HOW TO DRAFT A PROPOSAL FOR YOUR WEB DEVELOPMENT AND DESIGN AGENCY ?
Acquire brands faster than your competition using this guide
Acquire more clients for your agency
You run a web development and design agency. This is more of a technical assignment. But, scouting for clients or taking care of payments is not. You need some administrative and marketing skills to do these jobs. Now, these jobs also form an essential part of your business. Let us now see how you search for fresh clients. The best way of doing it is to draft a proposal for your web development and design agency.
The need for a proposal:
Why do you need a proposal for designing websites? Your client needs a website. You give your estimate. He agrees to it. That’s all. Is it so simple all the time? No, it isn’t. There is tremendous competition in the market. You are one among the hundreds of web development and designing agencies in town. In order to be ahead in this race, you need to be different from the others.
Do you remember the advertisement they used to air on television for a tomato sauce? All tomato sauces taste the same. This particular company designed a beautiful campaign where the protagonist opens up a bottle of tomato sauce. His compatriot bangs his head stating, “Oh no, not tomato sauce again.” The hero smiles and says, “It’s different”. This campaign got the tomato sauce manufacturers tremendous business. The key to remembering this advertisement now is that, it does pay to be different from the others.
When every website design and development agency is giving estimates, you be different and submit a proposal. This can get you the assignment you need for paying your bills and mortgage installments.
How do you go about it?
Drafting a web design and development agency proposal is a different kettle of fish. Instead of fretting and fuming over this marketing aspect of your business, it is better to master it. We assure you it is not a difficult process at all. You do not like to outsource this aspect of your business to anyone else because it includes discussing technical aspects of your web designing activity. Secondly, when you prepare the proposal, you know what is in it. Hence, satisfying the needs of the customer becomes easy.
Remember your days at school when you had to participate in debates. You were given a random topic, say “Benefits of financial inclusion”. You had a fixed time of about 10 minutes to make your point. Now, you cannot expect a schoolboy to speak on this topic with authority. But, still you managed to debate on this topic. When you can do so at such a young age, you will definitely be able to do so today.
Steps to take to deliver the perfect proposal
A proposal for a web development and design agency should concentrate on the following four aspects.
- Defining or identifying the problem
- Providing the right and viable solution to the problem
- Determine the costs of fixing the problem
- Closing the proposal
Let us look at these aspects one by one.
Identify the problem
What does the doctor do when you approach him for treatment? Does he prescribe pills straightaway? No, he does not because he has to identify and diagnose the disease. Unless he has information about the disease you are suffering from, there is no way he is going to prescribe any line of treatment.
The same is the case when a client asks you to submit a proposal for a web development agency. You have to interview the client and try to understand his needs. He might have tried his hand at designing a website earlier. In such a scenario, you can ask him the details of his existing website. Running a SEO audit tool will help you identify the problem with the website.
In case, the client has come to you for designing a new website, you should ask the client everything about his business, products, services, objectives, finances, and so on. Unless you have detailed information about the client, you will not be able to identify the problems he is facing. You can also check out the websites of the competitors to the client. This will also give you an insight into the problems faced by the client.
This is very tricky part of the proposal. Many clients do not like to discuss much about the problems they face with every web development agency. It might also happen that the client might not be in a position to explain the problem to you properly. They might look up to you to identify the problem.
Sometimes, the problems will not be with the website design. It could lie somewhere else. The competition might be the reason for the decrease in the sales figures. Thus, tweaking the existing website can get the sales back in order. You might have to ask the customer to explore other means such as offering freebies to win back the popularity.
The crux of the matter is that you should be able to identify the problem before attempting to solve it. Running SEO audit tools can also show you where the problems lie. Sometimes, the problem could be as simple as the background color of the web design. Under such circumstances, your solution should be an easy one.
Provide the solution to the problem:
You have done the hard part of identifying the problem. The next action is to provide a solution to it. However, your proposal should look at various other aspects. There might be other problems as well. A comprehensive SEO audit will help determine every kind of problem. In case of a new company, you have to imagine the problems and provide solutions. Referring to competitor’s websites can also help to identify their problems. You will then be able to ensure that your clients do not experience a similar problem.
