Never buy a product WITHOUT an upsell...

93 replies
I see a lot of emails to support desks for both my own IM products and others, and a common theme is people complaining about upsells.

I'm the first to admit that there is a right and a wrong way to do upsells, but if you are buying an IM product, there WILL be upsells.

If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
#buy #product #upsell
  • Profile picture of the author Mr Bill
    Upsells are fine (I suppose - not a fan personally) as long as they are not needed to fulfil the original promises of the sales copy. When I buy something I expect to get it, not bits of it and then if I "really" want to get the "whole and proper" job done I have to pay more. That just makes me angry and I immediately feel ripped off. I sat through 5 upsells once...lot's of swearing that day could be heard eminating from my office.

    I think it's a bit sad that upsells are considered "fundamental" actually. But that's just me.
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    • Profile picture of the author JennySweets
      I hear ya Bill!

      I've been burned - only once thank God - by a sales page that promised the sun and moon- then the upsell revealed that I only get the moon if I paid $150 more (that was $136 more than the original price LOL). Obviously I settled with the sun and decided to build a moon for myself.

      I accept one upsell on anything anymore. But when it gets to TWO upsells I get annoyed. Come on, you got my money, stop trying to bleed me dry! Send me a letter in a few days to tell me about the last part or something! :p
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    • Profile picture of the author Net66
      Originally Posted by WSOHelp View Post

      Upsells are fine (I suppose - not a fan personally) as long as they are not needed to fulfil the original promises of the sales copy. When I buy something I expect to get it, not bits of it and then if I "really" want to get the "whole and proper" job done I have to pay more. That just makes me angry and I immediately feel ripped off. I sat through 5 upsells once...lot's of swearing that day could be heard eminating from my office.

      I think it's a bit sad that upsells are considered "fundamental" actually. But that's just me.
      It's not just you :-)

      I am with you on the rule of the upsell not being fundamental to the original promise. That kind of upsell is IMO unethical and generally is going to leave a bitter taste in the mouth of the buyer and thats not good for business.

      I usually offer an upsell if I have an existing product that in some way compliments the thing I'm offering. I don't generally create a product just for the upsell, I'd rather give my customers all they need in one hit and build a solid reputation so they come back and spend with my again anyway.

      I know if I get offered an upsell that is clearly a fundamental requirement to fulfil the original promise I don't even open the original purchase, I just stick a refund request in and explain my reason.

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    • Profile picture of the author AlphaWarrior
      Originally Posted by WSOHelp View Post

      Upsells are fine (I suppose - not a fan personally) as long as they are not needed to fulfil the original promises of the sales copy. When I buy something I expect to get it, not bits of it and then if I "really" want to get the "whole and proper" job done I have to pay more. That just makes me angry and I immediately feel ripped off. I sat through 5 upsells once...lot's of swearing that day could be heard eminating from my office.

      I think it's a bit sad that upsells are considered "fundamental" actually. But that's just me.
      Amen! I cannot say it better.
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    • Profile picture of the author uebomoyi
      Originally Posted by WSOHelp View Post

      Upsells are fine (I suppose - not a fan personally) as long as they are not needed to fulfil the original promises of the sales copy. When I buy something I expect to get it, not bits of it and then if I "really" want to get the "whole and proper" job done I have to pay more. That just makes me angry and I immediately feel ripped off. I sat through 5 upsells once...lot's of swearing that day could be heard eminating from my office.

      I think it's a bit sad that upsells are considered "fundamental" actually. But that's just me.
      I completely agree. It's nice to find those marketers who genuinely want you to succeed instead of making money off of you. I don't like it when you get a product and then the only way you can really succeed is if you purchase the upsell. I like just having the original product and knowing I can succeed without the upsell. Now when George Brown came out with the Google Sniper 2.0 and did his upsell for the case study with Anthony- that was actually a good upsell. You didn't really need the case study in order to get the general concept but it still provided real value. I only prefer those types of upsells.
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      • Profile picture of the author WillR
        Originally Posted by uebomoyi View Post

        Now when George Brown came out with the Google Sniper 2.0 and did his upsell for the case study with Anthony- that was actually a good upsell. You didn't really need the case study in order to get the general concept but it still provided real value. I only prefer those types of upsells.
        That's exactly what an upsell should be. An upsell should not be something you need in order to make the original product work. It should be something complimentary that can make using the original product easier or more effective - but not something necessary. It also shouldn't be an option that has nothing to do with the original product.
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        • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
          Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

          I see a lot of emails to support desks for both my own IM products and others, and a common theme is people complaining about upsells.

          I'm the first to admit that there is a right and a wrong way to do upsells, but if you are buying an IM product, there WILL be upsells.

