Guide to Upselling Techniques for E-commerce Stores


Upselling techniques are sales strategies that encourage customers to buy higher-priced products. This method can be particularly effective on e-commerce stores where sellers can promote alternatives at several critical stages of the customer journey.

Our guide to upselling techniques explains how this sales strategy works and covers seven of the best techniques to increase the average cart value on your Shopify store. 

How Do Upselling Techniques Work for E-commerce Stores?

benefits of upselling techniques

Owners of online stores that sell similar products across pricing tiers can encourage shoppers to spend more on higher-priced items. Most techniques for upselling involve increasing the visibility and showcasing the advantages of premium products. Sellers should clearly identify the differences between lower- and higher-cost products to make a convincing case for why customers should make more expensive purchases.

What Are the 7 Best Upselling Techniques?

Simply showing customers higher-cost alternatives is often not enough to get them to spend more. Sellers can use the following techniques to promote premium products and indicate why these items are worth more.

1. Present Reasonable Alternatives

While the principle of upselling is to present products at higher prices as better choices than lower-cost items, it’s important to limit the price difference between these options. Experts generally recommend limiting the price increase to no higher than 25% more than the original item. Showing customers products that cost a lot more than the item they are considering can reinforce their decision to buy the more affordable option.

Owners of stores with larger inventories can try presenting several alternatives that include a product that costs a little more than the item in question, another product that is considerably more expensive, and a best-in-class option.

2. Justify the Price

Another sales technique involves justifying higher price points for premium products. Many shoppers are willing to spend more for items that they perceive to be of higher quality. The effectiveness of this technique depends on how well you can describe the advantages of products that cost more without making a hard sell.

Online sellers can use social proof in the form of positive reviews and testimonials to make a case for buying premium products. It also helps to display useful information, such as comparison tables for the features of lower- and higher-cost products. 

3. Offer Limited Options

Limiting options is key to good upselling techniques

Sellers should try to give customers between one and three options based on store inventory. If you only have basic and premium versions of a particular product, you can simply promote the more expensive item.

Limiting the options you advertise is the key to successful upselling. Presenting too many choices at different price points could lead to purchase paralysis. Most customers can reasonably consider the pros and cons of up to two or three alternative products.

4. Target Repeat Customers

Conversion rates among existing customers range from 60% and 70% compared to just 5% to 20% for new customers. Repeat customers are also likely to trust your store and be more receptive to recommendations about premium products.

All of these upselling techniques are more likely to work on customers who have already made at least one purchase from your store. You can still try out these methods on new customers, but it can be even more effective to use the ADG automatic discount app and Ultimate Upsell to target repeat customers with strategic offers.

5. Wait to Upsell

Timing is key to successful upselling. Sellers who attempt to use these techniques too early in the customer journey are less likely to succeed. Try to avoid obvious upsells on your store home page or on new customer registration forms.

While you can present similar items at a range of price points anywhere in your store, these techniques are likely to be most effective when customers are already in buying mode. Try presenting alternatives to items in a shopping cart or triggering offers in the early stages of the checkout funnel.

6. Test Upselling Offers

Sellers should experiment with these techniques in a similar manner to other promotions. It’s a good idea to run each offer for one to two weeks while gathering data. At the end of each promotional cycle, you can review the data, adjust the promotion, and repeat the process.

Methods such as A/B testing can be useful for refining any type of promotion. The best automatic discount app makes it easy to try different sales strategies, review performance data, and make changes as needed.

7. Automate Upselling With Ultimate Upsell

The right tools can make it easier to use sales techniques in your online store. Ultimate Upsell is the best way to strategically implement these techniques on Shopify.

With ADG, you can manage all of your Shopify discounts in one place. We make it easy to design promotions without coding and manage the offers available in your store at any time. Install and integrate ADG and Ultimate Upsell with your Shopify store today.

How Do You Upsell Effectively?

How do you use upselling techniques effectively?

The most effective way to upsell is to present customers shopping for specific types of products with a few alternatives that cost slightly more. Upselling techniques can be most effective when customers are ready to buy.

An effective upsell presents a customer with one or more similar items at higher price points than a particular product. Upsold products should not cost so much more that these offers reinforce the customer’s decision to buy the more affordable item. You should point out the advantages of premium products and make it easy to spend more on a purchase.

What’s the Best Way To Implement These Upselling Techniques?

Integrating the ADG app and Ultimate Upsell with your Shopify store is the best way to strategically upsell customers. An automatic discount app makes it simple to manage a wide variety of promotions. You can customize upselling techniques that drive up sales and profits. Contact us to learn more about using ADG and Ultimate Upsell to automate Shopify discounts and sales techniques.

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Don’t leave dollars on the table—ADG helps you add thousands in sales every day
4.6 star with 200+ shopify reviews
Don’t leave dollars on the table—ADG helps you add thousands in sales every day
4.6 star with 200+ shopify reviews