Most customers expect lower prices in online stores than in brick & mortar stores. They also do price comparisons before shopping, all of which increases the need to design the right competitive pricing strategies for your online shop.
Psychological Tactics in Pricing
There are many psychological triggers that can be used to influence a potential customer to accept the price offered. You need to stay competitive in your pricing, but that doesn’t mean you have to incur losses to get more sales.
Brand Value Pricing
An established brand that has positioned itself in the premier category might cost more, but because of the perceived higher value, many customers will be willing to pay that price. Build a Unique Value Proposition for your brand, show customers what sets your products apart. In fact, studies have shown that customers link higher price with higher quality.
Many products can be sold as a bundle. For example, baby lotions, baby soaps, baby oils, etc can be sold as a bundle, at a discounted price that will be lesser than if each of the items were bought individually. This also applies to gadgets like cameras. Shops often bundle them with tripods, an additional lens, camera bags etc. Bundling also helps you sell slow-moving products when you group them with more popular items.
Loss Leader Pricing
This competitive pricing strategy is used to lure customers by offering a product at very low cost and then making profit off selling related products. For example, with Gillette cartridge razors, the razors themselves are priced low and often come bundled with disposable cartridges. Gillette actually makes money off these disposable cartridges because users would have to replace them frequently.
This is an effective competitive pricing strategy. When users are given two choices, they tend to go for the lower priced one. However, present just one more choice (the decoy), you can convince them to choose the higher priced option. A prime example is how The Economist presented their subscription choices. They offered an online subscription for $59, print edition for $125, and the online and print bundle for $125.
The trick was the listing of the price for the print only subscription in the middle, that convinced readers that they were getting a bargain if they subscribed for both versions together.
When someone wants to buy something, if the seller introduces a sense of scarcity, it makes the person feel that he has to buy it soon or lose out, regardless of price. Many shops do this for certain items, listing the low number in-stock. eBay also shows the number of people currently watching that offer.
This is making price adjustment in response to marketplace factors. You can now use sophisticated tools to watch market movements and make price adjustments within the parameters you define, like minimum and maximum prices for each item. This competitive pricing software, like Intelligence Node’s 360°Pricing tool, also spot opportunities to increase prices and respond accordingly. For instance, if a competitor runs out-of-stock for a certain item, they can increase the price for that item till that scarcity exists.
Feedbacks and reports from these tools can also help you increase your margins. For instance, if you are offering the lowest price on a particular product, and the difference between your price and the second lowest price is big, you can increase your price a little, still staying below your competitor’s price and yet increase your profit margin.
There are many software available in the market to help retailers make informed, intelligent, timely competitive pricing decisions. Intelligence Node’s Incompetitor and Inoptimizer analyze competitor moves and provide you deep insights to help you come up with optimal merchandising and pricing strategies. These are AI-led solutions that keep learning with each use and each result.
Author Bio: My name is Frida and I have been working as a retail researcher for about 5 years at Intelligence Node. http://www.intelligencenode.com