How much is that tea-tray in the window?

tea trayImagine you are browsing round Harrods, and see a shiny silver tea-tray for sale at £800.

Now imagine you are browsing round a car boot sale, and see a shiny silver tea-tray for sale at 80p.

It’s the same tea-tray. The only thing that’s changed is the surroundings.

Top tip: Package your products well and you can charge more for them.

When setting your price point, remember that it’s all in the packaging.

But it’s not just what you do; it’s when you do it.

Last time I bought a new pair of spectacles, I spent ages choosing the frames I liked best. The cost was around £400.

When the optician phoned to say they’d arrived, I was excited to collect them, and slightly surprised when they were presented to me in a shocking-pink paper gift bag.

Inside the bag was a tall cardboard box, printed in a groovy multi-coloured design, and with a shocking-pink lid on top adorned with a gold-printed heart.

Inside the box was a red plastic glasses case with heart-shaped ends. It may even have been wrapped in tissue paper – can’t quite remember.

Inside the case (at last!), were my new glasses. I noticed little gold heart-shaped stickers on the plastic bits that rest on your nose. (The plastic bits didn’t last long though, and had to be replaced a few months later with ‘normal’ ones.) There was also a cleaning cloth printed with a nice colourful image.

Also inside the bag was a tall folded brochure, fully colour printed on quality paper. A cut-out ‘hand’ was stuck onto the front of the brochure. In order to open it, I had to slide off a strip of shocking-pink card that had been wrapped around it to hold the hand in place.

I couldn’t help thinking that the packaging must have cost an absolute fortune. And who paid? Me, that’s who.

I would have been far happier to pay less for my glasses, and to have received them packaged more plainly.

Instead of being happy with my purchase, and impressed by my choice, I felt I’d been over-charged.

Top tip: Package your products well at the point of purchase. That’s when the buying decision is made.

Photo credit: TheLivingRoominKenmore via photopin cc

Tea tray idea inspired by Derek Arden’s book Power Negotiating

2 Responses to How much is that tea-tray in the window?

  1. jackiebarrie September 18, 2013 at 4:07 pm #

    Thanks to Gwen Rhys, who sent me this story after reading this article:

    “Many years ago whilst sitting in a queue at the traffic lights I noticed a street sign – Vineyard Close (formerly Depot Close) it said. I formed a whole seminar around this entitled From Depot Close to Vineyard Grove.

    Where would you rather say you lived – it’s all about presentation, packaging, perception, etc. It was a small Edwardian terrace in a somewhat run-down part of Finchley Central, north London.”

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  1. It’s all about the packaging | Writing Without Waffle - September 30, 2013

    […] For more about the importance of packaging, read my recent post about the tea-tray. […]

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