7 Ecommerce Tips to Boost Upselling and Cross-Selling

Ecommerce marketing
8mid read February 5, 2020
Ecommerce marketing
7 Ecommerce Tips to Boost Upselling and Cross-Selling

Among various tips and tricks to raise revenue in ecommerce stores, upselling and cross-selling are obviously potential and profitable approaches. In this blog, we are delighted to help you understand clearly what is upselling and cross-selling with the comprehensive explanation. Then, you will be exposed to the best useful tips to boost up upselling and cross-selling that are concluded by many successful companies and marketers in the world. Let’s dive into it now!

What is Upselling?

Before learning useful tips to do upselling and cross-selling, we should make sure that all of us do understand the meaning of these two tactics in marketing and sales campaigns. 

First of all, what is up-selling?

Up-sell is to offer your customers to buy the more expensive/premium version of the items that they have purchased before or the items they are interested in from your websites. You might experience up-sell many times in both physical stores and online such as buying one-year gym membership instead of the 3 months, of course, with an attractive discount. 

Generally, upselling should be the first thing to do since you already know customers’ favored items. Whatsmore, it will be easier for customers to see the additional benefits of the higher package rather than seeing the different products. 

cross-sell upsell

What is Cross-selling?

Regarding Cross-selling, ecommerce stores do it by offering customers other products or services besides the ones they have purchased before or are going to purchase. Examples of cross-selling are so prevalent in our life. Have you gone to a KFC or Mc Donald’s restaurants without buying a combo of food and drinks? Similarly, e-stores can always provide buyers the combo, bundle, group of products with appealing incentives compared to buying the single items. 

Undoubtedly, cross-selling is likely to dilute customers’ attention to the specific products for which they are searching. Nevertheless, cross-selling is the best option when up-selling is not available. Also, cross-sell will be a great choice if ecommerce stores can wisely choose suitable items to cross-sell. These items are recommended to be related to the original ones with resonated benefits. For instance, suggesting customers buy a case and earphones along with a smartphone is a good suggestion.

7 Ecommerce Tips to Upsell and Cross-Sell Effectively

1. Offer an incentive or discount

How to encourage people to act differently from what they are tending to do? The answer is giving them an incentive. Logically, people choose to buy change their intention because motivation is attractive enough. Incentives in upselling and cross-selling can be discount price, free gifts, vouchers or coupon code, etc. Sometimes, people decide to buy a higher package just because of a free gift attached. 

Besides, you must show your customers clear value and benefits that they can have if they choose your recommendations. Showcase the products with accompanying features are so important in this situation. 

The practice of cross-selling can be buying three design courses with a much lower price as the following image:

Frequently bought together items

2. Fear of urgency 

The human brain reacts faster to unusual situations. Urgency results in the same effect. The urgency in sales drives customers to make buying decisions quickly unless they lose the deals. 

To create urgency and fear of missing the good stuff, ecommerce stores can use some useful tools such as countdown timer, daily deal products, flash sales, etc. With countdown timer, you can set up the period for specific items at the product page or homepage where attract much customer attention. In addition, if you change the deals alternatively and continuously, buyers will definitely access your websites more frequently to check it out. Hence, daily deals turn out to be a wise choice to improve upselling and cross-selling effectively. 

Similarly, flash sales are held more and more these days. With very impressive discounts for hot items in a short time (flash), customers will grab the stuff immediately. 

Flash sale banner

3. Social proofs create more trust 

In case discounts and urgency are not enough to persuade consumers, social proofs may be helpful. Social proofs help to demonstrate the value of upsell and cross-sell products to the previous users. It can be testimonials, customer reviews, case studies, and success stories that can be featured on your homepage or product detail page where you want to run the campaigns. 

Testimonials and customer reviews are quite the same and popular in any online shop today. People are increasingly searching for product reviews than ever. While reviews can be short and quickly collected, case studies and success stories likely take more time to gather and showcase on your websites. However, they bring great benefits and gain more trust to drive your sales significantly.

Customer testimonials and social proof

4. Reward loyal customers 

The rule of 80/20 shows that only 20% of your customers bring in 80% revenue for almost any business. Therefore, customer care should focus on repeat consumers. Rewarding them is one of a great way to keep them back and convince them to buy more from you because upsell or cross-sell for an existing customer is much easier than introducing them to the new ones. 

Provided that your loyal clients have been using something in your stores, it means that they have experience and understand your products. They are likely concerned about other items or higher packages if they are at good prices. 

Regarding reward types, there are many choices for you to implement, such as:

  • Thank you letter with upsell/cross-sell recommendation
  • Free gifts for loyal customers (more than one year eg.)
  • VIP class if buying more than $1000 for instance
  • Reward points 
  • Discount 10% life-time 

These recommendations for rewarding loyal customers can be flexible for each store. You can refer to this blog to have more ideas. 

5. Personalize your recommendations

Research by Accenture pointed out that 75% of consumers love to re-purchase from both online and offline stores if they can either know their purchase history, recommend good choices based on previous orders, and even remember their names. 

All of these conditions are related to the personal buying data of each customer. So, to serve them better, you need other tools to collect and analyze customer information such as a CRM system, report function, cookies, and so on. 

For example, if you know a customer financing status, you can give out the best options for them in upselling or cross-selling. 

Personalized customer recommendations

6. Use the Power of Three

If you haven’t heard about the “rule of three”, you have missed a fundamental trick in marketing. Marketers use this concept in their business to orient customers and force them to select the desired option in the most natural way. 

Regarding this blog, we will talk about the power of three in pricing strategy to boost upsell and cross-sell products. In various studies and researches, they found that among three price levels, customers mostly tend to choose the middle one. (This is also called price anchoring). Famous brands do implement this rule and become more than successful. 

You can see the example of Mailchimp following:

Rule of three marketing

The Standard package is even highlighted with the recommendation from them. If you notice, you can see the Premium option is much more expensive than the two others. And that package is likely not Mailchimp’s target product. It can be seen that Mailchimps are driving customers to upsell from the Essentials package to the Standard one in this case.  

7. Train your sales team

It is obvious that upsell and cross-sell are conducted and delivered more effectively via people to people. Your sales team, as well as the customers’ care team, are the vital ones who need to understand and know well how to persuade customers to rebuy or buy more from you. 

Beside educating employees via training courses, ecommerce stores can offer appealing incentives for sales guys. It can be the prize “employee of the month”, voucher on traveling, food and drinks, or even rewards company products. Incentives will surely motivate them to practice up-sell and cross-sell with potential customers. 

Training sales team

Wrap up

Actually, those tips and tricks for nurturing your upsell and cross-sell activities should be implemented flexibly depending on the business types and customers’ behaviors. For example, with the e-stores that have a great number of new customers frequently, discounts and intensives are more than recommended for attracting them to try your products and services. Otherwise, for the businesses that have a significant quantity of repeat buyers, loyalty rewards, and personal selling are the best methods for them to apply upselling and cross-selling effectively. 

Author Bio: 

Rainy is a professional and dedicated writer from Mageplaza, a leading company in Magento 2 extension builder. She loves to share deep knowledge of ecommerce and digital marketing to readers worldwide. 

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