Build Your Business:

Justifying Price in the T-shirt Business

October 3, 2016

“Your price is too high!” These are the five words that you likely hear the most when quoting products or services for your T-shirt business. All too often we lower the price in hopes of winning the job and the future business of the customer. This in turn leads to more work for less, if any, profit.

One of my favorite motivational speakers is author and motivational speaker Zig Ziglar. He offers great advice on how to respond to the statement of “Your price is too high!” Ask the customer a very simple question: “Is it the cost or the price that you are concerned about?” Most of the time the customer will ask what is the difference between cost and price. Price is what is paid up front; cost is the overall amount you pay for an item or service. At this time, you should provide a real-world example to further illustrate.

I like to share the story of when I was purchasing jeans for my six-year-old son. My son needed two pair of jeans, so we headed the local department store. At the store I looked at the expensive jeans and was taken aback by the $30 price tag. Immediately to the left of the $30 jeans were the $10 jeans. I opted to purchase two pairs of the $10 jeans in order to save money.

Within three weeks, the knees of the less expensive jeans were starting to wear out and by week four, both pairs were completely worn in the knees. I felt it was likely the result of my son playing too much on the floor and purchased another two pairs of $10 jeans. Needless to say, the same issue of worn out knees occurred within a month. I decided that I would not purchase the $10 jeans again and went back to the store and purchased two pairs of the $30 jeans. My son has had those jeans for eight months with no sign of wear at all.

When you put it into perspective, I would have paid $20 per month for 8months to replace the less expensive jeans; this is a whopping total cost of $160. For the two pair of $30 jeans, the total cost was $60 for the total eight-month. period. This is a cost savings of $100. Then you can say, “Now Mr. Customer, I ask you again, is it the cost or price in which you are concerned? You see Mr. Customer a lot of people can beat us on price but no one can beat us on cost and since price is a one-time thing and cost is a lifetime thing, don’t you really want the lowest possible cost?”

So the next time a customer says the price is too high, ask them about cost vs. price, illustrate the difference and explain what you offer that differentiates you from the competition—and as Zig Ziglar would say, I’ll see you at the top!

Jason Ziga is Manager of Sales & Service for Transfer Express. For more information, visit