Failing to Upsell Can Cost You Up to 20% of Your Business

When you go to the grocery store, what do you see lining the shelves all the way through the checkout line? Low-cost, high-margin items that children (and adults!) love to grab and toss in the cart at the last moment. Would you be surprised to learn that these “small” purchases of gum alone add up to $3 billion worldwide. These so-called impulse buys happen because the consumers is presented with an option that appeals to them in the moment. Doesn’t that sound a great deal like an upsell or a cross-sell? If you skip providing shoppers with these options as a part of your checkout process, you could be losing out on a significant portion of your annual sales revenue.

Upselling for Customer Benefit

Selling is always easier when you’re able to tie the product to a felt need for your shoppers. That’s particularly true of upsells such as batteries. Many a parent has been frustrated on Christmas morning by children who’ve received battery-powered gifts — minus those beautiful batteries. So many, in fact, that retailers have learned to stock batteries close to the products that need them. Problem solved! When you utilize this same type of upsell strategy, not only are you growing your sales but you’re also providing shoppers with a necessary benefits that feels helpful instead of intrusive.

Increased Profitability

It can cost a great deal to bring in new customers, but upselling a current customer has a very low cost associated with the activity. When you engineer your checkout process to automagically provide a related product, you are increasing basket size without any effort on the part of a salesperson. It does take some time and thought to ensure that you have the correct products, but reviewing your current purchases and speaking with your best existing customers should give you some good clues about which products to upsell.

Upselling to current and existing customers shouldn’t feel intrusive. You don’t want to require people to click through pages of upsells on their way to the checkout cart or you risk alienating your shopper. Instead, a very few well-curated items could be just what you need to boost that basket! 


“Remember, wealth has nothing to do with money, success has everything to do with failure and life is as simple as you make it!” – John Dessauer

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *