Helpful Guidance When Drafting a Business Proposal

Challenges abound when launching a business, but finances, in particular, represent a huge source of stress for otherwise confident entrepreneurs. Many ultimately need to seek support from prospective clients or sponsors. This can be accomplished with a well-written business proposal.

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PDF Template - business proposal template

Despite their clear value for budding entrepreneurs, business proposals often feel more complicated than other key documents. The problem? They vary significantly from one entity to the next. Each proposal must be carefully targeted based on the industry, the strengths of the owner, and the anticipated needs of the client.

All this can feel like a lot to handle, so we've developed a guide to break down what, exactly, a business proposal should include — and where it might be customized. Keep reading to learn about the basic components of a typical business proposal and the benefits of using business proposal templates.

Basic Components of a Business Proposal

Business proposals can be structured in many ways, but most provide insight into both previous successes and future plans. Specifically, a typical business proposal template will include the following:

  • Mission statement or narrative of expertise. What do you hope to accomplish as you launch your business? What do you have to offer? This section should provide a broad overview of your background as it relates to your industry or niche, as well as an overarching mission to guide your company's future.
  • Details about the need for funding. If the main goal of the business proposal is to secure funding, it needs a section detailing why this is so important and how acquired funds will be used. This portion of the proposal may outline specific goals or intentions for the immediate future.
  • Financial projections. When determining whether to fund a business, potential investors want to know whether their assistance will eventually produce financial gains. They need to be confident not only in the services that the business in question provides, but also, in its ability to remain solvent. Hence, the need for detailed financial information, including projections based on in-depth research.
  • Final summary. Like the introductory narrative, the proposal's conclusion should function as an overview of your mission. Ideally, the person reading the proposal will come away feeling confident about the future of the business and the hardworking individuals behind it. 

The Importance of Customizing Business Proposal Templates

Templates offer useful guidance for many aspects of forming and running a business. Depending on the situations in which they're used, these resources can be extremely detailed. With a business proposal, however, a more general approach is preferred. After all, proposals are highly variable, as they take both the realities of the business and the client into account.

When customizing a business proposal template, keep the following considerations in mind:

  • What makes your business stand out? While the narrative mentioned previously provides a great opportunity for highlighting all that makes your business special, this is not the only section that should be tailored to your strengths. Rather, the perspective that you have much to offer should be woven into the entire document. Use language that reflects your passion, goals, and ability to deliver stellar results. 
  • Which services are offered? Sometimes, entrepreneurs focus so much on explaining their experience and their goals, they neglect to mention which services they actually provide. A brief explanation can bring valuable clarity to the rest of the proposal.
  • Which previous projects have proven most successful? Explanations of experience are often more impactful if they include specific projects that have been completed in the past. The more details incorporated in this section, the better. In addition to providing a step-by-step overview of a given project, this explanation should highlight the basic timeframe. 

What to Know Before Signing a Business Proposal

Business proposal templates typically end with prompts for conclusion statements, followed by a recommendation for a signature. This brings the proposal to a proper close. The cliche about ending on a high note definitely applies.

Attention to detail is just as important when signing as it is throughout the entire proposal process. For this reason, a secure solution such as Nitro Sign is indispensable. This approach provides peace of mind — which is extra important when so many other aspects of your company's future remain in question. Additional confidence is available when you give our system a test drive, so be sure to sign up for a free trial.

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