December is an expensive month with people searching for the best deal and keen to secure bargains wherever possible. However it appears that the easiest way to save money is to simply ask nicely.
Customers who “mind their Ps and Qs” when dealing with retailers and suppliers can secure savings of up to £258 a year – compared to the national average of £158 according to recent research by first direct.
In total, UK businesses gave back £7.9billion in 2014 to the nation’s deal-hunters which goes to show there’s money to be saved if you know how to ask for it properly.
“Good” customers who are polite and reasonable account for around 60% of all the discounts given. In contrast, being pushy and demanding is far less likely to be successful and accounts for just 6% of deals given.
Many of us clearly struggle to keep our temper when dealing with companies with 68% of us getting angry and threatening to take our custom elsewhere, rising to 74% of men.
Remember to haggle
Haggling is often seen as rude but it need not be. “This misconception has left the big stores with their profits intact and only the knowing few with big bargains,” says Money Saving Guru Martin Lewis.
“Aim for polite, firm, non-combative and maybe just a touch flirtatious. Remember, do it with humour, do it with style and there’s no price or suggestion too outrageous. You can haggle virtually anywhere for anything.”
Knowing when to ask can make all the difference: the most frequent deal-givers are internet and TV companies with 30% of customers benefitting from some form of reduction. It is also well worth approaching your mobile network - around 19% of customers manage to secure a reduced bill or handset upgrade whilst 16% successfully negotiate a discount from their energy provider.
CEO of first direct, Tracy Garrad said: “Our research has shown that explaining exactly what you want in a respectful manner is far more likely to land you a successful deal where there is one to be made.”
See if you can make a saving on your home insurance by calling Discount Insurance today, but remember to be nice!