One of the most cost effective selling techniques is also the one sales technique where many retailers either avoid all together, or completely fail at performing properly. This sales technique is of course the upsell.
A properly performed upsell will entice a customer to purchase higher quality or additional products or services than what they originally intended to buy - and make them happy they did!
Where many businesses fail when it comes to using an upsell to increase sales is with the use of the hard upsell - or trying to persuade a customer to purchases add-ons or products that they do not really need. It is this mentality that even forces some business to forgo the opportunity of performing an upsell altogether.
How to Upsell to Increase Sales
In order to be successful at increasing sales, the ideology of the upsell has to change from a simple technique of increasing the bill to one that is not only good for profit, but also helps to build trust and a stronger relationship with customers.
When it comes to the upsell, always think about the customer's overall level of satisfaction as the top priority.
In order to change this way of thinking, you will need to focus on two main areas of training to help your staff improve the way they upsell.
1 - Provide Customer Service Training
It's pretty easy to notice that one of the major aspects that is lacking in the retail industry today is good old fashioned customer service.
Gone are the days of the commission based sales force. (Well, for the most part anyway). With that drive missing, many retail staff only provide the most basic level of customer service.
In some instances it makes shopping more enjoyable. You don't have to worry about the sales staff hovering around your every move. But in other regards, the level of customer service has dropped significantly.
Providing your sales staff with proper customer service training will build your business in the long run. By actually interacting with the customers, your staff may be afforded many more opportunities to perform an upsell. Remember, the upsell should be for the customer's benefit; the added profit is only a bonus.
For example, through interaction with the customer your staff may find out that they are actually purchasing your product as a gift for a loved one. This may create an opportunity to upsell them on accessories, gift cards, gift-wrapping, or any other products that you have deemed complimentary.
2 - Provide Product Knowledge Training
In combination with excellent customer service skills, the upsell will become much more effective if your staff is also very knowledgeable about the products and services you offer.
By knowing which products are complimentary, not only to other products you sell but also to certain situations (such as the one given in the example above), your sales staff will be much more informed and will be able to offer more accurate upsell opportunities as they arise.
Offering related products appropriately will result in more profits and increased sales. More importantly, it will positively effect the overall customer experience. In the end, keeping your customers happy is the best way to increase sales with the upsell technique.