I want to know wholesale prices or markups on Yamaha grands. I know my stuff and I know the wholesale price of a Steinway can be about 50% less than the retail price. I'd like to know how much I can buy a piano for if I work at a piano store.
There is definitely room to deal. I don't think its anywhere near 50% however.
If you work at a piano store, you cannot afford a piano ... unless you make a lot on commissions.
Well, I'll tell you something -- any piano dealer would be glad to get anything approaching a 50% markup on a Steinway. That would be easy street for sure.
Piano markups are not standardized, but retail prices and discount levels are. You are not likely to get any dealer to tell you what their markups are -- and if they do, you can bet that they are not, shall we say, engaging in full disclosure.
Steinways demand larger markups because they are fewer in number (there are only about 3500 pianos built per year, as opposed to Yamaha's 250,000) -- so there is less inventory overhang -- they don't have any need to discount the way Yamaha or other mass producers do. Steinways are also better made than Yamaha. A handcrafted instrument is always better than a line-production one -- no value judgment here, just fact.
Keep these things in mind: Dealers need to cover the cost of freight, the cost of prepping the pianos (good dealers do thorough preps for the showoom), pay their salespeople, keep the lights on and the roof from leaking. They have a right to some markup. Pianos do not sell in the large volume that cars do, and inventory can stay on the floor longer -- and they pay interest on that inventory. They are subject to the same type of competition, though, and cannot charge whatever they want for fear of being undersold. So the market keeps the prices where they should be.
As for how much of a discount you could get as an employee -- well, that is up to each individual franchise. I'll tell you this -- you won't pay wholesale. Too many other costs involved that the dealer can't recoup.
Be less concerned with what the wholesale is, (you'll never get a straight answer anyway) and more concerned with what your discount from MSRP is, and how that price compares to the other dealers offers.
Good luck to you!
In the UK, the standard retail mark-up is 82.125% (this represents profit, covering of overheads and included sales taxes, which the retailer then deducts and pays to the governement. So, there is always PLENTY of room for negotiation. Many music stores offer a 10, 15 or 20% reduction for professionals, music teachers and staff. Perhaps you should just call up and ask them what their professional discount is.