How to Politely Decline Bartering and Giving Away Free Products

Bartering definitely has a place in business, particularly if you are just starting out, or are in transition. However, at some point you have to stop bartering and giving away freebies and focus on making real money. In a sense, declining to barter and give away products and services is telling the universe you believe you are a professional and that you deserve to get paid. The unfortunate reality though, is no matter how much you want to stop, some people will still ask if you’re interested in bartering or trading at some point.

Bartering can be a good thing, but cash is king!

The thing is, if someone truly values your product/services, they should be willing to pay for it. The last thing you want to do is insult others, especially if the person asking is someone you know. Yet, on the flip side, if you’re going to stay in business you can’t give away everything for free, especially when the barter agreement isn’t for something you want in the first place. So, how do you politely decline?stop-giving-stuff-away

The first step is to believe in your product or service enough to say no. You don’t have to be rude about it, you could simply say to the requester something like “I’m sorry, but I don’t do trade agreements,” or “Thank you, but I don’t do bartering.” Simple, to the point and hopefully that will be the end of the discussion. But, what if the request comes via email. You could create a template to handle the requests so that when it comes up, all you have to do is copy and paste and add their name.

Your template could look like this

Hi there ____________,

I am really honored that you’re thinking of my business, however I will have to decline your request as my company policy is not to barter or do exchanges for goods or services.

However, if you are still interested in my (insert your product or service here) I’d love to assist you. All of the information about (insert your product or service here) can be found here (the link to the service).

Thanks for reaching out.

All the best,

(Your name here)

If you actually did want the product or service that they were pitching you could add a sentence in there about paying for it, but if you’re not interested in it you can either leave it alone or say something like “While I don’t have a need for your (insert their product or service) at this time, if this changes in the future I’ll be sure to let you know. I will also pass along your information if I think of anyone you could work with.

With all of the above being said, its understandable if you are still tempted at some point to barter. If this does happen be sure of two things:

1. The product or service is something you really want.

2. The trade for your product or service is equal to the amount you will be receiving in return.

We hope this post helps you in regards to this touchy subject. If you have any ideas for business tips or stories you would like to see on our blog, please head over to our facebook page and drop us a comment.

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