A Guide on How to Upsell and Cross-Sell in Print on Demand Business

You don't have to be a magician to hold old clients and increase income. It's simple: you introduce your audience to additional proposals at a bargain price or raise the value of the order through recommendations directly related to the product. Nevertheless, with the wrong approach, you risk becoming a defiant promoter. This guide will discuss how not to get hooked on ignorance and why it is worth introducing cross-selling and upselling strategies.

Today, a company's revenue is directly dependent on customer experience (CX.) Having an established audience is much easier to promote new products. But sometimes, clients who have been tied to a definite brand for years become adherents of a cardinally different one. Word of mouth goes out, and people become uninterested in the identical old prints on T-shirts or even the seemingly breakthrough novelties. This is due to quick strategies to engage customers not by you but by your competitors. Tradition and practicality have long since receded into the background, replaced by authenticity and accessibility. It turns out that the entrepreneur should think about expanding the range of trendy things. Namely, a time-consuming and complex process, which may be facilitated by offering updated releases (upselling) or additional functionality (cross-selling).

In 2006, Amazon created the ideal recipe for brand dominance in the online space. It increased sales by 35%, achieving unprecedented popularity. But how did the little-known bookseller Jeff Bezos manage to do it? The answer is adding upselling tactics to Amazon product listings. This method encourages the user to spend more money than their budget. Here is a simple and well-known example. You strive to discover those with a better graphics card or a more powerful processor while not spending too much when buying a laptop. But quality costs money, and sellers have learned how to get out of it using eCommerce upselling. If the buyer has had previous contact with the seller, the possibility of a repeat purchase will increase by 60-70% compared to 5-20% for a new visitor. Consequently, a trust raises the conversion rate as the intentions are high, and the transaction will probably be complete.

Sales may be optimized by supplementing the tactics with a technique that encourages visitors to get anything related to those already bought. Remember the famous phrase: "Would you like cola with that?" This perfectly characterizes eCommerce cross-selling.

Both tactics are interrelated and may effectively coexist in the sales funnel. So, if a visitor puts earrings in the cart, the recommended necklaces or rings may also be a supposed purchase. But since there are various alloys, you can propose a tougher one for the optimal cost to promote something. To learn more about how to utilize these practices, we have composed a guide of essential tips for upselling and cross-selling in eCommerce that can raise the average transaction value of your website.

Table of Contents

Upselling methods for POD business

Practices related to post-purchase upsells

What should an entrepreneur do to get more benefits?

Cross-selling strategies for POD business

Main tactics of cross-selling


Upselling in the eCommerce era has become a real deal. Its classic version explains the convenience of satisfying a need not by the main product A but by the B, which they consider as additional. A prime example of such print on demand sales is the thehappygivers website: after the goods are added to the shopping cart, the user is proposed similar things that differ in color, style, and design. The user can view them during the application process or clarify details.

So, upselling strategies aim to buy before and after selling (and even during), although they often occur before getting the main product. They're great for small value orders when there's little risk of losing money, and you don't need an extended description. Once the transaction is complete, you can make the most of your recent purchase by applying a display of small add-ons at more flexible prices.

Upselling in eCommerce is quite profitable for several reasons:

  1. It does not affect purchasing the initially selected item without disrupting the sales funnel. The method does not affect conversions.
  2. Such a trade raises the average order value (AOV) more than other methods. It is a form of impulse buying, convenient and valuable for the client. It's like shopping, where one more chocolate bar won't make much difference to the cart's total cost.
  3. A single click can provide a higher conversion rate because customers must share personal information to complete transactions.

Upselling and eCommerce methods can sometimes appear weak, especially when it comes to novelty. For the user to be confident in the relevance of the proposed thing and its necessity, you should launch personalized advertising. Nevertheless, if you put constant pressure on your clients, they will probably get tired of you. This threatens to affect brand awareness and harm conversions.

Practices related to post-purchase upsells

Any additional suggestions should be worthwhile to your audience. Here are a few basic practices that will teach you how to be helpful:

  1. Recommend relevant products that complement the cart contents. Relevant items, unlike random, will be crucial for promoting a purchase.
  2. Discount coupons certainly attract users' attention, willing to spend hours selecting products for less than the market price.
  3. Everyone loves gifts. After all, freebies create an incentive to get more for your money.
  4. Samples allow you to understand what makes a product stand out from the competition. After all, seeing, touching, tasting, hearing, and smelling get more awareness and allow you to experience the full advantages of using a thing.

Your POD Business Brings Good Money but Its Growth Has Stopped? Here are Some Useful Tips on Business Scaling

What should an entrepreneur do to get more benefits?

  • Customize

The previous purchases influence 86% of consumers, and AOV: 40% of people say that usually, their assets exceed the planned budget because the store's offer was relevant to their needs.

