BidMail Vs Downtobid: A Side-By-Side Comparison

Written by Bridget Cooper

DateMar 5, 2024
Reading time6 min read
Comparing software

Construction bidding timelines are becoming increasingly tight, putting pressure on estimating teams who are juggling multiple bids, expanding into new markets, and following up with contractors for coverage. With the declining quality of construction drawings, it's challenging to find the time to thoroughly review plans and identify any contradictions between pages.

That's where specialized construction bid management solutions like Downtobid and BidMail come in.

Construction bid management tools promised to streamline the administrative side of bidding, offering solutions beyond basic tools and generic software.

Let's compare Downtobid and BidMail to determine which one might be the perfect fit for your construction bid management needs.

What Is Downtobid?

Downtobid is an AI-powered construction bid management platform. Our AI assists estimators in building scope, generating bid packages, and sending invites to qualified local subcontractors. This enables estimating teams to send Bid Invites to the relevant subs on Day 1, ensuring comprehensive coverage.

Key Features:

Downtobid takes a subcontractor centric approach when soliciting bids.

  • AI-assisted scope detection and bid package creation
  • Automated subcontractor matching based on location and qualifications
  • Ensure you invite expanded bidder pool by matching against local subs via AI
  • Self-cleaning, AI-powered subcontractor database
  • Personalized bid invites to maximize subcontractor engagement
  • Intuitive planroom organization with custom bid packages
  • Automated bid follow ups

AI-assisted Page Turns to Identify Key Scopes

Downtobid's AI-powered bid review process streamlines efficiency while maintaining accuracy and completeness. By automating manual tasks, our platform reduces the risk of missed scope in the bidding process.

Bid Invites In Minutes

Our software converts plans into customized bid invites and scope sheets in minutes, simply by uploading documents. It also personalizes each invitation, using contractors' names for a more personal touch.

Intuitive Planroom

With Subcontractors being inundated with bid invites these days. It's imperative to make qualifying scope as easy as possible for your trade partners. Downtobid simplifies this process by allowing contractors to find and search scope directly within the planroom. We don't force anybody to create an account and we've invested our engineering resources to make load times incredibly fast, while being mobile friendly.

Who is Downtobid Best for?

Commercial general contractors specializing in complex projects.

  • Estimators leverage Downtobid's AI to ensure comprehensive scope coverage, receiving a detailed summary of key trades and reducing the risk of missed details.
  • Our AI intelligently selects the most appropriate bid packages and matches them with top-performing local subcontractors, streamlining the bid invitation process.

How To Use Downtobid

First, click here to get started.

Next, you'll land on a page where you can easily upload your project plans.

*Create Project.png

Simply upload your documents, and Downtobid's AI will thoroughly analyze the project plans. Each page will be scanned to identify scope and create tailored bid packages. Depending on the complexity of your project, this process typically takes between 10-30 minutes. Once complete, you'll receive an email notification, and your bid packages will be ready for review.

*Project Information.png

Once you log in, you'll find a complete list of bid packages prepped by the AI. It breaks down each package with a brief summary, spots where your scope fits right in, and suggests a list of local, qualified subs for invites.

*Scan For Scope.png

The AI sets up a smart bidding schedule, sending out your invitation to bid based on when the deadline is. These ITBs are packed with personal touches and a quick scope rundown, making it easy for subs to see if they're a fit without diving deep into the plans.

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The planroom's setup allows subcontractors easy access without the need for an account, letting them quickly find the drawings they need. With speedy performance and automated sheet organization, it's a breeze for subs to identify jobs that match their expertise.


Subcontractors get access to the Planroom, without the hassle of creating an account. They can zero in on just the plans relevant to them, fast. The automated sorting of sheets makes it super easy for them to spot the right jobs.


All emails get sent straight to your inbox, so you can reply without ever needing to switch out of your email.


What Is BidMail?

BidMail improves construction bid management with its software, offering easy access to a network of pre-qualified subcontractors. It makes it easy to view, download, and print plans. BidMail Share offers support this with a secure, online plan room for unlimited projects, personalized bid invitations, helping with communication and file sharing.

It is an older project bidding software known for its simplicity and low-friction workflow, but many users have criticized it for being slow and outdated.

Key Features

  • Simple user interface
  • Web viewer for time-saving, efficient plan access.
  • Time & Attendance feature for easy employee time tracking.
  • Customizable bid proposal templates.
  • Construction-specific time management software with BidMail Payroll.

Our take on BidMail is that users are seeking product upgrades such as the reintroduction of a global bid filter, which is a highly desired feature. On top of that, there's criticism in terms of how slow BidMail's network is and the pace of user interface updates.


BidMail's functionality centers on its customizable templates for various documents like Bid Invitations and Addenda, enhancing document access and subcontractor engagement. These templates allow easy access to bid documents, track subcontractor actions—such as email opens, plan views/downloads, and take-offs—streamlining the bid management process and communication flow.


BidMail's pricing ranges from a Free plan with basic features to an Enterprise option for advanced needs.

The Free plan covers 500 files, while paid plans offer more files and additional users at extra cost: the Business plan at $39/month for 1,000 files, the Professional plan at $79/month for 5,000 files, and the Enterprise plan at $179/month for unlimited files, each with a $10/month charge per extra user. These plans cater to businesses of different scales with varying feature sets.

Comparing Downtobid With BidMail

BidMail is seen as outdated by customers with slow updates and a limited network, affecting user experience. Downtobid, on the other hand, leverages AI for data accuracy, offers personalized ITBs, and ensures an organized planroom, focusing on user engagement and modern demands.

Our software also offers a transparent, flat-rate pricing model at $499 annually for unlimited users, with the added benefit of a 50% discount in the first year, simplifying budgeting and cost predictability for businesses.

It's clear that while BidMail is known for its ease of use, but it falls behind in modern updates and speed, which might be a dealbreaker for those needing efficiency and advanced features. Our software emphasizes fast, personalized interactions and superior data quality, appeals more to those looking for an efficient bidding experience. If you're leaning towards innovation and personalized ITB services, Downtobid has the edge.

Written by Bridget CooperUpdated on Apr 8, 2024

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