Prepare an effective quotation? 11 indispensable parts

A quote: perhaps the last chance you get to turn a potential customer into a paying customer. The last chance to convince your lead, to get a ‘yes, that’s the one who solves my problem’ in his or her mind. Then it is of ‘turnover interest’ that you write a quotation that ensures this. But how do you actually write such an irresistible quote?

With this article I will help you to write quotations with easily applicable tips. In addition, I give you a handy structure that really works.

Practical tips

Whether or not you are going to thoroughly scrutinize your quotations, the tips below are useful for everyone. Here they come:

  • Write your quote as you write on your website. This way you ensure consistency in all your expressions, making you appear reliable.
  • Your quotation does not have to be Bible work, but it must cover the content. Think about what you, if you were your own customer, would like to read in a quotation.
  • With your quotation, focus on the results of your service. Your customers want a problem solved – what happens when you fix that problem for them?

The 11 indispensable parts of an effective quotation

Make it easy for yourself by working with a quotation template. This way you use the same structure for every quotation, which means that you prepare quotations faster and faster.

The structure below is a bit of my own, and a bit of Jonathan Stark. Jonathan is a successful IT entrepreneur who rakes in orders of several hundred thousand euros, also through his quotations.

The structure is as follows:

  1. Front page
  2. Index
  3. About your customer
  4. About the project
  5. Why me?
  6. Outcome
  7. Method
  8. Roadmap
  9. The content and various options
  10. Investment (per option)
  11. CTA

1. Cover

There is nothing exciting about this. Think of it a bit like the cover page of your thesis. Put some practical information on it: your name, date, name of your customer, contact information. You get the idea.

2. Table of Contents

By using a table of contents you keep an overview for you and your customer. Use bullet points for the ‘chapters’.

3. About your customer

Put your customer in a story. Who is your customer? Which market is he in? What problem does your customer have? And why are they looking for you to solve that problem? You dig up all this information from your customer during an initial introductory meeting.

Pro tip: use the same words and terms as your customer. This way your customer recognizes himself 100% in this piece of text.

4. About the project

Describe briefly and concisely what you will do for the customer in your quotation. State what your customer wants to achieve by engaging you, for example. In addition, describe the situation your customer is in.

Why me?

Usually people compare the quotes with each other. Don’t forget to not only sell your solution, but also yourself. Think about your USPs. The most important thing is that you come across as a sympathetic person with knowledge and skills. Above all, be yourself, that’s always the best.

6. Outcome

In this paragraph you are talking about the soft and hard demands of your customer. Think of KPIs such as conversion rate, turnover, organic traffic, that sort of thing. But above all repeat the wishes of the customer.

Imagine: your collaboration has ended successfully. All your customer’s requirements have been met flawlessly. What does this mean for his business or life? Tell him or her.

7. Method

Often very dry matter, but it is necessary for your customer to read it. Describe how you work globally. Think of practical things such as invoicing, contact moments, the briefing, feedback rounds and time registration.

8. Step-by-step plan

If all goes well, you have already discussed a thing or two about data with your customer. Write down the step-by-step plan in this document, using the data you have submitted.

In any case, your start date and deadline must be included. In addition, it is also useful if your way of working is incorporated in this step-by-step plan.

9. The content and various options

This section takes you deeper into the project. What are you going to do exactly? Which service or package do you offer? What does the customer get for his money and what not? Also think of things that are obvious to you, but not to your customer. An example: free correction rounds, free software installation, that sort of thing.

It can also happen that you offer different options to your customer, describe those options. Make it clear for each option what is and what is not in that option. Repeat which option your customer should choose.

10. Investment (per option)

A quotation without a quotation is just as worthless to your customer as hot air. It is important that you make clear what the investment is per option, so that your customer knows exactly where he stands.

Copywriter’s tip: don’t use the word ‘price’, but investment. This works better, because ‘price’ or ‘cost’ evokes negative feelings.

11. CTA

Close your quotation with a call-to-action. At the very least, you want to have a response, so literally ask for it. For example, use a subhead such as ‘Deal?’ And ask your customer to respond within a certain period.

Pro tip: also explain why your customer ‘must’ respond within a certain time. Because you only have a few places left, for example. In this way you create scarcity and increase the chance of a ‘yes’.

Get started with your quote

You now have a better idea of ​​how to make quotes irresistible. Get started right away, and turn more leads into customers. Use the above structure as a guide, but don’t be afraid to tinker with your quote yourself. You know what is best for your customer in your market.


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