If you’re a salesperson, chances are you’re always looking for new ways to boost your conversions. Upselling can be lucrative, but it’s also gained a reputation as a pushy tactic. Fortunately, you can increase revenue and keep your customers happy by promoting items that match their needs and interests.
In this article, we’ll look at a few reasons your store should be upselling products. Then, we’ll take you through three effective tips for crafting a powerful upgrade pitch. Let’s dive right in!
Why Your Online Store Should Be Upselling
Upselling is the process of convincing consumers to purchase a better version of the product they’re interested in. The alternative is usually more expensive than the original item.
The idea is pretty simple: your customers get more features or better quality, and you get more revenue. For example, Apple upsells by comparing older and newer phones:
Since returning customers spend more money than new ones, you may have more success selling upgraded products to current users than entry-level options to first-time clients. This means you can spend less money and effort on customer acquisition. Thus, upselling can be an efficient way to boost your profits.
However, upselling may also seem like a risky move. This is because you have to try to convince your customers to go for a more advanced (and expensive) option without intimidating them or putting them off. Missing the mark can make you seem aggressive, and you may therefore lose customers.
Fortunately, you can increase your odds of a successful sale by leaning into customer-centric marketing. By keying into what upgrades your shoppers may be interested in, you can start selling improvements like a pro.
The Art of the Upsell: 3 Tips to Encourage More Sales
Understanding your consumers may not always be easy; however, a bit of valuable information can help you go a long way. Here are three practical tips for producing an effective upsell.
1. Focus on Products That Already Sell
Nearly every company has products that perform better than others. If this sounds like you, your first instinct might be to upsell less popular items to boost their numbers. However, this move can be counterproductive.
Upselling usually involves taking the best parts of a product and improving on them. As such, it’s a tactic that works best when there’s already an audience of enthusiastic supporters. Therefore, you may want to focus on products that are already driving sales.
For example, the cosmetics company Lush offers an upsell for one of its most popular products:
Since the product is so popular, there’s a better chance that some consumers would be happy to take advantage of a size-based upsell. This can also keep manufacturing costs down, making it an easy way to maintain an efficient business strategy.
Furthermore, the urge to upsell low-performing products can lead to too many choices for your customers. Fifty-four percent of people have given up trying to find a product due to being overwhelmed by too many options, so it may be wise to avoid this problem by solely focusing your efforts on bestselling items.
Another method for successful upselling is to provide service plans. For example, a furniture store may offer professional installation. Alternatively, a technology company might offer insurance for damages. These plans can effectively increase consumer spending without requiring you to produce more physical items.
2. Consult Your Customers’ Personalized Data
Analytics is a powerful tool. In a survey, 58% of respondents stated that their organizations witnessed a significant increase in customer retention after using analytics. However, customer data can do more than help sellers hold onto shoppers. You can also use this personalized information to upsell with greater accuracy.
Consumer data can give vital insights. For example, let’s say your store enables shoppers to “favorite” items and buy them later. Analyzing what products customers are most frequently favoriting can provide direction for an efficient upsell campaign.
You can also collect information from the demographics of site visitors, customer surveys, or browser cookies. All of these avenues can lead to a more precise upsell. Additionally, it might also seem more genuine to your visitors, as you’ll be recommending upgrades that they’re actually interested in.
Applying personalized data to an upsell can be subtle, too. You can consider Wayfair’s approach as an example. If someone browses the Wayfair site for a grill, they’ll find an upsell in the You might also like section below the product:
All of the suggested options fit the profile of what the customer is looking for, but they’re not all upsells. One is even a downsell, as it’s a cheaper alternative. This method can encourage higher spending without seeming too pushy.
Furthermore, upselling can also happen outside of your store. For instance, you may want to consider using carefully-picked influencers to promote the higher-quality versions of your offerings. This can help you naturally access new markets while also featuring more lucrative items.
3. Increase Value With Free Add-Ons
An upsell, by definition, bumps up the price tag. Many customers will reasonably expect this if they are guaranteed an enhanced product. However, there’s still an inherent risk: 45% of brand-loyal shoppers would consider switching companies for a lower price tag. As such, an upsold product could potentially drive customers away.
Fortunately, you can avoid this by providing more bang for their buck. While an improved item already gives customers more benefits, you can make this more obvious to them by throwing in a free add-on.
Free add-ons can take many forms, such as associated gifts, samples of similar products, or free shipping. These gestures can make it easier for shoppers to understand how your upsell will give them value.
Furthermore, adding in complimentary items can be a powerful marketing strategy. When you advertise a bonus, you may be prompting customers to buy products they might have overlooked. The beauty company Ulta accomplishes this by tagging items as including a Gift With Purchase:
In this example, shoppers only qualify for the gift after $25 worth of qualifying purchases. The benefits of this approach are two-fold: the non-specific upsell can make the customer feel more in control and increase customer trust, while the gift itself can encourage a conversion.
You may also want to consider more creative ways to increase value. For example, you might offer a premium subscription option that also includes a discounted renewal. This can upsell your service while also obtaining a long-term customer.
Upselling can be a tricky task. Consumers aren’t always open to a sales pitch, much less an expensive one. Fortunately, you can increase your profits while appealing to shoppers by striving to meet their needs.
Do you have any questions about how to implement effective upselling tactics? Let us know in the comments section below!
Image credit: Pixabay.