          If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

          Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
          I hate sweeping generalizations. An upsell is an option. Period.

          I've been doing this since 1997, full-time since 1999, and I seldom use an upsell. One-time offers on the back-end work much better for me. Some of my OTO's have a conversion rate of close to 70%. I've never came close to that with an upsell. Have you?
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        • Profile picture of the author retirewithsandie
          Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

          There is definitely a wrong way to do it, like saying the main product wont work unless you have this, or using extreme pressure, that type of thing. But as annoying as 5 upsells are, can you (as a marketer) really blame them for doing it?
          Yes I hate those that's what leaves a bad taste in my mouth over upsells. Yes I *know* that they'll be there regardless of what I buy. But I don't like the ones where they try to make you feel guilty in not buying especially when you barely had the money to buy the original product to begin with. I barely had the $47 or $97 or whatever & now you want me to spend another $200-400 that I DON'T have and try to make me feel guilty for it!

          Sorry but I have this thing about having a roof over my head, food in the refrigerator and keeping the lights on.

          Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

          If the upsell is after the initial purchase, then the customer will either buy it or they wont. So the vendor either makes the same amount as he would have normally, or he makes more. Never less. So basically it is not possible for it to harm the funnel/profits
          I've read on here that many use the original purchase as a "loss" and make money on the upsell. IIRC how it was explained, you have to account for refunds, advertising, etc. that they have to pay out. So that comes out of that in a sense & their "keep" money is on the upsells.

          Originally Posted by Coby View Post

          For example, if it's a video product - don't just make it a zip file - also make it so they can watch it online. Under the video you put related products...
          I hate those because I always forget about them. I have to save them because I don't always have time to watch. If they're short it's fine, but some are 90 minutes+ in one swoop & not broken down. I don't always have time for that. So they get put in my favorites & I forget to go back to them. When I can download them and save then I remember I have them better.

          Originally Posted by WillR View Post

          The problem is a lot of people use upsells incorrectly these days. Instead of creating something that makes using the front end product easier or more effective they will instead just take something away from the front end product and then offer it as an upsell.
          Yup! It's one thing to make it easier and another to make it seem that you don't have "all the information" in that original product even though that's what the sales letter basically stated.

          Originally Posted by WillR View Post

          Sorry, but that's just a ridiculous comment. People who do not use upsells are NOT ineffective marketers. I have been marketing for over 6 years and I know exactly how to do upsells. It doesn't mean I use them every time. There are times where I care more about helping people than making a few extra bucks - I guess that's the difference between some of us.
          Agree!

          Originally Posted by WillR View Post

          Um... no, people don't. They don't have to accept anything. If your customers are complaining about the way you are upselling then maybe you would actually do better to sit back and LISTEN to your customers for a change instead of TELLING them the way it should be. Then again, maybe that's only what us ineffective marketers do...
          Agree!
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          • Profile picture of the author Coby
            Originally Posted by retirewithsandie View Post

            I hate those because I always forget about them. I have to save them because I don't always have time to watch. If they're short it's fine, but some are 90 minutes+ in one swoop & not broken down. I don't always have time for that. So they get put in my favorites & I forget to go back to them. When I can download them and save then I remember I have them better.
            That's why I provide both options... (zip file and watch now)

            Also, I send follow up emails sending them BACK to the video area or a particular video (when it has it's separate page)...

            Helps remind those that forget and add more value to those that didn't... Also has helped reduce my refunds... Took me awhile to start utilizing my autoresponder...
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          • Profile picture of the author motive01
            Not me when I get a refund for a product I purchased I make sure I get refunds for the product and the upsells, if the product is garbage I make sure I get ALL my money back.
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        • Profile picture of the author Patricia Sphar
          Originally Posted by WillR View Post

          The problem is a lot of people use upsells incorrectly these days. Instead of creating something that makes using the front end product easier or more effective they will instead just take something away from the front end product and then offer it as an upsell.

          Balls to those people.



          Sorry, but that's just a ridiculous comment. People who do not use upsells are NOT ineffective marketers. I have been marketing for over 6 years and I know exactly how to do upsells. It doesn't mean I use them every time. There are times where I care more about helping people than making a few extra bucks - I guess that's the difference between some of us.



          Um... no, people don't. They don't have to accept anything. If your customers are complaining about the way you are upselling then maybe you would actually do better to sit back and LISTEN to your customers for a change instead of TELLING them the way it should be. Then again, maybe that's only what us ineffective marketers do...
          Originally Posted by WillR View Post

          That's exactly what an upsell should be. An upsell should not be something you need in order to make the original product work. It should be something complimentary that can make using the original product easier or more effective - but not something necessary. It also shouldn't be an option that has nothing to do with the original product.

