Offers: Don’t Take it Personal

I had a truly eye-opening conversation concerning Offers.

But let me start at the beginning…

My best friend is obsessed with shoes. She does not just claim to love shoes, it is a lifestyle for her.

She has a room in her home dedicated to her shoes. She has hundreds of pairs.

My best friend is also on Poshmark. She doesn’t sell, she has yet to purchase, but she does browse.

She browses the shoes, of course.

Occasionally she will ask my opinion on a pair she finds. I insist that she let’s me check out the listing to determine if it looks like a reputable seller and closet.

A week or so ago, we were sitting at Starbucks enjoying our grande flat white lattes when she showed me a pair of shoes she liked. They were really nice Vera Wang flats, not my style, but TOTALLY her.

This is how our conversation went…

 

 

Best Friend: Oh, look, tell me what you think of these…

Me: They are ok

Best Friend: I made an offer but they didn’t respond

Me: Let me see… (looks to see when seller was last logged on). How much did you offer?

Best Friend: $13.00

Me: How much were they asking?

Best Friend: $75.00

Me: *gasp!*

Best Friend: What?

Me: *gasp!*

Best Friend: WHAT?!

Me: She won’t respond, you offended her…

Best Friend: Why?

Me: You offered waaaaay too low!

Best Friend: But I offered her what I wanted to pay. I think they are worth $13. I want to pay $13.

 

She was totally and completely right.

She wanted to pay $13… not $75.

It really is that simple of an explanation.

You are allowed to offer what you think something is worth. Everyone has a different value perception.

They are not paying for your memories or concerned about the full price purchase you regret making.

Your potential buyer is letting you know how much they want to pay.

 

You have 3 choices you can make:

ACCEPT.

DECLINE.

COUNTER.

 

No need to get upset… think of a lower-than-you-would-like offer as “market research.”

If you continually get the same low offer on the same item, it may be time to assess the following:

PRICING: What is this item worth?

  • Check out similar SOLD listing on Poshmark and compare
  • Look at other online selling sites and see what they are asking

PHOTOS: Do your photos show your item in the best way possible?

  • Check out similar items and get ideas on how to photograph your item
  • Change it up! Model it or try out a cute flat lay

DESCRIPTION: What are you saying about the item?

  • Mention all the amazing features (pockets? adjustable? versatile color?)
  • Tell your potential customer how they can style the item
  • SELL the item’s awesomeness in the way you describe it

 

My simple, honest conversation with my friend really opened my eyes.

There was not a single ounce of her that was being rude or trying to offend the seller.

She had nothing to lose by offering, but might have ended up with the shoes at a great price.

 

She did not buy the shoes that day. But don’t feel bad for her, she has since forgotten about them and moved on.

Remember, she has hundreds of shoes in her shoe room just waiting to be worn.

 

 

If you want to continue reading about offers and pricing… check out the posts below:

Pricing Your Closet

Handling Low Offers

Making an Offer

 

XOXO

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18 thoughts on “Offers: Don’t Take it Personal

  1. ROFL! I think I love your bestie! Any woman with hundreds of pairs of shoes is a woman who will also buy the shoes, then shop for accessories (like the whole entire outfit) later. I’m so down with that and it’s my life! That being said, I would have to know the brand, style and condition of the shoes to know if her $13 ‘I think that’s what they’re worth’ offer makes sense. I dare say, if she’s like me, I know at a glance if the seller is trippin or I’m being silly. Whichever? Sure she can offer whatever she wants. However, in your list of the seller’s choices I find one missing choice: ignore the offer. I guarantee you a $13 offer on a pair of my $75 shoes will summarily be declined. I sell lots of shoes and if I list it at $75, they’re worth WAY more. But honestly, I’m not selling my Blaniks…I’m going to wear them until they turn into thongs, LOL! But my Louboutins notwithstanding, I price stuff based on what I would pay for said item. If your friend, a fellow shoe nut, said they were worth $13? She’s probably right. OTOH, a seller can just choose to ignore the offer. It’s a seller’s way of saying, “Dear Potential Buyer: quit trippin”! I prefer a simple No Way, Never! DECLINE. There’s no way to effectively counter an extremely low offer if you’re determined to stand firm. It doesn’t necessarily mean the seller is taking the offer personally. As a seller, I’m just not that vested in my ‘stuff’. It’s not personal. It’s knowing what I’m selling is truly worth and listing based on the ‘ for real’s not what they’re worth with all the experiences, memories and sentimentality attached (or the need to recoup that goofy wholesale price I paid) Frankly, I’d pay good.money just to see your friend’s choice. Just interested in another shoeaholic’s choice๐Ÿ˜‚

  2. Great blog!!!!!!!!!!
    I’m on POSHMARK as well (@tme2557) and can relate to a lot of your Posh insight. It’s a great blog for new Poshers and a relatable one for the seasoned Poshers!

