A business quote, sales quote, quotation, or simply a quote is a vital document required to close a business deal successfully. This document lists the price list you, as a seller, propose to your prospective customer. A business quote serves as a contract and usually uses a more formal tone.
The final pricing of the new quote document may include additional cost details such as the taxes, labor, raw material total costs, and other factors.
A business quote also includes:
- The duration for which it is valid
- The expected duration of service completion
- The goods delivery
A quote is usually confused with a proposal or an estimate. While these three documents can be used for the same purposes, they still differ in several aspects. We talk about those differences here.
How to write a business quote
How important is a quotation in business?
Very. As prices for commodities are often fixed, you may wonder why there is a need for business quotes at all. Well, with fixed prices, businesses usually create an invoice to deliver the information.
However, in cases where the prices vary or depend on certain conditions, service quotes are generated before the order is confirmed. Essentially, quotes serve a similar, but not the same, purpose as an invoice.
Being sent before the invoice, business quotes shape the first point of business contact with the client. A well-prepared quote can help turn a prospective client into a real customer.
In that sense, business quotes need to meet certain standards as they add substantial value to the future relationship with the client.
How to draft the proper quotation?
In the 2021 competitive market, small businesses and large companies alike target the same cohort of audiences, making competition fiercer.
Today, there’s no time to dwell on things; instead, the moment an opportunity presents itself, you react.
Immediately upon receiving a request for a quote, start drafting it according to your brand guidelines and your customer’s requirements.
The best start of drafting a business quote is to research the customer’s requirements.
To win them over, always use the client’s RFQ for more details, and take their demands into consideration. You can also rely on your previous, successful quotes for inspiration.
How to write a quote for business that attracts customers?
The objective of a business quote is to motivate your customers to choose your offer over others and seal the deal.
Here is a checklist of the standard tips that can help you create quotes that work:
Step 1. Pick a template
To save time and present a clean quote solution, choose a quotation template that will allow you to switch between different niches.
The quote template must contain all the required entries, such as customer contact information, company name, and other details, phone number, payment terms, descriptions and gross prices, net price quote of goods and services, applicable taxes, terms of payment, due dates, and validity.
This extensive and diverse library of business quote templates serves various examples of quotes created for different markets (including website development, sales, building, and design). Using the right quotation template could take you minutes instead of hours to get quotes out the door.
Step 2. Stick to the proper structure
When it features an appropriate hierarchy of components, every document reads better.
A standard layout for quotes you can follow looks a little like this:
- Quotation header: List relevant details, everything from your company’s name, and tax registration number, to contacts, payment terms, quotation number and date, and the name of the recipient. Write the word “Quotation” or “Quote” at the top of the page.
- Quotation body: Describe what the proposed goods or services are and provide pricing information.
- Quotation footer: Declare the total amount of all items, validity of the quote, and tax amount. Offer a call to action. This is usually their signature but you can choose something else if you feel it fits better.
Use your previously successful business quotes for reference to avoid errors and omissions. If required, you can add other elements, too.
Step 3. Be transparent
Make sure that your potential client easily understands all the details or policies that you present. Hidden details or terms and conditions can result in a lack of trust, so eave no scope for ambiguity.
Also, ensure that whatever you present is precise and accurate with all line items up front, so the client can easily compare your offering with others.
Building a trusting, successful relationship with potential customers is established through clear initial communication in your business quotation.
Checkpoints before you hit the send button on your quote
A superior quote will help conversions turn into invoices.
To ensure business success, here are a few crucial checkpoints to go through before sending your business quote:
- Double-check the calculation: The main intention of any business quotation is to provide accurate and relevant pricing information. Recheck all your numbers before you send a quote to the prospective client. A wrong calculation may not only mislead the prospect but also read unprofessional.
- Stay on top of your formatting: Proper formatting ensures your quote is laid out correctly in terms of appearance. Choose clear fonts, highlight headings, and keywords, and choose soothing colors (if required). This will make your business quote easy to read and presentable.
- Cross-check spelling and grammar: Your quotation must be accurate. Complicated language or a tiny spelling or grammatical error can confuse the client and leave a wrong impression, reducing your chances of deal closure. To avoid mistakes and errors, review the final quotation before sending it.
- Notes for clarity: If certain information in the terms and conditions or your pricing structure is a bit complex, you can include a disclaimer and/or add small notes for clarity. These notes should provide additional info to help your potential client decide.
- Optional details: A business quotation is typically a concise document. However, you can include some extra information like other services you offer, discounts, time frames you usually take to complete tasks, etc. These optional details could be a stepping stone into persuading a prospective client to choose you.
Tools to create sales quotes and sales proposals easily
Creating business quotes manually is getting outdated as we speak. It can be rather time-consuming, unreliable, and inconsistent, offering no version control or document tracking. In addition, when quotes are created manually, storage issues and lack of accessibility often arise.
Also, one of the more significant issues – whether for small business owners or bigger companies – is the lack of integration between platforms.
As employees within an organization rely on various business applications like Google sheets, CRM, Excel, and similar, they need platforms mutually integrated to help them prepare quotes easily.
Having to switch between multiple platforms to create a good quote leaves too much space for error, which negatively affects client relationships and, ultimately, a business’s growth.
Modern businesses are all about adopting new ways to enhance operations and grab more deals. This is why various tools and software solutions are in great demand.
Why choose quoting software?
Because the right software solution lets you generate, send and eSign your online quotes with ease.
It also lets you:
- Create quotes error-free in an improved time frame
- Drastically reduce the back-and-forth with customers
- Track engagement and usage details in real-time for easier communication and follow-up
- Automate your business quoting process to reduce inefficiency and errors
We recommend this quoting software that allows your clients to select from multiple options, change quantities, or chat with you directly. You can start with a free trial to test it and see if it fits your business needs.
Final thoughts on business quotes
“It’s time to stop manual data entry, so you can focus on crushing your quota.”PandaDoc
What seems like a small part of the business process, writing attractive business quotations is essential in seeking and retaining potential customers.
To win the deal, it is imperative to create accurate and concise quotations that meet customer’s requirements while fitting a professional layout.
Therefore, automation and investing in good accounting software may be a good idea for your business name and reputation on the market.
PandaDoc software could be a good bet as it provides a library of over 750+ quote templates designed to help you create your quotes professionally and efficiently, and make a lasting impression on your clients.