          I agree with all of Willr's points. USE the tool properly instead of BEHAVING like a tool (just had to go there...). The hustlers who masquerade as legitimate marketers fall back on 'it's ok, they can refund'. You can't refund a buyer's time, and a lot of time gets wasted on lousy WSOs and improperly utilized upsells. Do it right and stop wasting our time.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ridgway
      Originally Posted by WSOHelp View Post

      Upsells are fine (I suppose - not a fan personally) as long as they are not needed to fulfil the original promises of the sales copy. When I buy something I expect to get it, not bits of it and then if I "really" want to get the "whole and proper" job done I have to pay more. That just makes me angry and I immediately feel ripped off. I sat through 5 upsells once...lot's of swearing that day could be heard eminating from my office.

      I think it's a bit sad that upsells are considered "fundamental" actually. But that's just me.

      Completely agree... Spot. On. I don't mind if it's something above and beyond, but when it's obvious the upsell is to get the originally promised product or knowledge, fail.
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    • Profile picture of the author ryant21
      I am absolutely agree ! Upsells shouldn't be compulsory to get the original promises done.

      Originally Posted by WSOHelp View Post

      Upsells are fine (I suppose - not a fan personally) as long as they are not needed to fulfil the original promises of the sales copy. When I buy something I expect to get it, not bits of it and then if I "really" want to get the "whole and proper" job done I have to pay more. That just makes me angry and I immediately feel ripped off. I sat through 5 upsells once...lot's of swearing that day could be heard eminating from my office.

      I think it's a bit sad that upsells are considered "fundamental" actually. But that's just me.
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  • Profile picture of the author cashcow
    I don't really think that just because someone doesn't have an upsell that means they are not an authority, does it?

    I mean they might have tested their sales funnel and found that having an upsell was not the most profitable thing for them. Couldn't that be possible?

    Also, not sure how you could tell beforehand that a product has an upsell and, therefore, avoid buying the ones that don't.

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    • Profile picture of the author jryan
      I wanted to thank this post but I could not. Totally agree with the post here


      Originally Posted by cashcow View Post

      I don't really think that just because someone doesn't have an upsell that means they are not an authority, does it?

      I mean they might have tested their sales funnel and found that having an upsell was not the most profitable thing for them. Couldn't that be possible?

      Also, not sure how you could tell beforehand that a product has an upsell and, therefore, avoid buying the ones that don't.

      Lee
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  • Profile picture of the author bhuff85
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    This doesn't make any sense at all. How does an upsell have anything to do with whether or not someone knows what they teach? Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see any direct relation with upsells and proving authority on a topic because you offer them.

    So, if I walk into a hardware store to buy some nails and they don't try to upsell me a hammer, does that mean they aren't a trusted source for all of my hardware supplies and don't really know anything about hardware?

    How about a guy on the street corner that's trying to sell me a watch out of his coat pocket and tells me that for only $5 more, I can buy the necklace that he has with him, too. Does that mean he's an authority on selling jewelry and is someone I can trust?
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    • Profile picture of the author Toby Lewis
      Originally Posted by cashcow View Post

      I mean they might have tested their sales funnel and found that having an upsell was not the most profitable thing for them. Couldn't that be possible?
      If the upsell is after the initial purchase, then the customer will either buy it or they wont. So the vendor either makes the same amount as he would have normally, or he makes more. Never less. So basically it is not possible for it to harm the funnel/profits

      Originally Posted by bhuff85 View Post

      So, if I walk into a hardware store to buy some nails and they don't try to upsell me a hammer, does that mean they aren't a trusted source for all of my hardware supplies and don't really know anything about hardware?
      No, if the bloke at the hardware store sells you nails and doesnt offer a hammer, it means he is not a good marketer, I'm sure he's great with hardware. If a marketer sells you something without an upsell, all I'm saying is to think about it.
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      • Profile picture of the author willN
        Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

        If the upsell is after the initial purchase, then the customer will either buy it or they wont. So the vendor either makes the same amount as he would have normally, or he makes more. Never less. So basically it is not possible for it to harm the funnel/profits
        Absolutely incorrect. Let's say someone, me perhaps, starts to purchase your product for review. Then after I purchase, the products owner tries to upsell me, and I do not like it. Now lets say I have a review site for authority products like the seller is selling.

        Now that he has annoyed me, he has lost the upsell and any viable customers I may have sent his way.

        Lets go on an even easier scenario. I buy a product, everything looks good. I then get an upsell message, and now I have a bad taste in my mouth. Then when I go talk to a friend about the product, instead of convincing them to buy it, I talk them to stay away.

