Cross-selling is the art of enticing customers with goods or services that are related to what they are already buying. You may have supplies available for that printer you are selling. You might offer a dessert for your customer’s meal. Buyers want to know that you are searching for the best solutions to their situation. These tips will help you cross-sell more effectively.

  1. Be relevant – Offer suggestions which are related to the original sale, but do not attempt to sell your customer the entire store. If a customer buys some peanut butter, show them the jelly rather than the green beans. Your customer does not want to be inundated with too many choices when they have selected an item.
  2. Maximize positioning on your site – Place your cross-sell items where they will be seen near related items on your site. Use a suggestion tool which is offered with a lot of eCommerce software. Let your customers see the accessories that you have available, but again, keep the selection limited to a few.
  3. Bundle your products – Offer discounts for buying items in packages. Combo meals have worked extremely well for the fast food industry. Your customers thrive on the thought of making deals, so they will spend ten extra dollars just to save five on a pair of products. That behavior increases your bottom line.
  4. Offer several price points – When you are giving your customers a choice, present products from three different price points. You want them to know about the latest and greatest items, but you also want to give that customer some practical choices about what to buy. Do not be completely focused on cross-selling or up-selling the most expensive items.
  5. Be observant – This suggestion applies more to the brick and mortar cross-sellers. Watch your customers and understand the signals that they give you. If you can tell that someone is not happy with the features of your skis, give them an option of buying the skis that are higher on the price chain. Timing is everything, and the astute salesman can tell when their customer is making their decision.cross-selling
  6. Offer free shipping – Free shipping is a great way to get your customers excited about an order. Set a price threshold that your customers must pass to qualify for that bonus, and they will do quite a lot to reach it. If a customer is a few dollars away from the mark, they will add another item to reach your arbitrarily determined price point.
  7. Create some urgency – Use the idea that your items are available at this price for only a limited time. Give your customers some urgency by telling them that there are only a few of their favorite items left on the shelves. Keep the deals short so you can use phrases like ‘ends Thursday’ in your advertising.
  8. Show your top rated suggestions – Set up a system of relationship selling. Let your customers know what other customers have bought and what products they believe are the best. Give your customer the ability to compare feature to feature on each of the products that you have, rather than striking all over the board. Your customers love to receive information.
  9. Keep add-ons at checkout – Customers do not want to repeat the process of checking out when they have an add-on item. They do not want their impulse buy to throw them to the back of the line. They do not want to re-input their credit card information just because they wanted to buy a pair of socks with the shoes that they were purchasing.
  10. Make the experience personal – Your customers are the most important individuals in the world. They are the ones who keep the doors open, and they want you to cater to their needs. Focus the attention on them when you are cross-selling by using phrases like, ‘you might also like’ or ‘do you want’ rather than canned corporate phrases that start with ‘we suggest.’

Cross-selling and up-selling your products becomes easier with more practice. Experiment with the different techniques available and watch your profits soar.

This is a guest post from James Adams who is a writer working for leading supplier of toner cartridges. He analyses and reviews hardware like the Q6000A and posting on their design blog when he has enough time.

image: ed