Estimates & Invoices

A price quote is a call to action

A quote is a formal document. It explains your pricing for a job or order, and gives your customer a clear cost for the work.

When a customer asks you for a quote, it means they’re seriously considering doing business with you. All your sales and marketing efforts have paid off! You’ve shown that your service has value, and you’re one step away from closing the deal.

But don’t celebrate just yet. The quotation process might seem like a formality, but it isn’t. New business is won or lost at this stage, so it’s important to get it right.

In this guide we’ll look at how you can make price quotes work for you. With the right approach you’ll get a better response. This will also help you pitch your services at the best price – for you.Play video how to quote a job

Why quotes are good for business

Price quotes are an essential part of running some types of business, especially service businesses. They are useful because they:

  • help you and your customer understand each other.
  • state the price, terms and conditions of business clearly.
  • bring you closer to a sale by encouraging the customer to make a decision.
  • legally protect buyers, which makes them more likely to do business with you.
  • help you structure your pricing and the services you offer.
  • encourage transparency between you and your customers.

The difference between a quote and an estimate

If you’re starting your own business, it pays to know the difference between the two. A quote is usually a fixed price offer. It means that you have:

  • studied the work involved carefully.
  • discussed the requirements in full with your client.
  • calculated the materials and labor required.

Once accepted, it has legal status in many countries. So you usually can’t charge more for the work than you’ve quoted.

An estimate has less legal value than a quote. It gives the client a rough idea of what the job might cost, but there’s no guarantee that the price won’t change when the work is carried out.

You may have to explain this difference to some of your customers, so that they know what they’re getting. They will probably prefer a quote to an estimate, because it gives them peace of mind.