Fair discount from MAP pricing?

surge98

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As someone who typically buys used, I don't have a ton of experience negotiating on new guitars. Let's assume I'm shopping for a new Historic at one of the well-known shops (Dave's, Willcutt, Wildwood, CME, Sweetwater, etc). Even in a seller's market, I can't imagine you guys are paying the listed MAP price on these guitars. In the current environment, what would be a reasonable percentage discount from MAP to ask for? I have bought from some of these stores in the past, but not enough to get any special treatment as a big-time customer. Thanks.
 

ehb

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Dealers cannot advertise lower than MAP....BUT, talk to them on the phone or in person and they can sell it for whatever they want.... MAP on a brand guitar is not a huge margin for the dealer %-wise.... They generally have to pay shipping on top of NET.... NET vs MAP margin can be different according to brand. Lower brands than the big boys may have a touch wider margin...

In negotiations, I would bring up that everybody sells online at MAP... What can you sell it to me for and still get well on the deal? (Get Well = not lose geet and make a bit)

A pawn shop chain owner told me to use the Get Well angle when buying from especially pawn shops.... I've gotten killer deals using it. It kinda tells them you are a buyer and not a tire kicker... The pawn shops that make bank don't really much care what the item is, they're in the biz of keeping money moving. Period. They don't care if it is a Gibson or a ZimGar....

If they store knows you are capable and ready to lay the geet right then, they will generally negotiate because they know they can have another one just like that within a short amount of time to sit in the same spot...

Whoever 'They' are needs to know beyond doubt you are ready to buy right then.... Also, that you want them to make some money on the deal and not just 'give it to you' and that you'll be back to buy something from them again.... A good deal should actually make BOTH parties happy.... Unless you are talking to a blidiot at GC than can't make a deal...

Some old farts like me might remember George's store in ATL.... He didn't want a damn soul to walk out empty handed... He made bank on a grand scale... Folks would call or even drive from several states just to buy from them.... You didn't even have to argue there....

You don't know unless you ask....
 

Seven

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I've never bought any new gear for any less than 15% off. Usually more.
 

calieng

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10% off and free shipping is a pretty standard starting point. After that it depends on the particular guitar.

I actually found they are a little more stingy on prices this last year. Unless you are asking about Two Rock and then it is "Pay full price or get the F out of our store - these things sell themselves..."
 

coyote95667

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10% off and free shipping is a pretty standard starting point. After that it depends on the particular guitar.

I actually found they are a little more stingy on prices this last year. Unless you are asking about Two Rock and then it is "Pay full price or get the F out of our store - these things sell themselves..."
I go to Sweetwater regularly because they consistently give me this and a bag of candy, and when I've tried to reach out Wildwood lately they're like "not even a bag of candy, sorry". Are there other online shops besides sweetwater that pretty routinely do 10% and free shipping?
 

speyfly

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10-15% off is about all you can expect these days. That said, if you have to order something that is a main staple in the line then maybe 20% since you'll have to wait for it. This does not apply to the hi-end or collectables, they almost always have to be ordered.
 

surge98

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Are there shops that don't collect sales tax yet? I've seen a few small ones who don't, but I would assume I have to factor that in at a larger retailer. Not a big deal on a $90 pickup, but I hate getting slammed with hundreds of dollars on a Gibson. Particularly a used Gibson.
 

peobryant

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When I bought my Jimmy Page Telecaster from Wildwood, I called them, told them which guitar I was interested in, and asked what their best price was. He knocked 20% off, which I gladly accepted. This was in June of '20, so stock was completely different then, but still, it doesn't hurt to ask for a discount, you aren't going to hurt any feelings.
 
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Brek

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In UK dealers are taking stance that supply is very limited, so why sell at a price that eats margin when there is nothing to replace that with. So no discounts on Reissues in general, although two dealers in UK have dropped a grand off a couple of R9's in Jan' sales.
 

jerry_arnett

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I normally get a good chunk off at sweetwater it's my local store and have become pretty good buddies with my salesman this last summer I got a new 57 reissue 3 pickup custom 21% off
 

efstop

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In Canada, Long & McQuade doesn't discount on new gear. Occasionally they will reduce across a line, and occasionally a store will put something on sale if they've had it a long while, but retail is what they charge.
Used is where I've gotten all my deals. The gear I wanted bad enough to pay list price hasn't given me any sleepless nights or forced me to eat Kraft Dinner.
 

palmerfralick

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Dealers cannot advertise lower than MAP....BUT, talk to them on the phone or in person and they can sell it for whatever they want.... MAP on a brand guitar is not a huge margin for the dealer %-wise.... They generally have to pay shipping on top of NET.... NET vs MAP margin can be different according to brand. Lower brands than the big boys may have a touch wider margin...

In negotiations, I would bring up that everybody sells online at MAP... What can you sell it to me for and still get well on the deal? (Get Well = not lose geet and make a bit)

A pawn shop chain owner told me to use the Get Well angle when buying from especially pawn shops.... I've gotten killer deals using it. It kinda tells them you are a buyer and not a tire kicker... The pawn shops that make bank don't really much care what the item is, they're in the biz of keeping money moving. Period. They don't care if it is a Gibson or a ZimGar....