        I absolutley despise upsells, cross sells I like (where an offer is made on a service or product that would help with what I am doing) but trying to get me a gold membership as aposed to a silver membership erks me to no end and I look for a refund every time.

        When you are at a car dealer ship, he explains the options when you ask, or as you are talking about said vehicle. He does not sell you the damn vehicle, take your money, and then say "oh by the way, if you want these extra safety features I will throw them in for a grand". So that was a bad comparison.

        If you want to have different levels of service, advertise it in the first place. People are a hell of alot more comfortable with a transparent transaction then they are with someone who tries to keep them in the dark untill after they have your money.

        Notice how McDonalds used to ask if you would like to "super size that" as you were making your order, but before you paid.

        /end rant
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      • Profile picture of the author butters
        Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

        I've seen people ask for refund purely based on the fact that an upsell existed. This business is all about selling, I just think some warriors need to approach the matter as a marketer and not just a consumer.
        Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

        If the upsell is after the initial purchase, then the customer will either buy it or they wont. So the vendor either makes the same amount as he would have normally, or he makes more. Never less. So basically it is not possible for it to harm the funnel/profits
        Contradictory... just saying
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  • Profile picture of the author sandrax
    Haha, I actually just bought one and personally as a buyer and seller I think they are perfectly fine .

    As a buyer, you get more "hopefully" quality info on that you are interested in learning/doing.

    As a seller, you can make that extra dollar, it is always up to the buyer if they purchase it or not.

    Have a great holiday weekend USA
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  • Profile picture of the author Henri Lind
    Having 1 upsell is ok for me. If it's helpful then why not buy it, but adding more than 1 upsell and downsells, its just annoying.
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  • Profile picture of the author Toby Lewis
    There is definitely a wrong way to do it, like saying the main product wont work unless you have this, or using extreme pressure, that type of thing. But as annoying as 5 upsells are, can you (as a marketer) really blame them for doing it?

    Dodgy tactics aside, a good upsell should be like when you buy a car. They've got extra options like sunroof, leather seats, mag wheels, etc because some people want all the bells and whistles and the dealer is more than happy to accommodate and take their money. Sure, it's still a car and it works just fine without all those things, but they're damn nice to have!

    I've seen people ask for refund purely based on the fact that an upsell existed. This business is all about selling, I just think some warriors need to approach the matter as a marketer and not just a consumer.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

      There is definitely a wrong way to do it, like saying the main product wont work unless you have this, or using extreme pressure, that type of thing. But as annoying as 5 upsells are, can you (as a marketer) really blame them for doing it?

      Dodgy tactics aside, a good upsell should be like when you buy a car. They've got extra options like sunroof, leather seats, mag wheels, etc because some people want all the bells and whistles and the dealer is more than happy to accommodate and take their money. Sure, it's still a car and it works just fine without all those things, but they're damn nice to have!

      I've seen people ask for refund purely based on the fact that an upsell existed. This business is all about selling, I just think some warriors need to approach the matter as a marketer and not just a consumer.
      I hate to tell you this, Toby, but when a marketer is on the paying end of things they ARE a consumer. There's no reason they should have to accept, much less embrace, seller tactics that annoy them just because it's "marketing".

      And there's a difference between saying that it's nice to be offered extra options and saying 'avoid buying this car if they don't offer you the extended warranty or the rust coating'.

      Your opening headline was 'Never buy a product WITHOUT an upsell', the latest in the long parade of sweeping generalizations offered up as gospel truth.

      If you're venting because someone asked for a refund because you had an upsell, fine. It's a very long leap of logic to go from that to 'anyone not using an upsell doesn't know what they are doing.'

      If I go into a new market, I go with a single product. No upsell most of the time. I let the 'just a consumer' types tell me what kind of upsell to offer. Doesn't mean the initial product is somehow inferior or that I don't know what I'm doing, does it?
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    • Profile picture of the author anton343
      Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

      There is definitely a wrong way to do it, like saying the main product wont work unless you have this, or using extreme pressure, that type of thing. But as annoying as 5 upsells are, can you (as a marketer) really blame them for doing it?

      Dodgy tactics aside, a good upsell should be like when you buy a car. They've got extra options like sunroof, leather seats, mag wheels, etc because some people want all the bells and whistles and the dealer is more than happy to accommodate and take their money. Sure, it's still a car and it works just fine without all those things, but they're damn nice to have!

