If you work in sales, you’re probably already aware that your customers expect a quick and easy buying experience. But today’s salespeople are over-burdened, expected to provide a highly-personalized, attentive buying experience while also spending over 60 percent of their time on non-selling activities.

So what’s the solution?

To create an ideal buying experience for your prospect that leads to a close, you need to be extremely responsive while providing the most practical, relevant content. Insert the sales proposal. Defining a sales proposal can be tricky, as the actual format of the proposal varies depending on who is sending it. Ultimately, though, a sales proposal is a tool you can use to convince a prospect to purchase your solution to their problem.

Your goal is to create a winning proposal that is ready to share the moment your prospect enters the decision-making phase of the deal.

What does a winning sales proposal look like?

1. It has a personalized cover letter.

Too many salespeople underestimate the value of a good cover letter. Your proposal’s cover letter is the page that will receive the most views, so it needs to capture your prospect’s attention and create an emotional connection. Place relevant, differentiating information about your company and solution in the most valuable real estate on the page–”above the fold,” or the space before your prospect will need to scroll.

2. It focuses on the “why.”

Don’t just talk about what your solution is in the sales proposal, but rather why it will solve your prospect’s problem. Use the sales proposal as an opportunity to emphasize your unique selling propositions, and demonstrate its proven ROI.

3. It includes customer testimonials.

Buyers love to read reviews, so why not include them in your sales proposal? Demonstrate what you can accomplish for your prospect by showing exactly how you have done so for others with similar use cases. Choose customer testimonials from similar/relevant industries, that align with the value props important to your current prospect. This is your chance to showcase your past work to establish credibility in a way that says, “We’ve done this in your industry, and we can do it for you, too.”

4. It makes it easy for prospects to do business with you.

Remember that part about prospects wanting an easy buying experience? Make sure your sales proposal contains all of the relevant information needed to make a buying decision, including accurate pricing details. The recipient of your proposal might not be the final signer, but even the signer will most likely need to receive buy-ins from other stakeholders or influencers, so you want to arm them with all of the necessary information. Terms and conditions are often an important piece of content at this stage, as lawyers or other legal individuals may be reviewing and evaluating the risk involved in the deal.

Package all of this information with an appropriate call-to-action. If your prospect is ready to move forward, they will most likely want to do so as quickly as possible. Including an electronic signature call-to-action to close the deal, or to accept a letter of intent will help to move the process along straight from the proposal.

5. It’s accessible via mobile.

Finally, ensure your sales proposal can be viewed and interacted with on a mobile device. With the shifting sales landscape, more people are doing business on-the-go, and you want to be sure your documents are compatible with mobile prospects.

Now it’s your turn to take these steps and apply them to your proposal creation process. Looking for more? View our on-demand webinar on the topic of winning sales proposals, or take a closer look at our sales proposal solution in our document generation platform.