Pricing....The Correct Way

UPDATE TO POST THREAD: I will not remove the original content, but with everyone who has chimed in the feedback on the Best Offer aspect has been most appreciated. While the original content could have provided alittle more detail, regardless many have made clear this is not something of interest & valid points have been brought up. I will say this feature idea can be considered closed.

A feature that I have been long time looking for as well as I am sure many others would love to see would be a pricing related feature that all & all would replace the current price adjustments & lack of impact to changes.

My background comes from working eCommerce for a decade & being fluent in platforms such as eBay. Features such as List Price to Sale Price, having slash through & Best Offer options as well as having presets on the seller end when it comes to Best Offers not only saves alot of back & forth but increases engagement, conversion & the overall experience.

Would you rather play the market game trying to ride the wave as it always is shifting; keeping up with your listings & go to change your listing today say $75 from what it was to not be pricing yourself out, but a buyer comes along 10 minutes later to offer you $100 off the “new list price”. OR; would you rather have what your list price was, whatever it was & be able to put a sale price. Example, $1500, now $1250. Perhaps with the additional option of offers still available. Now with offers would you like to have the option instead of back & forth with messaging have a the presets already done that if someone sends an offer in the range of $900-$1100 on that $1250 listing you’ll auto accept, whereas if it were $800 or lower it was an auto deny but anything $801 to $899 counter offers or such up to say 3 times could be exchanged

All these features & builds already exist on other platforms such as eBay, the question of if, how & when can they be brought into play here.

This year was one for sure many were scrambling & at the end of it (much like eBay or Amazon) buyers look & focus on these key areas of listings. Titles, Photos & Pricing (shipping is generally to a degree part of this equation). Past that you can have amazing details in your description as well as your profile which should be there 100%, but how many still send a message asking questions to what you worked hard on? This is simple data on purchasing behavior

Thanks everyone!


I personally don’t like the idea of having the site sell the animal for me. Sure, it’s handy if we are allowed to sell herp merchandise like tshirts, tubs or whatever…

But animals are not something I would want an auto accept feature on. Or even an auto deny. Sometimes depending on a personal interaction, my mind will change on some sales. I feel we always need to do better for live animals and as frustrating as it is to have people questioning what has already been listed, I would rather answer that question again or direct them back to the description. I want to know what sort of person they are going to, even if the interaction is minimal.

If you’re a wholesaler just wanting to move animals like they’re a t-shirt or something then sure… But many of us do put more care into this hobby.

As far as features like sales prices and such, yes. Those are definitely welcome! It would make things easier to apply a sale price to all females or something similar.
But again, still not looking at an auto sale. Maaaaaybe an auto pending or hold…but I want to talk to people before hitting that sold button.


I’m with @armiyana on this one. I think as sellers of live animals, making this place more like eBay or Amazon is a rather disturbing idea. These are living creatures, not just inventory. Having a feature like auto-accept does not allow you to do due diligence in regards to buyers. It might actually even violate MM’s code of ethics, specifically:

  • Keepers agree to research, understand, and not violate any local, state, federal or international laws.
  • Sellers agree to make reasonable efforts to ensure the buyer has the ability to responsibly care for the animal, especially those with greater needs.

Auto-accept means you can’t vet the buyer at all, and could possibly end up having to cancel a sale/refund money. This would be extra problematic as the laws surrounding what we are legally allowed to keep where are constantly changing. There would have to be species specific controls so buyers from certain states could not have their offers accepted on illegal species, and that’s a lot of work to keep up to date.

The sale prices thing has been brought up previously, though, and I think it’s a great idea.


Personally, I think it would be useful to have some of these features, but I wouldn’t want to use them for all my snakes or replace the current system. In addition to what @armiyana and @noodlehaus have said, I’m concerned that some of this may facilitate a race to the bottom, which could be bad for the hobby in general. I would never want the system setting prices for me.

While I typically list my price as firm, there are some snakes I’d be willing to negotiate on. Being able to list sale prices vs the original price when I mark things down and auto-approve or reject offers would be helpful. One thing that really annoys me is when people message me with something like “what’s the lowest you can do?” It’d be nice to have a system to automatically reject lowball offers so I don’t have to write a polite “no thanks” email every time this happens.

@monroemorphs Correct me if I’m wrong, but in regard to the offer system, an accepted offer wouldn’t necessarily mean the sale is guaranteed, right? @armiyana and @noodlehaus both seemed concerned about this.

Let’s say that in theory, I would like to set the system to auto-accept all offers at or above 90% of my asking price. If someone from Colorado made an offer on a Hognose snake and the system accepted it, I would still have to inform them it’s illegal and refuse the sale. Not that I agree with the law, but I don’t want to break it. Situations like this are why I support USARK.

