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difference between list, retail and wholesale prices

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by clanner, Aug 31, 2005.

  1. clanner

    clanner Token Black Guy.

    Apr 27, 2005
    ummmmm, marietta GA
    I was wandering what the difference was between these to prices, I know a bongo's list is about 2000 and it's retail can be from 1205 and 1500, I just don't know what the whole sale price would be. I have been presented the oppurtunity to purchas one at whole sale and maybe a stingray at whole sale.

    bongo HH sapphire black abalone PG
    stingray 4 maple neck black on black.

    thnx for any posts.

    Edit: or is there a mathmatical formula I could use to figure this out and use at a future date so I don't sound like a spaz here?
  2. Rough definition because it varies (most expensive to least):

    List is usually what the manufacturere lists the price as, what they seek fit for a value on the goods.

    Retail is what stores will sell it at new.

    Wholesale is what stores buy it at (from wholesaler or from manufacturer roughly).

    There is no formulae.
  3. weeding


    May 17, 2005
    I don't know how it is in the music industry, but in most other industries, wholesale is far cheaper than retail... In other words, BUY!!
  4. clanner

    clanner Token Black Guy.

    Apr 27, 2005
    ummmmm, marietta GA
    the store I'm planning on buying from is my bands sponsor, main reason I'm asking is they're a while away and I don't have my own car or money for gas. so I'll place the order at the concert over there. just need a rough estimate, like is it half of retail or 1/3 of list or something? my incredibly rough estimate was about $700.00 and I want to get this right.
  5. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Those two words mean the same thing. I think the poster meant "street" price, not "retail".
  6. clanner

    clanner Token Black Guy.

    Apr 27, 2005
    ummmmm, marietta GA
    clarification, I know that retail and street price are the same thing, list on the other hand is a recommended selling price example, bongo list $2015.00 u.s. while it's street and retail price are one and the same at $1200.00 $1500.00 U.S.

    I'm just not sure what the average wholesale price of the instrument may be. I'm sorry of my posts were misleading.
  7. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Retail and street prices are NOT the same thing.

    Retail and List prices ARE the same thing.

    If you want to find the wholesale price on a Bongo, best of luck. It's generally not public information.
  8. If im not mistaken, Whole sale is the least expensive of the three. For example, I think Guitar Center Buys Warwick Standard Corvette fretless PASSIVE's for like $500-600(wholesale?), GC then Tags them at $899(Retail price) And the list price from the Manufacturer is $1299(List), Im not sure why they do this, But I guess thats the most it should be sold for, or thats how much its worth.

    EDIT: I was wrong, I just looked at the Warwick price list and the retail price from them is $1299, But yet GC sells them for $899, ANd GC buys them from Warwick at like $500-600, I think. :smug:
  9. Aerolithe


    Jan 23, 2005
    Columbia, MO
    In theory retail and list prices should be the same, and it is with most everything else, but considering most stores charge the exact or near exact same price for the same thing I'd say in this case retail and list prices are different. I have never seen anyone charge list price for anything on instruments, but I thought with most other items that doesn't really happen, except maybe at a discount place like Sams Club.

    Edit: I can't say with any ammount of certainty, but I was told that the store pays 70% of their asking price for the product for stuff like this, so wholesale would be 30% off.
  10. clanner

    clanner Token Black Guy.

    Apr 27, 2005
    ummmmm, marietta GA
    I'm talking about what usually happens, when it comes to almost all guitars and basses, it's taken as list is the top price, street and retail tend to be the same (from my experiance, I don't know about anyone else's) and now that I know how much lower wholesale will be from about 600? is the 30% from "street" or from list?

    thanks for helping me out with this btw.

    just did some rough math, about 1100 if disount from street, 840 if discount from list
  11. Tryxx

    Tryxx Sputnik Forums: Bass Mod

    Jun 1, 2005
    Hurst, Texas.
    Isn't there also MAP price? How much it actually takes to make the instrument, and it's illegal to sale under that? (There are exceptions of course.)
  12. Waabs

    Waabs Employee, Musical Instrument Retail

    Aug 1, 2004
    Couldn't you just ask them how much the Bongo will be at wholesale price?
  13. Aerolithe


    Jan 23, 2005
    Columbia, MO
    I've been told 30% off retail, but don't hold me to it.
  14. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    MAP = "Minimum Advertised Price". It's a price point that a manufacturer may set as the lowest price that an item can be advertised (i.e. in print such as a newspaper, flyer or catalog, or on the web). The retailer may still sell the item at a lower price (online retailers usually do this through a direct price quote via email, or by negotiating a lower price with the salesman). It's not "illegal" (as in against the law) to advertise a lower price than MAP, but it will most likely cause the manufacturer to stop selling it's products to that retailer.

    "MSRP" = Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price. Also known as the "List Price" or "Retail Price". It is the price at which the manufacturer sets to give as a point of reference for a starting selling price. Note the old adage... Nobody pays retail (that is, unless supply or availability is limited and nobody else is offering discounts).

    "Street Price" = the average price being sold by most retailers... Should be less (sometimes significantly) than MSRP.

    "Wholesale" is (at least in theory) what the retailer pays the manufacturer for the merchandise before marking up the price to sell to the general public (keep in mind that in order to get that price, the dealer must be a legit reseller with a tax id/reseller number and usually must by a minimum quantity, and may even have to purchase a certain minimum monthly or yearly). I said "in theory" because you always here about places selling at "wholesale prices". It's just a marketing and advertising gimick. It may be sold at a lower price than competors, but no retailer is going to sell you their merchandise at zero profit, nor should you expect them to. BTW, I don't any retailer is going to openly and honestly tell you their wholesale price... If you were a retailer, would you?

