Written by Sean McPheat |
“Want fries with that?”
Effective ways to up sell your current products and services
Up selling is a requirement that has generated a lot of attention in recent years. This is because businesses know the value of up selling products. It is not so much the product that matters as the related products that can be sold over and over again to the same buyer. This increases the value of your customer and makes him your life long customer.
Up selling is when you are offered an upgrade of the same product. It is closely aligned with cross-selling and back end selling. There are several ways that you can do this.
Effective ways to up sell: One of the easiest ways to up sell products is to offer an upgrade. For example your potential customer is interested in buying a sandwich from you. You might try to up sell him a value meal, which would include a drink and a side dish. This would all be at a discounted price. Just a little more than he would be paying for his sandwich. This is a common way for fast food places to up sell.
Similarly if you were selling software, your customer might be going to buy a standard version of your product. To up sell you might offer him an upgrade at a discounted rate. When he hears all the additional features and sees the discounted rate he will recognise the value and may very well buy the upgraded version.
You can quite see how up selling will increase the value of the product in the buyer’s eyes and bring in additional profit to you. This is a win, win situation when done correctly.
The technique is based on added value to the customer. This will be an upgrade at a discounted price, and enough margins to be profitable to you. Up selling in this way is not hard to do and customers are often quite willing to accept the up sell, when they understand the value in it for them.
Offer a related product: Another form of up sell is to offer a related product. For example a book could be purchased as is, or up sold with a bundle of related books. Again the up sell would be an irresistible discounted special price. Many potential customers interested in the subject would be happy to jump at the deal. Again this will be based on the principle of perceived extra value.
Cross selling is also offering a related product. In the case of the books instead of the bundle there may be a related piece of software to go with it, which will enhance the reader’s enjoyment of the book.
The example of the fries in the title will be an example of cross selling. The fries would be in addition to the main item that the customer is buying. This could also be a milk shake or cold drink on a hot sunny day. The milk shake, or drink would be quite a welcome addition for the customer and he would very likely accept it. An up sell has been accomplished quite easily.
Backend selling: Again a related product can be offered. This can be after the customer has purchased and be in the form of a bounce back offer, “Thank you for purchasing, here is a special discount for our valued customers etc.” This is a form of up sell and is the key to a successful marketing business.
How to encourage sales people to up sell? The usual way to encourage employees to up sell is to offer a small commission on every successful product that is up sold. This will encourage them to remember to up sell on every product they offer.
Making products that can be upgraded and sold in bundles or even used as back end offers: This is quite easy to do. You will need to develop about 4-6 products all related to each other. To do this you must understand your market. Ask yourself the question “What would a customer who likes this product also like to buy?” You will then have your up sell products ready.
Up selling can bring in a good amount of extra profit for your company. The trick to make this sales tactic work well is to have a good product to begin with. It should be useful and popular with your market. The next thing to remember is to make the up sell item valuable for your customer. Thirdly sell the up sell item at a bargain price so that the customer will see it as an additional savings with value. This will then be irresistible to your potential buyer. You are in fact making the up sell an offer that your buyer will find hard to refuse.
Originally published: 11 September, 2007
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