What is Cross-Selling?
eCommerce cross-selling is the marketing technique of selling more than one complementary product or service to one customer, in which a company or brand offers additional products to customers who already buy the primary product.
This practice originally takes place in retail stores, where consumers walk into a store full of different items and a sales associate will persuade them to buy more additional products to increase the value of the customer’s order.
What is Cross-Selling used for?
Cross-selling is a common practice in customer-facing roles and is used by service companies to increase revenue (AOV – Average Order Value). It can also be a way for companies to increase brand loyalty and promote products that the consumer has not purchased previously.
The ultimate goal of all eCommerce cross-selling is that the customer will buy at least one additional product in addition to what they have already purchased.
What are good examples of eCommerce Cross-Selling?
1. McDonald’s’ “Would you like fries with that?”
A simple yet brilliant and well-known example of cross-selling (you might’ve heard of it a hundred times) is McDonald’s famous “Would you like fries with that?”
it’s Mcdonald’s employees’ task to ask every customer if they would like to have fries and drinks or larger sizes. Thanks to this, Mcdonald’s sells millions of kilograms of fries globally. Every.Day.
2. Amazon’s “Customers who bought this item also bought”
Amazon masters cross-selling like an artist. With a simple section under each product’s brief information, “Customers who bought this item also bought”, they make cross-selling like a value-added service which deeply related to the customer’s need. Hence, motivate customers to buy more without being too obtrusive.
What we can learn from Amazon’s cross-selling tactic is that cross-selling should be presented as a solution to solve customers’ problems, to make their life easier, not just another marketing urge to spend money.
Related term: Upselling vs Cross-Selling
Upselling is a sales technique whereby a salesperson suggests a more expensive item than the one originally requested, in order to secure a higher sales total.
Organizations that sell items in retail stores might up-sell by suggesting an upgrade for an item the customer originally bought at retail price. Restaurants might up-sell dishes by offering smaller portions and/or menu items not offered on the regular menu.
How to cross-sell on your eCommerce site? Methods to start cross-selling right!
1. Offering additional services besides your primary products or services
This cross-selling practice is usually seen in software-selling stores. When purchasing a digital product or software, on the product or checkout page, customers can see add-on services such as warranty, fast shipping, extra package protection, etc.
2. Product bundling
In addition to adding extra services to your products, you can suggest complimentary items to your primary products such as “Customers also bought”, or “You might also love” or “Shop the look”… section on your product pages.
The products that are bundled together must naturally go well together (remember, focus on solving a specific need of your customers instead of trying to sell more). You can also invest in an eye-catching package for the bundles to encourage customers to buy your bundles.
3. Offering rewards
If you cross-sell multiple products, you may be able to offer customers additional incentives for purchasing more than one product. For example, you could give away a free chips voucher every month if they purchase two pizzas from your website.
Another possible way of doing this is by giving them a coupon code in the mail that they can use to get a discount on their next purchase.
4. Making data-driven cross-selling suggestions
Data and customer insights are always at the heart of any on-site optimization. Cross-selling is no exception. To cross-sell more effectively, make sure you don’t miss out on customers’ buying journeys on your website, how they interact, what keywords they use to find products, and how their purchases are made.
5. Utilizing visual merchandising
Visual merchandising is an excellent cross-selling strategy. With visual merchandising, you can easily prioritize your primary and complementary product displays together to entice more clicks. Using tools like Product Filter and Search, you can easily set display and ranking rules to display certain product collections, and bundles… first based on product attributes as well as keyword matching.