A sales proposal can make all the difference in closing the deal. You may have a great product, but it needs the foundation of a sales proposal to sell. A sales proposal should be able to convey products benefits, features and uses cases to the client in an engaging and professional manner. So,
What makes a winning proposal? Here are key elements to writing a proposal.
Table of Contents
- 1. Understand Your Customer Needs
- 2. Let Your Audience Know Beforehand What to Expect
- 3. Customize Proposal to Customer Requirements
- 4. Include Appropriate Details – Neither More Nor Less
- 5. Do Not Forget Call to Action
- 6. Give Customers a Strong Reason to Buy Now
- 7. Highlight Your Unique Value Proposition
1. Understand Your Customer Needs
This is the most crucial, basic and first step in creating a sales proposal. If you aren’t aware of what customers need and expect from your product, how would you know what to include in the sales proposal? Dig into the client company and their products, services, business challenges and pain points. The sales proposal should effectively address their problems and provide solutions.
2. Let Your Audience Know Beforehand What to Expect
The sales proposal key elements should not contain any unpleasant surprises for customers. It should be a no-surprise proposal. Just imagine the reaction of customers if they come across incomplete details or hidden costs. Most probably, they will drive you away with a statement ‘let me think about it’, which actually translates into ‘I am not interested’. Now, you don’t want that, right? So, before you send the proposal to the customer, give them a brief overview of what they should expect from it.
3. Customize Proposal to Customer Requirements
Every customer has unique business needs. Obviously, the solutions should also be tailored to their problems. It should be outlined specifically to customers’ business and how your product will meet their requirements. A personalized and winning proposal will overwhelmingly serve the customer. A tailor-made proposal is a customer delight!
4. Include Appropriate Details – Neither More Nor Less
Keep your proposal just appropriate, both in length and content. A too lengthy proposal will not hold customers’ attention span while a too short one may not include complete details. Similarly, the inclusion of content that is not relevant to customers’ needs should be avoided at any cost. A proposal should be crisp and concise, yet highlight all points that matter to customers. If you have time at hand before submitting the proposal, review it at least twice or thrice. The chances are that you would be able to fine tune it properly. Also, invest in good proposal creation software to create sophisticated, professional and error-free proposals.
5. Do Not Forget Call to Action
The ultimate aim of any sales proposal is to urge customers to take action. ‘Click here’ button on the proposal if it is generated electronically through proposal creation software is a perfect example of a call to action. A verbal statement such as ‘would you like to sign the proposal’ or asking your customer means include call to action.
6. Give Customers a Strong Reason to Buy Now
Have you ever seen or read those signs which give limited offers to customers – something like ‘offer only till Christmas’ or ‘discount available only on first purchase’? Aren’t you tempted to avail those offers? Well, you should too give your customers to make the purchase decision ‘now’ instead of ‘later’. A decision postponed or delayed could increase the chances of losing a deal because customers may meet your competitors in the interim or simply push the discussion at the back of their mind. Always assume you’re going up against several competitors and offer some instantly visible benefits to customers at the time of the sales proposal. For example, bundled product discount, upfront discount, free trials/demos/shipping, extended warranties, flexible payment schedule or no-questions-asked return policy. These kinds of ‘on the spot’ offers are likely to expedite customers’ decisions.
7. Highlight Your Unique Value Proposition
Remember that there are several competitors with similar products vying to win the same deal as you are. While you can’t thwart the competition, you can at least get an edge. And, you can do it by offering a unique value proposition to customers. Your sales proposal should highlight the differentiating factors that make your product a must-buy.
A compelling sales proposal can grow your business effectively. Make sure to include sales proposal key elements listed above.