Why do I need tenders if there is a good old sundress, telegram channels, Facebook and other proven ways to find customers? They say that it takes a long time to participate in tenders, it is difficult, and in general, your own person will win. So many argue, but in vain!
We will tell you what goodies you will get from participating in tenders, how to distinguish a good tender from a disadvantageous one, and what rules must be followed in order for the customer to choose you.
What gives the agency participation in tenders
If you have a shortage of leads, participation in tenders will help you get new projects. Yes, you will have to try to choose you – this will be discussed below.
If you are tired of small tasks, this is the place for you. Tenders are usually organized for long-term projects that will provide you with stability. If you recommend yourself well, it is highly likely that later they will contact you directly.
A case study about working with a large customer can and should be added to the portfolio as proof that you are in demand in the market and cooperate with business leaders. This is a clear recognition of your skill.
The more tenders the agency wins, the higher the ratings and the better the customer reviews. As a rule, this information is displayed on the agency card at the tender site. This means that it will be easier to win tenders in the future, because customers look through the cards of candidates, choosing the best one.
New connections and acquaintances
Participation in tenders is a free way to meet new people, to develop connections that may be useful in the future. Even if the organizer of the tender does not select you this time, he can remember you and then contact directly if necessary.
But what about corruption, bureaucracy and that’s all?
Unfortunately, the attitude towards tenders in our country is not very good. Bad news: in many ways it is justified (we all know the stories of how tenders were won by the customer’s cousins, and then everyone sawed the budget together). The good news is that it doesn’t really apply to digital. Everything is much simpler here.
There are special tender sites that specialize in tenders in the digital field, for example, Workspace. There is no bureaucracy: you do not need to issue an EDS and a special account, get accredited, fill out a bunch of documents, and so on. It is enough to register, fill out an agency card, choose a specialization (website or mobile application development, contextual advertising, search engine optimization, marketing, PR, SMM) and go ahead, look for suitable tasks and apply.
Are all tenders equally useful?
Alas, we do not live in an ideal world and there are also unsafe and unprofitable tenders among the tenders. We will tell you how to identify them.
How to identify a bogus tender?
- Unfortunately, there are still cases when dubious tender sites offer to pay for the very fact of participation in the auction or a percentage of the cost. At secure tender sites, you will not be asked for any money for participation itself (there are, of course, additional paid options, but they are not required). Therefore, if the cost of participation is indicated in the tender, it is better to pass by.
- Study and check the information about the organizers of the tender (contact person, contacts, company name, etc.). It is better to punch it in search engines – for example, by TIN or company name, as well as study the website of the organizer of the tender and call the indicated numbers to make sure that such a company really exists.
Workspace has a life hack: if the tender was organized from a corporate mailbox, a corresponding note is made in the announcement. Tenders with this mark are more credible. This minimizes the likelihood that the tender is fictitious: who will shine corporate mail for dubious purposes?
How to identify an unfavorable tender?
Each contractor decides for himself – based on common sense, his own experience and the price segment in which he works – which tenders are profitable and which are not. This point depends on many factors, and cost is one of the most important.
Often, in order to make a final decision, you need to first communicate with the customer. Especially if the ad contains a large spread in the budget or there is no exact information about it.
But there are also not so obvious points. The chances that the tender will be profitable are increased under the conditions:
- when it comes to the service you specialize in. For example, if a customer is looking for an agency or studio for the development of a turnkey website, and you previously only dealt with programming or design, it will be almost impossible to win a tender with more experienced developers, and in the end more resources will be spent on project implementation. Specialization in the customer’s industry is also important. If you have made medical websites more than once, then when working with a similar order, you will spend less time putting forward and testing hypotheses. At the same time, the probability of errors is reduced, and the implementation process is optimized;
- if the organizer of the tender demonstrates maximum conscientiousness: he clearly knows what he wants, and announces in advance the criteria by which he will evaluate the quality of work. There are tenders where the technical specification is too vague or short – in this case, feel free to ask for specifics. This plays into the hands of everyone: the organizer of the tender will assess the seriousness of your intentions, and you will understand what exactly will have to be done and whether it suits you;
- if the organizer understands that it fits into the specified budget with a margin of 25-30%. As practice shows, the project budget sometimes rises already in the process of work. And often it is through the fault of the customer, when he suddenly has new requirements and additional wishes. If the budget grows, and the customer does not have additional funds, problems may arise with payment;
- if the customer sets an adequate deadline in the application so that the contractor has enough time to implement the project with a small margin. When working with a specific customer for the first time (that is, not knowing him yet), one cannot be sure that he will promptly coordinate the stages of the project, give feedback and not add sudden wishes already in the course of work. Therefore, it is better to protect yourself by laying in a small time reserve for possible force majeure.
What rules must be followed to win tenders
Here are some tips to help you win a big tender.
Participate in tenders for your specialization
And again we repeat: you need to take projects for the services in which you specialize. Why?
- it will take much less time to prepare a response to the tender than it would have to spend if it were a new service for the agency;
- if you have a lot of experience, it means that there is also the appropriate analytics that will make the KP more effective and more useful;
in the portfolio, which the organizer of the tender will definitely pay attention to, there are already relevant projects;
- you most likely have both reviews and case studies with numbers, which reflect exactly how you helped the customer and how you benefited his business. And some may even have awards in competitions received for a project on the same topic.
Upgrade your agency profile on the tender platform
Who will customers trust more: a blank page with brief information or a detailed description of the agency with a list of services, portfolios and cases, reviews, contact information? When viewing applications, the organizer of the tender will first look at the profiles of those who responded.
What should be in the profile:
- specialization – you get the idea :);
- a story about the company: how many years the agency has been operating, where it is based, how many people are in the team, etc .;
- portfolio and cases;
- achievements: victories in other tenders, places in ratings and professional awards;
- reviews – reviews on Workspace can be left only by those customers whose tender was won by the agency, this causes more confidence in other potential customers;
- contacts – this way you will convince the customer of your decency and openness. And there is also a chance that the customer will fall in love with your agency so much that he wants to contact you directly, without organizing a tender.
Develop an algorithm for working with tenders
- Determine timing of reactions, communication standards, etc. Of course, understanding is achieved with experience, but even if this is your first time bidding, try to keep track of these points.
- Develop internal standards for tender documents and follow them. Prepare the necessary letterhead, samples, and presentation templates in advance.
- Identify a specific person in charge (for example, an office manager or a project manager). Entrust him with preparation of documentation, monitoring of tenders and elaboration of responses to them. And be sure to think over a motivation system for this employee!
Do not sin with the same type of responses to different tenders
Show an individual approach to each customer. When writing a commercial proposal (an example of a good commercial proposal for website development), focus on practical benefits for the customer (for example, the website will help him attract new customers and increase the loyalty of existing ones, help users understand the customer’s product, increase sales, etc.) …
- Tenders are not always labor-intensive and time-consuming. It is necessary to choose a modern tender platform without bureaucracy and complex participation procedures.
- Participation in a tender can give the agency new orders, large projects, positive feedback and a strengthening of its reputation.
- Carefully study the terms of reference, tender conditions and information about the company in order to identify fictitious and unprofitable tenders in time.
- To win a tender and save your resources, respond to applications for your specialization, show an individual approach to customers, upgrade the agency’s profile, work out an algorithm for working with tenders.
So, the tender is not as terrible as they say about it: it is quite possible to win it if you approach the matter consciously and responsibly and follow the recommendations described in the article. Good luck, colleagues!