Get More Money for Your Stuff With These Retail Secrets


Want to move product like a boss in the retail arena? Implement a few of these pricing secrets used by consumer giants (even if you're a bit player in the online game) to see an uptick in sales.

Use a Colored Tag System

Help your customers easily discern what's full price and what's marked to move with a color-coded tagging system. Home Depot, for example, uses white tags to indicate full price items and yellow tags for clearance merchandise, says Smatterist. This, of course, only works if you have physical items and buyers you can watch, but you'll definitely see what customers gravitate to if they can easily decipher what's on sale and what isn't.

Place Clearance and Sale Items in the Back of the "Store"

Placing clearance and other marked-to-move items in the back of the store is an industry best practice. How do I know? Because I'm conditioned (and you probably are, too) to head straight to the back of the retailer's setup to discover the can't-be-beat deals. Another reason this strategy is attractive to so many retailers is that you have to walk past all the new arrivals and full-priced items along the way — and they're hoping you'll find something you like there, too. If they put the sale stuff up front, you likely wouldn't venture past that section, and neither will your customers.

Offer Discounts on Damaged Goods

Recently I was shopping at West Elm to furnish a new home I purchased. I had a good idea of most of the items I wanted, but I also took a look around the store for items I knew I needed but hadn't yet settled on from other retailers. In the front window of the store and also in a corner on the second level were items designated as "floor models" that I was told were discounted heavily because they needed to make space for new-season arrivals. As such, I scored a dining table for about $500 off the original price, and two large area rugs, for 50% and 70% off, respectively.

These items aren't without their flaws, mind you — the glass tabletop has a small scratch on it, and the rugs have been walked on by other people — but everything was still in great enough condition to overlook the minor damage considering the excellent price.

If you have stuff that's still perfectly good, but marked by use, drop the price so it's still attractive despite whatever imperfections it may have and make those flaws a feature. If the customer feels like they're walking away with a bargain, those little dents and dings won't matter a bit.

Establish BOGO Deals if You Need to Move Inventory

If you have an abundance of inventory — maybe you came upon a surplus of items from a recent treasure hunt — consider offering a buy-one-get-one promotion to get the product out of the store and, thus, money in your pocket faster.

Price Your Items Higher With Room for Negotiation

Whenever I sell items online or at a yard sale, I price them for what I'd like to get for them — and that's typically higher than what I reasonably think people will pay for the items. And it's all very carefully planned out. I price items this way, because I know people will haggle. Considering the arrival of the eventual bargain hunter, then, I'm putting myself in a position to lower the price to one that they can handle and still walk away satisfied that the final price was one with which I can be happy.

Undercut the Competition

I run a couple businesses myself, though admittedly none of which deal with physical merchandise, but my strategy is always the same: Undercut the competition. If you have a quality product or service and your prices/fees are below the competition, the customers will come. Just don't slash your prices so low that you don't make any money. That's the best way to go bankrupt, which is definitely not this strategy's endgame.

Earn a Little More From Shipping and Other "Fees"

If you're an avid online seller — eBay, for instance — you already know that shipping fees can add a few extra bucks to your bottom line with each transaction. All of us have become accustomed to paying these fees when shopping online, so there's not much danger in turning the customer off — especially if you're a small, mom-and-pop-type retailer. But you want to make sure these fees are proportionate to the product and remain affordable. What I mean by that is if you're selling clothing, you can't charge $20 for shipping like you could an item with more weight, like sports equipment. Just be insightful enough to keep the fees acceptable so there's no red flag from the customer's side and you'll walk away a winner.

What tricks do you use to help move your stuff faster?

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