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Proposal Example on 2/18/2003
I wrote this proposal in conjunction with the award winning writer and designer David Siegel. It is quite in depth and describes a detailed project process
Submitted by

Siegel Vision Estimate

Project: ISR online service

Thank you for requesting a proposal from Siegel Vision for the Development of the ISR online service. We are excited at the prospect of bringing online grocery service into the San Francisco Bay area and hope to forge a relationship that will help this project be successful from the start and grow beyond the Bay area.

This is not a complete proposal or a quote, but rather a sketch of what we can do. We hope it will prove to be useful. Our quickly estimated total proposed fee for the development of the ISR service through a launch is in the range of $260,000.

Problem Definition:
ISR is in the unique position of being the first to offer an online grocery market place and delivery service to one of the world's most computer-literate markets. The existence of comparable services in other locations (NYCGrocer.com in New York and HomeGrocer.com in Seattle) gives us a chance to learn from other companies' successes and mistakes. The next battle will be won with flawless execution and a next-generation user experience.

Excellent branding and marketing tactics can certainly help customers become familiar with your name and get them to your front door, but what keeps them coming back? Customer loyalty comes not just from having low prices or a great selection, but from the ease of use and reliability of a service. Loyalty comes when a site gains customer confidence. Loyalty comes when sites actually save people time and energy, and simplify their lives. In the end, it is these criteria that drive the bottom line. Meeting these objectives is what goes into making a successful site.

Creating successful Web sites is what Siegel Vision is all about.
Founded by David Siegel, author of the hugely popular "Creating Killer Web Sites", and Chairman of Studio Verso, the award winning Internet strategy and design firm, Siegel Vision leverages years of experience in Web site strategy, production, design and e-commerce development to bring the highest quality results. We at Siegel Vision are confident in our abilities to bring a tested, fully functional, attractive Web site to a successful launch.

Thank you again for taking the time to consider our proposal. We look forward to meeting with you soon.

The Team

Working closely with ISR is our number one objective. More projects fail because of communication problems than anything else. Our office is located in the heart of San Francisco's Multimedia Gultch, We are a fully operational development firm consisting of some of the information revolution's best architects and specialists.

David Siegel has played a key role in the evolution of design on the web and has been a recognized expert in developing Web strategies. Author of two highly successful books of insight into Web site development, Siegel brings award winning experience from years of lecturing, consulting, and strategic development to the founding of Siegel Vision. David has worked closely with clients such as Hewlett Packard, Lucent, Sony, Office Depot, Amazon.com, Stock Center, Navitel, and others. He is a strategic advisor to the W3C and an international lecturer on ecommerce strategy and tactics. After receiving his master's degree in digital typography from Stanford University in 1985, David worked at Pixar for one year before going into business for himself. His site is at www.siegelvision.com

John (Bagus) Haig is one of the Internet's most experienced Web site producers. Having launched over 45 high-profile Web sites as Organic Online's Senior Web Producer and as a freelance producer, Bagus has the in-the-trenches experience to keep large projects on track. Among his client list are sites such as McDonald's, Levi's, Kinkos, Intelihealth, Oxygen, Red Orb Entertainment, and Ad Age magazine. He now is a freelance Web consultant and developer and recently launched sites for Roger Dean and Proxinet.

Jennifer Petersen has worked on a variety of Web projects including Excite, @Home, MSNBC, Broderbund, and C|Net's download.com. Her QuickTour project with the @Home Network has given her first hand experience with the design and integration of the latest in Web technology. She has worked with designers and also independently, producing sites for smaller online businesses.

Her corporate projects are profiled at www.workhouse.com/websites/resume and include sites such as www.lastexpress.com/ (designer & producer in association with atomicvision.com), www.bonelli.com (designer & producer), www.streetnet.com (assistant designer & producer), and www.getsmartinc.com

Lorena Proia is an accomplished user-interface specialist. She will work on the forms and buying process specifically. She will work with a usability firm to validate and improve the buying model and with the Siegel Vision staff to realize the screens necessary. See her site: www.proia.com

Strategy

ISR has done a great deal of strategizing about their business model and development. Siegel Vision would like to be your partner in achieving these goals. The customer is at the heart of everything we do. We've seen a lot of sites launch with a content-centric model. We don't believe this is the right approach. Successful sites of the future will be built around customers, not content.

