Upselling is the practice of encouraging customers to purchase a comparable higher-end product than the one in question. For example: If you are buying a $100 shirt, the upseller might say "But this shirt is only $10 more, and it's made of silk." Upselling is often done by salespeople in stores.
The upsell can also be disguised as cross-selling, bundling or package deals, where complementary products are offered along with the primary offering.
10 Upsell Marketing Tactics
Coupons are a great upsell strategy because they don’t come across as pushy. Instead, they encourage your customers to come back and buy more of your products or services; but in order for this tactic to work, you need to set up some rules.
- Keep coupons relevant - Make sure the customer will want to use the coupon. If I buy your cold medicine, offer me a discount on cough drops rather than an unrelated product like shopping bags. If you sell online courses, offer me a deal on another course instead of a different product.
- Put an expiration date on coupons - This will increase urgency and motivate your customers to make another purchase sooner rather than later. I might forget about my coupon if it never expires and not use it until years later when you’re out of business (or have moved onto making money with affiliate marketing).
- Get their email address - Offering coupons in exchange for emails is another great way to get potential leads on your mailing list and build relationships with new subscribers who could turn into paying customers down the road (especially if email marketing is part of your overall affiliate marketing strategy).
- Offer rewards for referrals - Coupons are also effective for getting customers to refer new leads—whether by sharing links with their friends or by giving out business cards with promo codes written on them—and turn their existing social networks into a huge network of potential buyers! You can incentivize further referrals by offering better deals when someone refers five people instead than just one person at first sight.
Highlight product benefits
Highlight product benefits: You can use this tactic to upsell a customer by highlighting the benefits of the upgraded product. For example, you can show the time savings or increase in productivity that can be gained by upgrading your software. Or if they’re buying a new car, you might be able to upgrade them from economy to business class.
Explain how the new product is superior: Point out why your newer product is better than older versions by describing its key features and benefits. Show how it will make their life easier or better in some way.
How does this tactic work? A good example of this strategy is Apple’s iPhone Upgrade Program: Instead of selling customers on a single device, Apple sells them on an experience—one that just happens to come with an expensive price tag every year when Apple releases a new model phone.
Innovate your products
When your customers buy something from you, they're purchasing it based on their idea of what that product can do for them. They've got a vision of the value it will provide.
If you can find a way to make that product better, or easier to use, or more valuable in another way, then you'll have provided your customers with an even better deal than they were expecting—and that's when upsells start to happen organically.
Can you add a new feature, or improve on an existing one? Can you provide accessories or complementary products? What's innovative about your new product ideas? How can you add value to what your customers are getting from their purchases?
This is also a great way to differentiate yourself from the competition. If your products are more valuable than theirs, then customers will want to buy from you instead of them.
Extend your reach
Now that you understand the importance of an upsell marketing campaign, let’s look at some tactics you can employ to make your strategy a success.
Extend your reach
- Develop a social media presence
- Use the right channels to reach your target audience
- Be consistent in your approach and content across every platform
- Utilize search engine optimization (SEO) to increase visibility
- Advertise on related websites and blogs
Upselling is the process of encouraging customers to buy a more expensive version of the product they're already interested in. On the other hand, cross-selling encourages customers to also purchase a complementary product.
Keep it simple and easy-to-understand
You need to ensure that both your product and sales pages are easy to understand. This is important because you want to make it as simple as possible for your visitors to make a purchase.
Here are some ways to keep things simple:
- Keep the language simple and easy-to-understand, even for non-tech customers
- Use diagrams, charts and tables to convey information
- Use examples and analogies to make the product more understandable
- You can also use videos to explain the product
Follow up to old customers
- Send an email to your customers a few days after their purchase, thanking them and offering tips on how to use the product.
- At a later date (don’t make it too annoying), send a customer survey via email. It might be helpful for your business, and it gives you another chance to upsell!
- Offer discounts when cross-selling–this strategy can also be used in person at your store. When you are ringing up a customer, recommend they buy something else that goes well with what they are purchasing, then offer them both items at 10% off if they buy the extra item.
Start your own blog
In addition to providing customers with free information, you could also showcase some of your best products. If you're in software development, for example, a blog is an excellent way to show off the quality of your code or program. Similarly, if you run a restaurant, a dedicated blog on recipes would help readers envision what it might be like to attend your establishment.
Once you've started building up content on your blog and generating readership through social media channels, consider creating an email list that makes use of newsletters as well.
Aside from writing about popular topics related to your brand and posting them on both social media and your site, there are other ways to gain organic traffic without paying for it directly:
- Give away incentives: For instance, if someone signs up to receive notifications from you via email or otherwise (such as SMS), they could get something in return. Offering a discount code or special access can go a long way toward growing customers' interest in returning to buy more!
- Build an audience: People love being part of something bigger than themselves - so create brand loyalty by building communities around shared interests or experiences. You can do this through contests where people submit their own videos made using one of our products/services (e-mail marketing) with other members voting for their favorite ones each week until winners are chosen at random."
Make videos featuring product reviews by satisfied customers
You've probably seen video reviews of products by customers, or testimonials from people who have used a product to get good results—and you can use that strategy in your business. Video testimonials are definitely worth considering, because they can be compelling. In fact, according to research conducted by Wyzowl in 2016, 72% of people prefer getting information about a product through video rather than text.
Video testimonials are particularly effective if you run an online business, but they can also help brick-and-mortar businesses. Even if you have a physical store, and customers come into it before making up their mind about buying something from you—for example, at a car dealership—you could still record the customer's reaction after he or she drives away with their new car and then post the video on your website.
Provide How-To's, tips, tricks, and techniques that educate customers on the full potential of their purchases. Your customers want to get the most out of the products they buy. Help them do that by sharing your knowledge with them on how to use and maximize their purchases. This builds trust, which in turn increases the chances of a satisfied customer raising his or her hand to purchase more from you!
For example, if you’re selling a doorbell camera, don’t just sell that camera. Provide tips and tricks customers can use to ensure their home is safe. Share testimonials about how effective your product was for previous customers. Be open about any potential flaws or weaknesses it may have so your buyers know exactly what they’re getting into before making the purchase.
If your product requires instructions, be sure they’re clear enough that even someone brand new to using it can figure it out easily. Consider making instructional videos available on your website or social channels as well so people can consume information in different ways.
Upselling is one of the most important tools in your marketing toolkit. With this simple technique, you can build long-term relationships with customers, offer them additional value, and ultimately build trust with them. Upselling is an essential part of any business. However, it’s crucial that upsells are done in a subtle way to maximize their effectiveness.