Proposal Automation: How to Save Time with Better Proposals

Written by Vanja Maganjic


Every sales professional knows the benefits of proposal automation. When you automate repetitive tasks in your day-to-day work, you can invest more time and effort in the creative parts of the process, as well as direct communication with potential clients. 

Seeing how business proposals are a big part of the sales process, it’s only natural you would want to find a reliable tool to help you out. The proposal process can be a hassle. You have to answer the requests for proposals very quickly. This means you should be able to create high-quality documents in a short amount of time. 

Once the proposal is sent, it still needs to be approved, signed and paid for. The follow-up process can drag out, especially if you don’t have any type of information that could help you. With all these reasons in mind, it’s easy to see why proposal automation is essential for your sales process. 

In this article, we’ll cover the most important benefits of sales automation as well as give you actionable tips on how to create better-converting proposals. 

How does proposal automation work? 

Proposal automation refers to using a tool or other types of technology to perform parts of your proposal process. 

The tool could be helping you in:

  • proposal creation
  • the agreement and signing 
  • payment process
  • the follow-up process 

When looking at the bigger picture, a proposal automation tool will help you streamline the sales process. By integrating all of your sales tools, you’ll have an overview of which potential clients have requested a proposal, which proposals have been accepted and which leads need more nurturing. 

In order for your proposal tool to work and speed up the process, it needs to be easy to use. It shouldn’t require any coding or design experience and it should be intuitive. 

Furthermore, automation brings you more consistency. Once you set up your proposal process and onboard your team members onto the new tool, you’ll be able to quickly create branded documents that look amazing and help you sell more. 

With all that said, it’s important to select the right proposal tool. It should be reliable and help you with as much of the proposal process as possible. That’s why you should use Better Proposals. 

Key benefits of using Better Proposals

Better Proposals is a great proposal tool that will help you speed up your sales process and completely transform it. We know exactly how hard finding new clients can be, which is why we’ve invested a lot of time and effort to help you over the hurdle of proposal creation. 

Here are the most important benefits of our proposal tool. 

Templates

Creating proposals from scratch can be a hassle. Figuring out how much text you should write, when to include pictures and how to structure the whole thing is not easy. 

That’s why we’ve created more than 200 document templates you can customize to your needs. All the templates are ready to be sent and don’t need a lot of editing. 

We put a lot of effort into creating our documents. That’s why we rely on yearly reports which show us the features clients like in proposals. Every year we analyze all the successfully signed and paid proposals our customers created, in order to figure out how trends change. 

That means that we know exactly how many sections your proposals should have, how to structure the payment section, when to send them, how to address the client, when to talk about yourself and more. 

The way we structure our templates makes them easy to get through and we made sure all the necessary information is included. If you want clients to get through your documents quickly, you should avoid fluff. Any type of content that isn’t bringing value to the proposal should be avoided. 

Since our proposals are web-based, meaning they are sent as secure links to landing pages, there is no need to print them out. 

printing out proposals

From our research, we’ve discovered that printing your proposals out affects your conversion rate by 88%. Because we want to give you the best chance possible, we made sure our documents are easy to read both on desktop as well as on mobile. 

That way, your clients won’t feel the need to print out your documents and by doing so, lengthen the agreement process. 

Content library

The content library is a feature that will significantly speed up your proposal creation process. It lets you save pieces of content for future use. Whether it’s text, pictures, videos, pricing section or your terms and conditions, with a few clicks you can save them and include them in other proposals. 

content library

Once you save all your repetitive content in the content library, you’ll be able to create new documents in a matter of minutes. 

This feature is extremely important if you engage in sending cold proposals. Those types of proposals will most likely have the same content, with a few tweaks. With the content library, you can create a large number of proposals quickly. 

If you are sending similar proposals to different clients, utilize the custom merge tags. They’re automatic fields that allow you to change clients’ names and other information like addresses, contact information, Tax IDs, changes to the terms and conditions and more. 

Digital signature

We’ve already mentioned how our proposals are web-based. One of the benefits of this is the usage of digital signatures. They present a secure and encrypted way of signing documents. 

Digital signatures are legally binding and accepted worldwide. Every digital signature is a unique copy linked to a selected document. This means that they come with time stamps as well as the signer’s IP address, making them impossible to falsify. 

Not only are digital signatures secure, but they also speed up your sales process. Think about it, this way, all you have to do is send your proposal to the client and they get to type in their name. 

digital signature

No one needs to print out anything, scan or send things through snail mail. When creating our digital signature, we made sure to make it convenient for both parties. This means that your clients won’t have to download any software or web extensions in order to sign your documents. 

Once they type in their name it turns into a digital signature which makes your document legally binding. After that, there can be no changes made to the document. 

