If you’re searching for proposal software, you’re bound to come across Better Proposals. That’s actually what I did a few years back.
Well, the truth is that I first saw the tool in an Appsumo lifetime deal offer. It was $39 for a lifetime deal with a 60 day money back guarantee. At that price I figured I can’t really go wrong, so I decided to give it try. After spending a few hours getting familiar with the product and chatting with the founder a few times, I just gave up and threw in the towel.
I ended up getting stuck with the software because by the time I realized that it wasn’t going to work for me, I got busy and distracted and missed the refund deadline. But it was only $39, and I got to analyze the product and see what the shortcomings were, so I could then create something better.
So let’s run through some of the pros and cons of Better Proposals:
One pro that comes to mind is that the founder (I think his name is Adam) is a really nice guy. At least that’s the impression I got from our chat sessions. True that was a few years ago, but I’m sure he’s still a good chap (British).
While Better Proposals (BP) offers a lot of design templates, they are very limiting in their structure. In order to move between sections of your proposal the user needs to click on a navigation link in the side bar. In other words, you can’t just scroll down through the entire proposal from beginning to end. I’m not sure what they were thinking when they built it like that, but it makes no sense to force a client to click on links to move through a proposal.
In any case, whenever you use design templates, you’re going to have to do some degree of designing and tweaking. That takes time and is really hard to do on a mobile device or tablet. And yet, the BP folks claim that you’ll be able to create proposals in minutes. Really? Not unless you’re going to use one of their templates without making any changes.
Propfire Design Templates
Propfire provides several templates with great looking cover designs to get you started quickly. But beyond choosing the cover you want, you don’t have to do ANY design work. Propfire automatically creates the design for you. That saves you a lot of time and frustration.
Your proposal design on Propfire can be as graphics heavy as you like, but we recommend you stick with our clean, streamlined and image-free design.
Contrary to what BP and other proposal software companies would like you to believe, proposals are NOT won based on complexity of design. Proposals are won based on deliverables, pricing and timing — and the prior relationship you’ve developed with the client.
Better Proposals provides content with their templates. But while the content might be relevant for certain types of project, for most freelancers, consultants or digital agencies, it isn’t. That means that you need to enter in all of your own content. For many users, that’s not so simple. After all, one of the main purposes of a template is to provide guidance regarding content, not just design.
With Propfire you get super relevant proposal content geared towards web design, seo, content marketing, social media and PPC. So you can pretty much use the proposal content as is, with just making a few modifications based on your own specifications.
You can also skip the template process altogether and use Content Snippets to create very customized proposals on the fly.
Check out this video to see how it works:
The BP folks also make a big fuss about trying to convince you that only .2% of all proposals ever get printed out, so there’s no reason for you to mind that you won’t be able to print the ones you create with their software.
I have no idea where they’re getting this data from. I know from my own experience as a digital consultant and small agency owner, most of the clients I pitch still want to print out a hard copy to hold, pass around and — most importantly — sign.
These clients I deal with are all successful companies that have been around for a long time and who have owners and management that still remember a time before Facebook and Tinder. There’s no way that they are not going to want to hold a hard copy of a proposal.
Proposals created with Propfire are formatted to be easily printed, so you can get it into the hands of your client quickly.
Embed Your Proposal
One of the coolest features of Propfire is that you can embed your proposals directly into your own website — something Better Proposals or the other competitors do NOT let you do. They might give you a branded subdomain, but just image how professional it would be to send clients to your own website to view your proposal? Well, you can do it with Propfire!
For Big Teams
Better Proposals is obviously trying to compete with Proposify for the large team agency market. But if you’re a consultant or smaller agency, you need something simpler to use and faster, that can create a proposal that’s right for the type of small and midsized clients you’re pitching too who want to see a concise, no-nonsense, proposal that they can hold in their hands.
That’s exactly what Propfire offers.
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