Insane Hydraulics

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How to Get a Discount at Any Hydraulic Shop

Do you know what I do for a living? If you think that I am a mechanic (a.k.a. hydraulic technician) - you are wrong. Because I am that plus everything else needed to run a two-people-operated hydraulic warehouse/shop. I do over-the-counter sales, I do phone calls, I do deliveries, I do projects, I do quotes, I do orders. I do client visits, I do cleaning and maintenance, and after that (or rather on top of that) I do the workshop and assistance calls. Hard to describe with a single label, really. I guess "running things" could be the right expression, but then the word "running" suggests that I am in charge of other people, which is not the case because I don't have any helpers, that is - aside from the missus, who does warehouse, accounting and pretty much everything else. The term "responsible for" would probably be the best choice, because I am definitely the one responsible for anything that happens in our tiny branch (in case you're curious - you can learn more about "my hydraulic career" in Five Year of Silence).

Be it as it may, what I am trying to say is that aside from the technical part of the hydraulic business, I am also connected to the commercial, which means that I know how much stuff costs and therefore what can be charged for it (by "stuff" I mean both parts and labor). So, in this post, I want to explore my over-the-counter sales experience and share some tips, which, if applied correctly, may get you a discount should you ever find yourself in need of a service or a product from a hydraulic business. A list of "insider tips", or better - "rules of conduct" - that will surely put you in good graces with any hydraulic salesperson and guarantee "preferential treatment".

Please note that I am referring to over-the-counter sales to new clients - the only people who, by definition, can leave a first impression that can determine the "arbitrary discount attribution".

Let me give you a quick overview of what we do and how we operate, so that you know "who's talking" and can decide whether anything that I say is even applicable to your "surroundings". As I said - we are a small operation, and the things we do in the shop are simple - a client shows up at our counter, and we sell him something hydraulic. Hydraulic hose assemblies are definitely the thing we sell the most. And just to give you an idea about our size - I make about a couple of hundred hoses in a good month. Tiny, I know.

Then, to make things a bit more interesting, we are located in the middle of nowhere, and I can tell you for a fact that a shop in a rural area works in a way that is very different from the way "them city folks" operate. I lived and worked in Lisbon for more than a decade, so I know this firsthand. I am talking about a place where people grow their food, and bring you bread and chouri├žo to thank you for something you did for them (or a rabbit - I got a rabbit once!).

Like many small shops, we operate without a strict pricing policy but with sufficiently high margins that (for better or worse) allow us to alter what we charge for the same goods and services by a large degree. Put in simple terms - "if I like you - you'll get a discount". Chemistry-based pricing model, if you will. This means - first impressions do matter, and since "everything hydraulic" is expensive - an additional 10% discount is always a big deal.

So, here's a list of things that you should do when you pay a visit to a hydraulic shop (if you want "special treatment"):

Bounus tip

That's enough for now. I'll probably list more things in a future post. Still - if you follow just a couple of points from the list above, I guarantee you that you will get a "special treatment" in any hydraulic shop in the world!