      I've seen people ask for refund purely based on the fact that an upsell existed. This business is all about selling, I just think some warriors need to approach the matter as a marketer and not just a consumer.
      But would you buy a car that tells you that you need an engine to make it work after your have bought it. (or would you be a pit pissed?)
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      • Originally Posted by anton343 View Post

        But would you buy a car that tells you that you need an engine to make it work after your have bought it. (or would you be a pit pissed?)
        LOL, what are you talking about!!! Car manufacturers are precisely KNOWN for their upsell mastery!

        Would you like alloy wheels? that'd be an extra $600, sir.
        Would you like, leather seats? that'd be an extra grand, sir.
        Would you like electric roof top? that'd be an extra $750, sit.
        etc.

        Seriously man... it's not about offering an upsell to make the original order work... it's about offering an upsell that completes and adds value to the original order.
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        • Profile picture of the author anton343
          Originally Posted by Anonymous Affiliate View Post

          LOL, what are you talking about!!! Car manufacturers are precisely KNOWN for their upsell mastery!

          Would you like alloy wheels? that'd be an extra $600, sir.
          Would you like, leather seats? that'd be an extra grand, sir.
          Would you like electric roof top? that'd be an extra $750, sit.
          etc.

          Seriously man... it's not about offering an upsell to make the original order work... it's about offering an upsell that completes and adds value to the original order.

          But aren't you offered these before you buy the car or do I go to the wrong dealers?

          I have never been to a dealers and offered extras after I have purchased the car I would like to bet you haven't also. You may have picked your car then asked if you wanted metallic paint, leather seats etc. but this all happens before the transaction is completed not after you have already paid.

          Anton
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          • Originally Posted by anton343 View Post

            But aren't you offered these before you buy the car or do I go to the wrong dealers?
            Fine, let's take another example: Buy a flight ticket online. Upon completing payment, you will be offered to rent a car at your destination point, hotel rooms, private taxis to/from the airport, etc

            Post-payment upsells are EVERYWHERE, and they SHOULD as long as they add value to your original order (which is the way every smart marketer does upsells).
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            • Profile picture of the author anton343
              Originally Posted by Anonymous Affiliate View Post

              Fine, let's take another example: Buy a flight ticket online. Upon completing payment, you will be offered to rent a car at your destination point, hotel rooms, private taxis to/from the airport, etc

              Post-payment upsells are EVERYWHERE, and they SHOULD as long as they add value to your original order (which is the way every smart marketer does upsells).
              Fine mate, godaddy does the same when you buy a domain name (you have to jump through hoops to get to the payment page). But to repeat what I said you dont need any of what you mention to get the full benefit of the flight you have booked. Some upsells are not complimentary to the purchase but are saying to get the full benefit of this product you now need the updated version for another $xxxx

              To me this sucks and is something I would never do

              Anton
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  • Profile picture of the author trytolearnmore
    I'm not really sure if that is a correct assumption. If a course is bad then i won't really expect much from up or downsells.

    But what if this person's course doesn't require any upsells? Maybe it is already awesome as it is.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    i will also point out that i have done some testing on this issue, and in many cases sellers can actually make more money by separating the upsell and making it another stand alone offer.

    if you have went through the trouble to create a 2nd product to be used as an upsell, there is definitely a good chance you would in fact make more money offering your upsell as a second product and using all the mainstream marketing methods you would use for product 1 on product 2 (your old upsell)

    this will always depend on the offer of course, but i have definitely seen that combing offers just to have an upsell may in fact be taking money out of your pocket.

    its a concept called opportunity cost.
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    • Profile picture of the author rts2271
      Not everyone is a marketer. Some people utilize marketing to sell their products or brand their business. On some of my products their are rational upsells coupled with them that extend or enhance the original product. On some, upsells make absolutely no sense. Equating the availability of a upsell with the skill of the seller is absurd.
      Your looking at the environment like everyone is a marketer. I am by no means a marketer. I utilize marketing to sell my products.
      Lets take Godaddy and their obscene upsell system. Sure it makes money, but a ton of people simply do not use them because of their annoying system. Lets look at Walmart. They make more money then everyone in IM combined times 1000. Their upsell system is a simple suggested products display.
      There's 51 flavors to float everyones boat. The idea that upsells determine a marketers credibility only injures your credibility.
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    • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
      I have noticed the more options you provide in the original sale, the less sales you actually make.

      IMHO its easier to tell them what to buy and when, compared to allowing them to make choices, on what package or price point.

      Maybe that's just a software thing on the internet, but i know in real life,
      when i sell on the phone is the same way.

      Selling the upsell as individual standalone product fixes that issue perfectly ( for us anyway )
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  • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals.
    Sometimes dropping the upsell doubles your conversion.

