How to Increase Up-selling and Cross-selling Potential

Anyone who has ever owned or worked in a retail-based business understands the value of cross-selling and up-selling products. It is the reason jewelers keep the wedding bands beside the diamond rings and why salon stylists keep hair products near the cash register. The public may think it is for the sake of convenience but perceptive business owners know that these extra sales can really make a difference to their profit margins. Online businesses are no different, they still need to make those up-sells and cross-sells, and although the theory is the same, the technique is a little different.


The Importance of Cross-Selling to Your Customer Engagement

As a retailer, you never need be shy about cross-selling your customers. Often you are doing them a service. If you are selling camping equipment and the buyer purchases a tent, letting him know about the proper fitting tent fly not only increases your total sale at checkout, but also increases the customer’s satisfaction by having the product he bought work as well as possible. Even if the purchase is not made that day, just by showing him what is available could encourage a second visit and purchase. The same theory applies to an up-sell, if your customer is looking at kitchen mixers with number of different attachments and you show him, a more expensive but quite likely more efficient item, not only are you more likely to up-sell this buyer, you improve his customer experience by providing the exact item he desired. The key to increase cross-sell is to offer companionable items that the customer believes he cannot do without.


Tips for a Successful Up-Sell

For a successful up-sell, show the customer the product as soon as they start to focus their browsing. You do not want to start introducing new ideas as they are calculating shipping costs. This may mean they will look at the new product, but you risk the chance of cart abandonment as they return to shopping. For a successful up-sell, it is also recommended that you show higher-end products with more features. Now is not the time to introduce additional savings, you want them to choose the more expensive item because it better suits their needs, and not the cheaper item because it is discounted.


Smart Navigation is Everything

So how do you increase up-sell and cross-sell opportunities on your website? The secret is in the UX. Good user experience can be the difference between cart abandonment and increased conversion rates and successful up-sell. When we talk about good UX, we are referring to smooth navigation that not only entices customer engagement but also guides the customers to the products you want them to find. Navigation optimizing tools can help boost sales through better navigation with tooltips, site tours and a wide variety of on-page guidance methods.

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Even in this electronic world, we still use the same selling techniques that were established generations ago. Cross-selling and up-selling remain an important part of retail business whether you are the neighborhood florists, or run a global online flower delivery service.

Noa is Iridize's Head of Content. With a background in digital strategy planning and database management, Noa translates Iridize's vision, stories and data into words. Digital learning and user experience are a particular passion of hers.