For any sales team, it is important to implement cross-sell and upsell programs. This might include email follow-ups, suggestions in the shopping cart, or upsell and cross-sell items on the product pages themselves.
Unfortunately, these initiatives don’t always have the effect that companies hope for. This is typically due to the fact that many users have become “ad blind” to cross-sell or upsell promotions. They may also not understand the value of an upgrade or an add-on in the limited space available on your website.
Good ol’ fashioned one-on-one communication with customers can fix all that. Live chat gives you the opportunity for just that kind of communication in a more natural, visually engaging way than on the phone. According to a study by the Aberdeen Group, companies that use live chat have a 2.4 times greater annual increase in cross-sell and up-sell revenue. Whether they are opting for more expensive products or adding to their order, customers who use live chat before making a purchase show a 10 percent increase in average order value.
How can you make this happen?
The best way to utilize live chat opportunities for cross-sell and upsell is to effectively train your live chat representatives on the best opportunities to merchandise these offers. Live chat agents should know which cross-sell and upsell suggestions work best with which products, and in what situations cross-sells and upsells should and shouldn’t be offered (for example, agents should know not to focus on cross-selling or upselling to a complaining customer).
Agents should also understand the importance of being sensitive to a customer’s needs when cross-selling and upselling. Rather than trying to cross-sell a product that a customer has expressed not wanting, consider the customer’s needs, and what additional or upgraded product could best fit those needs.
One good example of an upsell via live chat would be if a customer is interested in a product on your website that has “middle-of-the-road” reviews, while a more expensive product has stellar reviews. You can train agents who are chatting with visitors who need help with the purchasing process (and who have specific items in their cart that fit this criteria) to say something like: “If you’d like to see another option, this product has better customer reviews and more advanced functionality that may better fit your needs. Let me know if you have any questions!” By sending the visitor the link to the upgraded product, the user will be able to compare the reviews for him or herself, resulting in an organic, informed upsell.
For an example of a strong cross-sell opportunity via live chat, let’s say that you run a clothing website. If a customer is chatting with an agent about buying a sweater that has a matching skirt, train the live chat agent to draw your visitor’s attention to the extra item. Your live chat agent might say something like, “Just in case you are interested, there is a matching skirt to that sweater that customers love.” Then, be sure to have the live chat agent provide a link to the skirt.
The key to cross-selling and upselling via live chat is to train your agents and familiarize them with inventory and associated products. The results that you’ll see in sales and revenue is definitely worth it.