3 Things to Consider Before Offering the Friends/Family Discount

As business owners, we are all approached by well-intentioned friends and family members looking for a discount. It’s tempting to say yes. After all we love our friends and family and we want to help take care of them whenever we can. But saying yes, can put you in the poor house. So before you do take a moment to consider these three things …

1. How much am I going to profit from the sale after the discount?

This is a big one to consider because all too often we find we are working for next to nothing when it comes to offering services. And in the case of offering products we often fail to take into account the general expenses the sale of that product helps us cover each month in our business.

So before you say yes, think about what the profit would be if they paid full price. Is the discount greater than your profit? If so you owe it to your business to say no.

Check out these loving way you can say no…

  • I would love to offer you a discount, but my prices are already as low as I can go, and I need to be able to cover my day-to-day operating costs.
  • I’m sorry I don’t do discounts because I already price my products/services at the lowest price possible so all of my customers can benefit from fair pricing.
  • I can’t offer discounts, as I have to cover my own expenses, but perhaps you don’t need the whole package. Tell me exactly what it is you need, maybe there is another option I can make available to you.

2. What benefits will my business receive by offering this discount?

There are a lot of benefits people feel are worth it. Their gratitude for example, or my favorite, word of mouth advertising. But here is the reality. Their gratitude won’t pay for your monthly business expenses and your reputation as being a solid business owner is going to be much better word of mouth than, “she offers discounts!” 

Another truth that far to many of us learn the hard way, when they get something at a lesser price, they expect to receive something of lesser value. They most likely won’t realize the true value of what they are getting and may even look for flaws rather than seeing the high quality product/service you are delivering.

And finally it is worth mentioning, that when we discount ourselves, we are also not valuing what we do. We begin to dread giving products/services away so cheap and often begin to resent those receiving the discount.

If you can see a true solid value in offering the discount, go for it. But if you have any doubts, then you know you’ll need to say no.

Here’s an example of how I say no when I don’t see the value…

I do provide web design services to one organization a year, and am always looking for applicants. I tell you what, let me send you the grant application I have in place and we can go from there. 

3. Am I 100% comfortable giving this discount?

I get it. Obligations often trump our comfort level when it comes to family and friends, but when it comes to business we really can’t let personal obligations get in the way of our bottom line.

Before you offer up an obligatory “yes” take some time to tune into your body and what truly feels right to you. If necessary, tell them you’ll need to think about it, or check and make sure it is a good fit for your business. This will give you time to see how you really feel.

And if it doesn’t feel good, feel free to say so, and say no.

Thank you so much for thinking of me. I’ve thought a lot about the discount, and while I would love to say yes, I am not comfortable doing so. At least not at this time. I really want to make this business a huge success and offering discounts can really hurt my profits.

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