    But hey! Everyone knows you have to have an upsell, right? Hahaha, what idiot wouldn't have an upsell. Screw your silly test results and math, I have a generally accepted aphorism!
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    • Profile picture of the author Jacob Hargreave
      In my personal opinion if you already have a sale, why bombard the customer with two to three more items? There are some that genuinely do it tastefully, however there are those that go at it like a caveman.

      For Example

      The Successful Up Sell: Buying a remote control car and on the box it specifically says "BATTERIES NOT INCLUDED" in bright yellow lettering. The the person assisting you offers to get you the batteries you need.

      The Cave Man Up Sell:
      Buying that same remote control car, except it does not mention anywhere on the box or seller's overview that it needs to be put together piece by piece. So you end up needing to get:
      1. A Screw Driver
      2. Batteries
      This literally leaves the person with 3 options. Throw the device back into your face, and file a complaint. Buy the product and attempt to put it together themselves, or buy everything in one shot.

      Up sells are a VERY delicate operation. It makes the buyer second guess the quality of what they are purchasing. For example:

      Seller: Would you like to buy a warranty for your new remote control car?
      Buy Thoughts/Dialect: Why? Is it going to break on me?

      It puts TOO many variables into a person's head. The number 1 rule of marketing is to keep it simple! What some seem to forget is that this applies to everything including the sale. You can be potentially giving the person more reason to make advantage of that 30 day money back guarantee.

      However...if you make clear note of what the customer will need before they purchase there is a greater chance of up sell success in my opinion because there is nothing hidden.

      Unfortunately 85% of sales I see are just marketers breaking a full product up into multiple sections and selling the pieces bit by bit squeezing the most profit out of each sale. Give me a break... If the product is good it WILL sale for any price period. Why try to be greedy? Then they wonder why the refund rates are so darn high. It's amazing.


      Originally Posted by Toby Lewis
      If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

      My response to this statement is Chris Farrel. He offers no up sells, actually now that I think about it I don't think he ever has. He is not a billionaire, but he is extremely successful.
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    • Profile picture of the author CyberSorcerer
      Originally Posted by CDarklock View Post

      Hahaha, what idiot wouldn't have an upsell. Screw your silly test results and math, I have a generally accepted aphorism!
      Well, I'm an idiot that doesn't have an upsell! And also don't have a mailing list signup, for my IM course ONLY that is. But my IM course is also my ONLY MMO product.

      The results of me being an idiot is that my first 6 month class is FULL (at $47/month) and the next class is about 68% full which will start in mid Nov. Also, my students are so new that don't even know what an upsell is. Hell, they don't even know what 'Affiliate' means or how it works.

      Just my two cents on this subject. And not, internet marketing isn't my sole source of online income. Actually IM only amounts to about 32% of my total income from working online.
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  • Profile picture of the author murtuza
    upsells do help in boosting your bottom line income.

    Around 30% of my clients end up purchasing my upsell.

    What I also do is get my clients to subscribe to a squeeze page after they make a purchase and then you can promote them 2 more products at the thankyou and confirm thanks page.

    Also you can list more products at the backend on the download page.

    As long as your other products are adding value to your initial offer and as long as you are providing value in all of them, these simple tricks can end up making you thousands additional...
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan C. Rinnert
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    Just because it may be a fundamental doesn't mean that it's a requirement. In baseball, sinkers, sliders and curve balls are among the fundamentals for pitching, but that doesn't mean a pitcher is no good if he doesn't use them for each opponent's at-bat. If you know you can get the job done with a particular batter with a mix of fastballs and change-ups, there's no need to toss in a slider just because it's one of the fundamentals.

    An upsell is a tool. Just because some may not use it on all their products doesn't mean they don't know how to use to effectively. It just means they didn't need it for that particular job.
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  • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    I see a lot of emails to support desks for both my own IM products and others, and a common theme is people complaining about upsells.

    I'm the first to admit that there is a right and a wrong way to do upsells, but if you are buying an IM product, there WILL be upsells.

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

    Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!

    Apart from the fact you can never know if there is an upsell until you have purchased the original product

    The rest of the advice is sound, take no notice of those arguing the point with you, your correct in your original thought

    here is another reason for upselling (despite the comment about upsetting a reviewer further up the thread) as a prospective affilliate i want to see upsells in the marketing sytem or i'm not going to promote you.

    I want the biggest bang for my buck if i am going to email my list and recieve the normal downside of mailing and get people unsubscribe.

    Most people with a decent list and who know what they are doing will not normally promote something that doesnt stick to good marketing procedure. There are exceptions but not many.

