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Proposals
Felix Rusby avatar
Written by Felix Rusby
Updated over a week ago

Proposals can be found in the proposals section of any project. If you have a draft proposal you can open it by clicking on it.

To create a new proposal, from the proposals tab, click "Create Proposal".

Building your proposal

There are a few different elements to building a proposal. Firstly choose whether to use your proposal as a quote or estimate.

To do this, use the drop-down at the top of the proposal.

Reference

You can edit the reference by clicking the three dots next to the default reference and selecting "Edit reference".

If possible, stick with the current referencing sequence rather than changing it.

Customer details

A customer's details will automatically be pulled through from the project.

If you want to edit this information, click the pencil icon next to the customer details.

If you have more than one customer saved against that address you can choose which you want to select.

Introduction

You can use the intro box to add a customised personal message to your clients. You can add formatting such as bullet points, bold text and emojis.

Items

Items are the products or services that a business sells to its customers. These can be anything from physical goods to digital services.

Items are used to quickly build out a quote by adding pre-saved chunks that can be priced and managed according to your requirements.

Items will make up the bulk of your quote/estimate.

Items are covered in more detail in the next section of the article. Jump ahead to the items section.

Notes

Use the notes section to add any additional information to your quote/estimate.

Attachments

Use this section to include any additional documents, images or files that you want the customer to receive.

Note that you can automatically pre-attach your terms and conditions to all your proposals from your My Company settings.


Proposal templates

Proposal templates can be created from the Templates section of your account.

Click on the drop-down menu in the top right of your screen.

You will see two template options: "Event Templates" and "Proposal Templates".

Select the "Proposal Templates" tab.

If you have created existing templates these will be visible to you.

To create a template, click "Create Template". This will bring up the template editor.

You will see four boxes: "Template name", "Template description", "Intro" and "Notes". You will also see a "Valid for (days)" section, a "Payment schedule" section, an "Add explainer" button and a "Payment summary alert".

First, you need to decide on a template name. This will be used to identify your different templates.

The template name is the only required field in the template. All the other boxes and options can be left blank if you don't want to use them.

You can also include a template description. This will appear when you preview the proposal template.

Neither the template name nor the template description will be added to your proposals when you create a proposal from a proposal template; they are just used for reference and identification.

Use the intro and notes section to add the information that you would like to be applied to your proposals. The information in these boxes will be applied to your proposals every time you use that template.

You can use the custom fields to add information that is taken straight from the project you are working on such as the customer name or site address.

Next set the valid for days, this will be applied to all proposals built using this template.

The "Add explainer" allows you to add some extra context and information to your Payment schedule (explained below).

The "Payment summary alert" box allows you to add some extra information at the bottom of your payment summary. If there is any extra detail or a clarification you want to make to your payment breakdown (displayed on the right side of your quote) you can add it here.

You can also add this directly from your quote.

Payment schedule

The payment schedule is designed to allow you to break up payments into parts.

At the bottom of the template builder, click "Add stage".

You will now see two boxes under 'STAGE" and "PERCENTAGE" as well as a "DEPOSIT" tick box.

Choose what you want to name the stage. You can include a short description of what the stage is.

Decide on a percentage for the stage. This percentage will be calculated from the total cost of the project.

If you want your stage to act as a deposit, tick the deposit box.

You can add as many stages as you like, as long as they total 100%.

Use the "Add stage" button to add more stages.

Once you're happy with your template, click "Save Proposal Template".

Using proposal templates

With your template set up, you can now use it to quickly create new proposals.

Open a project and go to create a proposal as you usually would.

When you click "Create Proposal" you will be presented with a pop-up. You will see the option to "Start from scratch" or "Choose a template".

If you don't want to use a template, click "Start from scratch", this will open a blank proposal as usual.

To choose from your existing templates click on the drop-down.

You will see a list of all your templates. If you have an extensive list you can use the search function to find your desired template.

Choose the template you want to use and select "Apply template".

This will open the proposal editor, now prepopulated with an introduction and/or notes saved from your template.

If you have set up a payment schedule you will also see a summary of this in the box on the right side of your screen.

Once you send the proposal and it is accepted, you will see your staged payments appear as draft invoices within that project.

If one of your stages was selected as a deposit this will be sent instantly once the proposal is accepted.


How to create an item from a proposal

Items allow you to quickly build a quote. Rather than writing out each item line by line, you can drop in pre-saved items very quickly.

When adding items, you can either create items yourself and populate them with your own information such as the price and a description, or you can use saved system items.

If you prefer, you could create one line item for one piece of work and leave it at that, but by breaking a job up into parts, it gives you more flexibility.

This also allows you to add multiple-choice and optional extras to your proposals.

To create a new item from a proposal, click "create a new item".

This will open a new empty item. You can now fill out the information for your item.

Item Reference

This is internal and will not be shown to the customer.

Title & description

Add some information about the item. This will be shown on proposals, so feel free to add lots of detail here.

Images

You can also add your own images to items. This is a good idea as these images will appear on your proposals making them stand out to your customers.

Just click on the image icon and upload image files or drag and drop your image file directly into the image space.

