuable piece of content provided to your audience, in exchange for their email address. A blog freebie can come in the form of any digital product that is relevant to your audience and content. Some examples are ebooks, checklists, planners, templates, courses and more.

Why should you create an opt-in freebie?

The main purpose of creating an opt-in freebie is to grow your email list. Once your readers provide you with their email list, you can use it to nurture your relationship with them, provide more valuable content, and eventually turn these leads into paying customers.

Have you ever heard the saying “the money is in the list”? It’s a common saying among digital marketers because your email subscribers are the easiest group to market to. According to, email is 40 times more effective at acquiring customers than Facebook and Twitter combined (Holt, 2023). In addition, shoppers spend 138% more when marketed through email (Holt, 2023).

But let’s get real here. Growing my email list goes just a return on my investment. I truly love connecting with my readers and hearing what they have to say. You may or may not have seen elsewhere on my website that I’m an ICU nurse. So, helping people and REALLY connecting with them, fills my cup better than anything else. It’s my jam.

How to come up with ideas for the perfect opt-in freebie

Your blog freebie must provide value to your readers, in order to convince them to hand over their email address to you. Listen, you already get too many emails as it is, right? Well so does your reader, so your freebie offer better be an irresistible one.

The best way to come up with ideas for your blog freebie, is to learn your audience’s pain points and attempt to solve them through your offer. You should also relate your freebie offer to your blog content, and lead your readers to signing up for the freebie as the next logical step in your blog post.

Still need some help coming up with the perfect blog freebie for your niche? I made a list of 600 opt-in freebie ideas, to help you find the perfect one for your audience. Have this list of 600 freebie ideas sent right to your inbox by signing up below.

See what I just did there? I just offered you an irresistible blog freebie in exchange for your email address.

What freebies do I have on my blog?

I try to provide an opt-in freebie with each new blog post. Some staple freebies that I offer on my website include:

Pre-launch blog checklist (click here): A 49-point checklist to make sure you start your blog off the right way, before you even launch it.

a list of blogging resources and freebies, like this free checklist of tasks to do before launching your blog

Media Kit Template (click here): Stand out from the competition when pitching yourself to brands with this beautiful and professional media kit (completely customizable in Canva).

media kit

The Freebies Vault (click here): Access to my top freebies all in one place, The Freebie Vault. This includes a 52-page blog planner, 85 blog post ideas for any niche, and an ADHD reusable digital planner.

a free blog planner
a list of blogging resources and freebies, like this free list of blogging tasks to stay more productive, even if you don't have time
a free list of blog post ideas
a free ADHD digital planner

Other Blog Freebie Ideas

  • 12-month blog plan by Suzi Whitford: This freebie gives you actionable steps to do monthly, in order to start and grow your blog, increase your website traffic, grow your email list and monetize your blog. It includes monthly worksheets to keep track of your journey through the blog plan, a self-tracker to monitor your own progress, a 12-month editorial calendar and a log for keyword research. Suzi Whitford of used these exact steps that she includes in her blog plan to begin making over $9000/month in her first year of blogging.


  • Freebies that Serve & Sell by Kate Doster: This 3-day free course teaches how to find the perfect freebie for your audience, best practices for freebie design, and gives you a promotion plan to wrap it all up. It includes a bonus for 108 ways to grow your email list and a video lesson on how to create stunning workbooks and pdfs.


  • 100 Tips to make your first $1000 Blogging by Elna Cain: This freebie explains how Elna grew her own blog into a money making business that allowed her to stay home with her babies. She encourages you to used this guide to create your own blogging goals and to track your own progress.


  • Legally Blogs Legal Course for Bloggers by Dr. Lucrezia Iapichino: I wanted to mention this freebie, because I don’t feel like this topic is talked about enough. This course is pure gold. Dr. Iapichino has worked as an international lawyer, so she is the perfect source to teach you how to keep your blog legal. In this course, she reviews the importance of a legal blog, legal requirements for you as a blogger, what is a copyright and how to protect your content, the legal pages you MUST have on your blog, how to comply with GDPR AND CCPA (and what those things even mean), and how to track your income and taxes for your blog.
    • Note: If you are going to be collecting email addresses (like, say, for an opt-in freebie), you need to have legal pages on your website.


  • 8000+ Blog Post Ideas by Suzy Whitford: Welp, she’s done it again folks. This is an impressive list more than 8000 ideas for your next blog post. Or the next 8000 blog posts for that matter. The list is grouped by niche (and include many niches to give you a variety) and ranked by popularity.


