Best Retail Practices: Cross-Selling in Your Store

Have you tried cross-selling/upselling in your store? Bob Phipps explains cross-selling with this simple example:

“Think of restaurant servers who, when you order a piece of pie or cake, ask, “Do you want a scoop of vanilla ice cream with that?”. You’ve already decided you’re going to treat yourself. The server has made a sale. Then the server comes back to offer you ice cream too. Why? Because they know that vanilla ice cream goes great with pie or cake. They’ve offered you additional value, while potentially earning themselves extra revenue…and a higher tip, don’t forget.”

Cross-selling is a win-win: it maximizes your sale and the customer leaves with something extra. “A customer who says “yes” to buying your product is already willing to open their wallet once again.” (Bob Phipps)

How can you master cross-selling in your college bookstore? Check out these four tips:

1 – Know Your Pairings

Consider which of your products pair well together. It helps to understand the categories your products fall into, and which categories have good cross-over. For example: notebooks pair well with pens, binders pair well with index dividers and tabs or sheet protectors, and more. You can even practice during down-times with your employees by asking them to come up with different pairing ideas.

2 – Keep Pairings Relevant

Just like ice cream makes sense with a dessert, you want to make sure that your pairings make sense, are relevant to the student’s needs, and don’t feel forced. Your upselling suggestions should be in the best interest of the customer and product suggestions should resonate with them and increase satisfaction. Customers will feel turned off if they simply feel that you are trying to force more spending from them. Build loyalty with providing genuinely helpful pairings.

3 – Showcase and Display

Popular pairings should be prominently displayed and showcased in your store. Show your customers how products work well together by putting those products together! Having these products close together will also help your employees quickly grab them to suggest an up-sale.

Not sure how to best display items? Here’s how you can get the most out of your displays.

4 – Keep pairings reasonable

Bob Phipps recommends that “the suggested item shouldn’t exceed more than a certain percentage of the cost of the original item.” You’ll find out what works best for your customers by trying different pairings and adjusting accordingly.

“A good offering of complementary products completes the shopping journey in a natural way. A bonus of all of this is that the customer gets everything they need, not just what they asked for. That results in greater customer loyalty and increased customer satisfaction.”

Bob Phipps

What pairings have seemed to work in your store? Share in the comments below!

Want to read more? Here’s why it’s important that your employees know how to sell products.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s