  3. Hi Elle! Okay – so a quick story to tell, and then would love to know your thoughts/take on this particular scenario.

    My friend has been on Posh for a few months now, but just started listing some items yesterday. She found an Herve Lager dress on Poshmark she wants to wear to a friend’s wedding, so I showed her your posting and I helped her craft a comment to send to the customer prior to making an offer. It essentially said, “I don’t want to offend you at all, just hoping you can counter with your best offer.” We said this after reviewing the comments where she told other sellers, please use the offer button I will negotiate! Granted, we did offer half of what she was asking for, but only to get the negotiations rolling. She flat out declined the offer. My friend, totally defeated, decided she didn’t want the dress anymore. However, I encouraged her to write back to the seller and once again try to explain that she was simply trying to negotiate and find out what the best price was because she wants to buy the dress. The seller only wrote back “Too low.”

    My friend is so frustrated with this situation, and I told her I would ask her what The Gray Asparagus what she would do ๐Ÿ™‚ Any insight/advice/motivation you can share will be most appreciated by her!

    XO
    @emmalee6003

    1. I guess on this item at this time, she didn’t feel like negotiating… I have been in the position where I really wanted to get my asking price and didn’t want to negotiate- however a high offer might entice me. Maybe that is how she felt?
      For your friend I would say, if she STILL wants it, go back with her highest offer- if the seller declines again then it wasn’t meant to be (make sure to check similar sold listings to see how much others went for).
      If she doesn’t want it- that’s cool too! It’s a good lesson to learn as a seller to pay attention to what your customer is saying or requesting so you don’t miss out on a sale! I’m sure she will find another fabulous dress at a great price ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I am so glad you spoke in a way to give the seller a quick view of what the buyer is thinking. I automatically as many get offended and low offers. However you are 100% right! Your friend offered what she was willing to pay. So as a seller, should I get upset. The correct answer is no. I have the right to decline or counter offer. It’s called negotiating. I don’t have to get offended at the offer and take it personal. Thank you for changing my view on low offers. I should not take it personal it’s a waste of time. I can respectfully decline and go on with my day. Your blog is so awesome! You always provide precise and accurate advice. Once again you have shown me how to handle a situation that I’m sure will occur more than once. Now it’s laughable! I’m thinking to myself, why were you taking it so personal? The things we allow ourselves to get upset about is ridiculous! Decline, accept, counter! Either way, life goes on! Thanks again!

  5. Great Post, Elle! I’d like to follow with something Manish said at lunch last November at PoshFest. There was just 6 of us at the table that Saturday…we were discussing offers as the option had not long been introduced. Of course there was chatter about how offensive it was for someone to offer less than you thought an item was worth… one Posher even said she would “Decline and Block their Tacky A*s”. He responded with something along the lines of what you’ve said above about perception… and followed with he would suggest NEVER declining. Even if you counter with your same asking price and a reasonable explanation. He said, “money is already on the table at that point…so there is interest…you should at least follow up. Since then I have never declined an offer…and believe it or not, some of the $40 offers I’ve received on a $99 pair of jeans have wound up with the buyer (and me) being happy with me only covering their shipping!!! I admit, sometimes, I have to take a step back, and not counter or respond “in the moment”…especially since everything I sell I stand behind and love… but I have wound up making plenty of sales, and new Posh friends, simply by countering with a response as well. Just food for thought ๐Ÿ™‚

    Sorry that was long-winded… Elle, I love your Blog!

  6. Elle,

    Erika made some great points! Since your post on offers, I have been really good and just counter offering and negotiating from there. Some have lead to successful sales and some have not. However, I will admit that the other day, the offer was so low that I immediately declined. I saw red, lol. Truth be told, what Erika said is correct! Declining is not the professional thing to do. I will be sure to always respond moving forward, even if I have to wait a while to cool off. I knew not to take it personal, but the offer was an insult to say the least.