In general, I think it’d be nice to have tools to help me negotiate prices with customers. I hate haggling and I’ve told everyone who immediately asks for my “lowest price” as much. But of course, there is always a personal component to the sale, and vetting the customer can be important. I don’t believe the suggested new features are intended to replace that. Once the pricing is agreed upon we should then be able to proceed with discussions about care requirements, shipping options, etc.


I have purchased several snakes as well as a toad and a tree frog from MM and for me personally, I would MUCH rather have a one on one with the seller because I can learn a lot about the seller which is very important to me. We are not dealing with inanimate objects here, but in fact, LIVE creatures which to me mean much much more than just a sales commodity/object. As a matter of fact, I, in a way, vet the seller as well as a responsible seller would hopefully vet me. Imho modern technology is good in certain ways but we have to keep the human connection as much as possible. As a matter of fact, I keep up with the people from whom I have purchased my animals, at least for a while. I like the bond created between us.

With all the virtual stuff, text, email, automated phone systems, etc., the more personal interaction is a plus for me! :wink::lizard::frog::snake:


Exactly responses & thank you all. The feedback is all on point & no one is wrong in this. Living Animals vs Product Stocked on a shelf; 100%.

Should you be vetting a potential buyer vs just taking the money & running. I agree with that. Honestly if we want to run the data on how many well put together correspondences occur vs the “text messaging” approaches & quick hit sales as well as the approaches as many deal with of what is the lowest you will take or always stuff being swagged on the dollar then well…it would be some interesting figures

At the end of the day, I will happily deny a sale if I think you’re a flipper, you’re someone just worried about saving money & care less who you’re buying from or what you actually are buying. The feedback provided shows some sellers that follow that kind of selling but unfortunately not all exist as such. That is a truth, so should the site go to an “eBay” practice, no; especially being living animals. But are there aspects of such platform that can carry over which can work if structured accordingly, perhaps. End of the day sales are still occurring. The market is still expanding every year, every month, etc. With that everyone wants to be front & center & it just does not happen. You can do this incorrectly, unprofessional & unethically or you can do things in the correct lines.

So two areas of focus: First is pricing in general. We are dealing with living animals as said. Well the market changes & there is no true “retail value” on a living animal or market value as some try to uphold. Because whether a basement breeder trying to be respectful to the community or a top name setting the tone, what you choose to list it for vs what you choose to sell it for are two different things & there have been alot that have become loose lips hurting that over time as well as others on both sides which “adapt” or more so just change their feelings & pricing changes cause of social trends. Rather than having one selling with a listing at $100 then another at $200 & so forth for the “same” thing making things to some look off, having an option of “List Price” and “Sale Price” such as during holidays, special times of year & such it may have a different look.

As for the Best Offer. Understood what people are expressing & referring. I agree with the vetting aspect. Offers as a whole should either be a yah or nah. I think the market as a whole there are far & few anymore that pay a list price on anything. Whether its what you list & the shipping or even the list price in general. These are animals as said, so if we want to take the eBay aspect out of this then there shouldn’t be a bidding type mentally to being with. Meaning Seller A has this listed for such, Seller B has this listed for such. If the buyer wants Seller A’s item then they should be expected to pay what that Seller wishes to list otherwise they move on, not look to haggle or so for. If looking strictly at the livestock aspect & taking offers out of the equation, no one goes to a petshop & looks at something, then goes “will you take such”. Not saying they should, but the point it same as Walmart, you don’t go in & haggle on a TV, you don’t go to Samsung & haggle on what they manufacture. Rather you shop around, if you don’t like the price or deal you see who has it at the price you want it for. SO in this market buyers shop around as well as take advantage of knowing sellers want sales. Kinda of a problem buyers make for themselves. Personally, I’d rather give no best offers, no discounts & so forth to anyone outside of someone active membership supporting USARK, someone that is a return client or so forth but again; livestock or product, its the industry created, not one we need to have.

At the end of the day, if everything could be at the list price a breeder put it for, market value or what not & if we could vet buyers accordingly without this bs online of undercutting every other day I’m all for it. Everyone wants to blame the “smaller guys” but alot of the bigger names that push their high numbers & are dumping stuff at a fraction at the price aren’t clear of things either,

The buyers that I don’t even get a follow-up of shipment receipt, those are not a fav. While others we have built longtime followings with so contact & communication is key. That I apparently made seem as though has no place. Rather the opposite. In factor one pain point we have especially this time of year that would fall under vetting I’d say is the newbie accounts that purchased from some unnamed sellers who have no problem shipping this time of year, but we’re the jerks for being on hold shipping until after the holidays and so forth. :person_shrugging:


In regards to an auto accept concept, as morph has nothing payment wise setup yet I would say presumably not

However, with my initial writing of this; I should have been alittle more clear on it & after reading such the responses are pretty consistent.

