Cross-Selling – Convincing Customers That They Do Need 1 More Thing

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“Don’t go yet! There’s more!” We have all been browsing online and see those words just as we are about to check out. Does it make you pause and go back and add more to your shop? That’s cross-selling. 

A cross-sell is when online stores or retailers offer a complementary product to a customer. Cross-selling is one of the most effective marketing methods and encourages customers to add more to their cart. 

Some examples of cross-selling include a retailer offering a deal on a computer mouse and case to a customer purchasing a new laptop. Or an insurance provider who is offering home insurance to its car policyholders. The purpose of cross-selling is to offer additional items that complement the items that the customer is already purchasing.

Benefits of Cross-Selling

When you are promoting cross-selling, there are many benefits. This includes increased sales revenue and increased customer satisfaction. Cross-selling is great for both you and your customers.

The ideal situation is when your returning customers are not aware of a product or service that would improve their experience. When you find a visitor on their customer journey at the ideal point via their preferred contact method and react positively, they are more likely to purchase the recommended product. Not only do your sales increase, but customer satisfaction also increases because the product better fits their needs. Cross-selling can also create better long-term relationships, as long as the execution is correct. The products or services being cross-sold must be appropriate and fit the customer’s needs and what they are buying.

Cross-Selling Techniques

When promoting cross-selling, you want to offer the customers additional products and services that will genuinely provide them with extra added value. So, you always want to think about cross-sales from your customer’s point of view, not just from the view of how much revenue you think you can generate.

Find your customer at effective points on their journey. For example, email campaigns might be the best way to promote cross-selling if they have used your website to place orders before. 

Always make effective use of the data your customers provide. The new generation of consumers expects personalized services, even when it comes to cross-selling, and the tools for providing that through data that your customers provide are out there. 

Does cross-selling work?

Cross-selling provides value for both businesses and customers. It is one of the primary methods of generating new revenue for many businesses. Also, this is an easy way to grow any business, as a relationship is already there with the client and the business. 

When done efficiently and effectively, cross-selling does work. It is a good practice for any business and can translate into significant profits. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of Cross-Selling 

Companies employ different tactics to increase revenues and drive traffic back to your site. One of the most effective is cross-selling. When you are promoting cross-selling, the business must understand consumer behaviors and their needs. So, offering complementary products to fulfill those needs and add more value to their order is essential. 

While it is easier to sell to an existing customer than a new one, cross-selling can adversely affect customer loyalty. A salesperson is aggressively trying to sell a customer a related product, that is cross-selling incorrectly because it can come across as pushy. Then the customer will either leave without purchasing the item or not come back again. 

When you are cross-selling, it is important to know who you are cross-selling to. For example, some customers routinely return or exchange products. You don’t want to cross-sell to this type of customer because while they generate big revenues if the customer is returning the products, it will cost the company more than the revenue. 

Cross-selling has many advantages, such as increasing revenues, increasing brand loyalty, and fulfilling customer needs. Just be aware of the disadvantages if done incorrectly. 

How Can You Increase Your Cross-Selling Effectiveness?

There are several strategies you can employ that will make cross-selling effective. First, you will want to wait until a relationship is developing between the customer and your business. Once that trust is there, the customer is more likely to continue purchasing your products and more likely to add on the other items that have been suggested. 

You also want to make sure that the products and services complement the needs and goals of the buying customer. Offering a product or service that serves no purpose to the customer is counterproductive and can detract from customer satisfaction. 

When you are describing cross-selling, the best description would be it is your weapon to increasing sales. Here are a few options you can use for your e-commerce store to promote cross-selling. 

1. On-Site Opportunities

E-commerce cross-selling on your product pages is a great way to increase sales. It is all about identifying what customers need to make the most of the product they are purchasing. 

Customers want their shopping experience to be an easy one. That’s why showcasing what other customers are also purchasing with a certain product indicates what a person may need. 

Remember watching a commercial about anything electronic, and it always says “batteries not included”? This cross-selling opportunity lets someone know that your equivalent of ‘batteries’ isn’t included but that the customer can gain what they need with a simple click.

Suppose your product offers a warranty at an additional cost. In that case, this is also a great cross-selling opportunity because not only will it increase your revenue, but it also increases the total customer lifetime value. Also, depending on your customer service model, if something is damaged or has other issues, this formalizes that agreement and helps you earn a bit more money. 

2. The Boredom Purchase: Additions in the Shopping Line 

Are you ever in line at the grocery store, and while you’re waiting, you end up picking up a pack of gum, chocolate bar, or magazine? Your online store can do the same. When you make the customer an offer that sounds like a great deal, you will get more out of what they are buying. For example, if you offer discounts based on cart size – such as offering free shipping on orders over a certain amount – remind the customer of this deal and suggest related items that’ll get them over the hump. 

When you are offering products to get the customer over a certain amount, the products are in relation to what is already in the cart and keeping the costs low. It would help if you also kept the recommendations to a minimum to prevent customers from feeling overwhelmed or wanting to abandon the cart altogether.

If your product page cross-sells are relatively singular such as a “Customers Also Bought” section underneath your products – move this cross-sell opportunity to the cart total page to give the customers a little extra nudge before they are about to check out. 

3. The Big Benefit: Email and E-Commerce Cross-Selling 

Most e-commerce cross-selling efforts focus on the site, but there are plenty of other opportunities to earn a little more from customers. 

Email marketing is a great way to promote cross-selling for returning customers. After completing a purchase, an obvious opportunity at the end of the confirmation email would be to display a “Customers Also Purchased” section. It’s a quick and easy way to keep people interested. Even if it does not produce a sale immediately, it is a small reminder to customers showing all we have to offer. Keeping it simple also prevents the business from coming across as pushy. 

Another great opportunity is about a week after a customer has received their product, you can email them asking them to review the product. Again, it’s a way for you to actively see if people like what they are buying. You can also include coupons, discounts, or any other elements that may result in a new sale. 

4. Don’t Get Greedy 

Those are the three most popular e-commerce cross-selling opportunities that you can use to increase sales. You have plenty of options to encourage customers to add to their cart or make another purchase and ensure that you won’t use all of your options right away. You don’t want to come across as greedy or annoying, resulting in a lost customer. 

When your customer sees your ads and cross-sells pitches more than four or five times, it has the potential to make them frustrated. You want to avoid that like the plague. Being greedy can lead to situations where you can’t deliver, which can be harmful, especially during the holiday season. 

You want to provide additional value to the customer and boost enjoyment for your customer. Advertise to others how you want an advertisement to come across to you. 

Cross-selling is just convincing your customer that they need to add additional items to complement what they already have in their cart. It also allows you to showcase your products in a better way and engages with your customer, and drives more traffic to your website. 

These are great methods to cross-selling products that will result in sales without coming off as too much of a salesperson. 

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