What’s in a business proposal? This document provides you with a free business proposal template. Feel free to adjust it to suit your needs. No two businesses will use exactly the same format, so it’s important that you understand what the purpose of the proposal is. What are you trying to achieve? Does the format help you do that? If not, adjust it so that it does! Ultimately, a business proposal is comprised of three parts:
- A problem statement.
- A proposed solution.
- A pricing estimate. It’s worth noting that a business proposal is not just an estimate. While you will likely touch on costs in the proposal, an estimate is much more informal, and doesn’t take the whole picture into account in the same way a business proposal does.
Now that you know the essentials of a winning business proposal, it’s time to go ahead and start writing, right? Well, not exactly. The next part is to be able to find out what to put under the 3 Ps so that you can develop a business proposal that gets their attention and awards you that contract.
Detail the Cost and Time Involved. No client enjoys coming in over-budget for any job or project, but all clients appreciate knowing exactly how much time and money can be expected of them if they choose you for this specific project. Spell out the timeline of when and how you’ll do what with a best estimate. Are you going to interview your clients at the start of next month to figure out where their site is losing money? Will you begin wireframing your redesign iteration shortly thereafter?
If you’ve worked with a client before, convincing him or her to hire you on retainer (an ongoing basis) is one of the most effective ways to increase your income. Familiarity with your client’s unique needs, work style, and industry are all powerful motivators to convince them to choose you instead of anyone else.
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