If you’re looking to sell more, improving your business proposals is a must. Making your proposals stand out is a great way to make yourself more memorable to your clients and build a more compelling offer.
We’ve put together some business proposals ideas you can start using today to build much better proposals and create more rapport with clients.
These ideas unite marketing and sales concepts to create a more structured experience for your client when they read your proposal and won’t really take that much work to implement.
Idea #1 – Structure your arguments
Don’t just slap the price, some sentences from your website and call it a day. A good business proposal is no different from a good website or landing page. It’s structured to guide your client through a script.
It’s a great idea to structure your business proposal similarily to the following:
- What pain they need to solve;
- How you can solve it;
- Why they should trust you;
- How much they need to invest;
- How can they commit.
This not only shows you understand the value you’re providing but also that you actually care about this client and what they need. Nothing screams UNPROFESSIONAL like receiving a proposal that is not tailored to what you requested and don’t answer your questions or – even worse – mentions a range of services the company offers but you have no need of.
If you’re interested in improving the copy on your proposals, check our guide to writing the perfect proposal and our proposal sample analysis for a in-depth look at what makes an effective proposal tick.
Idea #2- Include testimonials
Testimonials are widely used in marketing as a way to build trust and provide social-proof. They are the perfect way to show your client that you have helped companies similar to them and that you can deliver great results if they hire you.
Still, it’s not everyday that you see someone include a testimonial in their proposals.
That means you can easily stand out by doing it!
You should reach out to previous clients and ask them how they feel about the work you’ve done together. It’s as easy as sending an e-mail and might even be a great way to reengage them and maybe reignite the relationship.
If they respond positively, ask them if you can quote them in your marketing material.
It’s important to ask for permission as it’s better if you can mention their name, position and company but some people might not be comfortable with that.
So, ask and, if they say yes, just do it!
Idea #3 – Limit their options
Giving your client the option to choose between 8 different packages means not only they need to decide to buy from you but they also need to spend energy deciding between each option you have offered.
That might make them postpone their decision, which in turn might make them backing out on the sale.
That’s the reason car manufacturers don’t price different packages for the same model to close to one another. Their clients have a lot of options from other companies so it’s important that they don’t overwhelm customers when they are so close to selling;
Having many options can be a good thing in some cases but when you’re trying to get to the yes it’s almost always a bad decision.
The idea is to keep your business proposal limited to a single offer or two at most, as long as they have very clear value propositions and won’t cause analysis paralysis on your client.
Idea #4 – Make it scarce
FOMO, the Fear Of Missing Out, is a very relevant effect in investing and marketing as a whole and you can take advantage of it as well.
Some companies do this poorly and try to evoke the feeling of scarcity by making their offer seem limited but, if you’re not selling physical products, that almost never makes sense and your client can see right through it.
One different, more honest approach you can take is to just mention your the terms of your proposal are only valid up to a specific date. You then follow-up with your client and remind them that you might not be able to offer them that same price if they decide not to close the sale right now.
If you’re using an online proposal software, you can even block access to your proposal after a few days. That way your client won’t be able to postpone their decision indeterminately. Also, if it contains information you fear your client can take to a competitor, like your strategy for this client, you can protect your work by blocking access to it.
Idea #5 – Follow-up right after they read your proposal
One of the best ideas for your business proposals is to find a way to track when your client access it. That will let you follow-up right after they read it and you’ll be in the perfect position to solve any objections or answer any questions they might have.
Consider calling your client 5-10 minutes after you see them access your proposal whenver you can. That way you know they’re most likely available and if they’re interested they’ll be really happy to see you investing time and attention in them.
If you use Proposeful to send your proposals, you’ll be notified as soon as your client opens your proposals.
Idea #6 – Add a CTA at the end
If you’ve structured your proposal very well, you have captured your client’s attention. Now, you need to capture their actions.
It’s a great idea to include in your business proposals a clear CTA (Call To Action) for your client to follow. It might be a link to payment, to a form where you collect their data, a accept button or some other way for your client to commit and move the deal down the pipeline.
If you don’t make it cleat to your client what the next step is, you run the risk of loosing the opportunity to close the deal when they’re excited.
Why sell tomorrow when you can sell today?
Idea #7 – Show some previous work
A final idea to drastically improve the effectiveness of your proposals is to show your client some previous work you’ve done for companies or people similar to them.
A lot like adding testimonials, adding a case study from previous work you’ve done with your clients adds social proof and makes your client more confident about hiring you.
Case studies might sound complex and some companies spend a lot of resources writing them. You don’t necessarily have to make it that complicated, you can just write a few paragraphs detailing a specific case where a client approached you, what challenge they were facing and how you were able to solve it. Top it with a testimonial from the said client and you’re gold.
Need more business proposal ideas? Check our templates
If you’re jumping of excitement after reading these business proposal ideas, we’ve got one more for you!
Proposeful is the perfect way to create and send proposals and implement these business proposal ideas. Sign up for free to start using today!