    And 100% if i dont know you and you approach me to promote for you, then the first thing i will check to see is if your covering all the bases, and upsells must be part of the process or i wont even answer your request.

    If i like the product and feel inclined to do a promotion and I think you have done the upsell badly i will offer up some changes for you to make before I promote.
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    • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      Apart from the fact you can never know if there is an upsell until you have purchased the original product
      Robert, many of us do the upsell before the purchase:

      Buy button -> Upsell page -> PayPal -> Download

      This decision is "click yes so I can buy two products, or click no so I can buy one product" - essentially the same process, differing only in how much money is spent.

      Many others, of course, do it differently:

      Buy button -> PayPal -> Upsell page -> PayPal -> Download

      This decision is "click yes and sign into PayPal again to spend more money before I can have what I just bought, or click no and get what I just bought."

      It is my contention that the first choice results in a happier consumer who is both more likely to buy the upsell and less likely to complain about seeing it.
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      "The Golden Town is the Golden Town no longer. They have sold their pillars for brass and their temples for money, they have made coins out of their golden doors. It is become a dark town full of trouble, there is no ease in its streets, beauty has left it and the old songs are gone." - Lord Dunsany, The Messengers
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      • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
        Originally Posted by CDarklock View Post

        Robert, many of us do the upsell before the purchase:

        Buy button -> Upsell page -> PayPal -> Download

        This decision is "click yes so I can buy two products, or click no so I can buy one product" - essentially the same process, differing only in how much money is spent.

        Many others, of course, do it differently:

        Buy button -> PayPal -> Upsell page -> PayPal -> Download

        This decision is "click yes and sign into PayPal again to spend more money before I can have what I just bought, or click no and get what I just bought."

        It is my contention that the first choice results in a happier consumer who is both more likely to buy the upsell and less likely to complain about seeing it.

        My upsells are done when they first login, not directly after the first sale or signup
        so there is a gap between the 2 actions

        The upsell is never seen as part of the front end sale, only seen when they login to get delivery of the product
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        • Profile picture of the author David Keith
          Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

          My upsells are done when they first login, not directly after the first sale or signup
          so there is a gap between the 2 actions

          The upsell is never seen as part of the front end sale, only seen when they login to get delivery of the product
          thats more of a cross sell then i guess.

          when i think of a good upsell, i think of "would you like fries with that"

          something not required, but something that makes the original product more enjoyable.
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        • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
          Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

          The upsell is never seen as part of the front end sale
          So... it's not an upsell, then.

          An upsell happens as part of the initial sale. It is an upsell precisely because the two purchases are viewed as one transaction by the customer.
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          "The Golden Town is the Golden Town no longer. They have sold their pillars for brass and their temples for money, they have made coins out of their golden doors. It is become a dark town full of trouble, there is no ease in its streets, beauty has left it and the old songs are gone." - Lord Dunsany, The Messengers
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  • Profile picture of the author kaper7
    An upsell is supposed to enhance the product or service. For instance buying an upsell that automates step makes sense. with that said, seller must be sure to deliver all that's promised for the product and disclose that that is an upsell that will make life even easier.

    I have found that when you are upfront with your buyer, it tends to build trust much quicker and that buyer will normally buy your future products.
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  • Profile picture of the author xxxJamesxxx
    I see a lot of emails to support desks for both my own IM products and others, and a common theme is people complaining about upsells.

    I'm the first to admit that there is a right and a wrong way to do upsells, but if you are buying an IM product, there WILL be upsells.

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

    Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
    Couldn't of put it myself.

    James Scholes
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  • Profile picture of the author simonhewitt
    I think an upsell can be a good idea but I hate it when I say no thanks and another sales page comes up, then say no thanks again and yet another appears. Sometimes it's just annoying abit like when you walk over to a car lot and the salesman pounces.

    I have just created my first ever product and it is a free report. I decided not to add an upsell page as the report is free, or is this a bad idea not using an upsell page
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    • Profile picture of the author HeySal
      Originally Posted by simonhewitt View Post

      I think an upsell can be a good idea but I hate it when I say no thanks and another sales page comes up, then say no thanks again and yet another appears. Sometimes it's just annoying abit like when you walk over to a car lot and the salesman pounces.

      I have just created my first ever product and it is a free report. I decided not to add an upsell page as the report is free, or is this a bad idea not using an upsell page
      Even after just saying that red lights go off in my head over upsells these days - if you are giving something for free, and it's only an outline for the paid product, nobody is losing anything. It's really good to be able to see what the seller is all about and if I only get an outline of the real product - am I out anything? I just got to get a free glimpse into the seller's knowledge to see if I want to pursue his subject.

