Applying various strategies to increase your business sales can be challenging. You need to present an appropriate offer in order not to scare away a potential customer. One of the strategies that can help accomplish this and achieve more sales is Upselling.
What is upselling?
Upselling is a sales technique that encourages customers to buy better or improved versions of the product they are already buying and showcases how it can better fulfill their needs, while at the same time leaving the customer feeling satisfied. It is a sales strategy that is used to improve the customer experience with your brand, product, or service.
In the ecommerce business, this technique can often be seen used in combination with cross-selling, which also stimulates sales. Incorporating these two techniques is a very common and effective strategy used by many online businesses.
Let’s say, for example, you run an online store that sells shoes. Your customer has just bought a pair of shoes. After the purchase is paid for, you can offer them another pair of running shoes, except they will be 15% off, or they will come with socks, or cleaning supplies. This is an offer that your buyer could be interested in. It is convenient both for you, as you increase your sales, and for the customer, as they can benefit from receiving something they are already interested in.
The key to a successful upselling technique is making sure that your customer benefits from the deal in some way. Don’t worry if they don’t buy what you offered straight away. This tactic will ensure their interest and most likely, they will return to your store for future purchases. Better yet, you’ll get recommended to friends and family.
Basically, upselling is a way to sell additional products or services that your recurring customers will be interested in.
Why is it important to use the upselling technique?
Some sales techniques can cause more harm than good. More often than not, a technique that is used incorrectly can cause a sale to fail. However, if done right, a sales technique, like upselling or cross-selling, can improve the customer’s shopping experience. Here are several reasons why online retailers heavily rely on these selling methods:
- They build a greater relationship with customers
When done correctly, upselling focuses on helping customers. How can it be done? By offering the best product that will cater to their needs, be it upgrades, premiums, or simple add-ons. It will turn out to be a tactic that will generate more sales and keep the customers happy.
- Recurring customers are more likely to place orders
As practice shows, optimizing a sale to a returning customer turns out to be cheaper and much easier as they already know what they are dealing with and a certain level of trust is already established. According to research, there is a 60-70% chance that a sale will be successful with an existing customer, and only a 5-20% chance with a new one.
- Customers return for more purchases
By providing unique value to the customers, you ensure that they return for future purchases.
When is it best to upsell?
Now that you are aware that upselling is a technique used to generate more sales, here are a few tips for when and how to best implement this technique.
- Before purchasing
Showcase recommended items at the bottom or in the sidebar next to the product or category your customer views.
- During a purchase
Display the recommended items by using pop-ups in the shopping cart, on the checkout page, or in the abandoned cart emails.
- After purchase
Use follow-up emails to attract customers back for more purchases.
To effectively use the upselling technique, you need to understand your customers’ needs and make their shopping experience more enjoyable. The best way to upsell is to ensure that, first of all, the customers feel like they received the better end of the deal. Here are some ways you can do it:
- Prompt upsells and provide special offers to customers (for example, offer free shipping or a discount on future purchases).
- Provide a comparison of the products next to each other and show the benefits of the more expensive products.
- Make sure your customers can afford the products you offer by upselling: usually, customers aren’t willing to pay more than 25% of their initial purchase.
- Don’t pressure your customers, always allow them to decide on their own. Show them what they can purchase, but learn to take “no” for an answer.
- Make your customers understand the need that isn’t there at first. A simple example of this is when you make an order at a fast-food restaurant and the cashier offers you larger fries for a lower price. You probably don’t need the extra fries, but you can’t walk away from such a beneficial offer and end up making the purchase.
- Create a sense of urgency by notifying your customers how many items are still in stock or how much time is left until the offer becomes unavailable.
- Apply user data to create personalized offers and present products that your customers will genuinely find interesting.
- Show a scope of comparable items, however, make sure your customers don’t get overwhelmed by the proposition.
Many successful ecommerce businesses prosper because they can show their customers the value of purchasing a suggested product. Don’t forget that upselling is used not only to boost your sales but also to benefit your customers.