The Bottom Line: Negotiate

In a challenging economy, there is a money saving option that has a high rate of success, works quickly, and can save the average business a great deal of money—negotiation. Make it a habit to always ask for a better price. Here are some ideas for successful negotiations.

Ask For What You Want

It might sound too simple; but in order to get what you want you just have to ask for it. Many people miss out on great deals because they have never thought of asking for a discount or improved payment terms. Always be willing to ask for something better than what’s offered. A key rule is to never negotiate with anyone who doesn’t have the authority to give you what you want. Always ask politely to speak to a decision-maker.

Be Friendly

Creating affinity is the ability to build a relationship with people and get them to like you. You should try to create affinity before, during, and after the negotiation process. So, how do you get people to like you? First of all you need to ask sincere questions to discover what you might have in common. People tend to be more relaxed with you if you have a shared interest. You should also create an environment that is positive for both sides, by stating your win-win intention up front. You let the other party know that you would like to come to an agreement that’s mutually beneficial. 

Create a Reason to Negotiate

You have to find some point that is going to entice the other party to want to negotiate with you. What’s in it for them? As long as you can give them a good reason, they will negotiate with you. Some examples of good reasons are:

  • The item is damaged or has a flaw and should be sold at a discounted price
  • You will buy in larger volumes if the price is attractive
  • You will bring more business in the future by coming back and bringing your friends and associates
  • You offer to pay in cash instead of using credit or debit cards, to save them money
  • You ask for special attention- something about your situation might be unique and you could benefit.
Don’t Offer First

Always try to get the other person to make the first offer. You should never make assumptions about the situation the other person is in; they could be willing to give you a better deal than you think. If you make the first offer, you’re really negotiating against yourself by showing what you’re willing to pay. 

Create Competition

It’s important to gently remind the other party that there are other places where you could take your money. You could bring up other companies that you are in discussion with, or tell them that you are going to check out the competition to see if they will give you a better deal. However, tell them that you would really like to give them the business, if an agreement can be reached.

Use Weakness as Strength

Don’t be too pushy when you are negotiating, even if you might have the upper hand. People generally don’t like dealing with people who think they are smarter than everyone else. It has been shown that a friendly, polite person in genuine need will get a better deal than a pushy, demanding person. 

Don’t Talk Too Much

Once you have gone through the negotiation process stop talking--don’t say another word, just smile. If you keep talking you might actually talk yourself out of the deal. If you talk too much you could give the other person a reason not to give you the price. The awkward silence actually works in your favor. 

So the next time you are making a purchase, try these strategies. You will be pleased with the results if you negotiate with confidence. Be sure to create a habit out of asking for a better price and you will improve your bottom line.