Friday, June 22, 2012

I think I deserve a discount because.....

An occupational hazard of running a business like LensesForHire is that people are always asking us for discounts. Maybe I'm just a bit naive, but I've never really understood why that is. I mean, you don't ask Tesco whether they'll do you a discount, do you?  (Or maybe you do.  But I bet they've never said yes.)

Anyway, I thought it would be fun to compile a list of all the reasons people have put forward as to why they think they deserve a discount. I'll try to keep this updated as and when new ones crop up!

So - I think I deserve a discount because ...

  • ... because I'm a first-time customer.
  • ... because I'm a repeat customer.

(Well, that's 100% of the population covered already, before we go any further!)

  • ... because I'm a student.
  • ... because I'm a pensioner.
  • ... because I'm unemployed. 
  • ... because I plan to hire tons of stuff from you in future, honest.
  • ... because I'm a professional photographer.
  • ... because I'm a member of the armed forces.
  • ... because I'll put a link to LensesForHire on my web site.
  • ... because I'm a member of a camera club.
  • ... because I'm doing a charity event.
  • ... because I'm doing a product review.
  • ... because I can't afford the full price.
  • ... because I'll recommend you to all my friends.

Have I missed any?

For what it's worth, I think that offering discounts to one segment of the population just means that they're being subsidised by the rest of the population.  To my mind, it's fairer all round if we just try to keep our prices as low as we reasonably can for everyone.  So that's what we try to do.


  1. ...because my previous reason for a discount was mentioned on the "I think I deserve a discount because....." page and so I think I deserve a discount for helping with your blog!


  2. Try being a Photographer and that list would be doubled- sometimes we're even asked to work for free - just for the "exposure"

  3. Anonymous22/6/12 16:56

    ... because it won't work on my camera as you still don't do Pentax stuff ...

    Differential pricing is actually quite sensible if you can do it effectively. The reasoning is that by setting the levels carefully you can maximise your profit per customer.

    At price £x you may rent out 20 units at a profit of a per unit, giving a profit of 20a

    If you charge a lesser rate to a certain group, you may rent out 25 units, say, because you will attract 5 price sensitive customers who previously wouldn't rent from you. Some of these might otherwise have paid full price, though. You will obviously make less of a profit (b) on these units.

    Normal pricing - 20 units profit profit 20a
    Differential pricing 25 units, profit 17a + 8b

    Obviously these are made up examples - the aim is to offer the discount to as few people who would otherwise pay full price as possible (so keeping it at 20a in the differential pricing example) This will increase profits. It may increase profits if you loose some full price customers too, if you attract enough new ones.

    This is why information about discounts is often hard to come by - you then only give the discount to those that look hardest - those that are most price sensitive. Look in a supermarket. The most profitable lines are at hand and eye level; normally the same thing but less profitable (usually cheaper) is on the same shelf but lower down.

    You've got to think of it not as customers subsidising others, but as you maximising profit.

    Of course is you run out of lenses anyway, you have no need to offer these incentives. But if you can choose between having a lens sat in a box or earning a few quid less than normal, choose the former. And spend the profits on some experimental Pentax stuff :)

  4. Can I have a discount just for being a nice guy?

  5. Anonymous4/7/12 17:53

    Anonymous deserves a discount for being pretty clever...

    ...I don't deserve a discount because when I recommend you and my friends get charged more, then I lower in their estimations for them seemingly being overcharged (when it's nothing of the sort). So, same price levels.

    (I've had the armed forces one selling pics in clubs. And a lot of very strange reasons. Best one is just blatent 'I can't afford it')


  6. Anonymous11/8/13 19:21

    I think I deserve a discount because you have a discount code box on your checkout page.

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