While most of us aren’t billionaires, many of us have spent more than the average price on a product or service because we believed the investment (or indulgence) was well worth the cost.

But how much would YOU really pay for the following super-expensive products?

1. Domain Name

In 2007, VacationRentals.com was purchased for $35 million. Next up on the list? Insure.com at $16 million and (of COURSE) Sex.com comes in third at $14 million.

2. Dessert

Serendipity 3 Restaurants offer a $25,000 sundae, the Frrozen Haute Chocolate, made with the world’s finest chocolates and served in a baccarat Harcourt crystal goblet, complete with an 18 carat gold and white diamond bracelet, plus a $14,000 jewel encrusted spoon. Too pricey for your tastes? Try the Golden Opulence instead—a steal at $1,000.

3. Beer

Back in the mid-1990s, a Cambridge archeological team helped recreate just 1,000 bottles of Queen Nefertiti’s 3,250 year old recipe, dubbed Tutankhamun Ale. The brew originally sold for $7,686 a bottle, but the price eventually dropped to $75. Soon after, King Tut’s curse struck again and the brewery closed its doors.

4. Parking Spot

If you live in the big city, you’re no stranger to expensive or just plain pain-in-the-butt parking. All your problems could be solved with this fresh on the market million dollar parking space in Manhattan’s East Village.

5. Notebook

Bill Gates purchased the Codex Leicester, one of Leonardo Da Vinci’s incredible notebooks, for $30.8 million in 1994. The good news is Gates purchased the notebook with the intention of sharing Da Vinci’s notes with the world.

6. Toilet

The Guinness Book of World Records lists the Hang Fun Gold Technology Group’s 24-carat solid gold toilet as the world’s most expensive toilet, coming in at $5.5 million. You can take a look at it, as it’s currently situated in a popular museum in China, and no, you can’t use it.

Why So Expensive?

Obviously some of the above items contain gold, which has been the hallmark of luxury for quite some time. But many of the above items are expensive for another major reason: perceived value.

A wealthy New Yorker is sure to shell out a million bucks for a parking space if they value the location, the convenience, and the added benefit of tremendous privacy.

The Codex Leicester notebook was created by Leonardo Da Vinci, who is well-regarded as one of the finest, most creative and intelligent minds in history. Similarly, the Tutankhamun Ale echoes a particularly curious era in ancient Egypt, creating an aura of mystery and history (and hey, alcohol) many people can’t resist.

According to our source, VacationRentals.com was purchased just to prevent the competition’s potential use of that domain name.

Perceived Value: Your Ticket To The Top

For the most part, we all subconsciously understand that value goes well beyond price. You’ve probably spent more money on a particular product or service because it was well-known as the very best in its class. You may have spent more because a particular brand’s marketing strategy appealed to you and stirred up a feeling of unsurpassable brand trust: you knew that by choosing one brand over another, you’re getting a no-hassle solution, plus extra-awesome customer service.

Now, turn around and apply these same principles to your business—when done correctly, you’re sure to take your brand to the next level. Here’s how…

  • Invest in Your Brand. One BIG way to show how shiny and amazing you are is to back your products and services with a memorable and unique brand. Make it EASY for your satisfied customers to spread the word about how great you are. That kind of word-of-mouth marketing is worth more than money can buy!
  • Differentiate. Stand out as better than the standard. What makes your business better than your competition? Again, make it EASY for your customers to discover why you’re leagues above the rest in your industry.
  • Appeal to Luxury. If you love to pamper pets, don’t settle for being known as the local dog washer. Invest in your idea and create a pet boutique, complete with grooming services and organic treats. Everyone has to start somewhere, but there’s always room to move UP.
  • Think Ahead. Industry trend-setters are the world’s most popular entrepreneurs. Don’t believe me? Even though only about 1% of the population has celiac disease and an estimated 6% have gluten sensitivity issues, the gluten-free trend has taken off like a rocket ship. Entrepreneurs who accurately predicted this trend’s popularity have created a billion dollar gluten-free industry in the last few years.

Our best advice? Be Freakin’ Awesome. Seriously: Be the BEST. A shoddy product and crummy customer service are a recipe for disaster. Put your heart and soul into your products, your services, your business, your brand, and your team to rise above the competition and offer your customers MORE.

When you’re the best around and you’re backed by a little ingenuity, foresight and a stellar brand, your business has got what it takes to make waves, because you’re offering consumers value. When customers understand the value in what you offer, you’ll be dealing with less complaints about your prices, so you’ll have more time and energy to invest in your business.