The Confessions of A Mattress Salesman: Pro Tips For Buying Mattresses

Memory Foam MattressSalesmen are in the business to sell anything. They can sweet talk you into buying a mattress that may not give you a good night’s sleep or even alleviate your back pain.

To help you avoid buying the wrong mattress, here are some top tips right from an ex-salesman.

Tip #1: Don’t fall for the brand names

True, there is a wide range of mattresses of different types, components and from different brands. However, the heart of these mattresses are made of the same material – mainly coils or foams.

The big surprise is that many of the big mattress makers get their mattress coil from the same manufacturer.

What this means is that the market is selling you similar kind of mattresses with a little variation under different brand names and cost.

Salesman’s Tips: Chuck the brand names. Go for the comfort.

When you visit a store, start with testing the high-end mattresses. Get the feel of those costly mattresses, and then work your way down to the less expensive mattresses. This will help you find a balance, and pick a mattress that feels good and doesn’t blow your bank as well.

Tip #2. Don’t let the salesman do the buying for you

There’s no such thing as a “best mattress” for all.

The comfort level of a person is highly subjective. A mattress that gives someone a good night’s sleep may as well be the cause of back pain and grumpiness for another.

Even the claims like “orthopedic-recommended mattress” or “medically-approved mattress” may not sound true when you actually lay on it.

Salesman’s tip: Do your homework.

Learn the abc of mattresses before you head out to the store to buy one. Browse for mattresses online and understand the market price and types.

To give you a basic idea, the major types of mattresses are:

  1. Memory foam mattress (this mattress molds to your body shape)

  2. Innerspring Mattress (uses coil support system, higher coil counts mean better support)

  3. Air Beds (has air-chambers that can be inflated to customize firmness level of mattress on either side, perfect for couples with different firmness needs)

Tip #3. Test Sleep

In a mattress store, you get just 10-60 seconds window for laying down to test the mattress. While you lay there, the salesman would try to flummox you with lofty jargons like “posturepedic”, “pocketed coils” and such to brainwash you into buying the mattress.

However, to get a good feel, you need to actually try sleeping on that mattress.

Salesman’s Tip: Ask for in-home trial period. Many reputed manufacturers (not retailers) provide month-long trial periods. You can also try to get exchange warranties in case you get a defective mattress.

Tip #4. Haggle The Price Down

Never take on the first price that the salesman gives you.

It’s a common trade practice to quote a price 30-50% higher than the true price.

Salesman’s Tip: True, good mattresses don’t come cheap but setting a budget in your mind will help you avoid overspending.

Even if it says it’s a fixed price, but don’t be afraid to haggle. Also, do watch out for holiday sales. Market prices go down heavily during the festive seasons.


We hope this guide will help you know where you are going wrong in buying a mattress, and empower you to make smart decisions when it comes to buying mattresses online or in store!

Remember, you spend one third of your life on bed. So, don’t hesitate to buy an expensive mattress, if it feels comfortable to you. A couple of thousand bucks is not worth more than a good night’s sleep.

If you have any questions, please ask below!