A freelancer’s life is nothing short of amazing. The freedom to choose what you love to do and the absolute control over your life are two major perks of being a freelancer. The flow of money is bound to be uneven, though. You might be flush some months and outright broke at times.
The key is to get a lot of paying customers at regular intervals and to do that you need to sell yourself better. Even after making a name for yourself in your niche, it’s essential that you put significant efforts to win the projects you bid for. A concise and clear cut proposal is the first vital step to achieve that.
QuoteRobot claims to help you create beautiful, winning proposals. They have a gorgeous user interface, so let us check out if the app is as good as it looks!
QuoteRobot costs $10 a month for unlimited use. The app integrates with popular third party services like Freshbook, Highrise etc. making it easier for you to pull data from an existing database. Usually, this integration would be buried deep in the settings page. But not in this app.
As soon as you sign in, you will be asked to enter the business details like company information and the amount you charge per hour. The very next step is selecting the third party app you want to integrate with. So, if you are importing customer data from another app, it’s better to do it at the beginning as the very step of creating a proposal requires customer information. This is a sensible workflow and saves you a lot of time and effort.
If you aren’t importing customer information from a third party app, use the Add Client link to manually enter the same. There aren’t many fields in the form and it should only take a minute or so to add a client.
After that, we move straight ahead to the quote creation part. Things start to get interesting from here. The elements that make up a winning quote – title, text, quote – are available on the right pane. Just click on the appropriate element to bring it to the canvas for editing.
Use the text block to explain in detail about the project or proposal to the client. Blocks of content are lined one after another, and the large fonts and design elements are amazing to work with.
Numbers are the heroes of a proposal, right? QuoteRobot does a great job at ensuring that all numbers including dollar amounts, dates, percentages etc. are conveyed without any ambiguity to the clients. Toggle buttons to show or hide certain fields is a cool feature. Similarly, exclusive buttons for hourly, fixed and recurring charges are smart additions as well.
Enhancing the experience further are the toggle buttons at the top. You can preview, edit or download the proposal by toggling these buttons. However, make sure that you save all the changes before entering the preview mode. I lost chunks of unsaved blocks couple of times.
The blocks looked really good in the preview. But, I don’t understand why each block has to have its own page. For instance, I don’t have to dedicate an entire page for a text block that briefs the client about the numbers that follow. There has to be some flexibility to choose which blocks get an exclusive page and which ones go together.
I devoted this review for the quote and proposal generation capabilities of QuoteRobot. However, the app can be used to generate invoices as well. For a freelancer, this is good news since there is no need to pay for one more app. Besides that, you can invite people from your team to lend a helping hand with a proposal. Team collaboration isn’t promoted heavily, but is available and can be accessed from the Settings page.
Snippets are worth a mention as well. Snippets are preset textual content you can add to blocks to make the creation process faster, similar to using TextExpander to help you type faster. To edit them, head over to the Snippets section in the Settings page. With the help of tags, you can insert dynamic data (like customer name, company address, etc.) with so much ease. I saw this feature explained in their blog post, but it would be great if they highlight features like these in the homepage as well.
I have been watching this quote and proposal creation vertical with fervent interest for the past few months. When I reviewed the first quote generation app here, I pointed out the relatively less crowded nature of the market. That’s not the case anymore. There are more than a handful of players in the field and they have changed some key rules of the game.
The one that I noticed was the pricing. Until few months ago, web apps in this space had a cap on the number of quotes and proposals that can be generated every month. Thankfully, that has changed and we now have true unlimited plans worth the money the customer is paying for.
At this juncture, eye candy is one aspect that could be used as a unique selling point, and QuoteRobot is rocking it to the max. Their clean and hip user interface is a clear winner and the good looking proposals they help generate add to the effect as well. (And, the robot mascot is so darn cool!) QuoteRobot is worth giving a shot if you are in dire need of a creating impressive proposals for your clients.