Write a Sales Proposal that Actually Closes the Deal [Checklist]
Love it or hate it, a sales proposal is a critical part of every successful deal. Although some salespeople consider it a waste of time, if done properly, it can not only help you close more deals, but also enable you to explore up-sell opportunities and drive more revenues. A well-written sales proposal gives you a chance to show that you understand your prospect’s needs, that you have listened to them diligently, and that you’ll provide a compelling solution.
Checklist for Your Sales ProposalHere’s a 4-step checklist to help you evaluate your sales proposal
- Is it organized?
- Is it readable?
- Does it address your prospect’s pain point?
- Does it provide pricing and timeline?
Is it organized?Often, when we work on a sales proposal, we end up filling it with a lot of content. Sure, you may know your sales proposal in and out. But is it organized well enough to help your prospects easily search through it and find the information they’re looking for? Are all the sections organized logically? Do they support your story? A thin, well-organized proposal is more effective than a detailed, unorganized document.
Is it readable?Although your proposal needs to be written professionally, it should also be easy to understand. If you add too much jargon and too many technical information, it will turn off your readers. It’s essential to communicate the complexities in a lucid way. Break down the problem and make your solution easy to understand. If your proposal is hard to read, then your prospects will assume that your solution is difficult to implement, or requires highly knowledgeable experts. Remember, your sales proposal will, often, be reviewed by multiple stakeholders. The easier it is to understand your proposal, the sooner you’ll be able to build a consensus, and close the deal. The easier it is to understand your proposal, the sooner you’ll be able to build a consensus, and close the deal. Click To Tweet Sometimes you might not be able to meet all the decision makers at the same time. In such cases, your proposal is likely to be passed around via email, with no one to present its information on your behalf. So keep your proposal simple and intuitive.
Does it address your prospect’s pain points?Make sure that your proposal directly addresses your prospect’s pain points. When we spend weeks working on a proposal, it’s possible to drown the essentials amidst details. Your proposal should clearly describe the problem and why it’s detrimental to your prospect’s business. It should also explain how your solution can help them solve their problem.
Does it address pricing and timeline?No prospect likes ambiguity, especially when it comes to how much they need to pay and how long it will take to benefit from your solution. Be transparent and provide them estimates upfront. Ensure that you help them understand the variables (e.g users, data, projects) your pricing is based on. For example, do they need to pay double if they double their users? This will enable your prospects to forecast how their expenses will grow as their usage increases. If you provide huge discounts for bulk requirements, make sure to highlight it. Also, point out the things that are unlimited (e.g 24×7 support, unlimited reports) in your solution. If your competitor charges for any of these things, this might help you clinch the deal. It can be tricky to estimate the timeline. I’ve seen prospects come up with new requirements when we’re in the middle of the execution phase, which only pushes things further. So make sure you clearly communicate the underlying caveats. For example, you’ll be able to implement your solution in 2 months, provided there are only up to 2 rounds of requirements gathering within the next 2 weeks. Finally, make the purchase experience quick and easy. Describe the various payment methods supported by your business, how they can use them, and what they can expect after they make the payment.
Writing a Winning Sales ProposalTo create a great buying experience for your prospects that closes the deal, you need to provide relevant and practical content in your proposal. Although the actual format of sales proposal varies from person to person, it’s a tool that you can use to convince your prospects to purchase your solution to their problem. Here’s a 5 step checklist to write a winning proposal
- Write a personalized cover letter
- Focus on the ‘why’
- Include customer testimonials
- Make it easy for prospects to do business with you
- It should be accessible on mobile