Do you ever come out of negotiations with suppliers feeling that you could have got a better deal? If the answer is yes, it is highly likely that you need to work on your negotiation skills. The feeling that you are paying over the odds can be frustrating, but there are a few fail-safe strategies that you can learn so that when you next enter negotiations, whether for domestic nuts or stationery supplies, you come out with what you wanted. Read on for a few tips that will guarantee more success when bargaining.

  1. Work Out What Your Supplier Most Wants

It will sometimes be the case that your supplier refuses to budge on price no matter how much you try. When this happens, it can often help to think outside the box when it comes to price. The key is to work out things which fall outside normal price bargaining to sweeten the deal. For example, you might offer them preferential treatment and deals on your services and products, or you could offer to go into partnership to give extra security.

  1. Sell Yourself

Most suppliers of industrial products will prefer to enter into lasting relationships with their clients rather than a one-off deal. A long-term relationship offers the kind of income security that allows a company to grow and start planning for the future. If you understand this, you can use the promise of future orders to beat a supplier down slightly on price. To do this, you need to make yourself out to be someone with whom they can form a solid business relationship.

  1. Shop Around

You can add significant strength to your bargaining position if you are up to speed with what a supplier’s competitors are offering. Once you have a few quotes, you can then return to the supplier and hopefully use them to secure a price which is lower than you were first given.

  1. Play Hard to Get

The first rule to any business negotiation is not to accept the first offer that you receive. All suppliers will go into a negotiation with two prices: the price that they are going to offer to kick off and the lowest price that they can conceivably accept. By rejecting the first offer, you should be able to haggle with them to get somewhere nearer the second price.

  1. Transfer All Your Business to a Single Supplier

Suppliers love the security of large buyers. If you really want to get a low price, tell your supplier that you are considering using them as your only supplier and see if they offer you any discounted rates. If it works out, you can simplify your supply chain as well as shave a significant figure off your expenses.

Negotiating with suppliers can be a tricky business if you lack basic negotiation skills and experience. The next time you discuss price with your supplier, try out a few of the strategies above and see how they help you obtain a better deal.

Rich Seigel - Author

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