In a fast-food restaurant
Would you like your Burger with Fries and Pepsi? That’ll make a combo and save you 75 cents!
If you have eaten in a fast-food restaurant, you might have experienced this kind of offer. Similar selling can be found in any industry, from recreation to health care, from construction to education.
Did you find the offered made to you useful? Confusing? Annoying? Let’s examine this sale technique, namely Cross-Sell.
Cross-Sell is a practice of suggesting related products or services to a customer who is considering buying one product.
- Relatively lower expense and efforts than other marketing methods
- Keep competitors away
- Enhance customer loyalty
A Highly Personalized Customer-Centric Approach
Trust is an Ingredient
Cross-Sell works when the customers already have had a degree of trust in the products or services, either by branding or previous experience.
Convenience is the Essence
Not only sets of relating products, what Cross-Sell truly offers to customer is Convenience. Sales team must always bear in mind that Cross-Sell only works if it can save the time and efforts of customers from selecting what they want and need.
Problem Solving and Satisfaction
First and foremost, the product or service that the customer is considering must solve their problems. Salesman should focus on identifying customer’s problems and show them how the product or service can solve the problems. Only after solving the core problem, talking about additional products and services is beneficial.
The rule of thumb is always talk about how the products/services would benefit the customer, rather than how good such offers are.
Although Cross-Sell is systematic, practitioners do not want to apply for all customers. Because Cross-Sell bets at buyer behavior psychologically, it must be highly customized to meet each and every customer it serves.
Effective cross-selling is all about guiding customer through self-discovery of what they need. In some cases, salesman also ‘educates’ customer on what they would want.
Avoid what drive “No thanks”
When the customer haven’t shown explicit trust in the company brand, and is still reluctantly exploring the products, s/he might find Cross-Selling too aggressive.
When it is the customer’s first time using the service, it can be harder.
When the customer is the independent type, s/he might find Cross-Selling annoying.
Salesman must fight against the temptation of pushing to product to focus on the customer’s need.
Don’t strictly follow scripts. In this case, best practice is customization, not the scripts.
To the customer, the person or team doing Cross-Sell is mostly from Sale department. Inside the company providing the project or service, it’s Cross-Work.
It involves all departments in the company to work together so that each team members would know well all products and services the company has to offer and how the link between them. In this type of inter-teamwork, competition won’t work as effectively as collaboration.
In certain cases, the job of Sale team is easier thanks to Marketing team’s efforts.
IT gets involved: Analysis and Data Mining
Software can assist in generating enterprise simulations. What-If scenarios can be done on screen. Relationship between products and services is easier to track. Scalability is supported.
Such tracking software can also link to Accounting systems for better information management and forecasting.
Collecting customer information and product information, Data Mining uses sophisticated algorithms, standards and scales to produce
- Personalized profile for each customer based on their preference
- Analysis of buyer behaviors and market
- Prediction of sale and procurement trends
By applying such practice, companies can achieve higher level of Business Intelligence to boost their strategies to which Cross-Sell is merely a part of.
Case Study: Amazon
Imagine the process you go through in using Amazon service.
Firstly when you visit the site, it will show you a list of personalized products that you might be interested in by analyzing your cookies. If you login using your account, it aggressively records your preferences including searches, orders and wish-lists to create a even more personalized list of recommendations.
Next, as you traverse through list of items, it never ceases to give your recommendations, reviews and comparisons.
Then, when you have selected a product, it recommends you to . The related product is shown on the basis of pre-defined analysis.
Besides, apart from presenting products, Amazon gives you additional services like Wish-lists, Checklists, Anniversaries recommendations.
As a customer, have you given a “wow!”?
As an entrepreneur, do you think you can do it better than they can?
As a business analyst, how would you create a system to match theirs?
A glance at another sibling: Up-Sell
Up-Sell is a sales technique whereby a salesman attempts to offer the customer with more expensive items, upgrades, or other add-ons.
Up-Sell shares many characteristics with Cross-Sell, but requires more advanced techniques.
It would be covered in another article.
John Boe, Cross-Selling Takes Teamwork
Tom Atkinson, Cross-Selling: Serve Well, Then Sell