  7. I am new to the whole selling on Poshmark thing, but I’ve listed a bunch of items I thought were worth more than putting in a yard sale or taking to Goodwill. So, I’ve made a bunch of productive negotiations, but THEN… yesterday someone made an offer on an item, and I counter offered them up a “meet in the middle” between their offer and the listed price. They then counter offered for LESS than their original offer! Am I wrong to consider that bad practice?

    1. Welcome to Poshmark! It sounds like you are already seeing success with sales ๐Ÿ™‚ You will see a lot of interesting behaviors when negotiating!!! I try to counter everything until things go a wrong direction then I decline and move on. Sometimes you make a sale and sometimes like you said- you will see bad practices.

  8. I am a buyer and not a seller, and wanted to know what you thought this scenario after reading your post on offers. I found a pair of boots that I really liked, and after asking if they were still available, did some research on Poshmark and other sites for pricing. The seller said they were brand new, but of course didn’t mention that they were from the 2008 season, so already 9 years old. (I know this because I bought them new then, and liked them so much I wanted to replace them.) Knowing this, I offered 35% below what she was asking. It appears she’s had them listed for a while now, without much interest at all. I really didn’t want her to be offended by my offer, so I looked to see if there was some way I could privately message her; I didn’t want to publicly post in the comments my justification for the price. There does not seem to be any way at all to send a message with offer. It’s been 24 hours with no counter or anything declining the offer. How do I know she received the offer? Thanks.

    1. Hi Carrie! You are correct, there is no way to send a private message so you would have to tag them on perhaps an old “sold” listing or if you have a listing of your own. We all have our reasons for what we offer and the reasons for our listing price- sometimes we agree and sometimes disagree. If you made an offer through the system she will receive an alert and it will alert her again a couple of hours before it expires. There is no true way to tell if she saw it because it could have been overlooked (it’s happened to me!!) or she may choose to ignore it.

  9. It is definitely annoying when sellers don’t respond to offers. I submitted an offer on a bundle of three items so clearly I was interested in buying multiple things! And the seller explicitly said on their page that they were open to offers. And I definitely did not lowball- it was just a few dollars lower. Had she countered somewhere in the middle I would have accepted no question. Instead she didn’t even bother to respond. I wish there was an easier way we could leave feedback for things like this.

    1. Hi Laura! Yes, definitely not ideal! I have to be honest and say that I sometimes miss offers., especially if I have been sharing or haven’t checked my closet for a few hours. Recently they have added a reminder right before an offer is going to expire so that has helped. I would recommend leaving a comment asking if they had a chance to review your offer- wouldn’t hurt!

  10. Buyers who lowball are offering what they think something is worth. That’s exactly why it’s insulting!! Their assertion is that your new in box, $300 designer shoes are worth $20. If you work in an office making $40 an hour and your boss says he’s going to cut your pay rate to only $15 an hour because that’s what your time is worth, you’d be insulted.

  11. Hi there, love your closet and have followed you for awhile! Came across your blog because of something that happened to my new-to-posh husband. He finally realized my posh obsession and had spent most of the day shopping for himself on his own account. I had coached him and he was offering reasonable offers, within $5-$15 of asking price and getting good results. Then he found a Lacoste sweater listed for $30 and offered $18. The seller (a posh ambassador) declined. The decline was fine…he was went to make another offer at $25 and found out she had blocked him! I was mad. As a top 10% seller myself I feel this behaviour is deplorable. Is there anything you would recommend?

    1. Hi Heather! For some reason some sellers use the block button generously and often. I don’t understand it so I can’t speak to or explain the logic. I personally would just not give that person your business… and there are too many awesome sellers to waste time on one with “odd” business tactics. I hate that he had a bad experience and hope he keeps shopping!

  12. As a new posh buyer. I completely agree with you Ellie. I recently purchased a few items with a low ball offer. I had no idea that I was even giving a low ball offer. I negotiated with the seller for a price both of us can agree upupon which was only a few more dollars more than the price I asked for… I find that my low ball offer is just a start into negotiating to a price I can afford. I feel like a lot of people take low balling too personally. I mean you have the power as a seller to respectfully decline or negotiate as well. I find it silly that people are getting upset about lowball offers Itโ€™s nothing personal. Itโ€™s all about perspective.

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