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Help Center
Help Center

6 Tips to Make Your Proposal Format Unforgettable

Written by: Hansika

Jun 19, 2024

6 tips to make your proposal format unforgettable

In business, first impressions are everything and this holds true for proposals.

With multiple proposals to go through on any given day, potential clients will skim through yours. So, how do you create a positive first impression in those precious few seconds? With a professional and well-formatted proposal.

The perks of getting the proposal format correct cannot be stressed. It reveals professionalism, an eye for detail, and most of all, respect for the client’s time.

Keep reading to learn more about effective proposal formats.

Create proposals that stand out using our Proposal Maker tool or edit professionally-designed proposal templates (no design skills needed!).


Click to jump ahead:

Leverage the power of readability

A proposal that’s easy to read is easy to understand, and that’s half the battle.

Jargon-heavy sentences and dense paragraphs leave readers confused and uninterested. Remember, most people don’t even have time for an elevator pitch, let alone long walls of text. 

To make proposals easy to consume, use a clear and concise writing style so that readers can assess whether your proposal aligns with their needs.

Simple Project Proposal Template

Font choice

Font style adds personality to proposals. A simple, formal font like Arial or Helvetica is easy on the eyes and has a modern, approachable feel. 

Want more options? Check out some more elegant fonts if you want to your proposal that extra oomph.

Avoid overly decorative fonts though — they look interesting, but will make the proposal hard to read. Keep it simple, and keep clients happy. 

Font size

Text size in your proposal also influences readability. Use a font size that’s too small and you’ll cause strained eyes. Go too big, and it could be seen as yelling or childish.

In proposals, use 11 or 12 points for body text and 14 pts or more for headings and titles.

Partnership Proposal Template

Line spacing 

Line spacing gives the text in your proposal room to breathe. A good rule of thumb is use to 1.15 or 1.5 spacing to prevent text from running into each other.


Margins give your proposal structure and elements enough breathing room to make an impact.

Use a one-inch margin to keep everything neat and accessible. If you have a long proposal, a wider margin can help with readability. 

Be organized and structured

A well-structured proposal helps clients review your offer, so it pays to be organized and make your pitch clear and persuasive.

Use headings and subheadings

Add headings and subheadings to organize proposals into clear sections and subsections.

Headings should reflect content sections so readers can scan. Also, make sure to use the right font size and make headings bold for impact.

Simple Retro Style Project Proposal Template

Here are more tips to improve the structure and organization of business proposals:

  • Logical flow: Your proposal should with an introduction, followed by a problem statement, and then the solution. Also, always state the methodology, timeline, and budget.
  • Section headings: Break your text into sections to guide the reader to specific information.
  • Transitions: Use transitions between sections for a better reading experience.

Include page numbers

Proposals, especially lengthy one, should include page numbers to allow readers to skip to specific sections or information easily.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when numbering proposals.

  • Add page numbers to each page in your proposal.
  • Place numbers in the same location (for example, at the bottom right).
  • Use section dividers.
  • Label and number figures and charts in proposals.
Visual Construction Project Proposal Template

Insert a table of contents (TOC)

For lengthy proposals (over 10 pages), include a table of contents to help readers find sections most important to them.

Here are some points to keep in mind when adding a table of contents to proposals.

  • Place your TOC at the start of your proposal for immediate reference.
  • Use simple fonts and adequate spacing.
  • Give descriptive titles for each section to make it clear to readers
General Business Proposal Template

Enhance visual appeal

Visual appeal is a strategic tool to enhance your proposal’s effectiveness and to draw the interest of potential clients. 

Plus it’s also a great opportunity to showcase your brand image.

Here are some simple methods to enhance the visual appeal of your proposals:

Add bullet points

Bullet points minimize walls of text which help you create clean layouts and allow viewers to scan proposals to grasp the main points.

Security Services Proposal Template

Use bold and italics

Use bold and italics to highlight important information. Some examples of text you can bold or italicize include dates, clauses, and figures.

Remember not to overuse bold or italics though or otherwise they’ll lose value.

Integrate images and charts

As the saying goes, a picture speaks a thousand words so whenever possible, incorporate images and charts to visually represent data and concepts.

Here are some points to keep in mind when adding visuals to proposals.

  • Use high-quality images and make sure they are relevant. 
  • Charts and graphs make complex data simpler. Don’t shy away from them!
Investment Proposal Template

Be consistent

A proposal that is consistent in appearance and style communicates trust and professionalism.


Uniform formatting makes your proposal look polished and inviting. This means when it comes to font style, size, spacing or margins, maintain one consistent style throughout.

Red Orange Sales Plan Proposal Template

Define your terminology

If your proposal is technical or uses acronyms, make sure to define them when they first appear to avoid confusion.

And if you use an acronym more than once, it should be an exact match to the first mention.  

Strong brand integration

Branding is important for building trust when done well, it’ll ensure your proposal is remembered long after you make your pitch.

Add your company logo and brand colors

The cover page of your proposal should prominently display your logo while the color scheme should match company colors to emphasize your brand.

Animation Video Proposal Template

Use templates

This tip is a great time-saving hack. Instead of making proposals from scratch, why not edit a proposal template?

Templates are based on successful proposals and incorporate practices that have proven to work well.

On Venngage, you’ll find proposal templates covering different themes, from consulting proposals, business proposals, sales proposals, and more. All the formatting and design is already done for you.


Adding the final touches

Remember to proofread

Give your proposal a once-over to catch any sneaky typos or grammar slips. This exercise can take you the extra mile with clients who go through business proposals with a fine-tooth comb. 

Let’s talk file format

Choose PDFs (it’s a no-brainer) for easy submission and universal access. The last thing you want is a potential client to be not able to open your proposal.

Pro-tip: Don’t forget to make ample use of white space in your proposals. This will make proposals easier to read and lighter on the eyes.

Conclusion: Edit a proposal template and never sweat the format or design again

When formatting proposals, keep these three thoughts in mind — readability, structure, and visual appeal.

And don’t underestimate the power a well-formatted proposal on success rates. Besides the importance of what you’re saying, how you present it matters too. Check out our proposal templates for better outcomes.