Your partnership with Siegel Vision means that some of the Internet's top strategists are working for you to create the scalable, fast, and dependable Web site you need. We will create the graphic design, help organize your content for smooth transition into your database driven system, and develop navigational elements and templates for all database, customization and personalization features. We'll test and verify all decisions with real customers before launch. We'll strategize with you to ensure a smooth transition from an initial launch to ongoing updates and revisions. We'll develop systems to help you monitor the real success of your site.

We'd like to introduce you now to our vision of how we would forge a working partnership to best achieve this end. By following this formalized process together, all production and communication issues will be addressed and a successful project will be assured.

Conceptual Overview
The ISR online grocery service must appeal to people and engage them in a relationship that will last. Ultimately, the customers will tell you how to please them, so the site must support a dialogue between customers and the company.

At the outset, we'll define what a successful site means to ISR and develop automated ways to test and report the parameters that will give you the information you need. We'll develop realistic user scenarios to ground our development of how the site will actually be used, and we'll conduct Internet Safaris to find out what is already successful. With Siegel Vision Workshops, we'll identify what content is needed and how to best organize it. We'll develop several mockups and test our ideas with real customers using both informal focus groups and formal testing methodologies. We'll find out well before launch what doesn't work and what people don't like. We'll find out why and what they would like instead. Finally, we'll define clear and precise specifications for the construction of the site, produce all the templates and graphics, and work with you to integrate this into your database and commerce systems to complete a Beta site. After more testing, QA, and staging, your site will undoubtedly be ready to go.

By the time your site launches, we'll be ready to implement a version 1.1 plan for putting in place pieces that weren't able to go live with their initial launch. We'll then begin planning for a full version 2.0.

Process

With a letter of agreement in place, Siegel Vision would drive the process through a series of 10 stages. These stages will allow us to go forwards with out having to go back. We've packed extensive strategy, design iterations and viability testing into the early stages of this project to assure that the production tasks done later won't have to be redone due to lack of planning and testing. What follows is a listing of the 10 stages, short summaries explaining their function, and an overview of the time and personnel Siegel Vision plans to dedicate during each of the phases.

Please refer to the appendix for more detailed itemizations of the tasks, milestones, accomplishments and deliverables of each stage.

Stage 1: Contract Negotiation, Scheduling, Project site creation. (September, 1998) During this stage, we'll iron out the details of the contract, including specification of all deliverables. We'll come up with a master schedule and build an access controlled project extranet that will allow all team members to keep up to date on the progress of the site. (personnel: David Siegel - 5 hrs; Senior Producer - 25 hrs; Creative Director - 5 hrs; Systems Administration: 5 hrs)

Stage 2: Audience Definition - (September, 1998) The Audience Definition stage consists of reviewing market analysis studies done by ISR, developing ficticious user scenarios that will ground our process in how people will actually use the site, conducting a Web Safari to discover what your customers like about the Web and the creation of a focus group of potential customers to provide feedback on the development of the site throughout the process. (personnel: David Siegel - 10 hrs; Senior Producer - 42 hrs; Creative Director - 20 hrs; Usability Specialist - 5 hrs.)

Stage 3: Site Definition (Sdptember, 1998) This stage allows for discussion on what the objectives of the site are, a validation of those goals with a focus group, a determination of how we will determine whether those goals are being met once the site has launched, and the presentation of a formalized Site Goals document. (personnel: David Siegel - 6 hrs; Senior Producer - 48 hrs; Creative Director - 16 hrs)

Stage 4: Identifing Content and Functionality for site. (September, 1998) In stage 4, we'll take an indepth look at what technologies will be used on the site and what they will be used for. We'll decide here what features will be a part of the original launch and which will be developed as a part of the site version 1.1 plan. We'll identify all content , copy and media needs, and explore the issues behind repurposing existing assets for the Web. Finally we'll develop a Content and Functionality Specification for the version 1.0 launch. (personnel: David Siegel - 18 hrs; Senior Producer - 74 hrs; Creative Director - 38 hrs)

Stage 5: Defining Structure. (October 1998) After we've decided what belongs on the site and what doesn't, we'll discuss and validate how to organize the content, provide both global and local navigation, and providing contextual headers for the site. We'll do this through Siegel Vision Workshops, and usability analysis of our results. We'll summarize our results with a site structure listing and an architectural flow chart diagram of the site. (personnel: David Siegel - 6 hrs; Senior Producer - 60 hrs; Creative Director - 32 hrs; Interface Specialist - 4hrs)

