Business proposal software makes the process of drafting, editing, and sharing business proposals more efficient. They also provide integrations and other tools to help your documents stand out from the competition. We looked at 20 of the best sales proposal services and evaluated the top 6, including the best overall.
Top 6 Business Proposal Solutions for Small Business Owners
|Business Proposal System||Best For|
|PandaDoc||(Best Overall) Teams that want a complete feature set at an affordable price.|
|Proposify||Sales reps that want an interactive pricing module in their proposals.|
|Bidsketch||Companies new to making business proposals that want guided help along the way.|
|Bonsai||Organizations that want to manage proposals, invoices, and clients in one system.|
|Qwilr||Teams that want to make visually striking multimedia documents.|
|Proposeful||Solo workers and freelancers looking for a low-cost, no-frills option.|
How We Evaluated Business Proposal Software
Business proposal software should give you the ability to create, share, and deploy multimedia business pitches. Tools should offer plenty of functionality to help you make proposals as you see fit, but they should also be intuitive or include built-in sales proposal templates so that you can focus on making the best proposals possible.
The criteria we used to evaluate presentation services include:
- Cost: Services should be affordable enough for businesses of all sizes
- Ease of Use: Business proposal software should be intuitive, even for less tech savvy workers
- Drafting Tools: We looked at the sort of content creation tools that each service offers
- Templates: Business proposal systems should offer pre-made templates to business users who do not have the time or skill to craft proposals from scratch
- Electronic Signature: We looked at whether each service offers electronic signature functionality
- Tracking Tools: Leading tools offer the ability to track proposal activity once content is sent to prospects
- Customer Service: There should be ample customer service help available in the event of a problem
- Storage Limits: We looked at the cloud storage space offered by each proposal software service
- Security: We looked at the type of security measures each service offers to protect sensitive content
- Supported File Types: Proposal systems should allow you to work in a wide range of different file types for your text, images, and video
- Software Integrations: We looked at the software integrations available with each service.
Based on our criteria, we find that PandaDoc is the best overall fit for most small business users. It is easy to use, packed with a powerful proposal builder, and priced low enough for most teams. It even comes with the ability to accept and process payments right from your business proposal.
Best Overall Business Proposal System: PandaDoc
PandaDoc is one of the most popular document automation systems on the market. Starting at $15 per month, the proposal software offers a powerful document editor, electronic signatures, and the ability to track client activity as they view your proposal. The service is also incredibly easy to use. Therefore, we find that this combination of price and functionality makes it the best choice for most general business users.
PandaDoc offers two tiers of pricing for small businesses. The individual package costs $15/user per month and is limited to two users. For $49/user per month the business tier allows for unlimited users and adds integrations and reporting. This is one of the more expensive options on the market.
PandaDoc Tiered Features
|Real-time Proposal Tracking|
|Custom Approvals & Role Management|
The Individual version of PandaDoc costs $15/user per month and comes with a core set of features such as access to a powerful proposal builder, electronic signatures, and the ability to track proposals as they go through the sales pipeline. It’s worth noting that you are limited to sending just 50 documents per month and you can only have two users per company.
PandaDoc individual is missing some of the advanced features found in the Business version. You don’t have software integration capabilities, so you won’t be able to connect data with leading customer relationship management systems (CRMs) such as HubSpot CRM. Still, this offers a higher monthly document limit than Proposify, and it’s ideal for salespersons that need to make a high amount of proposals and are OK with sharing a login.
At $49/user per month PandaDoc’s Business package adds quite a bit more functionality. There is no cap on users or documents in this tier. You get integration with most leading CRMs, Role management features for team members, a content library of pre-made assets, and an advanced reporting module that give you a full breakdown of what team members are doing what tasks. While it costs much more than the Individual tier, it offers a lot more functionality.
Compared to similarly-priced services, PandaDoc Business is a good value. BidSketch’s Team package, for example, costs $30 more and only supports up to three users per company. Therefore, the Business version of PandaDoc is great for businesses seeking a powerful solution for an affordable price.
What PandaDoc Is Missing
While the high-end version of PandaDoc has a lot of features, it doesn’t offer any integrations beyond CRM. Therefore, if you want to connect your proposal software with lots of different business apps, we suggest looking at Proposify. Thanks to Zapier’s integration with Proposify, you can connect that solution to hundreds of different business applications. Zapier is a popular business app connector that lets you integrate most of today’s popular business software.
