How To Develop A Business Proposal – If you need to know how to write a business proposal, congratulations! You’ve just found an amazing resource full of business proposal examples and free templates to get you started.
It’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed (and a little anxious) about writing a winning business proposal. You want to get it in as soon as possible, but you have no idea what to put in there, how long it should be, or even where to start.
How To Develop A Business Proposal
Writing a business proposal doesn’t have to be daunting. In fact, if you soak up all the information in this article, you’ll already be one step ahead of the competition. Sit back, pour yourself a coffee and ease into writing your next business proposal.
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A business proposal is a document that is used to secure work. It can be submitted by an individual or a business and is usually (but not always) a proposed solution for the specific job, project or service that is required.
Think of a business proposal as a bit like a sales pitch or job interview on paper. You need to explain why you are the best person (or company) for the job and really sell yourself or your business.
A good proposal will outline the service you offer and briefly explain how you will approach the task. It will also include a quote and/or estimate for the completion of the work.
A business proposal can be solicited or unsolicited. If a business proposal is requested, it means that the individual or business that wrote the proposal was
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Any business or individual can submit a request for quotation and there are many templates available online to help you do this.
To give an example, let’s say a company (not yours!) was sued. The company’s legal team can then send requests for proposals to various law firms. The RFP would most likely include an explanation of the situation and request assistance and legal advice.
Requested proposals are generally easier to write because you are given clear instructions. With a solicited proposal, you know exactly what the client or customer wants and can tailor your response accordingly.
Make sure you read the RFP thoroughly. Not only will this help you deliver a comprehensive and relevant business proposal, but the RFP will often contain useful information about the criteria used to make the final decision.
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If you are asked to submit a business proposal, you may also be given formatting guidelines, so please review these before submitting as well.
If you are trying to attract clients by sending out business offers without being asked first, then your proposal is spam. Like cold calling, these proposals are commonly used to try to get leads.
Writing spam can be a bit more difficult because you have no information to go on. An unsolicited pitch also needs to be much more compelling, meaning it’s up to you to research who you’re targeting and demonstrate your value proposition.
Unsolicited sales pitches should serve as an introduction to your product or service and aim to convince your potential client that they should use your service.
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An unsolicited business proposal differs from other advertising materials in that it carefully considers the customer’s needs and concerns and specifically addresses them.
Obviously, a solicited quote is much more likely to win new business because the company already has you on their radar. However, unsolicited offers have their advantages, the most obvious of which is that there is no competition.
Sending unsolicited proposals, provided they are well researched and offer creative solutions to your client’s problems, can be an extremely effective marketing campaign.
If so, they will likely have a review plan and/or submission guidelines. It might be worth checking them out and timing your suggestions accordingly.
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Okay, we’ll dive deeper into the details below, but for now, here’s a basic format to give you a better idea of the key elements that should be included in all business proposals, solicited or not:
A business plan is about you. It is a document that details your company’s strategy and shows how you intend to grow. The intended reader of this document could be, for example, an investor or a bank manager.
The idea of a business plan is to outline your goals, show that you know what you’re doing and that you’re worthy of investment. Therefore, in this document you can discuss how you intend to scale and how you will achieve and increase profits.
The business proposal is about them. A business proposal is a document designed to sell your services to someone else.
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While you can certainly use some of the information in your business plan to help you write your business proposal, the focus of your proposal should not be on you, but on who you are trying to get as a client.
A business proposal should therefore focus on how you intend to solve a potential client’s problem, how you can help them or provide value
How to Write a Business Proposal in 6 Steps Step 1 – Make sure you have all the information you need
The first thing you need to do is gather all the necessary information. Actually, scratch that. The
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Now that you’re nice and calm, let’s dive into it. First things first. You will be tempted to go through the process for fear of losing your job. Don’t give in to the urge to panic and rush the business proposal!
While you definitely want to submit your proposal as soon as possible, it’s much more important to do a good job on it.
You don’t want to spend your precious time putting together a business proposal only to realize you forgot a crucial detail. So be methodical and take your time.
What information do you need now to write a complete proposal? Here is a list of questions you should ask yourself before you start writing:
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If you send out multiple business proposals, you could probably benefit from using CRM (customer relationship management) software.
Basically, it allows you to keep track of all your contacts, appointments, and leads. It is a useful tool for creating a comprehensive system for organizing your proposals and your contact with clients.
There are plenty of CRM providers out there. To save you time, here are the top 5 CRM options (I highly recommend option 1 if you’re just starting out):
Once you have gathered all the relevant information to write a business proposal, you should have everything you need to outline the scope of the project.
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Project scope refers to the amount of work that needs to be completed to satisfy the client’s requirements. Here’s a helpful video that explains the concept (and the dreaded scope of creep!):
To complete your outline, you need to have a thorough understanding of what the job will involve. You should note down the various tasks that need to be completed along with the resources that you will need.
At this point you should also assess how long the project is likely to take and start to consider costs.
Try not to get too bogged down in the details at first. It’s better to treat it as a rough draft and then once you have your outline you can flesh it out by filling in all the details later. This is where a project plan template can help you outline your project in a structured way.
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Okay, so you’ve gathered all the information and successfully measured the project scope. Great! Now is the time to start pricing the job.
The best way to do this is to first find out how much the whole job will cost you.
Be sure to include labor and material/equipment costs as well as things like shipping. Try to be as accurate as possible and don’t forget to factor in any bulk discounts etc.
You should already have a good idea of how long the job will take, so factor your labor costs accordingly.
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A good rule of thumb is to multiply the estimated working hours by 1.5. This way you allow for any unexpected twists and turns in the project.
You can always make your client really happy by deducting those extra hours from the bill at the end of the project if they aren’t needed!
If the amount of time spent on the job is likely to vary (for example, a construction worker may not know the full extent of the work until the job begins), then make sure you include a notice in your proposal that covers you in this regard.
Once you have all your calculations done, it’s time to decide on your profit margin. This will vary depending on the type of business you are in. It’s probably best to do your research and check the industry standard.
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We’re going to break it down to a basic structure and do it step by step
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