Friday, September 4, 2009

So, Madam, Will It Be Cash, or Card?

Actually, it'd be by cheque.

Before the days of the credit card, cheques and cash were the more utilized form of payments available. In context of the beauty salons, I have come to find that paying by cash has very little benefit.

It is an acknowledged fact that hard cold cash paying customers would be in the position to be able to negotiate for a lower price, whether at a salon, or at your local mama-and-papa's shops. Sometimes even at a shopping mall, if you speak to the right person, and are looking at getting a high price ticket item.

However, as said, in terms of paying by cash, it does provide the benefit of a paying a lower premium for any item available under the sun without having to go through the entire red tape and extra charges that the banks seem to get. As well as the fact that the customer will never be in the red, nor have a debt (provided that they save before they buy).

But that is where the story stops.

I have found that for going to a salon, paying by cheque, or credit card is the better deal. Here are some of the reasons:

BY CHEQUE

  • In context of the salons that employ really hard-selling strategies, it signals to the salon that they will not be able to push the customer too much, as to bank in the cheque means that the customer needs to have a certain amount of money else it gets bounced.
  • It really puts into perspective to the salon staff that the customer really is HUMAN = the "we are all working for a pay-cheque" image, and if cheque gets bounced, it would mean the account amount is ZERO.
  • It signals to the customer that they always have to be aware of how much is in their account before they can allow the cheque to be deposited.
  • The cheque still allows a certain form of assurance to the company that the customer will not run off without paying, which is not possible with cash.
  • The customer can always ask the bank to stop payment on a cheque, if they are not happy with the service of the salon.
  • Personally, I'd go for this if not for the fact that.. I'd have to write out TWELVE cheques just to pay for the same sum, if say I had to make payment based on a zero-interest 12 month instalment plan.
BY CREDIT CARD
  • Having the ability to pay by instalment allows the customer to stagger out the payments on a monthly basis
  • Psychologically, it puts forward to the customer at the back of their mind: - of this "certain amount" will be towards their credit card monthly limit for that month - he still has to work out how much of his pay, savings will have to go to the "certain amount" payable.
  • CHARGEBACK: one of the benefits that is not possible by cash, or cheque. Of course, the customer can always complain to the bureau after paying cash, but that is a totally different entry altogether.
  • The customer can score credit card reward points. Although that is just one of the "side" benefits, but you really need to spend a lot to be able to get back much.

    The Disadvantages to this:
  • Not as effective a psychological barrier as the cheque, in terms of "remaining current account balance"
  • The company staff do not have to take pains to ensure that the customer's account is adequately "stable" before canvassing their treatments. As a result, for salons that employ hard-selling strategies, the image of the customer as being "human" is quickly forgotten.
  • If this doesn't work, then LEAVE your credit card at home!
Of the two, credit cards are good. But cheques are BETTER. ^^

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