What Is Strategic Pricing? 10 Types of Pricing Strategies For Your Business

By Thomas Bennett Financial expert at Priceva
Published on December 19, 2023
In the rapidly evolving world of business, strategic pricing stands as a cornerstone for success. It's more than just setting a price for products or services; it's about developing a thoughtful approach that considers various market factors, customer needs, and business objectives. Strategic pricing is a key driver for profitability, customer satisfaction, and market positioning. This article delves into the essence of strategic pricing and explores a range of pricing strategies that businesses can adopt to navigate the competitive landscape effectively.

What is Strategic Pricing?

Strategic pricing is far more than simply determining how much to charge for a product or service. It's a comprehensive approach that involves in-depth analysis and understanding of various market dynamics. This includes scrutinizing the competitive landscape, gauging customer perceptions, and recognizing the intrinsic value offered by the product or service. It's a tactic deployed by businesses to not only meet their financial goals but also to position themselves effectively within the market. Strategic pricing is a versatile tool; its application varies greatly depending on the sector, current market trends, and specific objectives a business aims to achieve.

Types of Strategic Pricing

In the complex world of business, choosing the right pricing strategy is crucial. Various strategic pricing methods cater to different business models, market conditions, and customer bases. Here’s a closer look at some common and effective pricing strategies:

1. Competitive Pricing Strategy

Competitive pricing is a strategy where businesses set their prices based on what their competitors are charging. It's particularly effective in markets with high competition and similar products, as it helps businesses stay competitive and relevant. Companies employing this strategy must continuously monitor their competitors’ pricing and market trends to adjust their prices accordingly. It's ideal for businesses that aim to capture or maintain market share in a competitive industry.

2. Cost Plus Pricing Strategy

The cost plus pricing strategy involves adding a fixed percentage markup to the production cost of a product. This straightforward approach ensures that all costs, including production, labor, and overheads, are covered, and a consistent profit margin is achieved. It is one of the most basic and commonly used pricing strategies, especially suitable for businesses where costs are relatively predictable, and market demand is stable.

3. Dynamic Pricing Strategy

Dynamic pricing is an adaptive strategy where prices fluctuate based on real-time market demand, customer behavior, or seasonal factors. It’s widely used in industries like hospitality, travel, and e-commerce, where prices can change based on factors such as time of booking, room availability, or consumer purchasing trends. This strategy allows businesses to maximize profits by capitalizing on peak demand periods while offering competitive prices during off-peak times.

4. Freemium Pricing Strategy

The freemium pricing model offers a basic version of a product or service for free while charging for advanced features or functionalities. This strategy is particularly popular in the digital services and software industries. It allows customers to try the basic features at no cost and then upgrades to premium versions for more advanced features, thereby generating revenue for the business.

5. High-Low Pricing Strategy

High-low pricing is a strategy where prices are set high initially and then discounted through sales promotions. This creates a sense of urgency and attracts both customers willing to pay a premium and those looking for deals. Retail industries commonly use it to attract a broad range of customers and to keep the inventory moving.

6. Penetration Pricing Strategy

Penetration pricing aims to quickly attract customers and gain market share by setting lower prices for new products. This approach is especially effective in introducing new products into a market, as it draws attention away from competitors. The low price point encourages customers to try the product, and once a customer base is established, prices can gradually increase.

7. Price Skimming Strategy

Price skimming involves initially setting a high price for a new and innovative product and then gradually lowering it. This strategy capitalizes on the early adopters who are willing to pay a premium for the latest technology or trend. Over time, as the novelty wears off, the price is reduced to appeal to more price-sensitive segments of the market.

8. Promotional Pricing Strategy

Promotional pricing is a temporary strategy to spur sales. It is often employed for new product launches, seasonal sales, or to clear excess inventory. This approach can significantly boost sales volume but needs to be used judiciously to avoid eroding the perceived value of the product.

9. Bundled Pricing

Bundled pricing is a strategy where multiple products or services are combined and sold at a lower price than if they were purchased individually. This approach not only increases the perceived value for customers but also encourages them to purchase more items than they might have initially intended.

