A regular client has left us to go to a competitor who offers a cheaper price. How do I get them back without matching the competitor price? (Perhaps think along the lines of offering a short-term deal in a longer contract, plus the benefits of being with someone you trust, cheap doesn’t mean quality, etc.)
Unfortunately, if your product or service is a commodity or viewed as one, then loyalty is difficult and your clients will always be looking for the cheapest price. Therefore, it’s imperative that you always build the value so you become indispensable and are seen as a ‘partner’, not a ‘supplier’.
My suggestion is to go back to this client and ask them the following question ‘if our prices had been the same, who would you have chosen?’ Now if they say the other company that they have now gone to, then you know the price was not the reason they left in the first place. You then need to question to understand what was the real reason for it and learn from it.
If however they say you, which I think they will, you must say ‘I’m really pleased to hear that, so I am clear why would you have chosen us?’ They are now selling all the benefits of your company, that are important to them, back to you. You end by saying ‘isn’t that worth paying that little bit more for?’
Now if they still can’t justify paying that little more then you can negotiate 2 ways; by taking things away or by adding things on. You could start by saying ‘if you only want to pay £x, what would you like me to take out of our offering?’ They won’t expect this and it will highlight the fact that there is a value attached to everything you offer.
If they don’t want anything removed, which is normally the case, then agree things you will add to your offering to help them justify paying that little bit more. You have to decide what variables you are willing to offer such as longer paying times, shorter contracts, etc.