It's time for a new button on Audiogon

Currently, when selling an item, one has three choices in the listing, buy it now, offer, offer and buy it now.

I prefer to vet my future trading partners, however my ads always say "price is firm". In the ad that I am currently running, for a most inexpensive piece of gear, I have had three offers, all well below asking price. I won't respond, as I have been clear in the body of the ad that the price is firm. In some way, this wastes the potential trading partner's time and mine. Why can't Audiogon add a "full price offer" button?

One would still get to vet potential buyers, buyers would understand that the only option is to make a full price offer, just as they do with the "buy it now" option, and those potential buyers that are uncomfortable with the preconditions would be smart enough not to respond at all.

It seems like this option would solve several problems.

Hi Viridian

I can't believe you are getting insane lowball offers on your item. I saw it and it is really fairly priced as I had the same headphone dac and when I sold it for about the same amount but on another e-tailers site.

I'm fine with the current button options they have here on Audiogon. What I would like to see is an automatic decline option wherein a seller can determine the amount of an offer they won't accept when they are setting up their listing.

E.g. A DAC is being sold for $100. The seller sets up the listing so that they will not accept an offer of at least $70. When the lowballers strike their offers get auto-declined with the seller not seeing the offers. Now a limit on offers should be put in place as well. You put in 3 offers that get auto declined you can't make any more offers through the system and your only option is to buy it now or contact the seller to resolve the issue.

Another thing you can do with the offer option is then select the offer you would automatically accept.

I've seen an option like this set up on another listing site and to me it is very effective. I've listed stuff and saw some really disgusting offers that would have ticked me off. They were auto-declined and that was that.

Audiogon is getting there. They just unveiled a new function called second chance offers.
If I were you I would learn to not let it bug you that you get lower offers even though your price is firm. It takes a few seconds to send a quick reply saying the price is firm but thanks. Who knows maybe they will rethink it and go for the full price anyway. I always price my stuff just a little higher and let them negotiate a little. Seems to work best. Throwing an instant vibe of I will be irritated if you even bother me with a lower offer is a big turnoff when reading an ad.
I agree with Ejlif
I think it is quite useful to say your price is firm if that is what you want. The bargaining process can be quite uncomfortable. I generally price my items low enough to warrant no bargaining or haggling, and I reject anyone who starts. That is for smaller items only however, I am open to discussion or trades and compromise on the big stuff price and or physically.
Also agree with Ejlif, and even if there was a "full price offer" button, I'm sure some would still send a question asking you to take less.
Marty, I think that is what the "Buy it Now" button is for. There is no offer, no negotiation, the person's only choice is to buy it now as stated in the ad. So when you place the ad, make "Buy it Now" the only option.

LOL!! You should know the Audiogon clientele by now, everyone wants a price break no matter how low you price something. That's why I usually play the game and list it higher than my target price. That way both the buyer and myself get what we want. ;)

It actually doesn't bother me at all, but I am always looking for ways to make the process more efficient. This is not a complaint against those that make offers, just a suggestion for increasing the efficiency of the system. On some items I am firm, and on some I entertain offers. I have enough experience, after twelve years here and an almost equal time with AudioMart to know what I am looking for in both a trading partner and in a transaction.

Please do not misunderstand, I have no vitriol for those that made offers, one must expect this under the current design of the system; it just isn't a particularly good use of their time as I will not be responding and will let the offers expire.

My purpose in asking was to see if others would find this an efficient enhancement or if they would perceive it as more clutter in an already cluttered ad posting screen.
Who needs another button, just list it "buy now" at the price you are firm at. They either buy at your price or not. done
I guess that is sensible. If you are firm there is no offer so just put up a buy it now button and let that be the end of it. I still imagine people will want a break on shipping or something else they can sneak in.
I appreciate where Viridian's frustration with people who ignore what is said in ads; however, I think those same people will still ignore the presence of that button and send in a lowball offer anyway, so in the end, no, I don't think it would do any good.
I offer what I think the item is worth or at least worth to me. If the seller doesn't like the offer either counter or simply say no thank you. As a seller I expect offers and if I don't like the offer I either counter or say no thanks. I live by my words.