Naturally, you need to provide solutions to these problems. However, your proposal should also incorporate other aspects of the business such as finance, marketing, boosting sales, and so on. Your web design should be such that it should attract the attention of people. A compelling website design can increase the website traffic to a great extent.
One of the problems faced by clients is the lack of responsiveness to screens of smaller sizes. We are referring to the mobile and tablet screens. The design requires tweaking to ensure that it fits the mobile and tablet screens.
Your website designing includes logos, contact forms, and many other aspects. The logo is a key element of the client’s business. It is the identification factor. People should be able to identify the logo from anywhere as belonging to your client.
The pricing factor:
While having the initial discussion with the client, you must have gauged the problems faced by the client. This would give you a fair idea about the pricing of the proposal. Web designing or development includes various stages. Each stage will have a cost attached to it. The customer should have an idea about the costing process.
The best way to set up the pricing is to include the fees data in a grid-like formation. This makes it easily accessible to the client. You call it the Fee summary. There are many ways of presenting the fee summary. We shall look at two such summaries and leave it to you to decide which one looks better.
a) The first summary looks like this.
Installation WordPress – $ 500
Theme purchase – $ 50
Theme customization – $ 250
10 pages creation – $ 600
SEO audit – $ 300
Total $ 1700
Does this summary look bad? One can say that the summary looks very technical. The customer might not be in a position to understand the jargon you have used. Let us improvise on this fee summary
b) Look at this example
Creation of website – $ 800
Write content for website – $ 600
Ensure it ranks high in search results – $ 300
Total $ 1700
Both these examples list out the same activities. Look at the difference in the language used in the second example. The customer will be able to understand the same easily. He can see that the activity is for his benefit alone. We are not referring to the technically savvy customer who will not have any difficulties understanding the earlier example. However, the normal customer will always find the second example more to his liking. Hence, it becomes imperative to include your pricing structure in the way the customer loves it. After all, he is going to pay for your services. If he understands where he is spending the money, it will benefit him greatly.
This is a very simple example of a fee summary. In reality, you will have to add many other costs. They include upgrading costs, maintenance costs, and so on. All these activities will be carried out at specific intervals. Hence, you can have a timeline where you can accept payments after you complete a certain task. This is also known as milestone payment.
Close the proposal effectively
This section should not be difficult for you. You are an expert in designing websites. Hence, including a call to action in your proposal should not be a big deal at all. Install this option. This will entice the client to click on this option. This is the beauty of the online proposals. The customer need not take time to decide on how to call you. You have a CTA button ready waiting for him to press.
Studies have shown that online proposals always ensure a higher success rate. One way of attracting the customer is to include a payment link for paying a deposit. This will impress the client more than anything else.
Which of the following proposals is better – Request for Proposals (RFP) or Technical description (TD)
You might encounter this question many a time. In order to know which the better option is, you should know the difference between the two. The RFP is usually drawn at an early procurement stage whereas the TD comes into the picture at the finalization stage. The client calls for the RFP and then decides to award the contract to you. He then calls for a TD. Thus you can say that the RFP is different from a TD in many ways.
They serve two different purposes. You can call the RFP as an inquiry statement whereas the TD is more of a descriptive one.
Where should you include information about your website?
In the normal course, it is always better to leave this part to the end of the proposal. By this time, your client would have read the proposal and understood the same. In case he proceeds to read this section of the website where you present personal details about your company, he would have made up his mind to shortlist your proposal. Otherwise, there would be no need for him to read this information.
When you present your personal information, it is better to include some customer reviews about your performance. This will help him understand what kind of service to expect from you. Of course, try to use simple language while describing your credentials lest it sound pompous.
Terms and Conditions
This is the most important aspect of the proposal after the cost and pricing factor. Your proposal can result in the awarding of the contract to you. Hence, you should specify your terms and conditions of the contract. The client will also have his version ready with him. The purpose of including the terms and conditions of the contract in the proposal is to avoid any misunderstanding at a later stage that could lead to legal issues. You can also specify the terms and conditions of payment as well in this section.
We have seen the entire process of drafting the proposal for a web designing and development agency. Just like any other proposal, this one aims to solve the problems faced by the client. It provides you with an excellent opportunity to present your credentials.