  • SEO Bootcamp by Mike Futia: This free course scrapes the surface of SEO (Search Engine Optimization). It reviews the secret to niching down, teaches you everything you need to know about domain authority, the two things you must look for before choosing a keyword, and how to improve your content so that it ranks higher on Google. Anything this man says about SEO is pure gold, so soak up every bit that you can.
    blog freebie

    Ideas for the Perfect Blog Freebie

    Although this blog post’s freebie features a list of 600 freebie ideas for you, the most common types of freebies include:

      • Templates
      • Printables
      • Workbooks
      • Courses/Webinars
      • Checklists
      • Challenges
      • Workshops
      • Email courses
      • Ebooks
      • Planners
      • Cheat Sheets

    How to Create Freebies for your Blog

    • Determine what kind of product to make.
      • What are your audience’s pain points (this means you have to define who your audience is before you can determine what problems they have). If you already have an audience, you can even ask them what tool would help them. Even though they are already on your list, you can nuture them with a valuable freebie and find out what you need to make to attract more subscribers.
      • Another thing to consider when determining what freebie to make is your end goal: What is the reason you are wanting to grow your email list in the first place? Are you wanting to market your existing products to them? Create a freebie related to core product, to make your audience want your core product.
      • What products are trending in your niche?
      • Which one of your blog posts are doing well? Create a freebie related to that successful blog post.
      • Use my list of 600 opt-in freebie ideas to come up with your own product.
    • Create a freebie that provides a quick fix for one of their problems. Determine what product will help your audience reach their goal in the easiest way. As you readers reach their goals through your product, they will look to you as a source of authority in your niche and come back for future advice and products.
    • Use a design program (I use Canva, because it is so user friendly, even for someone like me who is not very tech savvy. Other design programs include PicMonkey, Adobe Photoshop, and more) to design your freebie. Also design a mockup of your freebie, to give your audience a visual of what they are signing up for. It increases the amount of signups you get for that product, when people can see how it will be used in real life.
    • Set up your email platform to automatically deliver your freebie to your reader when they sign up (I use Convertkit for my email marketing and freebie delivery. I have tried other email platforms, and I felt like this was the easiest one for me to use, and most reliable platform for automatic delivery). Include your mockup photo in your email, along with the free download. Recommended: don’t just send them this one email to deliver your freebie and be done with it. Create a welcome sequence to be delivered even after the freebie has been delivered, to nurture your newest email subscriber (and help them stick around for the long haul).
    • Create a sign up form on your website, for readers to sign up to receive your opt-in freebie. Be sure to include your mockup photo with your sign-up form as well. Add this sign up form to relevant locations on your website and blog posts.
    • How do you display your freebie and a sign up form on your website? You can do this via a plugin for forms, a widget, link a mockup photo to a landing page, or an html form. (I know, what does that even mean, right? I use the page builder Divi and I find that this is the easiest way to include a form on my website. I just drag and drop the form where I want it. I have also used Elementor in the past and I found that it was also easy to incorporate forms.)
    • Where should you display your freebie sign-up forms?
      • Above the fold of your homepage
      • Footer
      • In relevant blog posts (in the middle of blog posts and at the end)
      • Sidebar
    • Create a landing page for your freebie (the only goal of your landing page is to get people to sign up for your freebie. It should be a standalone website without website navigation to distract from the main goal.)
    • Promote your blog post and your landing page on social media and Pinterest.
    blog freebie

    Designing your Freebie

    1. Think about how your audience will use the freebie. Will they print it or save it on their computer? If they are going to print it, limit the amount of color you use to save them ink and also make your final product more readable.
    2. Think about whether you want to deliver a final product or a template. Will your audience use the freebie as a final product or want to use it as a template that they complete on their own? If they are going to use the freebie as a final product, you can save it as a PDF document. If your freebie is a template that your audience will edit after they receive it, save it as a template. In Canva, when you go to save your template, click Share > Template Link. Canva will give you a link for you to copy. Paste this link into a PDF document and deliver that PDF via your automatic email. Copying a product as a template link allows your reader to edit the product as they wish, without editing your original version of it.
    3. Think about your branding. Design your freebie with the same fonts, colors, and design of your brand. This makes it easy for people to recognize it came from you (also add a link to your website on each page of the freebie).
    4. Think about the design aesthetics. No matter how valuable your content is in your blog freebie, if the design looks like trash, no one is going to want it. Make your freebie aesthetically pleasing for an irresistible opt-in that your readers can’t resist.

    Action Steps

    1. Determine the best opt-in freebie for your unique audience.
    2. Design an opt-in freebie that your readers can’t resist.
    3. Set up processes so that readers can sign up for your freebie offer and receive it automatically, even while you sleep.
    4. Take feedback from audience to improve opt-in freebie offers.
    5. Sign up for the list of 600 opt-in freebie ideas.
    With love...

    With love...

    Thank you for hanging out with me and for reading this blog post. What opt-in freebie idea do you have for your audience?

    If you liked this blog post, please share it to Pinterest.

    Let me know what you would like to see next on the blog and don’t forget to sign up for your list of 600 opt-in freebie ideas!


    Holt, A. (2023, Jan 4). 40+ email marketing statistics you need to know for 2023. Conversion Rate Optimization Blog.

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