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Are you flexible on your pricing?

 

Are you willing to negotiate?

 

If I pay cash can you do better?

 

Oh... I was referred to by So and so... You know uhhh... I forgot his name...

 

 

We've all heard it and I am just about sick of it. I have a professional website, courteous and profession manner in which we greet customers, high reputation with a niche market (German cars). What in god's green earth screams I will give you a discount????

 

How do you yall deal with this ? I don't receive these types too often but I had a series of them today compounded with other aggravation and I just had about enough.

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Are you flexible on your pricing?

 

Are you willing to negotiate?

 

If I pay cash can you do better?

 

Oh... I was referred to by So and so... You know uhhh... I forgot his name...

 

 

We've all heard it and I am just about sick of it. I have a professional website, courteous and profession manner in which we greet customers, high reputation with a niche market (German cars). What in god's green earth screams I will give you a discount????

 

How do you yall deal with this ? I don't receive these types too often but I had a series of them today compounded with other aggravation and I just had about enough.

I've got a dealer who expects me to cut my labor rate in half. If I don't give in he still has us do the work. Just stand your ground, smile and say "we offer a 10% discount for members of the armed services and police officers (or something similar)"

If they can't take that hint, I don't care to have them as customers. I let this indy dealer walk all over me this week but it'll come out in the wash lol

 

Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk 2

 

 

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It's been a long standing argument whether or not to have pricing the same at each shop or some sort of standard price for each job. Starbucks doesn't care that the diner down the street is selling a cup of java for a dime, or any other places prices.

 

It really isn't the price that keeps people coming back it's the quality and whether or not that particular person fits the atmosphere of "that" particular shop.

 

Selling yourself short by offering discounts (especially to those used car dealers) just invites more frustration.

 

Set your standard price, offer discounts as you see fit, but the bottom line is........ make a living.

 

I'm not a bargain hunters repair shop by any means, and I'm constantly asked to lower a price or do something cheaper. Ah, Starbucks isn't going to negotiate the price of a latte, and I'm not going to change my prices because you don't want to spend the cash... and YES... it really is the same thing, different products, different services, but it's still business between the shop and the consumer.

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I will play the negotiating game with a customer. Lets be real, car repairs are a big expense, and who in the right mind DOES NOT negotiate big expenses?

 

Just a quick list of stuff I did not pay asking for: House (and investment properties), vehicles, my shop, my parking lot, my roof for my office, my lifts, virtually all of my high-end Snap-On equipment, tire machine & balancer, towing discount with local company.

 

If a customer comes in and wants to talk their way into saving $20 off a set of 4 tires. Sure why not. Its $5 a tire whooptie-dooo. I'd rather make $100+ on a tire sale, mount & install that takes less then 90 minutes then send it down the road to the National Tire chain. If I quote a customer $2,000 for an engine job and we have $1300 in labor on it, sure I can take the $100 hit to secure the job and not send it down the road to my competitor.

 

Some of you can't, and its probably because your overhead costs are killing you alive since you did NOT negoiate anything. Heck I even negoiated my INTERNET pricing with our local cable provider. They wanted $70 a month since it was a "business". I got it for the $35 month residential rate. Business insurance, yep they can lower that bill when you ask without cutting out any converage.

 

I don't often get the guy in looking to chew me down on a price. To be honest its usually the foreigners. I guess growing up with "foreigner parents" I got use to the customary "lets make a deal". For the few times a month somebodies ask, I normally will come down a little to secure the job, its not running me out of business, it keeps the bays full, and a lot of these customers have been repeat and brought me a lot of work.

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I get Duke's outlook here and we will do that negotiating sometimes particularly on big jobs. But we are a small independent shop and it kills me because these same people don't ask Pep Boys, Meineke, Monroe, etc to discount - or if they do they don't get it. It seems like we are "targeted" because we are an independent "mom/pop" and people think it's okay to ask us when they wouldn't ask another shop that same question.

 

Also, everyone wants us to make a deal but it ticks me off when they come in and tell me they paid $800 for a brake job last month and they didn't even call us and our normal price is maybe $300. They had no problem paying $800 out to that shop. We hear it all the time. I'd LOVE to do your brake job for $800 - I'll just triple my normal price.

 

And like Joe - I have a favorite analogy - these people don't go to Walmart - fill up their cart and then start haggling/negotiating with the checkout clerk on the price.

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I would agree that some negotiations is part of our business, especially on larger jobs. Too me it has a lot more to do with the customer's approach. I am much less likely to negotiate with someone who outright complains about the price, as if you are robbing them blind. But if approached with the right attitude, I usually try to give something back to show that I am willing to work with the customer and these customer's are usually the ones you are looking to keep.

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It's part of the game. Times are tough. Most people just want someone to listen to there plight. Listen and speak with soft compassion because there but the grace goes you and I.

 

I remember seeing fist fights at the dealer in 1970,s over the $29.00 per hour rate or a price of a $1.25 spark plug.

Always price your job's with a discount in mind.

 

Referrals are what you want.

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         5 comments
      I recently spoke with a friend of mine who owns a large general repair shop in the Midwest. His father founded the business in 1975. He was telling me that although he’s busy, he’s also very frustrated. When I probed him more about his frustrations, he said that it’s hard to find qualified technicians. My friend employs four technicians and is looking to hire two more. I then asked him, “How long does a technician last working for you.” He looked puzzled and replied, “I never really thought about that, but I can tell that except for one tech, most technicians don’t last working for me longer than a few years.”
      Judging from personal experience as a shop owner and from what I know about the auto repair industry, I can tell you that other than a few exceptions, the turnover rate for technicians in our industry is too high. This makes me think, do we have a technician shortage or a retention problem? Have we done the best we can over the decades to provide great pay plans, benefits packages, great work environments, and the right culture to ensure that the techs we have stay with us?
      Finding and hiring qualified automotive technicians is not a new phenomenon. This problem has been around for as long as I can remember. While we do need to attract people to our industry and provide the necessary training and mentorship, we also need to focus on retention. Having a revolving door and needing to hire techs every few years or so costs your company money. Big money! And that revolving door may be a sign of an even bigger issue: poor leadership, and poor employee management skills.
      Here’s one more thing to consider, for the most part, technicians don’t leave one job to start a new career, they leave one shop as a technician to become a technician at another shop. The reasons why they leave can be debated, but there is one fact that we cannot deny, people don’t quit the company they work for, they usually leave because of the boss or manager they work for.
      Put yourselves in the shoes of your employees. Do you have a workplace that communicates, “We appreciate you and want you to stay!”
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