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How about instead of anchoring or negotiating or special discounts or sales or any of this nonsense, we have a simple agreement: I, a customer, will give you money for a product/service, and you deliver that product/service as described with no conditions, strings, or other such insulting attachments and we call it a freaking day?

When did commerce get so bloody hard?

Totally agree, but I think haggling and anchoring have been around for a very long time, at least as long as markets. I don't see them going away any time soon.

It's certainly true that haggling and such have been around essentially forever, but scientific rigor hasn't. There are now entire generations of PhDs who have carefully studied these psychological phenomenon to maximize business' ability to squeeze every last drop of blood out of you. Meanwhile the consumer has been left relatively uneducated and unprepared to recognize and maneuver in this world.

I would say haggling is similar but fundamentally different, that's more between a customer and a salesperson and usually involves more or less them on equal footing (the example that comes to mind first is a car, and the old saying that no one but a sucker pays sticker price). That's a luxury good where the need isn't immediate and the customer can exert some influence, unlike the vast majority of sales situations where the need is apparent and they can't just go to the 'next lot' whatever that might be.

"When did commerce get so bloody hard?"

I guess since the revenue optimization ideas kicked in! How do you think something as enticing as revenue could have eluded the desire of "doing it better"?

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