10. Discount Pricing

Discount pricing involves offering products or services at a reduced price. Discounts can be offered through sales, coupons, or as part of loyalty programs. This approach is straightforward and effective for attracting price-sensitive customers and can lead to a significant increase in sales volume.

Pros and Cons of Different Pricing Strategies

Penetration Pricing
Pros: Penetration pricing can quickly attract a large customer base and establish market presence. It's effective in disrupting established markets and creating brand awareness.

Cons: This strategy may create an expectation of low prices among customers, making it challenging to increase prices later. It can also lead to thin profit margins.

Competitive Pricing
Pros: Competitive pricing helps in staying relevant in a highly competitive market. It's a safe strategy for businesses looking to maintain a steady customer base.

Cons: This strategy often leads to a race to the bottom, where businesses continually undercut each other, potentially harming profitability.

Economy Pricing
Pros: Economy pricing is ideal for price-sensitive customers and high-volume sales. It's effective in markets where cost leadership is a key differentiator.

Cons: The main drawback is the low-profit margins. This strategy also leaves little room for brand differentiation based on quality or innovation.

Value Based Pricing
Pros: Maximizes profits by charging what customers are willing to pay. This strategy can enhance brand perception as high-value.

Cons: Requires in-depth knowledge of customer preferences and perceived value, which can be challenging to ascertain accurately.

Cost Plus Pricing
Pros: Simplifies pricing by ensuring all costs are covered, plus a profit margin. It's easy to calculate and transparent to customers.

Cons: May not align with market or customer expectations and doesn’t consider competitor prices or customer perceived value.

Psychological Pricing
Pros: Psychological pricing can influence customer perception and behavior, making prices seem more attractive. It's useful for promotions and increasing sales volume.

Cons: Overuse can make customers skeptical and may not build long-term value for the brand.

How to Choose Your Pricing Strategy

1. Determine Your Value

When determining your pricing strategy, the first step is to thoroughly assess the unique benefits and features of your product or service. This involves a deep dive into what makes your offering distinct in the market. Are you providing cutting-edge technology, unmatched quality, superior customer service, or something entirely unique? Understanding these unique selling points is crucial as they form the foundation of a pricing strategy that effectively communicates the value of your product or service to the customer.

2. Evaluate Pricing Potential

Next, analyze the pricing landscape, including the price points of similar products in the market and how much customers are willing to pay. This step is about understanding the market equilibrium — the price point where the customer perceives maximum value. It involves assessing factors like customer demand, price elasticity, and consumer behavior. The goal is to find a price point that balances competitiveness with profitability, ensuring that your product remains attractive to consumers while also delivering a healthy return.

3. Review Your Customer Base

Understanding your customer base is paramount. Who are your customers? What is their purchasing power? What are their preferences and buying behaviors? By answering these questions, you can tailor your pricing to suit your target audience. This could mean adopting a premium strategy for a high-end market segment or a more economical approach for price-sensitive customers. The key is to align your pricing with the needs and expectations of your target customers.

4. Determine a Price Range

Consider your production and operational costs to determine a viable price range for your products or services. This involves calculating both fixed and variable costs, including production, labor, materials, and overheads. The ideal price range should not only cover these costs but also provide a healthy profit margin. Remember, the price range should be attractive enough to lure customers while ensuring your business remains financially sustainable.

5. Check Out Your Competitors

Investigate the pricing strategies of your competitors. This can provide valuable insights into what pricing models are successful in your industry. Are your competitors using penetration pricing to attract customers or value based pricing to emphasize product quality? Understanding the competitive pricing landscape can help you position your product effectively and avoid common pitfalls.

6. Consider Your Industry

Different industries have varying norms and expectations when it comes to pricing. For instance, the technology sector may lean more towards value-based or skimming pricing strategies, while consumer goods might be more suited to competitive or economy pricing. Understanding these industry-specific nuances is critical for developing a pricing strategy that resonates with your sector’s dynamics.

7. Consider Your Brand

Your pricing strategy should be a reflection of your brand identity. If your brand is positioned as a luxury or premium offering, your pricing should align with this perception. Conversely, if your brand is seen as an affordable or value-for-money option, your pricing strategy should reflect that. Consistency between your brand image and pricing is key to building trust and credibility with your customers.

