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Government Bids Top 10 Tips to Blunder-Proof Your Bid

Make sure your government bids and government proposals are practical -- and your government paperwork is perfect. You may write the greatest government bids or proposals in the world, but if you fail to present them in a sophisticated, professional manner, you won't get the government contract.

10 Common Pitfalls to Avoid when Submitting Government Bids or Proposals

1. Using complex language in your government bids and government proposals. Keep your proposal simple and easy to follow. Use easy-to-understand language and avoid long-winded sentences and paragraphs.

2. Submitting a bid on government contracts that will place your current government projects at risk. All too often, businesses submit government proposals or bids they can't fully complete. Before applying for a contract, make sure you possess the skills and resources required to finish the project. Otherwise, you'll find yourself scrambling to meet the contract requirements while your other projects suffer.

3. Not accepting credit cards for payment. Many government agencies now prefer to use merchant credit cards and government purchase cards to buy goods and services. If you don't accept plastic, you may miss out on these government contracting opportunities. Many government contractors are also waking up to the benefits of credit card transactions. Instead of having to fill out detailed paperwork and wait for a check, they receive immediate payment.

4. Pricing an item in incorrect units. Many experts say this is the most common mistake made in submitting a bid. A typical example is submitting a bid on gallons when the request was for quarts. It may seem like a simple error, but it could cost you a government contract.

5. Submitting messy government bids. Just as you wouldn't send a coffee-stained business card to a potential client, you should not submit a proposal that is unprofessional in style or appearance. Before you seal the envelope, double-check your document for typos, blank pages, unnumbered or mis-numbered pages, smudges, rips and poor grammar.

6. Having preconceived notions about what specific government agencies need. Don't knock yourself out of consideration by assuming a government agency doesn't need your products. You never know: the City of Seattle may, in fact, be looking for scuba equipment. Contact the government agency before you decide. Businesses are often pleasantly surprised by what agencies will buy.