What’s a good rule of thumb when making an offer to assure you won’t offend the seller?
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16 posts in this topic

Do you feel the seller is offering a fair price?  

If the data is available, see what recent sales are for copies in similar shape vs what you are comfortable paying.  

Offer what you think is a fair price regardless of any higher listing price.

You can try to get more off but you risk someone else buying a book u want

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I've sent an offer or two that's about 60% of what the seller has listed as BIN.  I basically lay out how I arrived at my offer by providing recent sales.  If there are no recent sales, I'll take similar sales items and then add a premium to account for the fact that the seller's book is one of a kind (this is more the case when looking at signature series books or remark/sketches).  I always try to be polite and logical.  If the seller rudely dismisses it, I'd probably rather not be putting money in their pockets anyways.

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I've never thought about this too much; but I would say my general guideline would be: figure out the difference between my target price and the asking price.  Divide that in two and subtract it from my target price; so there's room for them to counteroffer but you can still meet in the middle. 

That's what I did last time, made an offer of $35 on a $49 asking price book; I was hoping to get it for around $40.  Then was happy when they took the $35 without a counteroffer.

But that's just a guideline, always make sure your offer looks like a fair price, even if it's on the low end of the fair price scale.

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17 hours ago, OtherEric said:

I've never thought about this too much; but I would say my general guideline would be: figure out the difference between my target price and the asking price.  Divide that in two and subtract it from my target price; so there's room for them to counteroffer but you can still meet in the middle. 

That's what I did last time, made an offer of $35 on a $49 asking price book; I was hoping to get it for around $40.  Then was happy when they took the $35 without a counteroffer.

But that's just a guideline, always make sure your offer looks like a fair price, even if it's on the low end of the fair price scale.

Good one. When posting BIN on Ebay, I usually try to line up with whatever it's going for in the condition it's in, expecting someone to offer less. If a buyer offered me $35 like your example, I'd counter with $40, but wouldn't accept lower unless it's been posted for a few weeks (I like to keep things moving). 

However, I think profit margin plays a role as well. I usually buy for a dollar and flip in the $30's, so if a comic is going for $49 on the regular, but mine has been sitting for a while, I'm more likely inclined to drop my price and/or take a lesser offer. 

Monstro mentioned the seller "rudely dismisses" an offer. I don't know where the line is between reasonable starting offer and low ball, but I've outright declined offers before when I felt the issue was big enough to wait for the next bite. Now, I'm more likely to stick to a range in counter offers rather than "meet in the middle" just to get the deal done. It took me a while to get there though. 

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Monstro mentioned the seller "rudely dismisses" an offer. I don't know where the line is between reasonable starting offer and low ball, but I've outright declined offers before when I felt the issue was big enough to wait for the next bite. Now, I'm more likely to stick to a range in counter offers rather than "meet in the middle" just to get the deal done. It took me a while to get there though. 

Ebay also allows "automatic rejections" where the seller can set a threshold and any offers below that generate an immediate rejection. The seller won't even be aware unless he looks at the listings to see if there were offers.  Not that I've sold a lot of slabs, but every one has had at last 1 offer 50% below what I was asking (and they were priced based on goCollect data)

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I don't think offending anyone has anything to do with it. You state what you're willing to pay. You may get ignored, maybe not, maybe you'll get a counter offer.  I personally hate dickering but some people love it. 

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Dont call the seller names if you dont want to insult them. Otherwise offer what you want, you may get ignored or they say no dice.

ex of a bad offer: Hey you stupid turd, how about I give to $200 for that hulk 181 you have and you can thank me for also not screwing your wife/girlfriend/mother.

ex of a good offer: Hi, Would you consider x dollars for x book. Thanks for your consideration.

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I have received ridiculously low offers on books and cards in the past.  I was auctioning some 1940 Superman cards on Ebay once and had someone ask men to end the auction and accept his offer because the cards weren't really worth anything but he liked them so would do me a favor and take all of them.  I passed and let the auction play out where they sold for between 4x and 8x what he offered.

For books, I try to politely decline low ball offers and then avoid selling to the person in the future.  An 80% offer is low but it really comes down to the price of the item.  Some items on CLINK appear to be listed at 2x the actual value since the lowest you can offer is 1/2 the ask.

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I had a TTA 44 on MCS  listed for $500. Someone offered me $17 for it. Now I have it set to reject any offer under 80%. I also make my sale price a bit higher since they began offering the Best Offer option.

Edited by shadroch
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I don't get offended personally. For example, I sold a Hulk #180 earlier this year for around $200 or so. I had someone offer $80. Yes it was lower grade but I knew it was a lowball, so I just declined.

If you are trying to lowball, you could offend. But if you want some "guidelines":

- if it is a $20-75 book, I try to see if dropping by $5-10 is possible. 

- if it is a $100-500 book, I try to see if $25-50 is possible to knock off

- if it is a $500-1000 book, I try to see if $50-75 is possible

Beyond $1000, I am not much help as I have never spent or offered or been involved in trying to buy a book priced that high. It also comes down to what the seller is selling it for. If the price is real good, I just buy. If it is market value, usually I don't bother. If it is slightly above what frequent sales are, I might try to make an offer more in line with that. 

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On 11/26/2020 at 2:13 PM, batman_fan said:

I have received ridiculously low offers on books and cards in the past.  I was auctioning some 1940 Superman cards on Ebay once and had someone ask men to end the auction and accept his offer because the cards weren't really worth anything but he liked them so would do me a favor and take all of them.  I passed and let the auction play out where they sold for between 4x and 8x what he offered.

That's the type of stuff that irritates me. They want to do you a favor and take "worthless" stuff off your hands. Well, aren't you an altruistic fellow lol :eyeroll:

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