The Bargaining Game

2 November 2002 13:53

I hate having to bargain when shopping for things. It's always a psychological battle between yourself and the salesperson. It's like a poker game and how much you're willing to give in to the salesperson's counter offers. After all, just as you'd like to purchase the product, they would like to get the goods out of their stores and earn some sales commission in the process as well. Some people I know, e.g. my Dad, treat bargaining like an artform of a game which they play very well.

I don't normally go for the jugular when it comes to bargaining (I usually ask for a price that is a tad under and more or less be happy with it) but an encounter with a salesman at one of the shops where I was going to help buy a digital camera for a colleague got me all riled up to go full on ('cos the price he was asking is exorbitantly higher than the last time I checked, not to mention the cocky and somewhat condescending attitude he had -- funny that he expects to sell stuff in that manner). Anyhow, as much as I think I have the tactics figured out (just like those salespeople have the customers figured out), in the end, after some exhaustive bargaining and eventually making the purchase, I just can't help feeling like a schmoe when I find out that I could have driven the price much lower with the shop still making some profit out of the sale. Then again, for those people who don't play this game well (like yours truly), would the extra dollars saved worth the additional arguments, time and effort spent to get it?

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