When NOT To Negotiate Price

When NOT To Negotiate Price

We may be all be knee-deep in the economic crisis, but lowering your standards and your price could hurt your business.

Ask yourself, what is the value of your product or service? Why is it beneficial to your clients? If you don’t know the answer to this question, you probably shouldn’t be in business. However, for most of you, you know your business has value, but maybe you don’t know how to sell it. Or, maybe you’re good at the sales presentation, but think that a sale’s a sale, so you will do just about anything to close. Quote Roller is here to tell you that lowering your price just to make a sale could be a big mistake.

Your product/service has a value. Lowering that price cheapens it. Plus, lowering that price one time could potentially, probably lower that bar forever. If you want to turn that new customer into a long-term customer, and you want to keep your current customers satisfied, price is not the conversation to be having.

download-1Everybody loves a package. Instead of chopping numbers, think about offering something extra. One headhunter friend won’t lower his commission, but keeps in his back pocket extra services, like language tests and videotaping presentation skills, as another way to convince the client that they are going to get the most thorough recruitment process available — even if it does cost ten percent more than the competition.

Everybody loves to be reassured. Offer your service or product with a guarantee. It can be a two-week product trial — “love it or your money back” — or that, if the service or outcome is unsatisfactory, you will re-do it on your company’s dime. Using that headhunter again, if, for whatever reason, the employee placed doesn’t work out in the first three months, he will do the next search for free. This way, you are betting on your success.

Remember, to be human is to be cheap. Just because your client brings up price, doesn’t mean it’s really important to him. Especially now, companies are putting pressure on their employees to attempt to get better deals. Your client may not want to negotiate price either, but will try to at first, simply out of habit. Steer that conversation in another direction — try to talk value, not dollars.

downloadOn the other hand, don’t assume your client wants to argue price — for goodness sake, don’t start by offering an already discounted deal! Make your sales conversations about your product or service. Even if you have a deal, start at your current price. Be ready to talk price and be well-versed in the various packages available, but, if price is the first page you open to, you’re using the wrong sales book.

Alas, sometimes, especially in these economically-trying ones, no matter what you do, you’re going to have to talk price. Before going into a sales conversation, make sure you know your limit. If the sale comes down to the money, offer that price and do not offer another. More than one price negotiation makes you seem like you are just in it for the money and gets your client thinking about shopping around next time.

If they still want to go lower and you can’t or won’t, don’t be afraid to walk away. Shake their hand, leave your card, thank them for their time, and tell them you are ready for them when they are ready for you.

No matter if you are selling web design, Rolls Royces or Picassos, make the conversation about your client’s needs and about your value… and that’s the bottom line.

What tricks do you use to determine and argue Price vs. Value?

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Social network addict, obsessed with writing about entrepreneurs and start-ups, including fabulous QuoteRoller.com
Based in Barcelona, also loves writing about businesses in Spain

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  • http://www.linchpin.net/ Damian Thompson

    Good article, It makes me think of a lesson a sales mentor gave me years ago:

    “There are only two prices you offer to people, full price or free.”

    If there is a real reason to discount (charity organization, relationship building, etc) then you can offer a small part of your service for free. If you aren’t willing to do it for free, then full price it is.

    There might be the odd exception, but it is a “rule” that has served me well.

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