I like testing. And money. This has got both.
Below you will find data from two A/B tests where the companies added one-click upsells and cross sells.
The first test increased average order value (AOV) by $55 (worth millions in annual revenue).
The second increased conversion rate by 13%, which for any 8 figure or greater ecommerce store is also worth 7 figures in extra annual revenue.
The full article also shows and analyzes 5 live examples from well known brands of upselling and cross selling related products at the cart stage.
Across all the examples you should be able to find an upsell implementation that works for you.
Test #1: Upsells that increase AOV: $2 million/year extra revenue for an online furniture store
The first example is from an online furniture store. Let’s say in this case that they sell sofas ranging from $850 to $2000+ with an AOV of $1200.
Their default shopping cart looked like this:
Their most popular sofas are leather, and what’s interesting in this case study is not the sale of the leather sofas, but of a particular upsell: a leather conditioning kit that helps protect the sofa, and costs between $40 – $80.
Something like this:
The conditioning kit is a perfect cross sell for a customer buying a leather sofa. It actively protects and lengthens the life of the thousand dollar or more purchase the customer is already making.
If you’re already spending $1500 on a leather sofa, why not pay $60 to protect it and make it last longer.
But these complimentary accessories were not easy to navigate to on the site at the time of this test. They weren’t promoted heavily.
The test hypothesis was that mentioning it as an option at the cart step, and making it very easy to add to cart, would increase AOV.
But how should you actually offer the leather conditioner in the cart?
With a photo?
As a one line item?
Do you add some copy to really “sell” it or keep it low key?
Will any of these decisions possibly hurt sofa conversions itself?
The decision was to start low key because the change of going from not mentioning that leather conditioner at all to mentioning it was a big enough change.
The pink strip was the only element added.
After 41 days, over 4000 transactions and $5,600,000 revenue tracked, and AOV increased by $55, with 92% statistical significance.
Previously they were selling around 40 – 80 conditioning kits per week. Once the test was turned on, sales jumped immediately to 150 – 180 per week.
This increase in AOV, on average, was worth an extra $180,000 per month in revenue (that’s over $2,000,000 of extra revenue per year!).
Ask yourself: Are there complimentary, lower priced products that pair with your main product(s) really well?
Walk through the typical buying and checking out funnel.
- Is it obvious to customers that these products exist? It should be.
- Is it easy for them to add them to cart? It should be.
- Does the copy position them in a way that makes it clear they compliment the primary products? It should.
Test #2: Upsells that increase conversion rate: 13% increase in orders for a health food store
Building on the success of upsell tests like the one above, a similar test was run for an online health food brand that sold nutrition bars.
The key difference from the example above though is this: They only sold that one product in 3 different flavors.
That’s it. There were no other products. All 3 flavors had the same price point.
So how do you offer an upsell when you largely just have one product in 3 flavors?
It’s not the case that customers didn’t know about the other products: On the homepage, all 3 products were mentioned. In the navbar, all 3 products were mentioned. Even on each PDP the other 2 flavors were mentioned.
The test was then structured like this: When a customer adds a product to cart and an add-to-cart “drawer” slides in, offer a single “pack” of one of the other flavors at a discount (A below).
Packs typically cost around $8, but customers can only buy 2, 6, 12, or 18 packs (AOV for this site was around $57).
So when a customer added one of these to cart, an upsell offered a single pack of another flavor for $6 (B and C). That’s it, you can only add 1 of the alternate flavor, but you get a slight discount on it.
Two variations were tested that were functionally similar but had slightly different designs (white border versus colored background).
Results: No change in AOV but an increase in conversion rate
The intention for this test was that this would get more customers thinking about adding multiple flavors to their cart and thus increase AOV. In other words that they wouldn’t just stop at the single pack but decide “Well let me also add more of the other flavors”.
That didn’t happen.
But what did happen was positive. It simply caused an increase in orders (“conversion rate”) on the site as a whole.
Specifically it showed a 13.4% increase with over 1,000 conversion events (orders).
Two variations were tested over 2 weeks with a slight design difference and both showed the 13% increase over the original.
Why did a cross-sell increase conversion rate?
Why did adding a single nutrition bar of an alternate flavor increase conversion rate?
Customers simply wanted to take advantage of the “deal” on the alternate flavor. They get to the site, browse the flavors, pick a flavor, add it to cart.
Stop and think about what your mindset, as a customer, would be at that exact moment: A part of you will have a slight doubt about your flavor choice:
“Hmm, maybe that other flavor was better?”
“I wonder what that would taste like?”
“Should I go through with it and buy this?”
In the variation, at that moment, customers saw a small $6 discount offer on one of the other flavors.
For some fraction of customers this was enough to push them over the edge to buy.
Basically, the cross sell acted as a discount or add-on special offer that encouraged more purchases of the main product.
Takeaways for your site
- If you don’t have upsells like the first example that compliment the main product and could possibly increase AOV, can you instead offer a similar product at a slight discount?
- Are there multiple flavors or varieties of your product that customers likely debate about choosing?
- Can you offer one of the other flavors at checkout at a slight discount?
Whatever you sell, offer something after the customer made a decision to buy. This is the single best moment to do it. There will never be a time when a customer trusts you more and where you have an opportunity to immediately persuade him to purchase something else.
For more upsell examples, see the full article.
PS. Ok, time for an upsell. As you are already reading it, you can also make sure to have access to the articles in the future. Why not like the GrowRevenue page on Facebook?
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