Nothing wrong with such. People are trying to do things right & that needs to be on Morph so that’s what matters


I like where you bring attention to this section. I agree with Morph’s bullet points & I don’t disagree with this being a problem or if this could not work

My question for further debate is this. The “common seller”; how many get a message that says, would you take X? Then they agree to such price & proceed with the transaction.

Now, per the bullets, more on 2 how many buyers actually go through making sure someone understands what they are buying, ask questions back or know what the seller is receiving from them, etc

I know I’m thorough with my customers, I send books in some cases like these posts lol

But I know also cases where I’ve bought from various names & was lucky if I could even get a tracking number in a couple cases. I’m not saying everyone is equal at all. But, I’m saying there is a possibility that some-point which currently exists & could be worked on already bares room for something else.

Honestly, the best offer aspect, we could scratch that from topic as that was kind of a secondary anyways, but being able to do a discount on your listings, or such if you choose; that is a different story

Writing in the Title Section 25% off Black Friday or Free Shipping or anything of such as well as just changing the pricing & so forth is messing & not a way to run a business. There are people that are on the platform as a hobby, upgraded craigslist & there are people this is a business, animals or not; with a business things need to be clear & in proper placement for both the seller & the buyer benefits & protections of transaction integrated & so forth


Valid Feedback & appreciated. Thank you

Wholesaling & not talking to people, no; not the case. Rather the opposite.

Could be some additional aspects to that feature, but overall the Best Offer or Offers in generally I’d rather see go away more than anything. The sales feature on the other hand I would rather see.

I am probably one of the few which initial contact one of the first things viewed is a buyers profile. If its new, one log in & that is with us & its already “oh I must have this animal, whats your best price” most cases that is not a sale going through.

Do we want to right people off, no but have we lost hours of time in people taking pics, weighing animals, setting up invoices & giving information that is basically available online to only still have the animal over the years, absolutely.

If someone is solely based on the price as well as shipping asap, especially this time of year, vs the animal’s well being then we’re happy to keep the animal with us & pass on the sale


You make some very valid points. Here are 2 things of the many great statements you make that I want to comment on. A few weeks ago I purchased a 15.00 green tree frog and the seller would not ship him until after the Thanksgiving holiday/black Friday rush and even though I was anxious for the little guy I was MORE than willing to wait for him. If a buyer presents that kind of “you are a jerk because you care about your animal’s welfare” attitude, I wonder what kind of home the animal is going to.

Also, of all the animals I have purchased on MM so far, I have only made one offer below listed price and I don’t know what possessed me to do that. But it was a very reasonable offer. After that first purchase, I have paid the price listed. If the price says “firm”, then it’s firm. If it says “offers” I still leave the price alone. If I can’t afford the animal, I simply don’t buy it, firm or make an offer.

Call me odd but I am old school in a lot of ways. I am not a Breeder/Seller so a lot of your ideas I don’t understand so I hope I didn’t offend you in any way. I only want the best for the animals here on MM. The best to you!!!:blush::lizard::frog::snake:


It feels like the biggest thing people have the issue with is dealing with window shoppers. Sure, sometimes I get frustrated, especially when someone asks me “okay but what’s the lowest you’ll go?” AFTER I already have said the price is firm. But I feel like having spent 20 years in freelance art, animal medical and animal retail the biggest takeaway I have is…

There will always be people showing up to take up your time.

The important thing is how you respond. That can be a make or break for the sale or the word of mouth. And I personally try to treat customers or inquiries with how I would hope to be treated, not just written off.

Man, it would be awesome if every time I spoke to someone about fish or a hamster that the sale would happen. Or talk about prevention meds for a dog or cat and that was followed. The truth of it is, that’s maybe 1/4th of the time if you’re lucky. I don’t expect that to change because I’m selling snakes on a herp site. Hahah.
For me it would be like going to a show and not saying hello or being chatty when I could with booth browsers. 70% are just passing by. But you might not know which ones until you say something.


No offense at all & stuff is posted with the intent to draw discussion. Not to follow suite as social media where people tear each other down & so forth haha, but rather compare & contrast to build towards the right direction. I’ve been around long enough as well as yes I as said I do come from an eCommerce background, no wordage wise not trying to create an eBay Animal market lol; but I do see many similarities to buying practices & search, list, etc so you take ideas of what can work & you ignore what doesn’t or can not work. In those years you get a thick skin as well so don’t see any offense here, you are 100% good!

