5 of the best sales proposal software platforms

To make a sale, you have to deliver a compelling value proposition and show your dedication to solving customers’ problems. While making a strong first impression can go a long way in closing the deal, the last impression a sales team leaves with prospects can be just as important. More often than not, a sales proposal document makes this last impression.

An effective proposal clearly captures the value sales reps outline in their initial conversations with prospects, providing more detail and addressing any remaining questions or concerns. The design of this document can communicate just as much as the content, showing how deeply the seller pays attention to detail or invests in professionalism. A well-executed proposal can easily seal the deal, while a sloppy proposal can sour a business relationship that started with a lot of promise.

How can sales teams ensure they deliver an effective sales proposal without slowing down the sales process? Sales proposal software can streamline nearly every aspect of generating and delivering a compelling proposal document. Here’s what you need to know about this critical class of solutions.

The purpose of sales proposal software

Sales proposal software, also known as “sales proposal management software” or “sales quoting software,” is a type of technology that helps sales teams streamline every aspect of creating, delivering, and managing proposals for prospective customers. The robust tools available in each platform help users generate high-quality proposal documents with advanced branding, rich media elements, and a professional design — even if they don’t have advanced design or programming skills.

Sales proposal software also includes features that streamline collaboration between different stakeholders, making it easier to leave feedback on design, track changes, and approve the final document. Many sales proposal software solutions even integrate with other tools, like customer relationship management (CRM) tools, so it’s easy to automatically populate proposals with relevant customer data.

5 of the best sales proposal software solutions

Sales proposal software encompasses many categories of solutions, each tailor-made for specific needs. Here are five types of sales proposal software and the best tool available in each category.

1. Client management software

Client management software is meant to serve as an all-in-one sales solution that streamlines tasks like appointment scheduling and invoicing. While these tools are somewhat limited in terms of creating and managing proposals compared to other categories of sales proposal software, they still offer a number of benefits. Overall, client management software is a solution for sales professionals who need a platform for managing their sales process.

The best client management tool: HoneyBook

user interface of honeybook

HoneyBook is a one-stop shop for small businesses and freelancers that need an easy-to-use and integrated solution for managing their clients and revenue. The platform allows users to draft contracts, submit invoices, collect payments, and, of course, design and distribute sales proposals. It’s capable of creating simple but professional sales proposal documents without using graphic design software like InDesign.

2. Sales enablement software

Sales enablement software allows for better collaboration between sales and marketing departments. It’s especially designed for creating and hosting content that can improve conversion rates.

Marketing teams can use sales enablement tools to analyze data and generate assets that help reps handle objections, provide more in-depth product comparisons, or otherwise allay purchasing concerns. Sales teams can host these assets on the platform and share them with customers as necessary.

The best sales enablement tool: Dock

landing page of dock

Dock is a robust, client-facing platform that allows users to curate a powerful content library and easily share relevant assets with customers through trackable links. Sales reps can also easily incorporate elements from the content library into sales proposals for ultra-fast and convenient document generation.

3. Response management and RFP platforms

Requests for proposals (RFPs) require a different approach than traditional sales opportunities do, and they require special sales proposal software to streamline that approach. Response management platforms allow users to build complex internal databases that make it easy to search and retrieve specific information. Sales reps can easily pull statistics and other data the RFP requires in a fraction of the time it takes to conduct standard database searches.

The best response management platform: RFPIO

landing page of RFPIO

RFPIO is an AI-powered platform that helps users quickly compile their best content for RFPs and organize it in a high-quality, stellar proposal with virtually no effort. RFPIO’s AI can quickly search through a company’s database and find answers to questions in moments, rather than in the hours or days it can take to do a manual search. This dramatically increases sales productivity and leaves reps with more time to focus on inbound leads.

4. CPQ

Configure, price, quote (CPQ) software is a game changer for users who sell customizable and configurable products. The software creates an online portal for customers to request a quote for a custom product made to their specifications. Then, the CPQ automatically calculates pricing with minimal input from sales representatives and generates a quote document.

Both customers and sales reps benefit from the ultra-fast processing times, improved accuracy, and the minimal manual labor required.

The best CPQ: Configure One

user interface of configure one

Configure One, a Revalize brand, is one of the original CPQ platforms developed for custom manufacturers, and it’s evolved into a premier cloud-based solution. Users can create online catalogs for everything from T-shirts to automotive parts and enable even complex configurations with advanced rules and conditional logic features.

5. Template-based sales proposal software

For more control over document design, template-based tools are a versatile stand-in for sales proposal software. Typically, these tools feature drag-and-drop text and image editors that allow users to create professional and polished proposal documents that can closely match a company’s branding. Users simply need to select a template that’s close to the design they want, and then they can drag and drop elements into the editor for detailed customization.

Jotform: The best template-based sales proposal software

Jotform is known as a powerful online form builder, but the platform’s versatile design capabilities make it ideal to leverage as sales proposal software. Jotform’s PDF Editor has over 1,000 customizable PDF templates to help users get started with building compelling sales documents easily.

Sales representatives can enter proposal details into online forms and then convert those submissions into polished PDF proposals at the touch of a button. With Jotform Sign, proposals are also fillable and signable, allowing users to submit contract approval right alongside proposals for even greater efficiency.

After putting so much work into generating leads and building relationships, you want to be sure your prospects are impressed by your final sales proposal. Finding the right sales proposal software can be a game changer for your sales team, helping drive a new phase of growth for your company.

Photo by Kampus Production

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