How to Effectively Upsell on Your Website

Syed Balkhi

Are you looking for a way to sell more premium products and improve your average order value (AOV)? If so, you’re in the right place!

Upselling is a highly effective way to connect with your target audience and convince them that buying an upgraded version of your product is worth the money. Simply put, upselling is the process of taking a customer’s order and offering them something extra for an additional cost.

Brands that sell smartphones or software know this practice well. Here’s an example from Samsung and their Galaxy S22 line:
Samsung Galaxy S22 LineSamsung Official

As you can see, there are three options to choose from. We will discuss the rule of three later, but for now, check out the different versions. Each one has unique benefits and features designed with customer needs in mind.

If someone walked in and asked for a Galaxy S22, the sales representative would try to get them to upgrade to an S22+ or Ultra, depending on their specific needs.

So, now that you know a little more about upselling let’s talk about the benefits. If you implement a solid upselling strategy, here are a few things you can look forward to:

  • Learn more about customers
  • Improve customer satisfaction because people are getting what they need
  • Boost marketing ROI
  • Increase your customer lifetime value

Today, my goal is to show you several actionable ways you can use upselling on your website so you can reach your goals and grow your small business.

Let’s dive in!

Highlight the Benefits of Upgrading

The number one thing you should do if you hope to upsell successfully is highlight the benefits of upgrading to a different product. Imagine you’re getting ready to buy email marketing software for your business. A pop-up asks if you want to upgrade to the deluxe version of the software, but there’s not a single reason why you would make the switch.

Would you take the upgrade?

Most people wouldn’t.

Now, let’s flip the scenario around. Imagine a similar situation, except the pop-up leads you to a landing page highlighting all of the different features available in the deluxe version of the software. Odds are, you are far more likely to accept the upgrade.

Not only will highlighting the benefits set expectations for your audience, but it also allows them to think about the various ways these new features will improve their lives.

You can expand on these points for your product by displaying user reviews that show how these features helped other people. If you’re wondering how this could impact your sales, consider this; customers are willing to spend around 31% more if businesses have genuine reviews on product-specific landing pages.

When you’re writing marketing copy for your premium products, ask yourself, “why would a user want to upgrade?” and use these points for reference when highlighting the benefits of your upsell.

Strategically Bundle Products

The next topic I want to discuss is product bundles. This is another surefire way to get more people to upgrade their orders. Putting similar products together in one affordable package can help improve sales and convince customers that your offer is packed with value.

Imagine you’re shopping online for a pair of shoes. You find a pair that you love and decide to add them to your cart. You navigate to the checkout page and see an option to add matching laces and a cleaning product. This is bundle upselling in action.

There’s a good chance customers will want to take care of their shoes, so they will happily accept this offer to keep their sneakers looking brand new.

If you sell software, like website plugins, you can bundle your product with other tools in your catalog. Another option is to partner with another business and offer both products for one price. So, the owner of an email marketing SaaS may decide to reach out to a hosting company about creating an all-in-one bundle.

Think carefully about the products available on your site and how you can nudge users with an upsell bundle that amplifies the value of their original purchase.

Follow the Rule of Three

The rule of three is the idea that you should limit your upsell options to three items or less. If you have more than that, users may experience choice paralysis. If this occurs, they may decide to leave without buying anything at all.

You can see an example of the rule of three in the photo from Samsung. They created three versions of their phone because they didn’t want to overwhelm or confuse their audience.

There’s another side to this rule that you should know. Most people will choose the middle option of the three. So, if you’re selling an online tool with three tiers; free, premium, and deluxe, most people will eventually become premium-level paid customers. You can later upsell the deluxe version when it’s time for them to pay their subscription.

Create a Sense of Urgency

Fear of missing out (FOMO) is another driver for upselling. Customers will usually take an upsell if they feel like they are getting a deal that won’t be around forever.

When you consider that 40-70% of people are not ready to buy when they visit a website, this can seriously improve conversions. People will gladly jump at offers if they are only available for a limited time.

Research shows that 7 in 10 millennials experience FOMO regularly. This stat means that people are always looking for the best possible deal.

There are plenty of ways you can add FOMO to your upsell offers. I’ve found that one of the best ways is to show a countdown timer on your payment page.

So, if someone buys a basic product from your site, you can show a countdown timer and upsell offer on the checkout page. The incentive from the deal and the limited time frame will prompt many customers to accept your upsell.

You can also include phrases like limited-time and while supplies last to add an extra level of FOMO to your marketing strategy.

Add a Touch of Personalization

Finally, let’s talk about personalization. A whopping 80% of people say they are more likely to take advantage of a deal if it’s personalized to match their unique goals and interests. I found that you can use this fact to upsell to existing customers and email subscribers.

Odds are, your email subscribers likely told you a little about their preferences when they signed up for your list. You can use this information to segment your audience and create upsell offers unique to each person.

Similarly, people who’ve purchased something on your site have a history with your brand and know what they want. If you can tap into their needs and offer additional products or services, more people will take advantage of your offers.

If you don’t know enough about your customers to start this process, I recommend using feedback forms and email surveys to gather essential details about your subscribers. If done correctly, you can create an upsell that aligns perfectly with their needs.

Back to You

It’s easy to see that upselling is an excellent way to grow your business and build rapport with new visitors and existing customers alike. Today’s tips have helped us grow multiple brands over the last decade. I believe if you’re persistent and follow the data, you can experience the benefits of this marketing strategy.

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Syed Balkhi is on a mission to level the playing field for small businesses. 19+ million websites use his software to grow and compete with the big guys. 100+ million people read his blogs every year to grow their website traffic, sales, & conversion

West Palm Beach, FL

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