I see it all the time. I even take advantage of it. Some businesses have too many discount sales and special offers - in fact it can seem like a permanent sale. I call this the DFS effect :)
But what happens? - no one buys at full price.
Now it is of course very tempting to drop your price when you have stock to move, and of course I am not suggesting that you don't ever have sales, just don't have them all the time.
If every email you're sending out to your list is just what's on sale, or that you've knocked xx% off 'this weekend only', if you send them often enough its not going to take long to wipe out all your full price sales.
There is a certain children's mail order company that I use often to buy things for my small people from and I know that I only have to hang on for another week or so every time I want to buy something and sure enough a discount voucher will plop onto the doormat through the post. I am regular customer and so I know I don't have to wait long. Now what's silly about this is that yes I do buy when I get my discount voucher, but the business has lost my momentum, and also the cash I was ready to part with 'on the spot'.
Now for a big mail order catalogue, or a large chain of furniture stores (ahem!) the continuous offers and discounting is part of a major marketing plan, but if you're a small business you don't always have the luxury of bigger margins and a constant flow orders. If you're a smaller business you value every sale, and all those not at full price just mean you have to work harder or sell more (or both!). You also then set a precedent that your prices are not 'real' but 'inflated' (yes I know those DFS sofas were on sale somewhere for a week at £1500 but no-one was buying them, right?).
So stick by your guns and don't be on 'sale' all the time. Think about value add offers instead, or extras you can include. Once you lower your prices (which is effectively what you do when you're always on 'sale') its really hard to push them back up again to the same customers. Then you're left with either finding new customers, or accepting you'll only ever be able to sell for less.
And don't even think about offering 5 years interest free credit if you're a small business either! Money up front thank you very much :)
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