A clean sales proposal is a lot like a handshake. You can easily tell the difference between one that is strong and confident, and one that is awkward and weak. While people may hesitate to admit it, that sort of presentation can make a difference when it comes to the impression you are leaving on a potential partner.
Creating the perfect sales proposal for your team may seem like a daunting task, but approaching the challenge with a few tricks up your sleeve can make it an effortless process. So, how do you elevate your sales proposal? It’s a lot easier than you think!
Tips for creating solid sales proposals
Define the problem and your solution
You can start to develop a robust sales proposal by determining the problem your clients are facing and the solutions that your team is equipped to offer. This is the driving force behind your sales proposal and will offer it the necessary direction that all other elements of the proposal will tether to.
Sales coach Peter Griffith has identified that some of the most important qualities in developing a sales relationship are the ability to communicate value and effectively demonstrate subject knowledge. Understanding where to build from can ensure that your team covers all their bases.
You should avoid having a surface-level understanding of prospective clients. Take the time to develop a deep understanding of their needs, problems, values, and other important aspects about them. Ask yourself these questions before you send your proposal.
First, what stakeholders are involved in the problem, decision-making, or process our product or service is hoping to address?
As you start to answer this question, be sure that your response includes people you see on the front and back end of potential solutions you are offering. For example, you may offer a solution that an HR team needs, but the IT team may be involved in managing the service. They should be addressed in your proposal, too.
Second, what problems will never change?
This question was coined by Amazon’s Executive Chairman, Jeff Bezos. He claims that it sets businesses with lasting solutions apart from those that are bound to fade into the distance. By asking yourself which concerns your client faces that’ll never go away, you can create a sales proposal that demonstrates lasting value. In Bezos’s case, he knew that customers would never be interested in paying more for products and would always seek out the fastest way to get what they wanted.
Third, what are the core aspects of my client’s identity?
Understanding your client on an intimate level guarantees that your proposal will target not just a single sale, but a lasting relationship. Think about their mission and values statement, community initiatives they are involved in, and who their workforce is. This may even help you determine how to effectively design your sales proposal!
Establish what information you’re presenting
Once you’ve determined the solutions and services you can offer to solve a specific problem, you can start to put together the right content to demonstrate value.
A sales proposal is typically made up of four key components, including:
- An executive summary
- Specifics about the products and services you’ll deliver
- A strategy to create a sense of urgency or call to action
- An outline of steps to follow if your proposal is successful
The best practice is to write your executive summary after you’ve put together the rest of your sales proposal. Doing this will ensure the executive summary encapsulates all of the details and strategies you’ve put together.
If you’re looking to create an all-encompassing sales proposal, you’ll want to demonstrate some key aspects of your team by providing the right information.
Take contact information, for example. While it seems overly simplistic to say that including contact information makes your business reliable, you can imagine the frustration or confusion of not being able to find the contact details of a company that wants to work with you.
Here’s some recommended content to consider including in your sales proposal to make it robust:
- Research and development that demonstrates the value of technology or strategies your products and services use
- Plans for quality control or standards you hold your services to
- Industry certifications and compliance information
- Case studies that demonstrate your ability to thrive in unique circumstances
Make the collection of information you provide as specific as possible. Fluff and vague statements mustn’t come across as a smokescreen for a lack of understanding.
The information you provide should also be easy to digest. Mix up delivery methods to keep information consumable and engaging. Parse numbers down to percentages, or convert them to visually appealing graphs and charts. You can record videos of your quality control team, leadership, or sales team to add personal elements to your proposal, too.
Of course, that’s provided that you’ll be using an engaging digital platform to deliver your sales proposal.
Share your qualifications and social proof
We’re prone to trust products and services that come at the recommendation of others. Incorporating testimonials into your sales proposal is a highly effective, low-effort way of demonstrating your industry expertise to potential clients.
Research has shown that things like online reviews and personal recommendations can have a huge pull on where we bring our business, so it’s worthwhile to collect and disseminate positive things your existing clients have to say about your business.
Incorporate customer testimonials in your sales proposal to demonstrate your reliability and customer service, your ability to adapt to unique circumstances, and showcase the lasting solutions you provide.
Remember that your business is offering more than just a product or service to a potential client. You’re demonstrating your interest in developing a lasting professional relationship with your clients.
Opt for a digital proposal
It’s 2022. Businesses are evolving, and sales proposals should, too.
Going paperless is becoming a growing trend, especially when it comes to B2B deliverables. Not only is this a greener way to start your working relationship, but it’s also far more engaging and easy to access.
Physical documents and hard-to-follow email chains can make accessing the information in your sales proposal inconvenient, so you would imagine that if you’re offering the convenience of service, this may seem counterintuitive.
This added convenience isn’t just for your prospective clients, either. It’s also for you!
Digital deliverables give you insight into when and where your clients are accessing the material you share with them. That’s right, you’ll know exactly when a buying team opens your proposal. You’ll also have access to granular-level data about what microsite visitors are engaging with most on your site, how long they spend exploring certain elements, and which aspects of the site are left untouched.
You can’t get all of that with a brochure that collects dust under an old takeout menu, can you?
Among these benefits, digital sales proposals offer a sense of security that traditional print documents can’t. Upgrading communication efforts to a microsite comes with the peace of mind that security features—password protection, SAML, and multi-factor authentication—have to offer. It ensures that sensitive information only gets into the right hands.
For more on how to leverage the power of digital sales proposals, head to our whitepaper all about it!
Digital sales proposal examples to get you started
Ready to get started? Here’s some inspiration for your next digital sales proposal.
A traditional one-pager is the printed version of an elevator pitch. They’re quick, easy to consume, and chockfull of important information. The sleek design of this digital one-pager immediately jumps in with product or service features and includes a visual list of testimonials. Relying on a highly visual but informative layout like this makes it easy for your client to have access to the information they need without looking hard for it.
Looking to pack a lot of information in one space in a way that isn’t overwhelming? Opt for a clean layout with a visually displayed menu. This proposal leverages clean visuals with minimal text up front. It’s easy to access critical information by clicking on a sublink at the top of the page, which is conveniently ordered by relevance. And, if all else fails, the site features a search bar that makes finding information that much easier.
Get started with a digital sales proposal by Zoomforth
If you’re looking for an easy way to get started with your own digital sales proposals, look no further than Zoomforth. Creating a microsite is as easy as customizing a premade template with drag-and-drop features. Your sales team will have a collection of deliverables that are secure, trackable, and accessible across all mobile platforms in no time.
If you’re convinced, try out a demo of Zoomforth today!