An eye on design in proposal generation software

Creating a sales proposal used to be a drag—you had to write it up (usually in Word or some other software), add in products and pricing (usually grabbing those from Excel or some other spreadsheet tool), proof it (usually missing a typo or a wrong price), and then send it (using Outlook at best, and snail mail or a fax at worst).

But with proposal generation software (like iQuoteXpress, IQX), @@making a killer quote just went from being a drag to simply being drag and drop.@@ Not only that, but—because you’re using a library of preconfigured templates—it helps you look like you hired a professional designer for every proposal you send.

Add in to the process consistent, clean contact management and sales reporting tools, and your proposal software generates more than just compelling quotes—it can deliver efficiencies throughout most every step in developing and delivering a sales quote.

Proposal design 1

Efficient by design

Let’s be blunt: in B2B sales organizations, you’re looking for business solutions that address at least one of two goals: drive revenue or reduce costs. No matter what else you may call it—fueling productivity increases, improving throughput, ROI-centered KPIs, etc.—it’s one of those two goals.

The proper configure, price, quote tool—especially when it’s CPQ integrated with a CRM solution—almost always addresses both goals, while delivering on a third: brand building.

Far too often, businesses have put easy brand-building wins (i.e., design!) on the back-burner, focusing instead on things like pricing strategies to drive revenue. But your CPQ solution has tools and templates built in that help ensure your quotes are clean, on-brand, and compelling enough to stand out in a crowd.

Because in most every case, your quote is one of many, and a professional appearance can work wonders. E.g., think about your first job interview—did you wear jeans or a suit? You wore your best to make the best impression. Your proposals must do the same!

Proposal design 2

Clean contacts

In addition to templates, your proposal generation software needs to house and manage contacts to:

  1. Ensure your reps have all the info they need for any possible prospect. It’s not enough to know your prospect’s CTO is Bill Smith; better to know where Bill worked last, have a link to his LinkedIn, a few details on his tech preferences, etc. We make it easy to do your homework.
  2. Link to previous proposals, ensuring no opportunity is missed and no sales call is wasted. Nothing worse than calling up Bill, running through your pitch, only to have him say, “I know. Your colleague told me all this last month."

A cloud-based contact management as part of your proposal software also makes it easy for any rep to connect with any prospect as the former can access the latter’s contact info anytime and from anywhere.

Reporting in

Finally, for your sales managers, your quote generation software absolutely must have reporting baked in. One of the best efficiency drivers is data, and sales analytics tools are critical. You can @@quickly see who’s performing and spot bottlenecks in your selling process.@@ A great looking proposal means nothing if it never gets out of the funnel.

If you'd like to learn more about this topic or see IQX for yourself with a free demo, contact us.