Upsells are an easy and effective way to boost sales, engagement, and retention—but not all upgrades are created equal. Learn the strategies that will help you upsell more on Shopify.
What is upselling?
Upselling is a tactic merchants use to increase average order value and revenue. It involves encouraging customers to spend more at crucial places along the buyer journey. Popular upsell offers include buying a more expensive product, upgrading a product, or purchasing premium add-ons or features.
Upselling and cross-selling are sometimes used interchangeably, but they are actually different tactics. While upsell offers focus on higher priced offers or features, cross-sell offers are typically for products related or complementary to the item shoppers intend to purchase. Here are some examples:
- Upsell: Promoting a deodorant subscription over a one-time purchase, or suggesting a newer, higher-priced model of a printer
- Cross-sell: Highlighting items frequently bought with a particular pair of jeans, or showcasing bestselling items currently on sale
Upsells aren’t just a nice-to-have for merchants—they’re an essential tool for selling more, building a better customer experience, cutting down on marketing costs, and growing loyalty. And for merchants on Shopify, implementing upsells is as easy as it is effective.
Why upselling is important for Shopify merchants
When it comes to selling, we all know it’s easier (and cheaper) to sell to an existing customer than a new one. Here are some of the other benefits of offering upsells:
- Increase average order value (AOV): By encouraging upsells across the customer journey, you can boost AOV by 70%.
- Improve the customer experience: Customers want relevant, personalized experiences. Offering the right product at the right time helps you build a better customer journey.
- Make your marketing more cost-effective: Customer acquisition costs are through the roof—marketing to existing customers helps you increase revenue without spending a fortune.
- Build customer loyalty: When customers feel like merchants know what they’re looking for, they’re more likely to make repeat purchases.
Effective upselling strategies
Successful upselling starts with the right strategies. Here are some to consider:
- Analyze customer and product data. If you want to build upsell offers that convert, you have to get to know your customers and what products they want.
- Be smart about product placement. Test out different offers in different locations in your Shopify store to discover what shoppers respond to most.
- Bundle your products. Showcase add-ons and upgrades as a bundle to persuade customers to purchase more.
- Personalize your offers. Leverage your data and AI for revenue growth by offering relevant products and personalized experiences.
- Implement upsell apps. Shopify apps like AfterShip Personalization can help drive personalized shopping experiences, boost AOV and conversion, and accelerate business growth.
- Offer subscriptions. One way to get a customer to upgrade is by encouraging them to sign up for a subscription on replenishable products. Entice them with a discount offer and lock in long-term revenue.
Where to upsell to customers
There are several places in your store where you can effectively upsell to customers. Enhance the shopping experience with upsells in these locations:
- Checkout: Show high-purchase intent customers more products just before they are about to checkout. Offer great deals and discounts to create a sense of urgency. Checkout upsells can increase AOV by 25%.
- Post-purchase: Boost revenue with irresistible post-purchase upsell offers. Show qualified customers relevant product add-ons or premium features after checkout.
- Product page: Highlight bundles and personalized product upgrades and add-ons to encourage shoppers to spend more.
- In-cart: Get shoppers to add more products by displaying products based on what’s in their cart and what they have viewed or previously bought.
- Thank you page: When customers complete an order, capitalize on their post-purchase excitement with targeted upsell offers.
Successful upselling examples
DIME Beauty implemented AfterShip Personalization to enhance their customers' shopping experience on their website. They have seen incredible results within the cart, checkout, and post-purchase one-click upsell.
DIME Beauty’s checkout strategy recommends items to build out a complete skincare regimen, with the exclusion of some products using specific tags. For example, when a shopper purchases a cleanser, the recommended upsell products are those usually bought with cleansers such as toners, face creams, and serums. This strategy resulted in an impressive 47% increase in AOV.
3D printer brand Elegoo wanted a way to stand out in a crowded market and build a loyal customer base. To meet this goal, the brand leveraged the integration between AfterShip Personalization and their subscription solution to upsell recurring purchases. This allowed for automatic synchronization of subscription selling plans from Shopify, which includes delivery frequency, discounts, billing policy, and inventory policy.
With the ability to upsell to a subscription-based program, Elegoo can offer exclusive deals and discounts, ultimately turning customers into loyal followers who drive recurring revenue. Since implementing AfterShip Personalization, Elegoo has seen a 70% increase in AOV and 40x return on investment (ROI).
Concrete Countertop Solutions
Concrete Countertop Solutions understands that acquiring the proper tools and materials is essential for a successful DIY project, so they use the "frequently bought together" feature to highlight add-ons. By leveraging this tool at checkout, stores can boost sales and increase their AOV by presenting customers with related products to complete their DIY projects.
With AfterShip Personalization, Concrete Countertop Solutions boosted AOV by 31%, reached 30x ROI, and had a conversion rate of 4% for product upsells.
Toronto-based brand house Compound Studio was seeking a way to boost revenue with an efficient upsell strategy.
With the brand Vitaly, Compound Studio found success by using AfterShip Personalization to improve the customer experience through a variety of smart features. They used the advanced AI algorithm to suggest matching jewelry as you shop—add a necklace, and it recommends matching bracelets. This strategy enhances the shopping experience, leading to a 46% boost in AOV, 5% upsell revenue, and an 8% order conversion rate.
For merchants who want to boost revenue, save on marketing costs, and grow retention, upsells are an effective way to sell more at various stages in the customer journey.
With AfterShip Personalization, Shopify merchants can add product recommendations across touchpoints, including the cart page, checkout page, product page, post-purchase page, and thank you page. Learn more about AfterShip Personalization.