By / 4 months ago

Price wars, like wars fought on the battlefield, are not a pretty sight—and they can have serious, long-term consequences for both sides. Despite the cold, hard reality of razor thin margins (if there’s any profit at all), price wars are a fact of life in our business. While it could be argued that there are no victors in a price war (except, possibly, the buyer), the extent that a company minimizes its losses comes down to strategy and tactics. We asked dealers how they minimize collateral damage to their teams in this month’s survey.

This month’s question came from John Moulder of True-Line Products, Indianapolis, who wrote: “A national distributor entered our market causing a price war. As a result, our commissioned salesmen are disgruntled due to reduced income caused by lower gross profit margins. I want to keep my people upbeat to do their best everyday. I explained that this was probably a temporary situation, but I could not be definite about another company’s long-term strategy. I feel I will lose some good people to other industries if I can’t compete in wages. How do other dealers handle this situation?”

To learn the answer, we reached out to readers who’ve opted in to receive our email communications. With nearly 250 respondents, it’s clear that this issue touched a nerve. A big thank you to the readers who participated. If you’d like to be added to our opt-in email list, just drop me a note at, and I’ll be sure we get you added.

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Rick Schumacher

Rick Schumacher is the editor and publisher of LBM Journal, and has more than 24 years experience covering the industry.