Making changes to your proposals

You won’t always see eye to eye with your clients. Sometimes they will want you to make changes to the proposals you’ve sent them. With Better Proposals,  those changes can be made easier than ever. 

All you have to do is log into your dashboard and edit the document. As we’ve already mentioned, changes to the proposals can be made up until the moment they get signed. 

making changes to the proposal

In order to make the agreement process quick and easy, we’ve included live chat integrations, which allow your clients to leave comments as they’re reading your documents. The easier you make it for your clients to leave remarks and ask for changes, the quicker the whole process will be. 

Payment options

Not only can your clients sign the proposals with a digital signature, but they can also pay their fees through the document itself. The payments can be made through PayPal, Stripe or GoCardless. 

payment options

This type of integration helps to make your proposal a well-rounded document which not only explains your solution, and shows timescales, but can also be signed and paid in a few clicks. 

You can set up the desired currency, the taxes and even the type of payment (one-off, subscription, monthly payment and more). 

Proposal AI

In order to give your proposal the best chance possible, we’ve created proposal AI. It kicks in once you’re in the finishing stages of your proposal writing and gives you actionable tips on how to improve your document. 

The proposal AI works based on an analysis of all successfully signed and paid proposals in the selected industry. This means that the AI won’t be correcting just the most common proposal mistakes, but also the mistakes that are tied to your field. 

proposal AI

This feature will help you rest assured knowing that your document follows the industry standards while helping you stand out from the competition. 

Proposal analytics

Our proposal analytics can help inform your follow-up process. 

They will show you when your proposal was:

  • Opened and by who 
  • Forwarded
  • Signed
  • Payed
  • As well as how much time readers spent on each of the sections
proposal analytics

By knowing how much time they spent on each of the sections, you’ll know how to approach them in the follow-up process. For the clients that opened your proposal and went straight to the pricing section, you’ll know that they’re looking for a cheap alternative and that you shouldn’t spend too much time trying to win that deal. 

For the clients that spend a lot of time looking at your timescales, you can follow up with an email explaining your process in more detail. Make sure to also include a case study that shows how you helped a previous client achieve ROI. 

The more information you have on a client, the easier it will be for you to construct your follow-up strategy. 

Proposal tracking

Our dashboard shows the status of all of your proposals, so you know exactly which clients to contact and which projects you can start working on. This data can be broken down based on a specific time period and even individual team members. 

Proposal automation allows you to easily create reports that show your conversion rate and the average time it takes for your documents to get signed. 

proposal tracking

This makes tracking your team super easy and diminishes the need for any outside tools. 

The reports also show: 

  • Monthly recurring revenue
  • One-off sales
  • Quarterly recurring revenue
  • Annual recurring revenue
  • Team performance
  • Individual performance
  • Revenue by product

Sales tool integrations

In order to further streamline your sales process, you can integrate Better Proposals with your sales stack. We offer more than 40 native integrations and all other tools can be integrated through Zapier or API. 

proposal integrations

This is where proposal automation shines. Whether it’s a tool that helps you out with sales, marketing or customer support, you can link them to Better Proposals and make sure your entire sales process is quick and easy.

From lead generation to sales and nurturing customer relationships, make sure your clients are getting the same quality of service at every turn. 

Bonus tips

Once you get in the habit of sending high-quality proposals, you may notice how not all of them bring in the same results. These common mistakes might be the reason why. 

Make sure your pricing section is called ROI or Investment. If you name it something along the lines of Price, you’ll cheapen your proposal by making it look like a regular invoice. Try using a name that sparks more positive emotions. 

You should send your proposals as soon as possible. This will give you a better chance of converting. However, make sure you’re not sending it on a Friday. That will lengthen the sales process. 

Conclusion

We’ve given you more than 10 reasons why proposal automation is the right choice for you. It doesn’t just save time, but also helps you make high-quality documents and makes your follow-up process easy and painless. 

The most important thing in all of this is choosing the right proposal tool for your needs. With Better Proposals, you’ll get all of the benefits mentioned, as well as round the clock customer service, a knowledge hub and so much more. 

Sign up for the free two-week trial and experience the benefits first-hand. It gives you enough time to send the first proposal and see how easy the whole process is both for you and your clients. 

You will no longer want to return to Word and the anxiety of including a single picture in your documents. Our starter plan starts at $19 per month and includes almost all of the features we mentioned in the article, making it an easy choice for the betterment of your sales process. 

About Vanja Maganjic

Vanja Maganjić is an experienced writer with a unique passion for creating content that helps brands connect with their customers. She believes in brands that stand up to the man and thinks that storytelling is an essential part of what makes us human. Her long term goal is to become the cool auntie that gives out family-sized Kit Kats on Halloween.
Categories: Proposal Writing Tips