What Users Think About PandaDoc
Users generally like PandaDoc and its various features. They find the platform to be very easy to use, and say that it’s proposal building tools are effective and intuitive. With that in mind, there are several complaints that CRM integration can be spotty depending on what system you use.
“I love PandaDoc and have used it for some time with various startups. Using PandaDoc was another way to show value and give an amazing experience to the end user. It adds a layer of prestige that helps elevate our brand and the customer experience.”
— Dwayne Vera, Sales Trainer & Growth consultant.
Best Proposal Software With Interactive Pricing: Proposify
Proposify, which starts at $19/user per month is a business proposal system that offers features such as a document builder, electronic signature, and a content library of assets for your proposals. Best of all, Proposify offers an interactive pricing tool, so it is ideal for companies wanting to speed up the proposal process by giving their customers the ability to quickly review multiple pricing options all at once.
Proposify’s small business packages cost either $19 to $49/user per month, depending on what feature set you want. Advanced features of the top-tier option include integrations, custom fields, and client input forms. This is moderately priced for a system of this kind.
Proposify Tiered Features
|Active Proposal Limit|
|Client Input Forms|
|User Roles & Permissions|
For $19/user per month Proposify’s Tall package comes with a core set of features including a document builder, online signatures, and support for many different file types. This package also comes with Proposify’s “interactive quoting” feature, which lets you put interactive pricing tables right into your proposal. Prospective clients can browse options, click boxes for add-ons, and get a customized price for their needs.
Unfortunately, this module is missing the ability to connect data with other software. It is also limited to just five proposals a month, which is very limited considering PandaDoc offers 50 proposals for a lower price. Still, the interactive quoting module makes this great for salespeople who have a low monthly document need.
The Grande package costs $49/user per month and comes with software integration functionality. A nice bonus with this package is that it offers Zapier integration. Zapier is an app connector service that lets you set up and deploy integrations with thousands of different apps, so this essentially gives you limitless potential when it comes to sharing data between all of your solutions.
Even in its more expensive version, Proposify’s document builder is still behind PandaDocs in terms of usability and features. The building module is more cluttered and looks less modern than what PandaDoc offers. Still, the wealth of integrations, along with the ability to insert the interactive quoting table, make this good for teams that want a seamless sales pipeline across solutions.
What Proposify Is Missing
Proposify offers a content library of assets, but you still have to draft proposals yourself. If you are short on time, or do not have any design skills, then you might want to take a look at BidSketch instead. That service offers a unique feature that can automatically generate proposals for you based on the text that you enter.
What Users Think About Proposify
Proposify is popular with its users. Sales reps in particular say that the interactive quote feature is easy to set up, and that it has had a direct effect on helping them close deals. Customers are also pleased with the electronic signature feature. With that in mind, many say that they wish they had a bit more freedom in customizing the look and feel of their proposals.
Best Business Proposal Software For Guided Proposals: BidSketch
BidSketch is a proposal system that offers, among other features, a drag-and-drop proposal builder, proposal analytics, and real-time collaboration features among teammates. With a starting price of $23 per month, it also comes with a guided help module that can effectively generate a proposal around text and images. This makes it a perfect fit for non-creative users, as well as those that are short on time and want to work quickly.
BidSketch offers three different pricing packages: Solo costs $23 per month, Team costs $47 per month, and Business costs $119 per month billed annually. It’s worth noting that this is not priced per user, which makes it one of the most affordable systems we looked at.
BidSketch Tiered Features
|Team Management Features|
The Solo packages offer access to the company’s document builder, as well as a few extras such as analytics and support for electronic signatures. At $23 per month, this about matches the feature set of other entry-level business proposal packages on the market. This version also supports unlimited documents per month, which is a rarity in this space.
If you want collaboration and team management features, you will have to subscribe to more expensive versions of the system. This is also missing the template selection offered by the least expensive version of PandaDoc. This is a good fit for businesses that want a strong core set of features and are fine with BidSketch’s auto-generated documents.
BidSketch Team, which costs $47 per month, has all of the features of the Solo version, but adds a guided help feature that generates a quick layout for your proposal. All you need to do is come up with the text and insert images as you see fit. It takes a fraction of the time to make a proposal here as it does in competing systems.
Unfortunately, this version is missing the software integrations found in intermediate packages from other vendors. It’s also unfortunate that this is limited to just three users, especially considering that this is marketing as a team-oriented option. This is a good fit for very small groups that want to collaborate on proposals at the same time.
The Business version has all of the features and capabilities of the Team package. The only meaningful differences are that it costs $119 per month and supports up to eight users as opposed to the Team version’s three person limit.