No extra buttons needed.
I actually thought the OP was concerned about selling even to someone who used the Buy It Now button. For instance, new users may not understand that it commits them to the sale. I had a case where someone used BIN and then never got in touch at all. I was out the ad cost and exposure. Also, I would imagine someone may have a problem selling to anyone with bad feedback, because they can foresee all sorts of problems. (See the long thread about Green Mountain Audio.) The Make A Full Price Offer button prevents these types of problems; nevertheless, I think ignoring low-ballers is the way to go, and so am happy enough with the current Audiogon button options.
Interesting post and responses. Personally, I will almost never buy anything where the ad lists "price is firm"; not because I think that the item is priced too high (although that is often the case), but because it represents to me a basic inflexibility on the part of the seller.

As a seller, I understand that we think that we know what our gear is really worth. But we don't, unless we are offering something extremely rare of one-of-a-kind. Value (e.g. selling price) commodity and luxury products is always ultimately determined by the buyer. In happy circumstances, both parties agree and an easy transaction os reached. But there are a lot of reasons why buyers prefer to see a little flexibility on the part of the seller, including:

1- Psychological win - some (many) buyers just need to "win" the deal. I'm not talking about getting your $4,000 amp for $100, but I have made many deals by offering just a little less than my asking price. Buyers need to feel that they are in control of the transaction. You can dismiss this idea, but I guarantee that stubborn buyers sell less gear.

2- Regional price differences - I get to travel quite a bit for my business, and I will tell you that there are significant differences in the perceived value for certain audio products in different parts of the country and internationally. The internet has helped to flatten this out a bit, but local and regional perceptions of value still exist. You can ignore it, but you will sell less gear.

Also, haggling is more common in certain parts of the country. I live in Southern California where we have a rich immigrant culture. Price haggling is a way of life here, as it is in New York City and other culturally diverse spots. Try that is a small antique store in Vermont and see how far it gets you (just an example - I'm not picking on anyone from Vermont. I'm sure that there are many fine hagglers there. It's just that I haven't met any...)

3- Clueless seller - a lot of guys simply do not really know what their gear is really worth, price it too high and/or set unacceptable terms and conditions, and then become indignant when no one offers them what they are convinced tit is worth. A little research is good in this case, but a little flexibility is probably worth more. The goal is to sell the gear, is it not?

4- Sellers who love the gear that they are selling. A special case of No. 3, above.

Some sellers will say that they simply hate the negotiating or haggling process. I suspect that these sellers just hate selling, and are looking to make the transaction easy and painless on their part. That's understandable, if not for the fact that most of your buyers will not share your views. IMO, a buyer who won't negotiate is anything but easy and painless to deal with.

Remember, no one needs high end audio gear. These items are luxuries, and the market varies almost a day-by-day due to economic conditions, weather, pollen count or what someone had for breakfast. Have you ever seen a used Ferrarri dealer that won't deal, or a shop selling estate jewelry that won't negotiate?

So my unsolicited advise if to grow some thicker skin and consider being a little more flexible. Or find someone else to sell your gear that has no personal stake in the transaction. I have replied "Thanks, but no thanks" to many buyers but have subsequently been able to conclude a successful sale.
unless the price is already lower than most buyers would ever expect someone to offer in the 1st place, it is "ok" to request that the seller consider knocking off 5-10% especially if you are READY to close the deal and not just on a fishing expedition. A phone call could confirm this and no one needs to feel slighted.
Some items are very cheap (less than $100 for ex.) so this could be insulting to the seller. but anything over $1000 and $50-$100 might not be insignificant
for some folks- it all depends on the item.

I sort of agree with you, well, mostly! I was selling a $30,000 preamp, had a guy who seemed seriously interested, exchanged some 20 emails answering questions about condition, set up, etc. Mind you this was (and still is) a current model for a blue chip manufacturer.....

After wasting hours of my time, the guy offers me $5,000?!?!?!?!


