Cross-selling is an effective way to boost your business’ revenue — without coming across as pushy or demanding and potentially offending customers. Those tactics are likely to get your marketing materials sent to the literal and virtual trash anyway.
Instead, cross-selling is the art of subtly promoting products and services based on information that you know about your ideal consumers, and then making suggestions based on those needs.
If you use cross-selling techniques correctly, you can increase the likelihood of consumers, who have already made a purchase from you, to purchase another related product. Here are five key principles to keep in mind when cross-selling:
- Make a strategic plan – Before you can ask customers to buy something else from you, you need to gather data about their current and future plans regarding your services. Then develop a plan to group similar services and products together as complementary items, if possible. Have a system set up for consistent follow-up to keep your name and brand image in front of your existing customers so they will think of you first when a need for your service arises.
- Location matters – Choose cross-selling items that cost about the same or less than the original purchase. Much like stores that position gum in the checkout line, you’ll want to offer low-cost complementary services and products that make it easy for consumers to make a quick decision about buying an additional item.
- Offer recommendations – Recommendations from other consumers help to keep your business out of “hard-sell” territory. With testimonials and recommendations like “customers who bought product X also buy product Y” builds trust and encourages consumers to buy. Don’t forget to ask your satisfied customers for testimonials and referrals on a regular basis.
- Use deals – Developing special offers such as free shipping, rebates, coupons or a discount on additional products purchased can help to boost your cross-selling strategy.
- Bundle – Slightly different from the deal, products and services that are bundled together and offered at the get-go give consumers a bit more time to consider purchasing both products.
You can shift your cross-selling program into overdrive with company branded marketing programs.
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