If you do not have a technical background, then buying a laptop may seem like a complicated task. This guide aims to equip you with the techniques and tips needed to buy a quality laptop in your budget.
Consider your Needs
When you’re shopping for a laptop on a budget, there are some compromises that you must make. Find out laptop features that are important for you. Also, decide on the laptop features that you don’t need. One effective method of identifying needs is to list down all the reasons for buying a laptop on a piece of paper or your diary. You can then figure out which features are essential to solve your problems. You can also identify features that are unimportant to you and remove them from the list.
Acquire Product Knowledge
While laptops may seem like complex machines, it isn’t very difficult to understand some of the most basic features that any modern-day laptop comes with. You can research new and used laptops online. Look up any unique features that you find during your research. Within a few days, you will acquire better understanding of the available laptop models and their key distinguishing features.
Identifying the Right Places to Look for Budget Laptops
Interestingly, the quest for a budget laptop is similar to a multi-level video game. You are rewarded every time you complete a level or stage. Likewise, when you’re buying a laptop, there are sources and places that you must look for. You start at the retail and get a vague idea of the prices. The next stage is a local wholesaler. Visit a couple of vendors and compare prices of laptops for sale. You should be able to find even cheaper prices at the wholesaler, which is actually the reward of completing the retail stage, but don’t rush into purchasing anything just yet. This is only the start of your quest for a budget laptop, and there are several other stages that need to be completed.
Most people usually tend to limit their quest to a wholesaler. In fact, any information outside the domain of the wholesaler is ‘closely-guarded’ by the local merchants. If you find those trade secrets, you can actually start selling laptops to the local retailers because you will then be purchasing laptops at rates lower than wholesale, which is what most retailers pay when they purchase the laptops.
Unless you tread into this zone that offers even lower prices on laptops than what you find at the wholesaler, you will never learn the true art of buying. It is only through such experiences that you become more well-informed buyers capable of taking the right buying decisions.
If you have your mind set on finding even better prices, then you must start by understanding the buying and selling process.
What is the Buying/Selling Process?
At the heart of any buying and selling activity exists a need. For buyers, it is a need for a product or service, and when that need becomes greater than the need for liquid money, a buyer becomes willing to spend that money to purchase the product or service, which in this case would be a laptop. Likewise, sellers have a need for money for which they’re willing to give up a product. The greater the intermediaries between a buyer and seller, the higher the prices will be to the end-seller. So if you buy from a retailer, you will get the highest price for a model that will be many times cheaper at your local wholesaler.
To find even cheaper deals on laptops, you will have to eliminate some or most of the intermediaries. This doesn’t always mean purchasing directly from the maker, but rather looking for the some of the biggest suppliers of laptops in your state or country. The closer you get to the source, the more alluring deals you’ll find. However, there are instances where you are unable to benefit from a very luring deal from a giant supplier. For instance, the supplier may impose a minimum purchase limit of 5 or 10 laptop units.
Online Classifieds: Direct Buying and Selling
Online classifieds are a great place to look for budget laptops for the simple reason that these websites offer direct buying and selling activity without the involvement of any intermediary. At times, you tend to find sellers who are in desperate need of money, and if they possess the product you seek, they may be willing to give it away at a very low price.
There are some important considerations that need to be made when you’re looking for the cheapest laptop deals:
1. Meet the seller at a safe place. Decide somewhere safe to meet the seller.
2. Check the invoice of laptop to confirm that it has been properly purchased and is not a stolen item.
3. Inspect different components of the laptop. Find out if the laptop is still under warranty. A valid warranty can be a big relief, especially with a used laptop.
Negotiate for the Best Laptop Deal
If you have inspected the product and everything seems legit, you should consider making the purchase. Sign a written agreement that can serve as a proof of purchase in case some problem arises in the future. Before closing the deal, don’t forget to negotiate for the last bit of saving that you can squeeze out of the seller.
If you have done your market research well, it becomes fairly easier to convince the seller to reduce their price. You can offer valid excuses for demanding lower prices, such as missing features in the laptop or the general market prices. If the seller is serious about selling the product and you manage to put convincing comments on the table, then you’re likely to win the best low price laptop deal.