Protect your business with a proposal

We have heard of proposals. Some business owners and companies use them. Some do not. Either way, a proposal can save a relationship with a client. It makes a verbal agreement concrete. How many times have we shaken hands with someone in a deal only to find that the terms of the handshake changed without the other “shaker” knowing it?

Some business owners I speak with do not use proposals, because they charge a low price on a specific service while they use a proposal for the larger deals. I find this to be a mistake. Even the smallest deals with the lowest price tags can go sour because of a disagreement or a misunderstanding. Mitigating a misunderstanding is the most important reason to draw up a proposal and sign it with your client. In my business, whether I charge $100 for a simple change or edit on someone’s website or a full blown project costing $50,000, I still use a proposal. There are not only misunderstandings with a handshake or a verbal agreement, but one of the parties can be dishonest and change the terms willingly disguising it as a misunderstanding.

A proposal puts everything in writing. It lays out the number of hours, prices, services performed, and the deadline. I have learned my lesson the hard way that not specifying these items in a proposal can cause me to lose the sale or worse, I perform the work and the client wants a refund, because I did not perform the work the client’s expectations which could have been avoided with a simple proposal. One project I had, for example, the client wanted an entire piece of software developed even when he signed the proposal and I refused to build it without additional funding since it was never in the proposal. Therefore, a proposal can also be your business bible. It helps you read the client’s mind and vice versa. Without a proposal, you cannot read a client’s mind. At least, the client can question the absence of the feature before signing the deal.

The bottom line is that if you are a service-oriented company, it is best never to accept another project from any client (even existing clients) without at least a simple proposal, but the more complex the proposal, the better you are protected from misunderstandings.

About Bruce Chamoff 8 Articles
After building websites for over 20 years, Bruce Chamoff has become the first web design coach in the world. He is passed just building a pretty websites. He strives to build websites that make his clients money."Anyone can build a website, but most people cannot build a website that converts". Working with mom and pop shops to Fortune 500 companies, Bruce has strengthened the web presence for over 1,000 companies around the world and has spoken at web design conferences. Bruce has also created several streaming TV channels. When he is not being an entrepreneur, Bruce spends time with his daughter and writes original music with his band.

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