May 25, 2022
"Had we continued with Word and PDF offerings, it would have been quite inefficient compared to what we do now"
It’s evident that the digital customer journey is more important than ever, more so following the COVID-19 pandemic. We see many organisations within the meetings and events industry creating their sales documents and proposals using Word or PowerPoint, and distributing these as print pdfs. 😫 Why is this a problem? Sales teams are dealing with unnecessary hassle to build and send proposals and losing a lot of time as a result. So, we’ve outlined the main differences between an interactive proposal (a digital solution) and a pdf static proposal (the “outdated” proposal) to help you understand why interactive proposals are a must-have for sales teams.
The clue is in the heading! Pdfs (Portable Document Format) are a static, unchangeable document, meaning updates from customers are painful to make. At least not anywhere near as easy as an interactive proposal, which is effectively a website and dynamically updates each time the seller makes changes.
Pdfs are limited in that there’s less flexibility in the types of content you can display, whereas interactive proposals allows you to embed multimedia content. Take for example - videos. Customers expect to see videos of your products and services and value personalised proposals.
Sellers can easily showcase the value of their products and services through great, organised content types. Buyers can easily select their choices within an interactive proposal, saving them the time of having to confirm this through another channel, such as phone or email.
Do you and your colleagues use the same template for sending out sales documents, or truthfully speaking do your proposals look different each time they’re sent to a customer? A consistent look is not always guaranteed when building proposals in programs such as Word, as it is tricky to format images, texts, and descriptions to appear coherent per proposal.
In a sales platform such as Qondor, you have a single design and layout for proposals set up to reflect your brand for consistency and brand reinforcement. It also means that sellers have an easier time when adding or amending products in proposals, and they don’t have to spend time worrying about the design. Qondor also displays recommended image sizes and automatically formats the image, letting the seller know whether the image size will look good in the proposal.
In Qondor, sales teams also have access to the same templates, and (depending on who has user rights) sellers will only ever be able to change their copied proposal, reducing the risk of templates being mistakenly changed.
Your customers will too become familiar with the format and are guaranteed to be blown away by the beautiful design and resolution of an interactive proposal in comparison to a basic pdf proposal.
"Customers reward rich virtual buying experiences… As business customers learn and buy more online, unflattering comparisons to advanced digital retail and media companies are unavoidable."
(Future of Sales, 2020, Gartner)
Have you ever opened a PDF document on your mobile and read through it? It is not easy to find the information you are looking for without having to pinch your screen and swiping right and left and scrolling back and forth. It is easy to lose track and you will probably have to wait until you get the PC to evaluate it properly, or maybe even print the proposal.
With Qondor, the proposal is like your own webshop tailored to each event, and the buyers' experience is comparable to how you buy products and services in your personal life, quick and it is easy to navigate. Just have a look here:
"We moved away from the traditional way of distributing offers in pdf format and name lists in Excel to Qondor’s interactive proposals. Now we have a digital customer journey which starts when the request for proposal comes in, through the offer phase, continuing with the planning and ends with the guests being at our hotel. Qondor has enabled the wow-factor both for us and our customers"
JESPER HYSEUS (CEO)
When organising and selling meetings and events, there are often a lot of changes involved in the sales process. Information needs to be updated in the proposal, and the customer needs to be sent the most up to date version. With pdfs, sellers cannot simply update the document which the customer has received. They need to go back and amend the original Word or PowerPoint file, save the pdf and resend it. This results in losing any comments or feedback left in the document, along with there being several versions of the proposal and an email chain. This could lead to the risk of creating confusion in which is the newest proposal version. Imagine discussing the event with your customer over the phone, and you are both looking at different versions! Having to dig through emails to find the correct version is no fun and is time-consuming.
With Qondor’s interactive proposals, customers receive a unique web link to their proposal. If there are any amendments to be made, the salesperson can simply update the proposal from their side and the changes will be reflected immediately. Any time the customer clicks on the link, they will be directed to one, dynamic version of the proposal. This provides a single source of truth for both the seller and customer and any other stakeholders involved.
Pdfs lack when it comes to tracking where the customer is in the sale. In sales, it’s a crucial task to follow up on customers, but how do you know when the best time is to do that? With pdfs, there is no ability to track interactions with the proposal, leaving sales teams guessing.
As interactive proposals are a web version, interactions with the proposal are tracked. In Qondor, sellers are able to see when the customer last viewed the offer, and better yet notifies when a customer has left feedback or answered a proposal. This way the seller is always aware of the progress of each sale. This saves a lot of time and allows sales teams to focus on the right things at the right time.
By using Pdf proposals, you are missing out on a major element of successful sales as pdfs aren't able to provide data.
When choosing an interactive proposal platform, it is useful to consider whether it can also provide you with reporting and insights to inform your sales decisions, and understand when and where to focus your sales efforts.
Using Qondor interactive proposals, you have full insights around the products & services you offer, the suppliers you work with, what is accepted and not, and what has a larger margin over time.
To recap, there are 6 reasons why interactive proposals will close more sales than pdf print proposals:
Allows for more flexibility in showcasing products and services, and it dynamically updates
Looks more appealing and ensures a consistent brand design
Provides a great buying experience for your customer
Provides a single source of truth for all stakeholders involved
Allows you to track when your customer has seen the proposal
An interactive platform like Qondor provides reporting, key data and insights to inform your sales decisions