Similar to cross-selling, up-selling is a sales and marketing technique wherein a seller persuades a customer to buy items more expensive than the currently perused item—all of this without straying out of the product family. For example, if a customer enters an offline store to buy a Galaxy Note 3, the sales personnel may recommend the costlier variant of the product lineup, say a Galaxy Note 5 or Note 4.

Though up-selling and similar selling strategies may sound spammy or unethical, it’s essentially also helping the customer derive additional value, provided the up-sell is done taking the customer’s primary requirements into perspective.   

Proper Up-Selling

Basically, up-selling is the store wanting the buyer to spend the maximum amount on a particular product. However, the product suggestions should not be too pricey. At every point, the customer’s buying ability and requirements should be kept in mind. For instance, a buyer looking to buy a Citizen or Fossil watch mustn’t be recommended an Omega or Rolex. As a general thumb rule, the potential up-sell items mustn’t exceed the buyer’s initial product choice’s total price by 25 percent. 

A brick-and-mortar store sales executive must let the customer feel or try out the product. This will increase the chances of a successful up-sell. Basically, a simple recommendation won’t make the cut.

The seller must ensure the buyer is aware how the product (potential up-sell) will benefit him. If a Galaxy Note 4 or 5 is recommended to a buyer who wants to buy the Note 3, the sales executive must list all of the features such as the advanced image sensor, higher resolution display, much improved S-Pen features, etc. that make the more expensive versions superior and worthy. 

When done right, up-selling helps create stronger seller-buyer relationships. Because with every successful up-sell, the seller gets an additional opportunity to interact with customers and know them better. This feeling is mutual.

Upgrading Business

Up-selling helps a company grows its sales and profits. It, in fact, is a better way to improve market share, since selling additional items to an existing customer is much easier than enticing in a new buyer. This holds true for cross-sells as well.