A retailer’s job is to separate you from your money. Sales tactics are tools to ensure that you spend as much as possible. While some pricing techniques result in great deals for consumers, others might be just a bunch¬†of smoke and mirrors. Here are five common tricks, so that you can identify when you are about to get ripped off before it happens!

Retailers Charm Buyers With Decimals

One of the oldest tricks in pricing is to hide behind pennies, meaning pricing a $200.00 item $199.99. These two prices are virtually identical, but that last one seems like less. The effect of this so-called “psychological pricing” is even¬†more profound when shaving off a penny knocks a digit away, such as when you buy a $10.00 product for $9.99.

Sellers Lure You With A Feeling Of Exclusivity

Per customer limits are another way retailers trick you into thinking a great deal is afoot. When cases of diet soda are on sale but limited to four cases per customer, most shoppers are going to buy more than usual. Similarly, wholesale retailers like Costco and Sam’s Club have built their entire business model on making their members buy more because of a perceived bargain in bulk.

Buy One, Get One You Don’t Need For Free

Grocery stores employ this trick all the time. Instead of discounting a box of cookies by, say, 25 cents, they run a near-constant BOGO special. Another brand might be two dollars cheaper, but you pay the extra price just to two boxes, even if you don’t need them.

Retails Steer You To Purchase Based On Product Placement

Want to know a really good way to sell a $1,000 watch? Put it on display next to a couple of $10,000 models. “Price anchoring” is the sales term for forcing perspective. Customers feel good about a purchase when they believe they are getting a deal. To beat this, determine a product’s value away from the retail display.

Sellers Reduce “Pain Points” To Get You To Buy

If a $500 price seems too high, sellers know that “six easy payments” of $85 sounds a lot less. That $85 earns the seller an extra $10 at the end of the payment arrangement. Another trick is bundling of upgrades, like when you get the LX auto package versus just paying for heated seats.