Top 10 tips for successful upselling and cross-selling

Why upselling or cross-selling is easier than new business

Have you ever been recommended a particular dish or a bottle of wine in a restaurant? Your waiter was increasing the average spend per head for your table by upselling.

Nobody likes to be sold to but suggesting relevant additional items from the menu (cross-sell) or convincing you to upgrade to a slightly more expensive wine (upsell) probably enhanced your dining experience. A win-win situation for both you and the restaurant.

For the purposes of this post, I’m going to use upsell and cross-sell interchangeably. Both approaches have a similar outcome – the customer gets more value from your business and you get more revenue from a loyal customer.

According to the Marketing Metrics, the probability of selling to a new prospect is 5-20%. The probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%. With strong evidence like that, why wouldn’t you upsell and upgrade the customers you already have a strong relationship with?

Successful upselling helps you to make your customers happier and more successful while accelerating business growth and increasing revenue. Each upsell has the potential to increase the lifetime value of your loyal customers, a strategy that will pay off in the future.

Effective upselling?

Spotting an upselling opportunity is a valuable skill for both Sales and Customer Service. All it takes is a little time to research your customer and understand their needs before you approach them.

  1. Become an expert on your products and your market – customers want to buy from people who have credibility; people who can advise them on what products are best suited to their unique circumstances and who add value by recommending upgrades or alternatives.
  2. Get to know your customer – take the time to research the customer before you get in touch with them.
  3. Pick the best time – use what you know about the customer to get in touch at the optimal time whether that is at the point of purchase when they are already in “buying mode”, in-app when they realise they have a need, during customer support interactions when they could benefit from an upsell or when they are celebrating success such as a winning a deal or an award.
  4. Make an initial contact – put them at ease, listen attentively to their needs and show a genuine interest in them, their business and their marketplace.
  5. Tailor your offering – keep the customer’s needs in mind and ensure you recommend a product that will suit them. Lay the seeds for future upsell opportunities by taking them through additional features and the benefits they will see now and in the future.
  6. Let the customer decide what is affordable – make your case for the most appropriate product to meet the customer’s needs before bringing the cost into play. Highlight the differences between the basic and high-end versions of the product, have at least 3 price ranges of options and help them to make an informed choice.
  7. Suggest a few related products – offer additional products that are relevant to what the customer has already bought or intends to buy. Nothing will turn them off quicker than offering them irrelevant products or overwhelming them with too many options.
  8. Make the customer experience positive – help your customer to get the best value from your product, show the benefits of bringing everything they need into one place and they may reward you with recommendations and repeat business.
  9. Stay in touch – make yourself available if they have questions or if they need any assistance. Stay at the front of their mind by sharing relevant and timely insights with them throughout the customer lifecycle.
  10. Share best practice with your team– reflect on approaches that work and encourage your team to share ideas. Sales leaders can track the results o upselling and reward the team for success.

Upselling isn’t a sales tactic where you win and the customer loses. It’s a customer success tactic that can help you to build deeper relationships with customers where both you and your customer benefit. The customer gets more value and excellent customer experience.

You get more revenue and better customer retention rates through being honest and genuinely interested in helping your customer to achieve success.

It’s not always appropriate to upsell, especially to disgruntled customers. Pick your moment wisely and it can help both you and your customers win.

How can Artesian help you to upsell

Artesian is a software solution that provides contextual, relevant insight into customers and their markets in real-time, helping you get to know your customers better and giving you a competitive edge when it really matters.

Artesian helps you retain and acquire new clients, manage risk and equip your teams for success. Our most recent customer survey showed that 36% of respondents had more business opportunities and 25% experienced an increase in customer satisfaction.

Find out why our customers love Artesian with a demo.