It’s puzzling that BidSketch does not offer a slightly more expensive version that supports even more users, as the cap is still small compared to competing systems. It’s also odd that no version of BidSketch offers no software integrations at any level of service. BidSketch Business is best suited for teams of eight people or less that do not need to share prospect data across different software systems.
What BidSketch Is Missing
BidSketch gives you everything you need to build, share, and deploy business proposals quickly. However, it does not offer any connectivity with today’s leading CRMs. It is very different than Bonsai, which offers CRM features within its proposal building system. That service is much better suited for teams that want a more comprehensive sales workflow.
What Users Think About BidSketch
Users who have no interest in designing their own business proposals enjoy how easy and quick the process of proposal creation is. Many find that it is a perfect option for fast-paced companies. However, there is a lot of frustration from users about the lack of customization options offered by the service.
Best All-In-One Business Proposal Software: Bonsai
Bonsai, which starts at $16 per month, is a business productivity suite that offers, among other things, the ability to build and share business proposal documents. In addition to that, you can also use the software to write up invoices, track clients through a sales pipelines, and track work time. Bonsai is ideal for freelancers and other small organizations that want a one-stop-shop for their business document needs.
Bonsai pricing ranges from $16 per month for the Plus plan and goes all the way up to $24 per month for the Premium edition. The Premium edition supports unlimited users, but each additional user costs an additional $9 per month. This makes it a moderately priced solution.
Bonsai Tiered Features
|Client Management Utility|
|Data export & import|
Bonsai’s entry-level Plus plan, which costs $16 per month, comes with a proposal building module, proposal tracking capabilities, and a client management dashboard that gives you a view of your various client statuses. It also comes with CRM features, so that you can track a sales pipeline just like you would with Salesforce or any other standalone system.
Unfortunately, this version of the service does not come with the ability to add electronic signatures. This is especially disappointing considering other entry-level systems, like BidSketch’s Solo package, come standard with e-signature support. Still, the fact that this also comes with invoicing and CRM features make this a fantastic catch-all solution for solo workers and extremely small workgroups.
The Premium version of the solution costs $24 per month. It supports collaboration among unlimited users, but each additional user will cost you $9 per month. This package also adds support for electronic signatures and a white labeling feature that removes the Bonsai logo from all documents and adds your own branding.
At just $24 per month, Bonsai Premium is one of the most affordable top-tier business proposal packages available. However, when you take into account that each additional user priced at $9 per month, costs can quickly add up as your onboard more of your staff into the solution. Still, this is a good fit for established companies that want a more professional business presence thanks to custom branding.
What Bonsai Is Missing
Bonsai has a fairly comprehensive document builder, but it is not very easy to add video, animations, and other media to your proposal. This could be a problem for startups that want to project a flashy, modern image to prospective clients. Organizations looking for the best multimedia proposal software should check out Qwilr, which makes it very easy to add all sorts of artwork and other extras to your content.
What Users Think About Bonsai
Freelancers in particular like that they can draft business proposals, invoices, and timesheets within the same solution for a low price. With that said, there are complaints that the system’s interface is hard to understand and that the web app can crash often.
Best Multimedia Business Proposal Software: Qwilr
Qwilr is a business proposal system with a focus on helping users make visually striking designs. With a starting price of $29 per month, Qwilr offers features like a proposal editor, pre-made templates, CRM integration, and reporting features that tell you how long people are looking at your proposals. The fact that Qwilr makes it so easy to embed video into proposals makes it great for those who want to share video on their content.
Qwilr has two different tiers of pricing. The Pro edition costs $29 per month, while the high-end Business package costs $79 per month. This pricing structure puts it toward the more expensive end of the small business proposal system spectrum.
Qwilr Tiered Features
|Saved Blocks Library|
|Remove Qwilr Branding|
The Pro plan offers access to the company’s proposal editing tools, which allow you to make media-rich, colorful proposals that your prospective clients will be able to view on both desktop and mobile devices. It also comes with access to the company’s full library of pre-made templates. You can also choose from over 900 different fonts thanks to the service’s Google Fonts compatibility.
This version is missing some of the functionality found in the more expensive Business version. It does not give you a custom domain, so your clients will always see Qwilr in the URL of your proposal. That, along with the lack of CRM integration, might be a deal breaker for some. Still, this is a good entry level option for those who want to make visually striking proposals.