Stage 6: Look and Feel. (October, 1998) In Stage 6, we work with all the information we've collected and brainstorm ideas for visual, organizational, and functional metaphors for the site. We'll develop layout grids, and page mock ups for all templates. We'll conduct quantitative usability analysis of a number of the best design candidates and iterate through refinements in the design. By the end of this stage, we'll have a complete set of specifications for producing every aspect of the site's design. (personnel: David Siegel - 9 hrs; Senior Producer - 86 hrs; Creative Director - 110 hrs; Interface Specialist - 22hrs, Usability Specialist - 60hrs; client side engineer - 36hrs; systems administration - 10 hrs)

Stage 7: Production (November, 1998) With the specifications for every aspect of the site in place, we'll produce images, format content, process the other media that will be used on the site, create the final html versions of templates, and prepare everything for transition into the database. Along the way we'll produce working models of most templates and get feed back from our focus group. (personnel: David Siegel - 6 hrs; Senior Producer - 110 hrs; Creative Director - 158 hrs; Interface Specialist - 8 hrs; client side engineer - 70 hrs; systems administration - 5 hrs)

Stage 8: Integration (December 1998) Once all the parts have been collected, Siegel Vision will work with ISR's content management system to enter all templates and contents into their system. We'll test the loaded database for functionality, and release a Beta site for final user testing, quality assurance testing, and cross platform-cross browser compatibility. We'll work with you to identify final changes and implement final fixes. (personnel: David Siegel - 8 hrs; Senior Producer - 112 hrs; Creative Director - 73 hrs; Usability Specialist - 20 hrs; client side engineer - 46 hrs; systems administration - 26 hrs)

Stage 9: Staging (December 1998 - January, 1999) With a fully functional beta working under password protection, we'll run the site through it's paces. We'll work with you to conduct functionality testing, load testing, and ensure that the systems put in place to monitor site performance are functioning properly. (personnel: David Siegel - 1 hrs; Senior Producer - 24 hrs; Creative Director - 158 hrs; Interface Specialist - 8 hrs; client side engineer - 70 hrs; systems administration - 5 hrs)

Stage 10: Soft Launch (January, 1999) As the site goes live, we'll do more testing, for functionality and implement our pre prepared plan for a version 1.1 site launch. We'll also begin developing a plan for the site version 2.0 launch. (personnel: David Siegel - 8 hrs; Senior Producer - 61 hrs; Creative Director - 52 hrs; Interface Specialist - 10 hrs; systems administration - 19 hrs)

Assumptions

Working together means understanding each other's needs, expectations and capabilities. Over 4 years of experience building Web sites has helped us understand the best ways to set up relationships with clients such as ISR. We need to set up a relationship where you do what you do best and we do what we do best. Below we've outlined how we see a successful relationship between ISR and Siegel Vision.

ISR has done good research and planning and their strategy verifies.

Siegel Vision will design and build templates for a fully functional secure online commerce Web site with personalization and customization features for an initial launch.

Siegel Vision expects to build different templates for different browsers based on browser detection and user preference.

Siegel Vision will supply a senior producer to work on site at ISR 3 days a week for the duration of the project.

We will work toward a light launch at the end of January and a full launch in March.

A full contract will specify exact deliverables and Siegel Vision expects to be paid for the development of these specifications.

We will build and maintain a project site.

The audience is limited to one target group at launch: English reading Bay area families.

We may develop marketing ideas that may increase the cost of the project if ISR approves.

The online catalog will be limited to 50,000 items for an initial launch.

ISR will perform all database development, content creation and data entry functions. This includes obtaining product images, writing copy, copy editing, and getting legal approval for all materials on the site.

ISR will devote a single point of contact who will be available for at least 20 hours per week. Other members of the ISR team will funnel comments and questions through that person.

ISR will provide sign off at specified milestones in the site development to assure approval of the site's direction.

ISR will cover any and all travel expenses and reasonable, pre approved expenses.

Any missed milestones on the clients part will result in either the postponement of scheduled launches or an increase in fees that would allow for extra resources to be allocated to the project.

 After an initial retainer, Siegel Vision will bill ISR every two weeks during the project and will be paid in no more than 30 days. We will not begin work without the initial retainer.

Conclusion

We believe that Siegel Vision and the other members of this team are uniquely qualified to help ISR realize the vision for your online store. We have top level experience and competence in strategizing and managing the building a site to meet and surpass your expectations. We are dedicated, hardworking professionals that love to see a project done well and done on time. Our reward comes when your site generates or exceeds the anticipated results.

Thank your for your consideration. Please contact us immediately to discuss moving forward.

David Siegel and John Haig - Siegel Vision

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