Customer Asking To Quote "Real" Price

We quoted our customer with MSRP prices line by line, and then at the end gave them a single global discount before sub-totaling and adding the sales tax.

This serves 2 purposes:

1. Our customer can use each single MSRP as a price guide to calculate margin or use it directly to re-quote / re-sell to their own end users.

2. Avoid our customer to take our proposal to our competitor and bargain a better price with our quotation.

Now customer e-mailed us back to disclose line by line each item with their own discount. Best approach to handle this ??

1. Reply with a "sorry, our company policy is only quote MSRP prices" ??

2. Do as customer is asking us to.

If your discount is the same across the board, couldn't the customer figure it out themselves?

Say you quoted 5 cameras, mounts, etc...and discounted the whole thing 40% off MSRP. Can't a customer look at line 1 and take 40% and come up with the price for that line?

If so, why not break it out for them? i.e. do the math.

If the discount by line is variable or the quote includes line(s) of labor, that may make it more of a challenge.

Break it out line by line, ask to meet with the person who can make buying decisions face to face and bring a contract and itemized proposal with you. Go with the intention of closing this deal. But don't disclose line by line without a face to face first. Be diplomatic about getting a meeting, don't be a jerk.

I would not comply with their request. It is playing into their "games", and customers who go back and fourth playing price games are a simple waste of time for the fact that they have no respect for you, your time, your knowledge, and skill.... and they need to go.

Tell them your price is what they see, and you do not partake in price games because your time and skill come with a price.

If you think the customer is worth it, I think its worth giving in to their request. We live in a day and age where customers want more transparency and convenience. You then shift the focus towards what your services are and how much you are better than the competition, this stuff cant be shopped like prices can. If they are truly a price-based customer and does not care about service, then they could be more trouble than they are worth.

This is why its important to never try to win business based just off price. You have to find differentiating factors to set yourself apart from everyone else selling similar stuff at similar or lower prices.

We get asked to price match all day and every day, and we wont do it 95% of time. Reason being is we have alot more to offer than companies selling the products at lower prices. Better warranty, better tech support, better all around service. Most of your companies quoting lower than you probably have lower overhead, which could mean lower quality service.

So in my opinion, quote them line item, then focus on your differentiating factors. If they ask you to price match, simply say with confidence "No Im sorry we cant do that because we do this and this and this, and that other company simply cannot do all those things"

A smaller company doesn't necessarily mean lower quality service.

@ Undisclosed 5

I am a low overhead contractor, I have been in the security business for over 20 years, I know the business,the clients and the processes for quoting and closing sales. But I can not even fathom HOW you equate low overhead with low quality, that is somewhat of an elitist mis-statement.

I have grown my business on giving my customers concierge level service, my low overhead allows me to offer better pricing and lower labor cost. My average system is Mid level cameras, mostly HIK OEMed equipment, but I have installed full Bosch PTZ systems with fiber backbone out 4 miles(not the cheap stuff)I build custom NVRs and only recently left my elitist approach and started using embedded NVR/DVR systems to capture a niche that I had missed out on. I go up against the larger companies in my market area often, and most of the time I win,

I have the reputation for quality and service

The mentality that someone without a high overhead office and warehouse is a trunk slammer shows how you look down on your competition. Generally as a rule I find that my high overhead competition is quoting the bottom of the barrel prices to compete and make up for their high labor rates.Or I have seen cheap chinese at exorbitant prices, I have high overhead competition that sells DIY labeled equipment with high margins. Overhead does not and will not have an impact on my quality of sale or service.

Every proposal that I send out be it a large commercial system , or a small residential system is line item, I go in with full disclosure and full warranty statements,and feel that anyone that doesn't do this is doing a dis-service to their clients and hiding stuff in their quotes, I have seen it over and over.

I have grown my business on giving my customers concierge level service, my low overhead allows me to offer better pricing and lower labor cost.

"You get what you don't pay for" :)