Now with discounts, I like what you brought up. I will give you one as of recent. Over the last few weeks I’ve had repeat requests on 2 listings of the same type animal buyers asking for 25% less than list price as well as free shipping. I’ve also had the same with local pickup & another listing from someone that was a return buyer was willing to do 20% but then they wanted 35% plus free shipping. Lastly, have another first time buyer asking for 25% & free shipping.

Using percentages to keep things alittle clean & easy to follow, but lets use the last & say animal is $800 with shipping to then being base $115. Now, as the seller in any scenario you can easily just say no, 100%. There was a time where asking for free shipping or asking for 5%, 10%, 15% was a thing. But it has increased where a starting point is 25% to 50% off list price as well as factoring in shipping. Some sellers don’t bother with shipping & just lump it in (eBay logic, sorry but truth)

So perhaps with the vetting aspect & best offers maybe there shouldn’t be an auto accept; but maybe there should be a somewhat auto vet aspect. Do you accept offers, yes. Buyer puts in what they are looking to offer if they are interested. If it declines then they know where you kind of stand & they can either continue to inquiry if interested or they can move on. Perhaps that would reduce some of the dead ends where it unfortunately does come down more to the money vs animals. Again, I’m voting yes to the vetting aspect brought up. If someone is only worried about how little they can spend with us then it is probably not a good home for our animals. So Id rather not spend multiple hours back & forth with them when there are other inquiries to respond to & potential close out that are a better fit.

The shipping aspect; 100%; there are plenty that have become entitled from 3 aspects. Lack of understanding, receiving from sellers that have a lack of understanding / time invested & receiving from sellers that have time invested but are more focused on the money vs the animals & don’t want to lose on the sales if they say they will hold on shipping. Do many shipments even delayed ones arrive safely if packaged accordingly, sure but is it worth the risk to the animal; no. Some get it & some look at their racks as, I have a backup I can ship



Every message gets the same chance, same start points & see where they go, whether a new account or someone with 2000 logins

The percentage for conversion when it comes to such overall is around a 20% if correct which sounds low but when taking everything into account & the processes involved its about accurate.

For the select few that have websites & can review say an abandoned cart or webpage traffic where the interaction between buyer and seller is not needed to really complete the transaction the % may vary abit but the process of communication before & throughout to get the completion of the sale currently it can be hit or miss, which is fine cause again you are talking to whom you are working with. Some you get great content going & it can be back & forth with detail. Others its text messaging, one or two sentences at best on one end while you do your job to be thorough & detailed as you can only do.

End of the day regardless who you talk to & how much you communication, once an animal leaves your possession to enter theirs once in theirs what happens is out of our control, most cases great turn outs. There have been the few some have experienced which if they could recall the animals back they would for sure.

Working with living animals is for sure its own sector & takes the right people


One thing I forgot to method on Morph that we try to point people to especially new is the How to Inquire section.

How many do, how many care is the question. Again no one likes shipping, everyone wants the best for the least spent. The difference with living animals vs again a TV off an assembly line is some people are under the belief a Clown Yellow Belly Ball Python is the same from whoever you buy it from, so if one seller has one for $300 & another has it for $200 then the higher seller should match end of story. Sellers are buying the individual animal, sometimes buying the gene expression. You could be paying for a different level of service, etc. There are an array of factors that can go into why each seller prices slightly different but the first is not treating the animals as all equal & rather as living pieces of individual art. You are buying THAT animal, not an animal


Sounds like we agree on the key points. I like your idea of the “buyer offer” auto. Also, exactly what you said, this is a great way to exchange ideas to learn more and improve, not bully and ridicule. I detest Facebook, Twitter, etc because of this. This forum, for most part, is not like this.

Keep chipping away with suggestions for improvement! You are doing very well here!

Caron. :wink::blush::lizard::frog::snake:

1 Like

Thank you for expanding on it! And finding a similar number to commiserate on with inquiries:sales. Frustrating at times but expected.

Overall great ideas and the one concern I had was making it seem dehumanized in the process. But looks like that isn’t an issue after all.
It will be interesting seeing what others think of the end of the holidays has more people popping in on this.


That’s true, and I always try to decline offers I won’t accept as politely as possible, even if I find them insulting. I realize in most cases they are not intended to offend.