Pricing your item

To price your item, you have the option of choosing a set price, setting a profit percentage or setting a profit amount. Your item price will likely need to at least equal the cost of your materials.

You also need to choose which tax rate to assign, which can be done by using the tax drop-down.

If you want to set a discount, click "Apply discount".

Use the discount box to choose a discount percentage.

When you're happy, click "Back to Quote". Your changes will be saved automatically.


How to create item groups

When you first open a new proposal the items section will contain one empty item group

So far this item group does not contain any items.

To start adding items to your group, click into the search box within the item group.

If you want to add an item that is already saved then start typing the name of the item you are after.

If you cannot remember the name of the item click "Advanced search". This will open up a list of your saved items. Click on the item you want to add.

You can now repeat this process to add a collection of items to your group.

Create and add a new item to an item group

To add a new item, click into the empty group search box.

Click "Create a new Item".

Fill out the item information and click "Back to Quote"

Your new item will now be added to your item group.

You can continue to add items to build out your group.

Remove an item from an item group

To remove an item from a group, click on the item you want to remove to open it.

Click "Remove item"

Adding saved item groups

If you already have item groups saved from previous proposals you can add these straight away.

Click "Search existing groups".

Saved groups, including system groups, will be presented as options in a box.

Click on the item group you want to add to your proposal.

Adding additional groups

Once you've filled your first group with items, you may want to create an additional separate group.

You can create and add as many separate item groups to your proposal as you like.

To add a new group, click "Create new group".

How to remove an item group

To remove/delete an item group click on the "x" in the top right corner of the group.


How to create multiple-choice items

Before you can create multiple-choice items, you first need to add a group to your proposal.

Once you have your group click on the item you would like to make a multiple choice option.

This will open the item.

You now need to change the item settings from "Required" to "Mulitple choice"

Once updated this will automatically save.

Click "Back to Quote".

Your item will now appear with a selectable box next to it. Until you assign other items in the group to multiple choice you will not be able to choose between selectable items.

Repeat this process for all the items you want to make multiple choice.

You will now be able to choose between items that have been set to multiple-choice from within the group.

How to create optional extras

To make an item an option extra open the item from within its group.

Change the item setting from "Required" to "Optional extra".

Items assigned as optional extras have a tick box next to them that can be checked to add the item to the cost of the proposal or left deselected if they aren't wanted.

It's important to understand that multiple-choice and optional extras can only be used from within item groups.

It isn't possible to give a choice between groups, only within groups.

You may want to create multiple groups with different combinations of choices.



Discounts, deposits and other details

On the right-hand side of the quote, there is a box that allows you to apply some additional modifications to your final proposal.

Valid for

You are able to adjust the number of days that your proposal is valid for. The default number can be changed from your company settings page.

Discount

You can use the "Set discount" button to apply a total discount to your proposal.

If you click this button it will open a pop-up. From there you can add a percentage discount that will be applied to every line item on your proposal.

Deposit

If you want to request a deposit from your customers, click the "Request deposit" button.

This will open a pop-up box.

From there you can choose to set a fixed number deposit, a percentage deposit or a full deposit.

For the fixed deposit, specify how much money you want to take for the deposit. For the percentage deposit, choose what percentage you'd like off.

Payment options

Under payment options, you can enable or disable card payments and bank details. If one of these boxes is unticked then that payment method will not be available to the customer.

Price details

Use these tick boxes to hide or reveal pricing and tax information.


Previewing your proposal

Once you're happy with your proposal click "Preview". This will open the proposal preview page.

From this page, you will be able to see a preview of what your customers will view once you send them the proposal.

Use the "Send me a copy" tick box to receive a copy of the proposal when you send it to the customer or leave it unticked if you don't want a copy.

Edit your email message

You can set your default email message from your My Company email customisation page.

However, you can also edit the messages that you send out with your proposals on a case-by-case basis.

Use the editor box at the top of your proposal preview to write your message.

Send and download

Before you send your proposal you can download a pdf copy of the document.

Click "Download as pdf" and a pdf copy of the proposal will be downloaded.

If you want to process the proposal but don't want to send it to the customer, you can click "Mark as sent". This will move the project that proposal is associated with into the proposal sent column of your pipeline.

This will allow you to progress with converting it to an invoice.


Change proposals

If you want to make changes to a proposal once it has been sent (or marked as sent), then you need to create a change proposal.

To do this, from an open project, click "Propose change".

This will open the proposal editing screen that was used to construct your original proposal.

You can now change the number of items on the proposal, either setting the value higher or lower (you can set an item to 0 if you want to remove it entirely) or you can add new items.

These changes will be reflected in the pricing summary on the right-hand panel.

When you're happy you can send your changes to the customer, ready for them to accept.


Manually changing the status of a proposal

When creating proposals or invoices it is possible to manually change the status of that document or even duplicate it.

Here's how to do it

From the open project, click on the three dots next to your proposal or invoice.

This will give you the following four options:

  • Mark as accepted

  • Mark as declined

  • Duplicate

  • Resend

Click on the option you wish to achieve.

You can also do this by instead of clicking on the three dots, clicking on the actual proposal or invoice. This will open it and show a summary of the document as well as the same four options as above, plus an edit button.

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