Remember the Russian proverb, “It’s not the horse that pulls the cart. It’s the grain.” It is not the buyer who pulls the price decision cart, it is the seller’s mix of products and services which feeds the buyer’s deeper needs and leads them toward decision.
We continue our discussion of the thirteen approaches by which sellers can best defend their price and still close the sale. These thirteen defenses apply whether you are holding to a firm price or to a price that have very little give.
How can a salesperson make concessions that give nothing away-concessions that provide the buyer increased satisfaction but without giving away goods, money or services? Successful sellers know it is wise to make such concessions, especially when defending a price which has little or no room for compromise.
Sellers have the power to increase a customer’s satisfaction in a number of ways. One way is by providing credible backup. They can assure the buyer that the product or service will meet their needs by providing a list of satisfied customers. They can listen responsively to the customer’s viewpoint. They can show their commitment to customer satisfaction by having them meet with their company president. Each of these concessions costs little but provides the other party with considerable satisfaction.
I remember two salesmen who used to call on me when I was a purchasing agent. Both had a simple technique for making the price negotiations more pleasant. One always brought delicious muffins. I looked forward to seeing him, no matter how difficult the problem to be discussed. The other salesman gained my respect and attention by bringing along useful trade, price, and product information that helped me do my job.
Did these amenities help them to better hold their price? To some extent I believe it did. Both raised my satisfaction level by making concessions that gave little or nothing away at the table.