This exactly. I don’t mind giving a small discount when people ask nicely, but I reserve the right to turn people down if the offer is too low, or if I simply like the animal too much to give a discount. I put a lot of time and effort into my snakes, so when people ask for a discount over 25% plus free shipping it feels both disrespectful to me and to the snakes.

I’ve also found that people asking for huge discounts are typically flaky. They rarely go through with the sale even if you offer them the discount they’re asking for. They’re just looking for cheap snakes, nothing specific. If the price means more to someone than the snakes themselves then I don’t mind them shopping elsewhere.


Many good points have been made. I’ll comment briefly. Like most other breeders here, I do this because z in passionate about the animals in my care, those produce, those I hope to produce. I have zero interest in any type of “auto accept” type feature. They’re not inventory in the typical sense of the term, not to me. They’re not widgets.

Exactly so. I can tell people about any individual’s temperament, socialization, feeding behavior. For the majority of BrightHope snakes, I can and will happily discuss parentage and family lines and traits and origins, often going back years. Again, not widgets.

Agreed. We’re not a large operation, but that doesn’t mean I don’t take my animals and my business seriously. In fact, our motto is “Small scale professionals.” There are always going to be window shoppers and flaky non-buying time-suckers in any business. Annoying? Sure. But just part of selling anything. I’m comfortable not selling to them.


@monroemorphs I was with you on the vetting auto response. But only for a few seconds. I think this would have everyone sending in low offers over and over again until they hit your lowest price. Snake for sale $100. I offer 50… No, then 60…no, then 70…no, at 80 I get a yes. Now the seller just lost 20 from someone just playing the game.
I believe this will be the normal for almost every sale, no communication just button pushing.
Then everyone starts listing things for more so the don’t loose the 20. Now the same snake is listed for $140. So the game can be played and the seller gets what they want.

@monroemorphs, everything you are suggesting all sounds great for an eBay type community. I feel this community is still more like a (snake for sale sign in the yead and you can deal directly with a each other and make decisions on the person along with the snake.) this is what I feel is how people hear like it to be. (some large breeding companies excluded. They need to move larger amounts of inventory). Not that there is anything wrong with it. It is a business. They might like this idea and I think if I was a large breeder, I would use it. No to little interaction, snake 100, push a button for 70 get a yes, then directed to my payment site. That is if I had 100’# to move each year. Time is money for big business thinking.


Now don’t get me wrong, lets put this other problem into play for good measure. IF there were a push button in place for an offer aspect there still leaves the difference of shipping. Think about it, from East Coast to West Costing shipping on one listing (for sake of discussion) vs just a town over pickup or a couple states nearby could change what a seller would agree to as an offer. There are alot of moving pieces in this type of concept. Ultimately what has been gathered her which is perfect information is thus, everyone does not like the idea of an auto accept type offer feature however equally everyone sees the aspects of how offers are a game, buyers tend to be more focused on the dollar vs the animal & having someone come out of the woodwork never having even messaged you before with an instead will you take X is just too common.

There are alot of enablers that cause the entitlement & expectations within this industry, laced in the platform (not the platform itself) as well as just buying & selling metrics as a whole.

I use eBay as an example of comparison & I think some focus is misdirected but thats no biggie. I can use Amazon as well that carries over to what goes on when dealing with living content as well. The expectation that buying mentality is conditioned to, you place your purchase for something & get it next day. If you are told otherwise then its a problem. That should not occur when dealing with live cargo despite it does ship in an overnight service, but rather the seller needs to ship accordingly, on select days & should be shipping per the animal’s welfare first; not the buyer’s demands

Unfortunately, because of some; instead of that being a norm & complete across the board understanding in this industry as it should be, it is variable & while many are understanding you get others that are again entitled, demanding & enabled because of those that allow such.

There will always be tire kickers, there will always be those that low ball, there will always those that put money first. It is part of sales & competing as afterall even if there was MAPP on every animal listed someone would still break it lol

I don’t want to see things easier or catered towards the incorrect situations, rather the opposite. In a right world an audience would respect the work put into the animals produced whether basement breeder or 5th facility built ground up, they would respect unlike other industry’s with “free shipping” there is no such thing as free shipping & shipping can be anywhere from $50 to $150 so when something is listed for $80 & you want it shipped free, perhaps take a ride to pick it up yourself. That for many smaller time people this is more a passion & hobby, that a sale is just to recoup some feeder expenses or maybe a new animal themselves but even the larger guys margins don’t work the same as in typical retail so if things are not turning over such as many this year you’re losing more than you gain but only a select few actually make a true living.

Unfortunately all in all, the world won’t change & the line its part of business will always stay true. I do think the feedback as a whole has been on point from everyone.