  • Take note of the price 

One of the best upselling strategies may be called “the 25% rule.” The supply of certain goods should not exceed the cost of the order by more than 25%. If a visitor orders a couple of $100 T-shirts, the recommendations should not show things priced at $30.

  • Use data analytics

Analyzing audience behavior is necessary to create a personalized experience. Let you also make it a habit to check up on marketing campaigns and even test them for viability.

  • Implement successful email marketing

Typically, this digital marketing practice usually works best for building trust with the audience and keeping existing ones strengthened. This is one of the most effective POD marketing channels that can incredibly enlarge sales and AOV. So about 80% of entrepreneurs use it to attract new and retain old clients. In addition, e-mail does not depend on algorithm changes of other related platforms, making it more reliable and centralized.

Implementing the principles of upselling on eCommerce platforms is not so difficult if you know what for sure may help you. Here is a list of programs you should take note of.

The motivation to get something based on non-random offers has become a common practice that effectively works. However, it's worth thinking about using other methods to develop the СX. So, we'll discuss what cross-selling is in eCommerce and the tactics that work best for the print on demand business.

increase revenue with upselling

Cross-selling in eCommerce encourages customers to buy more accessories at a bargain price and even more garments and household items. It's like the extra fries on an extensive mac menu. Like upselling, cross-selling in eCommerce is a helpful tool to increase store income and conversion rates as well as promote something. For instance, the typical actions of a visitor interested in the website content will be manipulating the cart, wish list, reviews, and personal data. These digital footprints help to develop the CX and meet all needs.

To demonstrate the store's capabilities, you can introduce customers to other goods. To do this, you should track user habits in the context of Google Analytics and other programs that collect information about preferences. You can get a higher margin by offering something completely new, relevant, or well forgotten. So let's figure out how eCommerce sites can increase cross-selling.

Main tactics of cross-selling

  • Premium products

Based on your audience's values, offer relevant premium products. So, if you are a sustainable brand that offers exceptionally eco-friendly cotton T-shirts, make similar ones in the more costly segment. 

  • Delivery can be free and not very

Recently, companies offering gift delivery after reaching a certain number of items in the cart have gained special attention among shoppers. And it's nice for them and for the entrepreneur to increase income.

  • Seasonality is the №1 rule for realizing unpopular items

It's almost impossible to sell thermal underwear or terry socks in the hot summer. So it's worth taking advantage of the drenched rule of marketing - make the most of every season to sell all the popular products. We have already written an article about this, which is not a bad thing to reread for the novice salesman.

  • Be aware of where your audience is

Locality and accessibility are two interrelated concepts in business. If you meet the need in one region, then it looks like you should expand the boundaries of your business. Note: climate, weather conditions, and shipping options affect demand. While the snow is falling in Minneapolis, Florida is bathed in the warm sunshine. So if you own an online T-shirt store, you should manage POD warehouse while creating several collections. They may also be placed in separate blocks, such as summer, winter, or fall clothes.

  • Create a package proposal

Test the products' viability related to a particular theme - for example, several phone cases with different prints. But to get it bought, you should put a much lower price than the total cost of all these items.

  • Use previous buying experience

Print on demand sales funnels can be expanded by adding cross-selling. You offer popular things or combine them with others (e.g., any cloth + cool stickers for only $10), and all the user has to do is decide how relevant the offer is. If you have not collected data using cookies or other methods, you can risk proposing alternative solutions.

  • Reviews, reviews, and more reviews

If you want to be believed, take care of your online reputation. Whenever someone receives a parcel, don't forget to thank and motivate them by doing a review. Please send the receivers your request and ensure that the product they bought meets their expectations: the more reviews, the more evidence of your reliability. People's comments also affect the CX: try implementing an average product rating based on customer opinions. That will also help identify weaknesses in collections.

  • Run profitable deals

Cross-selling eCommerce reinforces the sense of urgency and need. Exclusive items at a bargain or a discounted price can be triggers for purchase and a great tool to keep your old audience coming back to your company.

  • Expand brand visibility on different platforms

Sometimes cross-selling can be “boring” for eCommerce - according to statistics, 97% of bounce rates have websites to which users go for the first time. But you can get closer to them if you use other platforms (like Instagram, Facebook, TikTok.)

Is it Important to Create a Blog for Your Online Store?

To make the CX better, increase conversions, and decrease the bounce rate, every entrepreneur in the print on demand business should implement a strategy of up- and cross-selling. Today they have become one of the main assets of digital marketing because they allow you to raise profits and expand the influence of the brand. Read this guide, and you'll learn how to satisfy clients, engage old ones, and finally build a powerful online reputation.

June 8, 2022
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