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July 2014 – How Up-Sells and Cross-Sells Boost Your Bottom Line

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When a customer is in “buying mode” capitalize on that frame of mind! Maximize a sales opportunity by introducing additional or complementary services or products, as there is a strong likelihood that they’ll easily be part of the sale.

What’s the difference?Up-Sells and Cross-Sells

  • Up-sells – Offering an upgrade, add-on or more expensive item.
    • Example: for a telecommunications vendor, moving a customer from a basic plan to a plan with more features.
  • Cross-sells – Offering additional and complementary products to an existing sale.
    • Example: in a sports equipment store, after the customer selects golf clubs, offering balls, shoes and accessories.

Why do these work?

It’s all about the customer’s frame of mind. When a customer decides to purchase something, they are in “buying” mode.

By up-selling or cross-selling at that moment, you have a unique opportunity to increase the value of your sale.

It’s all in the timing, delivery and expectation

There are three main components to successful up-selling and cross-selling.

1. Timing

  • For up-selling, the offer must take place while the customer is deciding to buy.
  • For cross-selling, the offer must take place after the decision to buy is made.

Up-Sells and Cross-Sells

2. Delivery

  • Use the right words to show the benefit to the customer.
    • It’s about what and how you say it.
  • Make sure you explain the features and benefits of each component you are presenting.

3. Expectation

  • Make the offer with confidence and with the expectation that the customer will agree to the offer.
    • Have an assumptive, yet respectful approach.

For example:

  • Up-sell for a language learning center – “These 10 classes will help you improve your Spanish. When you select 15 classes, the cost per class is lower and you also improve your pronunciation.”
  • Cross-sell for attorney – “I’ll have the will ready for your review next week. Since we’re drafting this important document, it would be cost efficient and wise to include a health care proxy – should I include it?”

Up-sells and cross-sells can be leveraged online and offline and are part of any successful marketing plan. Make sure you and your staff are carefully trained on these techniques and aware of the importance to your company’s continued growth and success.

Successful cross-selling and up-selling focuses your efforts on meeting your customer’s needs, rather than pushing more products and services. When these marketing efforts are well thought-out, practiced and delivered, those added sales help you grow your business.
For advice on how best to implement such tools or any other marketing solutions, please contact us.

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