The bidding process these days is very similar to writing your resume for a job. As a bid manager, it can be disappointing to lose out on contracts one after the other. You are devastated when you see your competitors winning bids over your proposals even though you think you quoted the lowest possible price for the products or services. There are many companies that base their decision solely upon price, overlooking the importance of service and value that they can provide to the customer along with their products and services. Understanding the difference between price, service, and value can make your bid more appealing and effective.
Pricing is important but so are service and value
The tendency of the bidders to overly rely on low price can be understood because of the propensity of public sector companies to choose the bidder who has quoted lowest price. It can be pretty hard on you to price your bid higher than your competitors. However, you can utilize the same bid to highlight the benefits of your service and value that you provide to the customer. In fact, your bid becomes very attractive with these extra benefits to the customer scoring heavily over the pricing that you have mentioned in your bid.
Deliver more value for less
There is always pressure on you to undercut the price of your competitors to win the bid. In such a scenario where all bids have nearly the same price point, it is the bid that offers more value to the customer that often wins. In fact, even a higher price bid wins in these situations as customers find them more appealing because of intrinsic value they carry for them. If you are seen as delivering more value than your competitors, expect chances of your bid as winning bid to be very bright.
And how do you project this more value to your customer? It is through developing a strong and positive relationship with the customer that you reassure him of providing more value for his money. This relationship generates trust in the mind of the customer. He realizes that the bidder with the lowest price may prove costly for him in the long run. On the other hand, your bid with a higher price becomes more reassuring if you can inspire confidence with your bid.
Develop a stable business model
When most of the received bids quite the same price level, the first choice of the customer is often the bidder who has experience and who has proved his skills. If you have set up your business recently, it is often difficult to convince the customer about the professionalism of your company. However, you can achieve this by investing in the business model of your company. If you can show that you have a proper structure in place with a clear hierarchy and well defined roles and responsibilities, it becomes easy for you to convince the customer about the kind of service and efficiency that he can expect from your company. The structure and model of your business should inspire confidence in the mind of the customer to choose your company over your competitors in the bidding process.
Make the customer feel like king
Even though you are quoting a price that is similar to what other bidders are quoting, make your bid stand out by justifying the price according to the needs and requirements of the client. Et the client know that you have focused solely on his needs while arriving at the bidding price. Along with the price, never forget to mention how the products or services will be delivered and what will be your mode of responding to the queries and complaints.
Know the needs of the client
Do you know that U.S Air force is the biggest outsources of the world? It may surprise you but they try to source all the materials and the services for their personnel and the jets from companies around the world. And what is one thing that they emphasize when awarding contracts? It is the ability of the bidder to understand their needs and fulfill them in the most efficient manner. One bidder who realized Air Force cannot allow jets to be grounded for long time periods developed his bid in such a manner that he addressed this requirement of the U.S Air Force. This is the secret behind winning bids. If you can address the core concerns of the customer through your service, you can easily make your bid stand out from the rest of your competitors.
One more thing that you should be aware of as a bid manager is the fact that many customers expect certain discounts for long time contracts and bulk projects. You should know how to mitigate your costs to be able to provide such discounts to your customers.