Ask Colleen

Hi Colleen.

I am really unsure of what to do first when dealing with “your price is too high”? I understand that I should never drop my price without getting something in return but should I go to that negotiation right away or try something else first.

Thanks, Laura

Hi Laura! That’s a really great question, especially these days, when it seems that more and more sales reps are often forced to negotiate at the end of a sale. The first and perhaps most important step is to make sure you’re in the right frame of mind. Most sales reps fail in their negotiations simply because they don’t really believe that their product or service is worth the price they’re charging. When this happens, you tend to sympathize too much with the customer, and give in to the negotiation.

In order to be a successful negotiator, you have to truly believe that your product or service is worth every penny you’re selling it for, and that your customers would be getting a great deal even if they buy it at full price. One tip is to think back to the last time they sold their product at full price, then write that customer’s name down on a piece of paper and put it up somewhere in their office where they will see it every day. By reminding yourself that “XYZ Company bought at full price,” you can ramp up your confidence and trick your brain into helping you sell at full price again.

The biggest mistake you can make is to offer a discount up front when the prospect may not even be looking for one. There are always prospects s who are willing to pay full value without negotiating. So step number one is to get – and stay – in the right frame of mind. Step two is to simply hold firm. This is the most difficult part of any negotiation process. However, it is also the most effective.

When a customer asks for a discount, I encourage you to respond by saying: “Hey, I can understand that price is an issue. It’s great that you’re looking for the best price for your company, and you need to know that we’re giving you the best deal possible. There is no way I can give you a discount.”

I’ve found that about 40 per cent of the time you say this, their customers tell them that they “just had to ask” and then agree to pay full price.

Good luck! Colleen