The Value of Free

The Value of Free

With customers becoming more discerning about how they’re spending their money, businesses need to look at ways to give their customers added value. Adding value to a potential transaction doesn’t have to cost a lot, but could pay huge dividends down the road with increased business.

You don’t necessarily need to add the value as part of a transaction as it’s ok to give something away for free in an effort to earn business.

I talked earlier about the value of a handwritten note and how that can help your business. But what are some other ideas? Read on for more.

Let’s take a look at some examples:

Probably the most famous is Amazon and it’s free super saver shipping on any purchase over $35. For the longest time, the minimum purchase threshold was $25, but even at $35 it’s a bargain to get free shipping on your products.

Apple gives customers free shipping on any purchase of $50 or more, which when buying from Apple, isn’t hard to do.

Target gives their Red Card members free shipping on online orders plus a 5% discount for using the card.

United Airlines MileagePlus card holders get a free checked bag and priority boarding. If you’re not a member, you have to pay for your bags and if you want upgraded boarding, you’ll have to pay for it.

So what are some things you can offer your current and potential customers? Here are some suggestions:

  • Free shipping / delivery
  • Free estimate on a particular job
  • Free installation (appliances / electronics / other home improvement)
  • Free inspection (pest control / other home improvement)
  • Free consultation
  • For Personal Trainers – Free 30 Minute training session
  • For Barbers – Free mustache trim with haircut
  • For IT Pros – Free PC Checkup (virus / spyware / performance)
  • For Dentists – Free Dental Health Kit (toothbrush, floss, mouthwash, etc.)
  • For Realtors – Housewarming basket with local coupons, products for new homeowner
  • 10% off purchase for signing up for your email list

There are lots of things you can include or add to build perceived value for your product or service. Giving away something for nothing is a great way to build rapport and shows people that you care about the relationship. If you’re dispensing free information in the form of a consultation, you’re also showing people that you’re an expert in your particular field.

While free does wind up costing in some form or another, be it monetarily or your time, the perception of the additional value is what’s going to help you get the sale. If giving something away for free helps give you a steady flow of paying customers, isn’t it worth doing?

So what say you? Do you have any value adds you provide or give away? Let’s discuss in the comments!

Disclosure of Material Connection

Some of the links in the post above may be affiliate links. This means if you click on a link and make a purchase, I will receive a modest commission from the sale. These links help support the maintenance of this website.


Please be advised that I only recommend products or services that I have used or tried personally and believe will add value to my readers' lives. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”