How to onboard a coaching client


How to onboard a coaching client


If you’re a new coach perhaps you’ve been wondering how to onboard a new client, well in this post I’m going to cover the whole process for you so you can see how you can apply this to your own business and create an onboarding workflow that works for you!

This might also be helpful for any established coaches who want to refresh their process.

Want to watch my video on this where I go into a little more detail? Here you go!

1. How interested people get in touch with you

For most coaches, we’d have a booking call or a discovery call with a potential client, so the first stage of our onboarding process should be getting that call set up. 

Often that is through a contact form on your website or you can have a direct  link where people can automatically sign up for a free chat.

For some coaches, they may also have an additional step here which is a form that the interested person completes before the free call, like a Health History form if you’re a health coach.

2. Booking Call / Discovery Call

Next in the process of onboarding a new client is the booking call – I tend to call these calls booking calls because in my experience 90% of people are not there to ‘discover’ what coaching can do for them, they just want to find out the finer details and make sure you’re a good fit. 

I have a different approach to Discovery Calls and using them to get clients which I cover in my Dream Discovery Calls training.

Booking calls are also really useful for you as the coach to make sure you’re only working with the right people – it’s also an opportunity for you to ask questions and see if they’re the right fit for you!

Related post: How to start a coaching business from scratch

3. Contract / Programme agreement

We’re going to assume that your interested person is in fact the right fit and says yes to working with you, yey!

At this stage you want to send them over the contract or programme agreement as soon as possible so they can sign it and formalise things going forward. 

4. Payment

At this stage you’d send over an invoice or payment link.

I use invoices that have a payment link with Stripe or PayPal, for recurring payments or payment plans I use PayPal buttons or I set up a payment option inside my Teachable account.

5. Onboarding form (optional)

You might want to have the client complete an onboarding form so you can gather more information from them about where they’re at. You might skip this step if you had them complete a form before the booking call.

6. Have them book their first session

Sometimes it can be useful to book the first session in on the booking call if they are a yes to working with you, but if that didn’t happen, then send them a link to an online calendar or email them to set up a date and time.

And there you have it, a process for onboarding a new client!

You can include lots of other things in your process. Think about your own business and what would set up your client (and you as the coach) for success. Would you like to send them a gift? Have some resources forwarded to them? What would make it a really wonderful customer experience? Add those elements into your onboarding workflow.

I find it really helpful to just bullet point out the whole process like this:

  • Booking call booked
  • Booking call held
  • Contract sent over and signed
  • Invoice and payments set up
  • Onboarding form 
  • First session booked

When you’re onboarding a number of clients it can be helpful to use some tech tools to make it less work for you and more of a slick experience for the client.

Try out an online calendar like Calendly or Acuity Scheduling, this will save you time going back and forth with people trying to find a time that works and can also be really helpful when it comes to having boundaries with your own time.

If you want a more comprehensive option, I recommend Dubsado* (affiliate link*) which includes a scheduler as well as automatic workflows that manage everything from contracts, forms, invoicing and more. It saves time, creates a really well organised and professional experience for clients and is just fab!

I hope you’ve found this post helpful and has given you lots of ideas on how to onboard your own clients! Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

If you’re a new coach and are wondering how to set up your business don’t forget to check out my free Zero to Launch guide that will take you through everything you need to do to set up a successful coaching business. Download it for free here.


How to onboard a client

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