For $79 per month, Qwilr adds a few features that might be of interest to more established companies. You get your own custom domain for your proposals, which makes your company seem more professional to clients. You also get integration with most CRM systems, and the ability to add any font available on Adobe’s vast TypeKit library. This is a small bonus to some, but a game changer for professional designers who want a large choice of typefaces.
This version of the service is limited to just three users. If you want to accommodate more employees, then you will have to spring for the enterprise version, which costs $3,000 per year and is simply not viable for most smaller organizations. We wish there were more intermediate tiers to Qwilr, because the service is so useful for startups that want to make great looking business proposals.
What Qwilr Is Missing
Qwilr is an effective solution, especially if you have an eye for design and want to make use of its multimedia and font support. However, its small business pricing isn’t very flexible. If you want a wide range of options, Proposeful offers a free version as well as four different paid tiers of service.
What Users Think About Qwilr
Many Qwilr users mention in reviews that they have gotten very positive feedback from their business proposals. They like that it is so easy to stand out from the competition, and they especially like how easy it is to make sense of the system’s interface. With that said, some users did report that the system failed to connect data with their CRM system.
Best No-Frills Business Proposal Software : Proposeful
Proposeful, as its name implies, is a business proposal software system that offers tools to enter text, format it, insert images, and share with prospective clients. Unlike most other systems on the market, however, it offers a completely free version. Additionally, there are four distinct pricing tiers to meet the needs of most business users. Still, the free version is adequate to meet the needs of teams that have minimal proposal needs and are looking for a free option.
Proposeful’s Starter edition is completely free to use and gives you a basic core set of features. The paid versions range from $49 per month and go all the way up to $240 per month depending on how many proposals you want to make every month and what features you need.
Proposeful Tiered Features
|Proposals Per Month|
|Download to PDF|
|See Proposal Viewing Time|
|Remove Proposeful Branding|
The Starter version of Proposeful is free and comes with access to the company’s robust proposal builder. It also comes with proposal tracking and support for electronic signatures. This is impressive because some paid systems on the market don’t even offer this.
Unfortunately, you are limited to just 15 proposals a month, so it’s not viable for busy teams who are constantly courting prospects. It also lacks the ability to see how long prospects spend looking at your documents like in the paid versions of the system. Still, this is great for those who only need to make proposals occasionally and don’t want to pay for the ability to do so.
The Light+ version of the service costs $49 per month and raises the monthly proposal limit to 25. It also lets you see how long your clients are reading documents, and it removes Proposeful branding from all of your content, so it gives your company a more professional business presence.
If you want to accommodate more proposals each month, you will have to spend much more for the Large edition of the service. This version is also lacking the proposal automation features found in the top-tier version of the service. This is good for any business users that liked the Starter version, but want to send more documents every month.
Large – Large ++
The Large plan is nearly identical to the Light+ version of the system. For $90 per month, you can send 50 proposals per month rather than the Light+’s 25 document allowance. You get all of the same features as the less expensive option, so it’s only recommended for companies who absolutely must send more than 25 documents out every month.
Like the Large plan, the Large+ package simply offers more documents per month than less expensive options. For the monthly price of $150, you are allowed to send up to 100 documents each month to prospective clients. It also adds Zapier integration, so you can connect data with many other business apps. But when you consider that other services, like PandaDoc, allow you to send unlimited proposals for a much lower price, this isn’t an especially good value.
The Large++ edition of Proposeful, which costs $240 per month, is the same as the Large+ except it allows users to send up to 200 proposals per month. Other than that, you also get the Zapier integration included with the Large++ package. Like the Large+ version, it’s hard to make a case for adopting this system when competitors offer more features at a lower price.
What Proposeful Is Missing
The free version of Proposeful has a good enough set of features for any team that needs to send just a few proposals a month and does not need any advanced functionality. However, the paid versions of the system all offer a poor value in terms of proposals-per-month. If you want to send many documents to clients, we suggest looking at PandaDoc, which offers unlimited proposals for just $49/person per month.
What Users Think About Proposeful
There aren’t many online reviews for Proposeful, but the ones that are published seem to be unimpressed with the system’s features. Many like that it is very simple to use and offers a free version. However, many users say that they upgraded to a different system once their needs grew and they better understood what they wanted out of their own proposals.
If you are still using a word processor to draft your business proposals, you are selling yourself and your business short. There is no shortage of specialized software products that help you easily make effective proposals that are sure to catch the eye of your prospective clients.
If you want to start making powerful proposals, we suggest PandaDoc. It is an ideal balance of price, usability, and features. Best of all, the company offers a 14-day free trial of the service so that you can try it out for yourself. Click the link below to learn more.