If they store knows you are capable and ready to lay the geet right then, they will generally negotiate because they know they can have another one just like that within a short amount of time to sit in the same spot...

Whoever 'They' are needs to know beyond doubt you are ready to buy right then.... Also, that you want them to make some money on the deal and not just 'give it to you' and that you'll be back to buy something from them again.... A good deal should actually make BOTH parties happy.... Unless you are talking to a blidiot at GC than can't make a deal...

Some old farts like me might remember George's store in ATL.... He didn't want a damn soul to walk out empty handed... He made bank on a grand scale... Folks would call or even drive from several states just to buy from them.... You didn't even have to argue there....

You don't know unless you ask....
I remember George. bought my 1st two guitars from him in 1972. An Aria acoustic which I still have and a Dan Armstrong clear plastic electric which is long gone. He was the antithesis of current guitar store conglomerates. and loud as hell everyone the store could hear his negotiations. A Titian of Atlanta music store owners.
 

KBMelb

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I normally get a good chunk off at sweetwater it's my local store and have become pretty good buddies with my salesman this last summer I got a new 57 reissue 3 pickup custom 21% off
My favorite guitars have come from Sweetwater. My first sales engineer use to get me the 20% (+/-) range. My 2015 TH58 was 21% off. He left and the next guy never seemed to go beyond 12%. Which is what was the discount on my 3pup B7. It was only 9lbs 4oz with a Bigsby and a Carmalita neck carve so I caved. The 10 pounders were selling like hotcakes so what a was mortal to do??

I think timing/time of year plays a lot into what they are willing to do.
 

ehb

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I remember George. bought my 1st two guitars from him in 1972. An Aria acoustic which I still have and a Dan Armstrong clear plastic electric which is long gone. He was the antithesis of current guitar store conglomerates. and loud as hell everyone the store could hear his negotiations. A Titian of Atlanta music store owners.
You would damn sure walk out with what you came for at SOME price.... and get other stuff thrown in as incentives... He understood business... Volume and retention of customer base...

If he could get folks to come back to HIS store every single time, then he had a steady stream of money from you. You were happy with the prices and he was happy. Multiply that by thousands of musicians.... Order a speaker or two, open the box and there might be a couple of good speaker cables thrown in, etc... I went up there to buy a new Ensoniq synth (not that first 8 bit sampler crap)... They didn't have one and the sales guys said I didn't want that anyway. (Service issue) and told me to play a Yamaha... I had 1400 cash in my pocket for the Ensoniq and the Yamaha was waaaay past that. He said 'just play this thing for a bit'.... Oh my homey jeebus it was killer and waaay more powerful than the Ensoniq. When he came back I told him I loved it but I only had 1400 on me and that was it. He said 'I think it's on sale (the marked down price already ON IT was waaaay past my 1400).... He said be right back, went in back carrying a Yamaha box and laid it down. He said 'you'll need a Yama pedal' and tossed a new in box in the pile, 'you'll need some good cables' and tossed a handful of cables for every hole in it on the pile... 'Oh, you'll need a good heavy duty stand for that' and laid a QL double brace KB stand on the pile.... In my mind I was thinking he was about to hit me for a B I G chunk past my 1400... He picked up a calculator and started hitting buttons at random while looking around the room and looked at display... I was expecting something close to 3k with all the other shit.... "Well damn. Looks like it all comes to...wait a sec (punched a few more buttons) yeah, it all comes to exactly 1400 total. No tax since your ordered it from AL and getting free shipping... " Hell yeah.... "Pull around to the side and I'll bring it all out and load it for you." Pulled around and he loaded it.... Standing there dumbfounded, I had a smoke and George came out wear golf pants carrying an amp and putting it in a guys car for him... G was 'yadda yadda yadda' jabbering all the way to the car... ;)

Damn right I'd buy from them again if I needed something....
 

519tbarr

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In Canada, Long & McQuade doesn't discount on new gear. Occasionally they will reduce across a line, and occasionally a store will put something on sale if they've had it a long while, but retail is what they charge.
Used is where I've gotten all my deals. The gear I wanted bad enough to pay list price hasn't given me any sleepless nights or forced me to eat Kraft Dinner.
Thumbs down! That's the Canadian/European market mindset! Higher prices, lower CDN dollar, tax, tax, tax and carbon tax.
 

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GuitarPops

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I've found Melody Music in Bloomington a good shop but practically inflexible on price (I had to wrangle to get $20 off a '59 Epiphone). AMS was totally willing to work with me on my Gibson CS LP and I got 15%. I have purchased 2 Fender custom shop from Willcutt. In one case they gave me 10%, in the other I was able to get 12%. From my experience you can get steeper discounts on Gibson over Fender, at least for CS

One other shop I had a good experience with was Pitbull Audio in National City, CA. No fuss, a decent discount and on my side of the USA.

Unfortunately, there are getting to be fewer and fewer shops where you can avoid sales tax.

Take care all....
 

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