A business proposal templates is a formal document you send to potential clients, partners, or investors, essentially asking the question, Do you want to do business with us? But it is more than that. The business proposal’s mission is to convince these people to want to do business with you, and how it does this is through the outline of what your proposed business is, what the costs, advantages, and risks are, and why in the end you are the best person or company for the job.
Business Proposal Format
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This sample proposal can be solicited or unsolicited, and despite its fixed intent, it can take many forms: a letter, an outline, a form. From this free collection of business proposals, select a Proposal Template to help you get started.
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The Best Time to Draft a Business Proposal
Naturally, not every business will have to draft a business proposal, nor would you have to do it for every partnership. (There will be times you will also receive a proposal from another firm, for example.) You should think of the business proposal as the first step to any major, planned initiative:
- When looking to expand your influence by linking up with related firms as partners
- When seeking extra funding to undertake some ambitious growth project (also see Investment Proposal Template)
- When pitching clients (especially wholesale buyers) to hire you as a supplier (also see Marketing Proposal Template)
These are all examples of external proposals, where you are trying to put your company forward as an option to people outside your company.
But a business proposal can also be issued within a company, addressed to the appropriate decision makers, when you want to push a particular project you think will benefit the company’s mission. This will take a project proposal format that follows the general outline of a business proposal.
The Basic Parts of a Business Proposal
After all the budgeting and project analyses and plans are laid out, it’s time to draft the proposal. Whoever you’re addressing it to, a proposal will follow this general outline:
- A title page (for external proposals). This should contain your company name, the date, and the addressee’s details. Be direct here as much as possible. Serious prospects will be turned off by a generic “To Whom It May Concern.” Do your research and find out the names of your clients.
- Table of contents. Mostly for detailed, multiple-paged proposals.
- Executive summary. Make a statement of a customer issue and how your service is the solution.
- Approach and methodology. Your proposed plan to solve the client’s problem.
- Qualifications. List your past successes in similar or related situations; convince them you are the one for the job.
- Schedule and benchmarks. A timeline of the project.
- Cost proposal. This will include estimated budget (for investors) and payment schedules.
An easier way to get started is to peruse this list and pick one that fits closest to your situation. You can draft your proposal loosely on top of your free sample to make a winning business proposal.
General Business Proposal Template in Word
How to Use These Templates
These free documents can be downloaded as Word documents, completely editable. Some will be completed samples you can tailor to fit your needs, and others will be outlines showing you where to input your information. Creating a business or Sales Proposal Template cannot be made easier.