Upselling is a powerful marketing technique. It’s used by almost every business – including the stores that you visit each day.
When you go to a fast food restaurant, they always ask if you want fries or if you want a value meal. When you visit a convenience store to purchase milk, a cashier may inform you that there’s a deal on milk and cereal bought together.
These are examples of upselling. You’re attempting to get the customer to purchase more than they originally planned on purchasing.
This is generally achieved by offering a greater value at a higher price point.
You can use these same techniques for online music marketing. There a variety of ways to recommend additional purchases to your fans, helping you earn extra income while doing what you’re already doing.
Create a List of Your Merchandise
The first step is to create a list of what you’ve got to offer. This includes everything that you sell through your website or eCommerce store, such as:
- CDs and MP3 downloads
- T-shirts, hats, and clothing
- Posters, bumper stickers, and other paper merchandise
- Miscellaneous merchandise – shot glasses, bracelets, and other odds and ends
Create a list of these items. If you use an eCommerce platform with your website to handle online sales, then you should have an online inventory list. This should also allow you to sort by price and category.
If you create a manual list of items, sort by price and label the merchandise based on category. For example:
- Clothing and accessories
- Posters and other merchandise
These categories will help you upsell to your fans. When someone purchases a hat, you may recommend a T-shirt. When they buy a bumper sticker, you could recommend a poster.
You get the idea. You’re trying to upsell a similar product to your fan.
Along with upselling based on category, you can use these techniques to market your latest deals and new music releases.
When someone purchases a previous album, you should definitely recommend that they check out your latest release. You can do the same with new deals and offerings.
How to Create an Upsell Opportunity
The upsell occurs during or after a customer makes a purchase. Your ability to upsell during the transaction will depend on the features of your website or eCommerce platform.
Upselling Via Pop-Ups
To upsell during the transaction, you could use a pop-up message.
Pop-up plugins are readily available for WordPress and other popular website platforms. If your site is built from scratch, you can use web-based tools, such as Moz Tools, to develop pop-ups.
You should create a pop-up for each item in your inventory. They’ll be triggered by the “add to cart” button for one other item. For example, when a visitor clicks “add to cart” on an old album, the pop-up for your latest album should be triggered.
The pop-up needs to include a short message, an image, and an “add to cart” button.
If pop-ups aren’t available, you can include the upsell directly on the web page – either under the product description of similar products or on the checkout page. Though, this limits your ability to effectively upsell.
Upselling Via Email
The other option is to create the upsell opportunity after the transaction. This is achieved via email.
When a fan orders an item through your website, you should have a system in place to automatically deliver a confirmation email. This email should include the details of their order.
You should then follow-up this email with the upsell – or include the upsell directly in the confirmation email. Though, emails tend to be more effective when each email has its own focus.
The upsell email should contain a short subject line, such as:
- Here’s another album you might like!
- Thanks for shopping! Here’s another deal for you!
- If you liked the sticker, check out the posters!
The body of the email should also be short and to the point. Start by thanking them for their purchase. Since these emails are triggered by the purchase of a specific item, you can mention the item that they purchased and then present the upsell:
Thanks for downloading [Album Name]. We loved making that album and hope you enjoyed it!
But, if you liked that, then I’ll know you’ll want to hear [Latest Album]. This our latest release and features a more refined sound. Personally, I think it’s our best work yet. Why don’t you check it out and hear it for yourself?
Click here to get the best deal on [Latest Album]!
This is just a basic template. You could beef it up with a more accurate description based on the actual upsell that you’re using – and to match your own personal style.
Automating these emails is easier when you use an autoresponder series. This option is available through any of the web-based email marketing platforms.
Using an autoresponder, you can automatically send the confirmation email and the follow-up email with the upsell opportunity.
MailChimp allows you to get started for free and offers relatively affordable options for a larger mailing list. If you need help setting this up, take a look at this short video:
Final Thoughts on Upselling Your Merchandise
While you can make extra money through upselling, you shouldn’t think of it in terms of income. You should do this as a way to provide better value to your fans. You want to make sure that they’re aware of everything that you have to offer.
Upselling isn’t hard. You have two main options for upselling to your fans – as they browse your site and after they’ve made a purchase.
When you upsell during the transaction, pop-ups work best. For upsells after the transaction, you’ll use emails. Both options require the use of web-based platforms or specific online tools. As mentioned, most of these tools are available for free.
The bottom line is that you need to treat your music career like a business. If you want to increase your online earnings, you need to look at the following factors:
- The number of customers
- The number of transactions per customer
- The average sale per transaction
Upselling helps with the last two factors. By encouraging your fans to check out similar items, you can increase the average sale per transaction (when upselling via pop-ups) and the average number of transactions per customer (when upselling via email).