Essential Items to Include in Your Next Business Proposal

When you’re in business, there’s a good chance that another company will ask you to fill out and submit a proposal for them. While this may seem like an easy task, it can often pose just the opposite when you realize that it is your job to sell your product or service. You must convince the other company that your business is the best choice for their needs. 

To make this task easier on yourself, we’ve put together a list of the essential items that should be included in your next business proposal. Read more about them below.

1. An Executive Summary

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The first part of any well-written document should include an executive summary so the reader knows exactly what they’re getting themselves into before investing their time or energy into the rest of it. For example, let’s say you’ve been asked by a soda company to provide them with a complete marketing plan for their latest product. 

In the executive summary, you would summarize exactly what your plan entails. Good actions include sending a pitch deck to specific soda companies and supermarket chains. It’s also a good idea to do look into recent trends. From there, you can determine how you should implement your plan like identifying high-traffic organizations where demos can be held and hiring interns who will help with these demos.

2. An Introduction of Your Company and Its Employees

If you’re including an executive summary, it’s already understood that you want those reading your proposal to know more about you and your organization. However, by having a clear introduction explaining who you are at the top of your document, you’ll give readers all they need to know immediately. 

Let’s say, for example, that you own a small marketing firm with four employees, each of whom specializes in social media. While this information is already clear from the executive summary, including an introduction to your company at the top of it simply solidifies your place as an authority on the subject.

3. A Breakdown of Exactly What You’ll Be Doing to Help Them


Have you ever read something where all the writer does is tell you how great they are?  If you’re like most people, you’ll find that quite annoying.

Instead, write exactly what services you’ll be providing and why they will benefit those reading the proposal. For example, let’s say a soda company wants you to provide them with a plan that helps increase sales by 20% over three years. You would include in the business proposal example that, during these three years, 30% of your time will be spent on research and development while the other 70% will be split between digital branding and public relations.

4. A Breakdown of Exactly What They’ll Get in Return

As already discussed above, every company should only invest in a project if they’re sure to receive something worthwhile out of it. If your business is going to be helping another company increase sales by 20%, then you need to show them how this will benefit them as well as what measurable outcomes can be expected as a result. 

For example, perhaps you would like for those reading the proposal to know that if their sales do indeed increase by 20%, they can expect to see an additional $500,000 in revenue each year. This number doesn’t need to be exact, but it should be specific enough so that they know exactly what they’re getting out of the deal.

5. A Sign-off/Closing Statement

After your proposal is written and you’ve included all of the information necessary for the reader to make a smart decision, you’ll want to close off by thanking them for their consideration. You could also remind them how great it would be if you could work together. 

For example, let’s say you want readers of your soda company proposal to agree with you about increasing sales by 20%. While this number will vary depending on what industry you’re currently in (a tech company may not be interested in a 10% increase in sales), the general idea is that you want to show them just how beneficial your plan will be no matter which angle they’re looking at it from. And, of course, a polite sign-off will remind them just how excited you are to work with them if they agree to give your proposal a read.

6. Include References/Endnotes

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As any professor will tell you, endnotes are extremely helpful for those who are interested in learning more about your topic. Endnotes allow you to provide additional information while also allowing the reader to continue focusing on your exact words and ideas. This is especially important if your proposal is based on existing research or materials. At the bottom, you’ll want to provide a bibliography.

Of course, there’s plenty more information on writing successful proposals you can find online or through other resources. You can even find dozens of business proposal ideas online. However, these five tips should provide you with an excellent place to start when putting together what could be the next big project for your business.

And if you feel lost or unsure about how your next proposal should look or how to write a business proposal, check out Venngage today. The platform has everything you need to get started, including the best business proposal template.


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