Managing Customer Negotiation: 3 Tips to Strategic Discounting

Managing Customer Negotiation 

3 Tips to Strategic Discounting


Have you ever felt compelled to buy something when it has been discounted? I’m sure everyone can think of a time where they thought to themselves, “I can not miss out on this deal!” Whether you needed that item or not, you felt like you got a win.

In strategic sales, customers may not just buy something because it’s a good deal, but they can certainly be motivated to make the decision faster or pick your solution over your competitors. Here are a few tips that we have learnt through the years to maximize the ‘win-win’ for you and your customers.


Give your customer a win

Psychology tells us that people want to feel like they are getting a win or a good deal when they are making a purchase. When it comes to positioning your discounting, drive home the point that your customer is getting a great deal and a win!

Pro Tip: Using phrases like “This deal never comes along” or “I have never seen this discount approved” are great ways to make your customers feel like they are getting a win, even though you may have more room to discount. Make them feel good about the discount, no matter where that is on the discount matrix, and you will build momentum with the customer’s decision.


Qualify budget prior to discounting

You never want to leave money on the table. This could be the difference between missing your quota or hitting accelerators in your commission pay out. Make sure you know your ROI and understand the WHY this project is happening.

Pro Tip: Qualify the customer’s budget prior to presenting pricing. Have you ever presented pricing and received the feedback, “This is way less expensive than we thought?” Nothing is worse than knowing you discounted too much and left revenue in what we call the ‘commission graveyard’.


Tie discount to customers objectives, not yours

One of the biggest mistakes we see sales professionals do is offer “salesy” discounts. What we mean by that is offering a “month end discount” or a “one time” discount. This is a quick way to lose customer trust and become that annoying sales rep that only cares about himself/herself.

Pro Tip: ALWAYS tie your discounts to your customer’s priorities! Understanding WHY they are making the decision and the impact that waiting has on them and their business. That knowledge gives you the leverage you need to on the close date. Ask questions like, “If you wait 1 month, it is going to cost you $100,000. Are you comfortable with that?” or perhaps “If this gets delayed one month, we know this is going to keep your close rate at 10% rather than 20% which would be X # of customers. What would that mean to you?”

Your customers are your #1 priority. Take care of them and they will take care of you. When offering a discount, make sure it’s a win-win and a sustainable relationship for both parties.

Happy Selling

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