Obviously this piece was FAR out of his reach, and he wasted my time. Yes, I was annoyed at him, but it sold for almost exactly what I was asking a few days later..... This is unfortunately one of the annoyances of selling on line, and as Audiogon has changed to the 'new and improved' format, it seems more an issue......

This site USED to be die hard audio people, now it is closer to eBay so we have to accept that it isn't what it used to be and deal with some schmucks along the way........

I only hope it doesn't get any worse, but for now it is still one of the best sites for trading high end audio and AV gear........

I suspect that will change over the next few years too.........
@Br3098, you do make some valid points, but you are also overlooking some other options.

When you say:
The goal is to sell the gear, is it not?
You are correct in most cases. However, some are simply testing the market, and may or may not sell depending on the offers that roll in. I have done this, I have listed gear and found out that it is worth more in value to me than it is on the market, so I have kept the piece. That is why I still have my highly modded CDP after 7+ years, it is worth more to me than I can get for it on the market. I would be lucky to get $2000 for it, but it would cost me well over $5000 to improve upon it, so why sell? The market told me to keep it and enjoy it!

Also, while the goal is to sell gear, only a desperate seller will sell at any cost. I agree that the buyer's mentality is to "get a discount" or "win the deal", which is why I play the game and inflate my original asking price to account for this negotiation. As a seasoned seller, I have a good idea of what the value of what I am selling is. If I can't get something close to my asking price, I realize that it is June, a terrible time for sellers in this market, and I will keep the ad posted, but wait for October or November to actually sell the item, when the market traditionally picks up again.

Patience is the key virtue for any buyer OR seller. Those that HAVE to buy or sell NOW are at the mercy of the current market. That is true in any field, not just in audio.
Jmcgrogan- I guess that makes it a buyers market. I have to say some of the observations about the psychology of trading/selling are right on target. I am always put off buy a person who rates the quality of their item at a 10 and wants 85% of the initial mrsp. The truth be told that while I respect the seller who doesn't create ambiguity and say price is firm, it can also signal a difficult to deal with seller in the back of my mind. I would hope all selling and buying be friendly but this isn't a hippie wonderland.
I am anxious as I want to sell some thing post divorce and downsizing. I am not a manufacturer or a rep for one so if some small flaw is found I don't want to deal with complainers. I generally keep prices low. I have never used the Agon auctions but might try it soon.
Mechans, this time of year is a buyer's market!! There are good deals to be had if you find a seller who HAS to move something. A seller can still sell this time of year, but due to lower traffic and lower interest level, the sale price is usually lower too.

Sorry to hear of your personal problems.
Being firm with a price, means that you stand your ground. If people offer a lower price than asked, let them walk away. Another user will come eventually.
lmbo...why would you let something so trivial bother you to the extent you have to post about it? Ignore the silliness, you don't have to respond to any of it, especially that troll that asks 10k questions with no intention of making a purchase. He's just bored and playing troll.

I do understand frustration but thats part of the internet. Augon mods have quite a bit on their plates as it is. Chill, and take the silliness with a grain of salt. It's become something for me to laugh about, try to laugh.
Right when I first saw the sales layout I had roughly the same opinion as Viridian. My thought was to give the seller the option to remove the OFFER feature, leaving the prospective buyer the full price option.
Br3098, too many of those points are slanted towards the buyer's favor. I've always felt the opposite was the way things should go. If the seller doesn't offer what I want for the price I want, so be it. But, I sure don't want to be pestered by someone making idiotic offers, and yes, I'd rather it didn't sell if I price I don't adhere to your sales preferences. I really don't care for haggling at all. Rarely have, rarely will.
I find it interesting that most of the respondants to this thread addressed it from some type of theoretical or philosphical perspective when the question was simply about the efficiency of the mechanical system itself, not about how to sell gear or how to respond to offers. I do however appreciate all of the insight. Happy selling.
In the Forums, I'd like to see the section that lists the multiple pages moved for the bottom of the page to between the original post and the responses.