In this day and age, everyone’s looking for a better deal. It doesn’t matter if it’s the stuff you use every day or the bigger purchases you make a few times in your life. We have grown accustomed to paying what the seller is asking for most of the things we purchase and rarely think that we might be able to get a better price if we would only ask. It might seem a little uncomfortable at first, but with a little practice, you’ll find yourself asking; “do you think you might do a little better on that?” Here are some simple tips on negotiating yourself to a better deal…
- Before you go shopping, do your research. Use the Internet to read reviews about competing brands and have an idea of how much you should expect to pay, even for used items. Look up retailers who might have what you’re looking for on sale. Pawn shops are great places to browse and comparison shop as well as strike a great deal. Some retailers even offer a price matching or beating policy if you come prepared to prove it. I was once shopping for a new hard drive for a broken laptop computer and when I mentioned that I could get the a much better price online for the same make and model they carried in the store, the sales person offered to match it on-the-spot. Be ready to prove your claim by bringing the competitor’s sales flier or print the page off the internet. An informed consumer is an empowered consumer to do your research before you head out the door to shop.
- Always be polite and friendly! The old saying, “you get more flies with sugar than with vinegar” couldn’t be truer if you’re looking to knock a few dollars off the price of your purchase. Be friendly, polite and respectful; the sales staff at the store aren’t your enemy and you’ll be surprised how much better they’ll respond if you ask their opinion on different brands or models, get their recommendation on what they and customers have liked and what they’ve seen returned to the store. When it comes time to talk about price, just ask if is there is anything they can do about a better price? Often they will tell you about a sale that doesn’t start for a few of days, offer to throw in accessories for free that you would have had to purchase anyway, or they just might drop the price 5% or 10%. If they say they can’t make that decision, ask if they think their manager might be willing. The key is to be courteous and respectful and never to act “entitled” to a discount.
- Be ready to give a little to get a little. Many times, asking for a discount for paying cash can get you a better deal. Retailers have to pay fees every time a customer wants to swipe their credit card. You give up incentives from your credit card company, but if you’re putting cash money in your pocket right now, you’ll be further ahead. If you willing to take the floor demo, an opened or damaged package, or some other display defect they often will offer a discount. I once asked the desk clerk at a hotel if they could do better than the rate I had already reserved online. They offered a room that hadn’t been fully remodeled and they knocked another $15 per night off the price. I received a 10% off a horseshoes game package at Wal-Mart once because the carry bag they came in was torn. I wasn’t planning on carrying them around anyway, so everybody wins. Life is a series of compromises and being ready to do that when shopping just might save you some money.
- Consider buying in bulk. Warehouse stores like Costco and Sam’s do this every day, but you might be surprised what you can get at other retailers. I’ve saved 20% at the local liquor store more than once by asking if they will give me a better price on a case of my favorite wine instead of just one bottle. If the kids need new shoes, ask your friends or neighbors if they do to. You might be surprised how a store will respond if you request a discount for purchasing several pairs on the same visit. At pawn shops, you can often gain additional negotiating power by purchasing multiple items at the same time. Plan ahead and buy more than one and they might offer you some additional discounts.
Negotiating a better deal can be fun and save you money and these tips can work for you at a lot of establishments including restaurants and other retailers. Deal4It.com offers online auctions where you have access to a wide network of professional pawn brokers who love to negotiate on price for all kinds of items. Deal4It.com even has a fully automated, video-guided negotiation tool that will let you negotiate a better price on many items listed on our site. If you would like to give it a try, Click Here to see what’s available for negotiation. Have no fear and have fun.