8. Gather Feedback from Customers

Collecting and analyzing customer feedback is an invaluable step in refining your strategy. This feedback can provide direct insights into how customers perceive your pricing, what they value most about your product, and their overall satisfaction. Use this feedback to make informed adjustments to your pricing, ensuring it continues to meet the needs and expectations of your customers.

9. Experiment with Pricing

Finally, don’t hesitate to experiment with different pricing strategies. The market is dynamic, and customer preferences can shift. Trying out various pricing models, such as introductory offers, seasonal discounts, or bundled pricing, can help you discover the most effective strategy for your business. Monitor the outcomes of these experiments closely and be ready to adapt your approach in response to market feedback and changing conditions.

Can You Combine Pricing Strategies?

Harnessing the Power of Multiple Strategies
Combining different pricing strategies can provide a robust approach to maximizing business profitability and extending market reach. For instance, integrating cost-plus pricing for standard products with dynamic pricing for seasonal or high-demand items can cater to varying customer segments and market conditions. This blend allows businesses to remain flexible and responsive to market changes.

Tailoring to Specific Needs
By employing a mix of strategies, businesses can tailor their approach to different aspects of their product range or customer base. For example, a freemium strategy might be suitable for digital services to attract new users, while a value based pricing model could be applied to premium services, highlighting their higher perceived value.

Strategic Alignment
The key to successfully combining strategies is ensuring that they align with your overall business goals and market dynamics. This might involve using penetration pricing to enter new markets, followed by a shift to a skimming pricing strategy as the product gains recognition and demand increases.

Evaluating and Adjusting
Regularly evaluate the effectiveness of your combined strategies. Market conditions, customer preferences, and competitive landscapes are dynamic, and your strategies should be adaptable to these changes. Use customer feedback and market analysis to refine your approach and ensure it remains effective.


Choosing the right strategic pricing model is crucial for the success of any business. By carefully considering your market, costs, customer base, and overall business strategy, you can select a pricing model that not only covers your expenses but also maximizes your profitability and market presence. At Priceva, we are committed to providing you with the tools and insights necessary to develop effective pricing strategies, helping your business thrive in today’s competitive marketplace.


What is Strategic Pricing?

Strategic pricing is an essential business practice that involves setting prices not just based on the cost of goods or services but also on a comprehensive understanding of various external factors. It encompasses analyzing market dynamics, understanding the competitive landscape, gauging customer perceptions, and aligning with overarching business objectives. This approach enables businesses to use pricing as a strategic tool to achieve specific goals, whether it’s increasing market share, maximizing profitability, or positioning a brand.

What is an Example of a Pricing Strategy?

Penetration pricing is a classic example of strategic pricing. In this approach, businesses initially set prices lower than the market average to quickly attract customers and gain a foothold in the market. The low strategy is typically used during the launch phase of a product or service to draw attention away from competitors and to quickly build a customer base. Once the product or service gains market presence and customer loyalty, prices are gradually increased. This strategy is particularly effective in highly competitive markets or when launching new and innovative products.

What are the 4 Pricing Strategies?

Penetration Pricing: As mentioned, this strategy involves setting lower prices to gain market share quickly and then increasing prices gradually.

Price Skimming: In this strategy, businesses set high prices initially for a new or innovative product, targeting customers willing to pay more. As the market saturation increases, prices are lowered to appeal to a broader customer base.

Cost-Plus Pricing: This straightforward strategy involves calculating the total cost of producing a product and then adding a fixed percentage on top to determine the selling price.

Value Based Pricing: This approach sets prices primarily based on the perceived value of the product or service to the customer, rather than based on production costs or competitor prices.

What is Strategic Product Pricing?

Strategic product pricing is a nuanced approach to setting prices for products, taking into account several key factors. It involves a careful analysis of market conditions, including understanding customer demand, evaluating production and operational costs, and considering the competitive landscape. The aim is to set a price that optimizes profitability while meeting or exceeding customer expectations and aligning with the overall market. This type of pricing is especially important in industries where products are differentiated based on features, quality, or brand reputation. Strategic product pricing ensures that the price reflects the product’s value, market position, and business goals.

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