Monday, January 26, 2009

you could be one of those people who love negotiating and get a discount on everything

Be a Better Negotiator
Did you ever wish you could be one of those people who love negotiating and get a discount on everything? Well, you can. All it takes is some knowledge of basic negotiating tactics and a little bit of guts. Follow these strategies and you'll be happily haggling in no time.
Inquire about a better price. Ask any great negotiator how she gets good deals and she'll likely shrug and say, "I just ask." The first step to any successful negotiation is making the choice to engage in one. The simple question "Can you give me a better price?" or "Is that the best price you can offer?" will often earn you an immediate discount on a product or service. Is that really all it takes? Sometimes, yes.
Ask for extras.
This is a good strategy to use with a small, independently owned business. If they're already making a sale, they're more likely to sweeten the deal with a little something extra. But again, you have to ask: "If I buy the skirt, the two tops, and the belt, can you throw in the earrings for free?" The worst they can say is no.
Offer to pay in cash up front.
This is a great tactic to try with party vendors, small-business owners, and entrepreneurs. Cash up front saves them from credit-card fees and the potential for bounced checks or late payments. If you can afford to do it, paying early and in cash will often win you a significant discount -- just be sure to get a receipt!
Do your homework. When dealing with a large national chain store, car dealer, hotel, or bank, your best negotiating tactic is your knowledge of the competition's pricing. Searching online for other stores' prices can give you a leg up -- especially if you bring a printout of a better price from a competitor with you. Stores will often match the better price, even if it comes from an Internet-based competitor.
This is also an important strategy when negotiating salary or benefits from a potential employer. Research your industry, region, and competitors' salary ranges ( and are two good sources) so you are not picking a number out of the ether. Information is power -- use it.
Blame the negotiation on someone else.
This is called the "empty chair" technique -- pretending that an absent third party is forcing the negotiation, not you. Car dealers are masters at this strategy ("I'll have to bring that number to my sales manager"). This saves you from looking like the bad guy. Try something like this: "My boss/partner/manager/investor won't like that number, but I can probably persuade her to accept 10 percent lower. Can you do that?"
Be nice.
One of the most unsuccessful negotiating tactics is anger. Yelling, complaining, or threatening will annoy the other party and make them far less willing to cut you a break. Personality and friendliness count.
Be willing to walk away.
Finally, the best negotiators have a bottom line and are willing to walk away if they don't get what they want. Detachment is a great negotiation strategy. If you want something too much, the seller or employer can smell your desperation and is less inclined to bargain.

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