How Cross-Selling Boosts eCommerce Sales
Explore the concept of cross-selling and how it can boost eCommerce sales. Learn what it is, how it can benefit your business, and what not to do while cross-selling. By complementing customers’ main purchases by promoting higher-margin products and/or services, cross-selling can help you to boost your profit margins.
When you’re trying to sell products online, amidst a sea of competitors, things can get pretty difficult.
It’s hard enough just getting people to your online store, let alone keeping them there, and convincing them to actually make a purchase.
Online shoppers are notorious for abandoning their carts, mere seconds before they go through the checkout, so when it comes to eCommerce, many people are wary of the idea of cross-selling, for fear of annoying potential customers and scaring them away before they buy.
But the truth is, if you want to boost eCommerce sales, cross-selling can be an invaluable tool, and most sales professionals will attest to this.
For example, a Hubspot survey of over 500 sales professionals found that 74 percent of respondents who cross-sell say it’s responsible for up to 30 percent of their revenue.
Moreover, another survey from HubSpot of more than 1,000 sales professionals from around the world found that 42 percent of companies get 11-30 percent of their revenue from cross-selling.
What’s more, the survey also asked sales professionals what their goals are for the coming year, and as you can see from the graph below, the third most popular answer was to up-sell or cross-sell existing customers.
As you can see, among sales professionals, cross-selling is an incredibly popular tactic, and that’s because it’s so useful for helping them to increase sales.
That being said, cross-selling can also be applied to your online store, helping you to boost eCommerce sales by increasing the value of customers’ orders.
So, if you want to learn more about cross-selling, then you should definitely keep reading.
Because in this article, I’m going to explain exactly what cross-selling is, what not to do when cross-selling, and how it can help you to boost eCommerce sales in your online store.
What Is Cross-Selling?
Cross-selling involves offering products or services to customers that are complementary or somehow related to something they’ve shown interest in or have already bought.
The idea is to try to convince customers to purchase additional products and/or services that will complement or improve what they’ve already purchased.
Using the fast-food industry as an example, cross-selling would involve offering customers who are buying a burger the ability to upgrade to a combo meal with fries and a drink.
In the context of what we do, cross-selling would entail offering complementary services to clients.
For instance, if we’ve already built a client’s website, or are in the process of doing so, we can offer them other related services, such as content marketing, or social media management.
If it’s not done in the right way, cross-selling can actually annoy potential customers, and this can deter them from making a purchase.
But when it’s done right, cross-selling offers a wealth of benefits for your business, like improving productivity and efficiency, and gaining greater loyalty from customers, which can help you to boost eCommerce sales.
What to Avoid When Cross-Selling
While cross-selling does provide the potential to significantly boost eCommerce sales, if it’s not done in the right way, it can actually have the opposite effect.
So, before we get into how cross-selling can help you to boost your online sales, I wanted to point out some of the things you should avoid doing.
With that in mind, below I’ve listed several of the most common mistakes businesses make when trying to cross-sell to their customers.
When you’re trying to cross-sell to your customers, make sure the products and/or services you’re recommending are actually relevant.
Offering products that have nothing to do with customers’ needs or whatever it is they’ve purchased can annoy them, or ruin their perception of your business, and this can result in lost sales.
If you’re too aggressive in your efforts to cross-sell, this can be incredibly off-putting for customers.
Truth be told, there’s no better way to deter customers from doing business with you than being too pushy, so make sure to reign things in a bit, if need be.
Lack of Personalization
If you’re not taking the needs and preferences of your customers into consideration then your attempts to cross-sell are probably not going to be very effective.
So, in order to ensure you’re providing personalized recommendations that are actually relevant to your customers, it’s important to invest in things like customer segmentation and data analysis, so you can be sure what you’re recommending is going to provide value for customers.
Cross-Selling Too Soon
Before you attempt to cross-sell to customers, ideally, you’ve got to have some indication that they’re actually interested in making a purchase.
With that said, if you try to cross-sell too early in the sales process, it’s probably going to annoy your customers, and this could end up being a deal-breaker, so before you try to cross-sell anything to your customers, make sure to do whatever you can to ensure they’re interested.
How Cross-Selling Can Benefit Your Business
As I already mentioned, if it’s done right, cross-selling offers many benefits for your business, and all of these aspects can help you to boost eCommerce sales.
That being said, now that you know what not to do, you’ll be much more well-equipped to understand how cross-selling can benefit your business, and what you need to do to make that happen.
With that in mind, here are some of the ways that cross-selling can benefit your business:
Cross-selling can help businesses to make the most of their resources by being able to sell more products or services to existing customers, instead of having to acquire new ones.
This can improve efficiency and lead to increased cost savings, as the cost of acquiring new customers can be very high.
Through the process of cross-selling additional products and/or services to existing customers, businesses can drastically increase their productivity.
This can be chalked up to the better allocation of resources, as less time and money will be spent on acquiring new customers, and more focus can be put on increasing sales from existing customers.
When you’re trying to cross-sell, some customers are just never going to bite, and that’s okay.
But by consistently recommending relevant products and/or services to customers, businesses can bring in more revenue by increasing the number of products they sell, along with the average value of customers’ orders.
Improved Customer Experience
Cross-selling is bound to annoy some customers, but there are those who truly enjoy it, and others who have even come to expect it.
When it’s done properly, cross-selling can significantly enhance the customer experience by offering personalized recommendations, which can result in customers being more satisfied with the products they purchase and their shopping experience as a whole, which can lead to greater loyalty.
Enhanced Customer Relationships
One of the best ways to build trust, and in turn, improve your relationships with customers, is by showing them that you appreciate them, and understand their needs, desires, problems, and preferences.
And by offering relevant, personalized recommendations, cross-selling gives you the opportunity to gain this deeper understanding, while simultaneously showing appreciation and gaining greater trust by offering a more satisfying shopping experience, and letting customers know that you actually understand them.
More Repeat Business
As you gain greater loyalty and trust from customers through cross-selling, this can lead to more repeat business.
Because when you encourage customers to look at products and/or services they may not have considered before, show them that you understand them, and enhance their shopping experience, they’ll be more likely to return to your store and do business with you again.
Better Profit Margins
By complementing customers’ main purchases by promoting higher-margin products and/or services, cross-selling can help you to boost your profit margins.
And by offering these kinds of upgrades or add-ons, you can also increase the value of each customer’s purchase, giving yourself the ability to generate more profit from each sale.
(Featured image by QuinceCreative via Pixabay)
DISCLAIMER: This article was written by a third party contributor and does not reflect the opinion of Born2Invest, its management, staff or its associates. Please review our disclaimer for more information.
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