Price vs. Value

Posted May 19, 2011 by Marcy Twete in Life After Five
Bombarded. The appropriate word for the way today’s most popular deal sites market. Deals are everywhere – Groupon, Living Social and other daily sites, not to mention the designer deal sites like Gilt and Rue La La. And this career girl is guilty of giving in to the deal bombardment. I love a good deal site. So the question is, how do you navigate these daily deals without getting overly excited about the price and buying something you might not need.

We’ve all done it – fallen prey to choosing price over value. We’ve all been in a store looking at a sale rack saying to ourselves, “But it’s $12.99 down from $45!” when the reality is we never would have bought it for $45 and the only reason it’s appealing is the price. The same thing happens on daily deal sites. A $300 Calvin Klein dress looks awfully good when it’s discounted to $129, but you have to ask yourself, would you have paid $129 for it if you didn’t know it was on sale?

My advice is this, look at the deal without looking at the price. Avoid looking at prices, and instead, simply follow your instincts. Do you love that restaurant on Groupon? How about that designer on Gilt? Look at the piece, look at the deal, read the fine print, and do it all without looking at the price. Cover it up with a piece of paper on your computer screen if you need to. And after you’ve taken a look and thought it through, decide on a number – what is the value you would place on that item? And given that value, what would you be willing to pay for it?

Just this morning, I looked at some great looking sandals on Rue La La – I thought to myself, “I really like that pair. I would like to buy them. And for me, they’re worth about $75.” When the price was $140, I clearly walked away, even though they were originally $300 shoes. When you weigh the price vs. the value without being manipulated by the amount of the discount, you’ll make smarter purchases and save money overall.

About the Author

Marcy Twete

Marcy Twete is a career fundraiser turned corporate responsibility executive, a career and networking expert and the author of the book "You Know Everybody! A Career Girl’s Guide to Building a Network That Works."