*Flea Market Negotiation*
How many of us have more money that we need and can afford to accept the initial price quoted for the products or services we need? I know I don’t. As such, I have developed a habit of negotiating most of the things I buy. I don’t normally negotiate groceries, fuel prices, or other items I purchase on a regular basis (I do negotiate these items if purchasing in bulk). However, I do negotiate the purchase of cars, computers, clothing (suit and ties), shoes, and other items I purchase on an infrequent basis. I do this not only to save money but to also practice my negotiating skills since this is one of the critical skills I need in my profession as an acquisition specialist. From reading the messages and article I know that most Rubies are money conscious and want to save money whenever possible. Hopefully, this article will provide you some new ways to accomplish this.
Negotiating is not about being confrontational or beating the other side up to get the lowest price. Negotiating is really about open communications and helping both sides to reach an agreement where both achieve some of their goals. While most people may be afraid to negotiate in retail stores or for major purchases, negotiating at a flea market is expected by everyone and provides an excellent opportunity to hone your negotiating skills. As such, this article will discuss how to effectively conduct negotiations at a flea market. These same skills and strategies can be used on other purchases regardless of the value or situation.
The first step in any negotiation is to be prepared. To accomplish this for a flea market you should:
After arriving at the flea market do the following:
a.How far did he/she travel to get to the flea market?
b.Do they attend these often?
c.How did they determine the price to set for their products?
d.What do they plan to do with anything not sold at the end of the day?
a.Never accept the initial offer
b.Avoid getting into confrontational negotiations or arguments
c.Never offer to split the difference
d.Know when NOT to negotiate
e.Never trust what the other party tells you unless it can be verified
f.Use time pressure (deadlines)
g.Never assume you know what something is worth to the other party
a.Bogey Tactic – This is all the money I have/can afford to spend. Never allow the other party to know (before or after the sale) just how much money you really have to spend.
b.Reluctant Buyer – Never become excited about any item you wish to purchase. This way the seller does not know if you are committed to buying or if you could easily walk away from the negotiations.
c.Use “what if” tactic – if the seller will not lower the price begin asking what if questions. What if I purchased two instead of one, what kind of discount would you give me. Throw in other items to form a collective group of items and ask for a discount. Remember the seller may be willing to give you a discount if you take some of the "junk" items in order to get rid of them. This is a very powerful tool since it commits you to nothing but forces the seller to determine various pricing situations.
d.Use time pressure/deadlines – people are more inclined to negotiate as the deadline for closing (end of flea market) draws near. At flea market most people do not want to repackage and load everything back into their vehicles. They are more agreeable to accepting a lower offer than earlier in the day.
e.Nibbling – once the other party is psychological committed to selling you the item ask them to throw in some other minor item. For example, when purchasing a shoes ask them to throw in some shoe polish. While I use this tactic on personal negotiations I do not use it on business negotiations since it could threaten the long term working relationship.
Effective negotiation is a skill like any other in that it must be constantly used and refined in order to be effective. By practicing these skills at a flea market you don’t have the stress associated with a major purchase and your liability is small if you do something wrong or pay too much for an item. You do not need to be a master negotiator, just know how to effective use 3-5 negotiating tactics and you are ahead of most professional buyers. I personally have used these tactics and know how effective they can be when used properly.
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