    Hope that helps.

    - Ugly.
  15. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Most musical items are keystoned, meaning that wholesale is one-half of list. Some manufacturers, like Sadowsky, Mesa and Monster, establish the sales price and won't let retailers discount it. In other cases, retailers like GC buy in such large quantities that they get products for less than half of list. I use 60 percent of list as a base for a good price at places like GC. Some online stores like Rik's Music and Northern Sound and Light get close to that on some items without haggling.
  16. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    There are a couple of reasons why a retailer would (or should) be reluctant to tell the general public their wholesale price.

    First of course is that now you know what they paid for it, and while you may think it's fair to pay, say 5% or 10% over that price, it may not be enough to cover that retailers overhead expenses.

    Second (and this can get complicated), is that some manufacturers have different pricing levels depending on how much of a product a retailer buys in the course of a year. For example an "A" level dealer pays a lower wholesale price than a "B" level dealer simply because he/she buys in larger quantities. That's how some larger "warehouse" dealers are able to undercut the smaller guys... they're paying less for the same merchandise. They also sell more as well, so they can afford to make a smaller profit on each item sold. It's a simple matter of economics.

    Multi-tier pricing was very common and was the way IBM sold their original PCs back in the 80's. Unfortunately, it led to a large "Gray Market"... Computer retailers would buy more PCs than they knew they could sell in order to achieve a better pricing tier, then they would sell the excess PCs (at a small profit of course) to smaller non-authorized dealers who weren't able to buy direct from IBM (for a variety of reasons). These dealers would then in turn sell the PCs to the general public. The problem was that they had to remove the warranty cards from the boxes or both dealers risked getting caught by IBM (who would then pull the dealership from the original company). Michael Dell (Dell Computers) started out by selling "gray market" IBM PCs from his dorm room in college.

    - Ugly.
  17. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    Only suckers buy retail and I doubt that there are any suckers left in the world.

    I hate the words "retial" and "list". We don't pay them, so why does everyone list them?

    Manufacturers do this so we can percieve a "deal". We see "List Price" on an item and we shy away, but somone whispers in our ear that we can pay a "street price" and all of a sudden the color starts to come back into our faces and our breathing gets a little easier. This is when we should take a closer look into the eyes of the sales person. This is when we will actually see the little dollar signs spinning where their pupils used to be.

    I HATE seeing the word "List" next to a price for an item. The only reason there are actual "street" prices is that no one in their right mind would pay over what something is worth. Once manufacturers realize this we can get past the BS when purchasing an item.

    So, here's a hint to all the manufacturers and dealers out there. Give it to us straight. You tell us what you need to make on an item to come out with a little coin in your pocket after costs are covered and we will pay it. Leave the infalted numbers out of the deal. If we like your stuff, we WILL buy it.
  18. bovinehost

    bovinehost Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    That 'retial' word really makes me mad, too.

    I mean, first you tial, then someone raises a stink and you have to do it all over again.

    I hear you.
  19. My family owned a retail music store for over 40 years and I grew up buying and selling gear at a young age. Munji is actually very close and I agree that by and large about 50 to 60% of MANUFACTURERS LIST is a good place to start, but there is another layer of the cake. It can often depend on the manufacturer and what you are buying. SKB for instance costs less than 50% of RETAIL (Generally About 30 to 35% of Manufacturers suggested) on nearly everything they make....I could get Shure Beta 57s at a dealer price of under $50 if I buy enough of them and you KNOW that GC does!! I would ALWAYS start at least at 50% of RETAIL (Always Less than Manufacturers Suggested retail price) or less on a big ticket item....

    Example: If an item has a
    1. MANUFACTURERS SUGGESTED RETAIL PRICE of $1249 - commonly referred to as "List Price"
    2. Suggested RETAIL PRICE of $899
    3. "Sale" Price of $749.00
    4. offer 40 to 50% of the Manufacturers Suggested Retail $1249/2 = $624.50 which will be REAL close to wholesale but usually a little higher...the dealer will make about 10 to 15% at this point and most likely counter under the $749.00 or will take the deal....

    If ANYONE tells you that "there is not that markup in this or that" they ARE FULL OF IT!! NOONE is going to sell anything that they can't make a decent return on!! What is the point? GC is famous for this on cables and stuff because they are relatively inexpensive compared to a bass or amp....think about it, they GIVE you a $1,000 bass but charge you full boat for a Monster Cable because there is no markup in it? LOL!! They are making a sizable return on the lower end stuff and in fact, as a percentage of profit, it is generally the smaller stuff that they get their highest margin on...Food for thought, eh?

    Just remember, if you are not satisfied with the deal you are getting, DON'T get the "gotta have it now syndrome" Walk away, typically they will counter with a lower price, if they don't get to a point you are comfortable with paying, keep on walking. If it takes a "Manager" to price override something, tell them you will wait!! Shop on!


  20. jz0h4d


    Apr 26, 2005
    If list price = $1000

    than whole sale = $500 + the cost of shipping (which the dealer pays for).

    That's for most items in a music store. Some manufactures figure there stuff is premium therefore whole sale = 60% of list price.

    Don't forget that music stores have to make enough money to pay employees, rent, electricity, heating, cooling, insurance, advertising, phone bills, anf a hundred other expenses.