Frequently Asked Questions

How do I create a Proposal?

Proposals are more detailed Estimates that enable you to add rich text content and images to your Estimates, making it easy to showcase the value you bring to prospective clients. Proposals also give you the benefits of Estimates, which allow you to send an outline of your Items or Services to your Client for approval before beginning the work, giving you the best of both worlds. 

Note: Proposals are available on the Plus and Premium plans only. 


Creating Proposals

Making a new Proposal is similar to making a new Estimate, with rich text content and image options added. Use these steps below: 

  1. Go to the Estimates section
  2. Click on the Create New... button
  3. Select Proposal. This will take you to the New Proposal screen.
    New proposal button.

Each section of the Proposal is broken down into detail in the below sections.
New proposal screen.  

Proposal Content

  • Prepared For - You can specify your Client here.
  • Proposal Date - Chances are this won't need to be changed as it's automatically populated to today' date, but if you need to change it, you can do so here.
  • Proposal Number - An unique number to identify the Proposal. You can create your own Proposal number using alphanumberic characters (both letters and numbers).
  • Sections (Overview, Scope of Work and Timeline) - These are optional sections that are rich text formatting capable. You can bold, italicize or underline text as well as add bulleted or numbered lists and insert images. To delete a section, hover over it and click on the trash can icon next to it. You can also add more sections above or below the Pricing area with the Add a section link. 
  • Pricing - This includes Description, Rate, Qty, Line Total, where you can quote the Items or Time for your Client. To add Tax to your Proposal on the items, refer to this article.
  • Notes - Add a summary, notes or bank transfer details (optional) to the Proposal.
  • Terms - Include your standard payment terms like bank transfer details or a PayPal email so your Clients know when and how they can pay! This is remembered for future Proposals based on your most recent Proposal's Terms. 


Customize Proposal Style

  • Template - You can choose between Simple or Modern, for the option of having a logo in a corner, or a wide banner across the top of your Proposal.
  • Theme Color - This will change the color of your headings (e.g., Description, Rate, Proposal Number). It will also change the banner color at the top of your Proposal on the Modern template.
  • Font - You can choose between Helvetica (Modern) and Garamond (Classic). 

For the Client

Once a Client is selected, this section appears:

  • Currency & Language - Here you're able to change the currency or language (either English or French) of the Proposal.  

Saving and Sending Proposals

Once the Proposal looks the way you want it, you can either click on:

  • Save - This saves as a draft if you're not quite finished working on it.
  • Send... - An email preview comes up where you can easily change or add more email addresses and personalize the email for your Client. 

Once saved/sent, you'll be taken back to the Estimates section. 

Accepting Proposals

When you send a Proposal to your Client, they receive an email with a link to the Proposal and a button to Accept it with a single click. This allows the Client to confirm your quote so you can start invoicing them. 

The Client's view of the Proposal will look similar to below: 
Client view of a proposal. 

To Accept a Proposal yourself, you can use the steps below: 

  1. Go to the Estimates section
  2. Check the box off next to a Proposal that has not been Accepted yet
  3. Click on the Actions button
  4. Select Accept and the Proposal will now be marked as Accepted

You can also add comments to a Proposal. Just click on the header above the Proposal, and scroll to the bottom to type a comment. This will send your Client an email with this new comment.

Comments on a proposal.

Converting Proposals to Invoices

Once the Proposal has been reviewed by your Client, save time by instantly converting it to an Invoice. Here's how:

  1. With the Proposal open, click on the More Actions button
  2. Click on Convert to Invoice
    Convert Proposal to an Invoice button.
  3. You will be taken to the New Invoice page, and you can finish building the rest of your Invoice
  4. Click Save (to save as a Draft) or click Send... to email it to your Client.


How do I copy/duplicate a Proposal?

  1. Go to the Estimates section
  2. Click on the Create New... button
  3. Select Create From Recent... 
  4. Choose the Proposal you want to copy
  5. Finish editing the rest of your duplicated Proposal.

Alternatively, you can also check the box off next to any Proposal and click on Actions, then select Duplicate for the same result. 


How do I archive a Proposal?

Archiving Proposals allows you to keep your list organized, so you can focus on unaccepted Proposals. To archive your Proposals, use these steps: 

  1. Go to the Estimates section
  2. Check the box(es) off next to the Proposal you want to archive
  3. Click on the Actions button
  4. Select Archive

To access your archived Proposals, click on the View Archived Estimates button. Click on any archived Proposal, then click on the More Actions button and select Unarchive to restore it back to the main list.


How do I delete a Proposal?

Deleted Proposals do not appear in any Reports you run.

  1. Go to the Estimates section
  2. Check the box(es) off next to the Proposal you want to delete
  3. Click on the Actions button
  4. Select Delete

You can view deleted Proposals by clicking on the deleted link at the bottom of the list as well, where you can also undelete them.


What happens to my Proposals I created during my trial of FreshBooks?

When your trial expires, if you've upgraded to a Plus or Premium plan that supports Proposals, you'll be able to continue creating and editing your existing Proposals. If you've decided to upgrade to the Lite plan instead (where Proposals are not available), you'll still be able to view and edit only your existing Proposals.