What is cross selling in e-commerce?

E-commerce has become one of the most effective ways to sell products and one strategy that has proven to be successful in the world of e-commerce is cross-selling. Looking to know how it works and how to implement it in your business? Read on!

Have you ever been to the market or store to buy a specific product, but brought home 1 or 2 additional items? If you’ve gone through this, it means you participated in a cross-selling action, and it’s time to start applying it to your sales!

A lot of companies treat the consumer as a one-dimensional figure who has only one need to satisfy. The customer enters the store, buys the product and leaves. End of interaction.

By acting this way, companies miss great opportunities to increase revenue at minimal cost.

If the same thing happens to you, don’t despair. You can change this situation with just 2 questions:

  • What does it take to make my product work?
  • What are the consequences?

Confused? Relax, read on and you’ll understand how these questions can increase your revenue!

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Imagine you walk into an electronics store and tell the salesperson you’re looking for a new phone. Your only requirement is that it has a powerful battery because “you hate running out of battery or carrying your charger everywhere you go”.

Next, the salesperson shows you the most self-contained phone on the market and before you go to the cashier to pay, he asks, “why don’t you take a power bank too?”

Then he explains the offer to you, “for another $100, you take a power bank home, and you’ll always have enough charge to double your battery life.”

Great, right?

Then, in the checkout line, you see another customer talking to the same salesperson. But this customer wants a cell phone with a great camera because he loves to take pictures.

After the salesperson presents him with the best camera phone and closes the sale, he asks, “Do you have a selfie stick yet?”

You must have gotten the idea by now.

So, what is cross selling? Cross-selling is the technique of making an offer for a product that is complementary to what the customer has decided to buy to increase the store’s revenue.

That is, (taking the example as an explanation) you wanted a cell phone with a good battery, and you also got a power bank, and the other customer wanted a device with a good camera and bought a selfie stick to complement it.

So yes, this type of strategy can play a vital role in increasing your company’s revenue.

Harvard Business Review conducted a study among companies in Europe and the United States and found that everyone who implemented cross-selling strategies increased the ROI results of each customer.

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5 examples of cross-selling e-commerce

Here are five examples of cross selling in ecommerce that you can implement in your business to boost sales and attract new customers:

  1. Product add-ons: this is the most common form of additional purchase. When a customer adds a product to the cart, other complementary products are shown. For example, if a user adds a camera to their shopping cart, they might be offered a tripod or camera case as an add-on.
  2. Product bundles: in this type of cross-selling, several products are offered together in a package at a lower price than if each of them was bought separately. For example, when a customer is buying a video game console, you could offer a package that includes the console, a game, and an extra controller.
  3. Upselling: the customer is offered an improved or more expensive version of the product they’re looking to buy. E-commerce upsell examples include the following: if the user is buying a 50-inch TV, you could offer a larger 65-inch version with extra features..
  4. Post-purchase cross-selling: after the customer has made a purchase, you could offer additional products related to their purchase. For example, if the customer has just bought a cell phone, you could offer a phone case or headset.
  5. User behavior-based recommendations: this uses data from previous purchases and user behavior on the website to offer relevant products. For example, if a customer has bought several cookbooks, they could be offered more cookbooks or cooking-related products.

These are just a few examples of cross-selling e-commerce that you could use for your online store. The key is to offer related and complementary products that add value to the customer’s purchase while increasing the average order value.

How to cross sell effectively?

Keep the following tips in mind for effective e-commerce cross-selling.

  1. Know your audience well: before offering an additional product, make sure you know your customers and their needs. This means you could offer products that really interest them and that could improve their shopping experience.
  2. Show relevant products: when making product suggestions, make sure they’re relevant to the product the customer has already chosen. This will make the customer more likely to be interested in the additional product.
  3. Offer an incentive: to encourage the customer to make the additional purchase, offer an incentive such as a discount on the complementary product or free shipping on multiple purchases.
  4. Make it easy: make sure the additional purchase process is quick and easy. If the customer must go through several additional steps to purchase the suggested product, they’re more likely to back out of the purchase.

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Best practices in cross selling e-commerce in retail

There are a few best practices in retail that can help improve the effectiveness of cross-selling:

  1. Offer discounts when complementary products are purchased: offering discounts when complementary products are purchased might encourage the customer to make the purchase.
  2. Offer a loyalty program: this incentivizes the customer to buy more products and make more purchases in the future.
  3. Offer related products on the checkout page: this is a great way to increase average order value and reduce shopping cart abandonment.
  4. Personalize offers: customize cross-selling offers in line with your customers’ interests and needs. For example, if a customer is looking for home care products, offer related products such as vacuum cleaners.

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Benefits of cross selling e-commerce

Cross-selling e-commerce has several key benefits that can help improve the customer experience and boost a business’ sales. Some of the main benefits are:

  1. Improves customer experience: when customers find relevant and useful products, they feel more satisfied with their purchase which, in turn, leads to a better shopping experience. This builds customer loyalty while increasing the likelihood of them becoming repeat customers.
  2. Reduces cart abandonment: by offering additional products on the checkout page, you can reduce shopping cart abandonment by giving customers an extra reason to follow through with their purchase.
  3. Improves advertising efficiency:  cross selling for ecommerce can also help improve advertising efficiency by offering customers relevant and useful products. This helps to increase the conversion rate and reduce the customer acquisition cost.
  4. Increases customer satisfaction: offering complementary and relevant products can make users feel more satisfied with their shopping experience. What’s more, customers might come across new products that they hadn’t heard of before, which increases their level of satisfaction and the likelihood of making additional purchases in the future.

To sum up, rolling out cross-selling strategies in e-commerce is an excellent way to improve your customers’ experience while boosting sales. Offering related products in the shopping cart and on the checkout page can be an extremely effective way of driving sales of complementary products and increasing order value.

PayRetailers is an online payment platform that can help your business effectively roll out these strategies. Thanks to its advanced technology and customizable tools, you can offer your customers a smoother and more convenient shopping experience, while boosting your revenue and building customer loyalty.

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