Discount War

Just as surely as a diamond is forever, it’s inevitable that you will encounter a customer who describes a competitor’s 50%-off sale and asks if you can match the deal. How you respond depends on your business philosophy. You can refuse to alter your price, instead explaining why your store provides greater value for the money. You can bring your price down to match the competitor’s. You can hold your own inventory-clearance sale, which will not only attract customers but also enable you to move unpopular merchandise. If you’re skeptical about the competitor’s discount claims, you can collect his ads and forward them to an agency that investigates truth-in-pricing violations. Sales and discounts of jewelry—whether actual or spurious—are ubiquitous. “The big department stores that buy double spreads in every newspaper in the country every weekend—50% off with a

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