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3 Rules for Successful Up Sells

If your product or service allows you the chance to up sell your customer at the point of sale (and seriously, what product or service doesn’t?), then you instantly double and even triple your income if you know how to properly suggest and get your prospects and customers to buy more.

First, let’s talk about what NOT to do:

  1. First of all, you absolutely have to ask for the up sell in order to get it. I know that sounds like a “duh!” comment, but take it from me – out of the thousands of sales reps I listen to each year, a very small percentage actually do.
  2. Ask for the up sell as an afterthought. As you’ll see, timing is everything with the up sell. Don’t wait until the very end of the sale to suggest one. You have to make it part of your original product offering as you’ll see.
  3. Ad lib it. You absolutely have to be prepared, polished and assumptive when asking for the up sell. Again, this is where many sales reps fall short as you’ll see.

OK. And now here are the 3 rules for successful up sells:

  1. The first thing you need to do is know exactly what up sell item or service you’re going to sell with what product. If you sell many different types of products or services, then you may have a pair them in advance and be ready to offer the product that most likely fits or goes with what it is you’re selling.

    Take some time this week and map out exactly what specific product or service you’re going to up sell with which product you’re selling. And then stick to that and pitch that over and over again.

    Case Study: I consulted with a blood plasma company once that sold everything from blood plasma, to flu shots, to disposable supplies. There was a lot to choose from in terms of up sell. We hired a new rep and he quickly became the number one producer because he decided to up sell the same bottles of blood plasma whenever someone bought blood plasma. In other words, he didn’t try to them sell them gloves or needles. Here’s how it went for him:

    If the client bought two bottles, he would always say, “That’s great. You know, we happen to have two more bottles of that left with the same expiration date. They come in a case of four – would you like me to just send you our last four bottles?”

    Over 60% of the time they would!

  2. And that leads me to rule #2: Be prepared with a scripted approach. The up sell is one of the easiest and most important parts of your presentation to script out. So many sales reps (like 80% of them), ad lib the up sell (whenever they think about it at all), and often aren’t convincing nor persuasive.

    But the top reps have taken the time to script out the most compelling up sell pitch they can, and then they deliver it with confidence and in an assumptive manner. This makes a huge difference. Here are some great ways to start your up sell script:

    “________, I’ll tell you what many of my clients are also taking advantage of…”

    “That’s a great choice. And did you know we’re running a special offer on two or more cases? Yes, you can get free (shipping, package of wipes, promotional posters, etc…

    “_________while that policy is perfect for you, the smart way to go is to increase your coverage to 2 million dollars for just a $100 more a year. That would be your best move on this…”

  3. The third rule is that timing is everything! The best time to suggest the up sell is right after your prospect or client has said yes to an order. Don’t talk past the close, don’t go over any other details, just go right into your up sell pitch.

    The reason for this is that your client is in the “buying zone” at that moment and that is when you make your up sell offer. Don’t worry, they won’t cancel their first order – that’s in the bag. What you want to do now is suggest an up sell (that you’ve scripted out and that is compelling) at this exact moment and then hit your mute button and listen.

There you have it. The three rules to effective up sells. Try them today and watch your sales – and your confidence – soar!

About the author

Do you have an underperforming inside sales team? Talk to Mike to see how he can help you and your team reach your revenue goals. To learn more about Mike, visit his website: