Amazon has traditionally used a “fixed” pricing structure. Well, it’s not really fixed, and can fluctuate because of demands, but whatever the price is on the screen is the price you pay. Amazon is changing that for certain items and introducing old fashioned bargaining with “Make an Offer”. The initial rollout will include collectables and art. Negotiations are strictly between the seller and prospective buyer with Amazon having nothing to do with the price. The customer makes an offer and the seller can accept, reject or submit a counteroffer for a price. The process continues until either the two sides make a deal or walk away. Amazon made a note that this is not an auction process like eBay. It’s a pure negotiation.
Amazon Unveils ‘Make an Offer’ for Customers to Negotiate Lower Prices
New pricing feature allows customers to offer to buy items at even lower prices
To start, customers can negotiate prices on more than 150,000 items across Sports and Entertainment Collectibles, Collectible Coins and Fine Art
SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Dec. 9, 2014– Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN) today announced the ‘Make an Offer’ experience that allows customers to negotiate even lower prices on thousands of items. Expanding on Amazon’s traditional fixed price model, the new pricing feature allows customers to offer to buy items at even lower prices. If agreed upon, customers can then purchase the items at a savings from the listed price. To start, more than 150,000 items from sellers on Amazon are enabled with the ‘Make an Offer’ experience across Sports and Entertainment Collectibles, Collectible Coins and Fine Art. The new feature will expand to hundreds of thousands of items from sellers in 2015. Customers can browse ‘Make an Offer’ eligible items at www.amazon.com/makeanoffer.
Here’s how it works: Sellers enable the ‘Make an Offer’ feature for items to show customers they are willing to negotiate for a lower price than the price listed. When selecting ‘Make an Offer’ on an item’s product detail page, a customer can enter and submit a new price of their choosing. The seller will receive the customer’s lower price offer through email, at which point the seller can accept, reject or counter the offer. The seller and customer can continue to negotiate through email until the negotiation is complete. When a seller accepts a customer’s offer, the customer is notified and can place the item into their shopping cart at the agreed upon new price for checkout and purchase.
“The new ‘Make an Offer’ experience is a game-changer for Amazon customers looking for great prices on one-of-a-kind items, and for sellers looking to communicate and negotiate directly with customers in an online marketplace environment just like they do normally in their own physical store or gallery,” said Peter Faricy, VP for Amazon Marketplace. “In a recent survey of our sellers, nearly half of the respondents told us that the ability to negotiate prices with customers would be important to drive more sales on Amazon. ‘Make an Offer’ delivers that functionality and makes customers feel confident they are getting an item they want at the lowest price possible.”
“The ‘Make an Offer’ experience gives customers more control and better deals than they may have received prior to this program,” said Steven Costello, Executive Vice President of Steiner Sports Memorabilia, Inc., headquartered in New Rochelle, New York. “The negotiation experience will hopefully get more communication between us and our customers to help us better gauge the price for certain items. We love the ‘Make and Offer’ program, and it is only going to get bigger. Once customers know this is an available feature more offers will come, leading to more sales.”
The ‘Make an Offer’ feature is not an auction format. All negotiations are 1:1 and private between individual customers and sellers. A seller is able to accept a customer’s offer at any time. The intention is to lower prices, and a customer negotiating with a seller will never pay more than the listed price.
“The ‘Make an Offer’ experience is unique as it provides a new and engaging way for Amazon customers to negotiate lower prices. I think it will broaden my customer base,” said Spencer Eggers, owner of Coast to Coast Collectibles, headquartered outside the San Francisco Bay Area. “This new shopping experience could also increase customer loyalty because it will give serious buyers the opportunity to have direct communication with the seller to determine a fair, agreed upon price. It will be like a Black Friday sale 365 days a year.”
Businesses interested in selling on Amazon can learn more at services.amazon.com/contactus.
Amazon.com opened on the World Wide Web in July 1995. The company is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire phone, Fire tablets, and Fire TV are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon.