How to write a letter negotiating a discount

Updated February 17, 2017

As a businessperson, you should seek to build business relationships and save costs whenever possible. When you have a close relationship with a vendor or another business, consider asking for a discount on your purchase or on large orders. You should not feel guilty about this; negotiating discounts is a common business practice, and even if the vendor or company refuses your request, you will not have lost its respect or your reputation as long as you phrased the request in a respectful manner.

Load a piece of letterhead paper into your printer. You want to reinforce your solid, dependable image, and the letterhead will remind the vendor or business of your credibility.

Type the full date, and skip a line space. Type your contact person's name, her title, her company name, and her company's address. Skip an additional line space. If you do not have a contact person at the company, call their phone number and request the name and address for the representative in change of sales.

Type "Dear Mr./Ms. (Name)" followed by a colon. Skip a line space.

Begin the letter by introducing yourself and your company and asking for the discount. Be specific about what kind of discount you would like, because people are more accommodating of a specific request than a general one. Ask for a fair discount, but not an outrageous one, lest you be seen as taking advantage of the vendor or company.

Explain why you believe that you deserve the discount. If you purchase a large amount of materials from this company or if you have been using their services for a number of years, be sure to highlight those facts.

Thank the recipient for her time. Provide your contact information so she can respond your request. If you plan to make an order soon, ask her to reply by the order date so that you will know how much to pay on the order. Skip a line space.

Type "Sincerely," and skip three line spaces. Type your full name and title. Print the letter and sign it in blue or black ink above your typed name. Mail or fax the letter to the recipient.


Ask the vendor or company representative to reply in writing so that you will have proof of the discount when you place your order.

Things You'll Need

  • Stationery with company letterhead
  • Printer
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About the Author

Natalie Smith is a technical writing professor specializing in medical writing localization and food writing. Her work has been published in technical journals, on several prominent cooking and nutrition websites, as well as books and conference proceedings. Smith has won two international research awards for her scholarship in intercultural medical writing, and holds a PhD in technical communication and rhetoric.