Martin Limbeck, author of No is Short For Next Opportunity: How Top Sales Professionals Think, who is known as the “Porsche of Sales,” offers this advice:
■ When you first mention your price, don’t make it sound as if there is room for negotiation:
Let the customer bring up the word “discount.” Don’t bring it up yourself. How many times have you heard a salesperson say, “The list price is $x, but if you pay cash I could bring it down a little.” Don’t do that. You’ll appear desperate, you put the ball in the customer’s court and you’ll be playing catchup the rest of the negotiations.
■ Be ready for objections:
When your client comes up with the price objection, you draw one of your catch phrases. “Thrift is good but quality is better.” “Cutting the price means cutting the quality, and that is not an option for us.” “The grass is always cheaper on the other side.” “Other offers are cheaper—and they deserve to be.” “Go with the cheaper option, and things will get really expensive.”
■ Combine the price with the notion of value:
Don’t try contradicting the “too expensive” objection. Your price is higher than others and that’s a good thing. Instead, say, “You’re right, it is pricey. It’s pricey and high-value. High value because…” and elaborate on the benefits of the product.
■ Hold firm on the price but ease up on the concessions:
Once the customer wants a discount, that’s a good thing because it means he wants to buy from you. You’ve sold him. You can get creative and offer a small discount in exchange for more orders or payment in advance, something that also benefits you.
■ Use diminutives when articulating the price:
This may sound like a minor detail, but it can make a huge difference. “The quad bike is going for eight” sounds less than “eight thousand,” or “The service contract is 12” sounds less than “1,200.” If, on the other hand, you’re pointing out what the customer stands to gain, use full numbers: “At the end of the day you’ve saved yourself $434.”
■ Know how to present the price in a proposal:
The price should be folded into the description of the benefits like the meat in a sandwich. “You will receive a new writing desk, with two drawers, as requested, a hanging file folder, and two cable connectors, for $2,942.11. Of course, this will include the adjustable legs, designed for ergonomic sitting positions, and the power strip attachment.”