      I don't consider offering a paid product on the heels of a free one an "up-sell" at all. I consider the free product an introduction or review to allow me to see if the products are what I want and need.
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  • Profile picture of the author JDArchitecture
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    This statement is on par with those who bitch about upsells and OTO's -- ludicrous.
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    • Profile picture of the author ShayB
      I'll say up front that I've never offered an upsell with any of my WSOs. Lots of reasons. Not saying it's a good or bad decision - one of my Hotsheets sold well over 2000 copies, so I don't think that hurt sales.

      OTOH - I have a LOT of people who buy one Hotsheet and then say "Where are the rest? Do you have others? How can I get more?"

      I've always directed them to my website, but it's been suggested that as an upsell I offer a bundle of Hotsheets (that would otherwise be unavailable for purchase on the WF, meaning they are only offered to my list).

      I'm going to test it with my next WSO and see if it helps or hurts. We'll see.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy Fletcher
    Some people in this thread really hate money.

    Upsells aren't evil, only evil upsells are evil.

    "Do you want fries with that for an extra buck?" - There is nothing wrong with offering them something extra that complements the original purchase.

    "Do you want the meat patty in the burger for an extra buck?" - This makes the original promise a complete lie and there is everything wrong with that.

    Stop moaning about how much you hate marketing on a marketing forum and go apply some of it to your own businesses.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      This thread is wobbling on the tracks, and in danger of derailment. We started with a blanket statement that a marketer who didn't use an upsell on every offer didn't know what he was doing. We've hit the loose rail and leaned into the value of upsells in general. Leaned the other way into the value of an upsell to an affiliate. Now we can't even seem to agree on what an 'upsell' is...

      Originally Posted by owslaw123 View Post

      thats more of a cross sell then i guess.

      when i think of a good upsell, i think of "would you like fries with that"

      something not required, but something that makes the original product more enjoyable.
      In my mind, 'would you like fries with that' is a cross sell, introducing another product into the mix. Kind of like the 'would you like the batteries also' example above.

      To me, a true upsell would be ordering my value meal and hearing 'would you like to supersize that for an extra $0.75?'
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  • Profile picture of the author Celeste Green
    Having a sales funnel is certainly a smart marketing idea, but like anything else it's not an absolute. Time & testing will tell whether your market responds well to upsells or not. In the Internet Marketing realm, visitors are accustomed to seeing upsells so it's not that unusual. If you tried that with a puppy training ebook, you may make your buyer jittery & cause them to immediately feel distrust, like they got ripped off or something like that.

    It depends on the product/service too. If I sign up for a low $37 ebook & then the upsell is a monthly membership site or $100+ software to automate/improve upon the book then that works well together. It's an enhancement rather than a withholding of what was promised in the initial sale.

    However if I pay $1000 for an all inclusive service & then get hit with upsells, I get a little ticked off. That's just getting greedy at that point or really your all inclusive service isn't as great as it should be.
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  • Profile picture of the author O0o0O
    I see upsells as additional supplemental material that a warrior can use to further his or her internet marketing career. As someone said earlier, the original WSO the warrior paid for should be given at the outset, and then any additional information, resources or services should be then added for an extra cost.
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  • Profile picture of the author Coby
    More than one way to skin a cat...

    Instead of trying to get ANOTHER sale right away, maybe another approach is to provide them VALUE First then ask for another purchase...

    For example, if it's a video product - don't just make it a zip file - also make it so they can watch it online. Under the video you put related products...

    I'm still testing both - but the latter is working best for me at the moment...
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    • Profile picture of the author DeadGuy
      Is upselling a fundamental? No. Absolutely not. It comes down to weight and perceived enhancement. The weight of the product the customer intended to purchase vs. the weight of the upsell... plus the perceived enhancement value of the upsell. Should be formula in there somewhere.
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  • Profile picture of the author PatriciaS
    I'm a little tired of upsells (or promotions within a product) where the upsell itself seems to be the whole reason the product was put together in the first place. I'm also increasingly suspicious of those upsells that may not be "required" for the product to work, but sure make it way better. I'd rather marketers just package the whole thing together, spell it out, and charge more from the get go. OR, at least spell out the upsell details in the original sales page.

    The other day -- on the strength of his reputation for over-delivering and my own very happy experience of that -- I bought Jason Fladlien's product on QR codes. It was $27, and the report itself was frankly a little thin, IMO. The $27 did include, however, access to online software so you could create QR codes (as if there aren't plenty of other free resources for that online).

    But I was even more disappointed that within the document was a sales pitch for a $77 product that allows you to edit the QR codes so you can create them and rent them for changing clients or change where they point to, etc. Very useful -- but also very pricey and I felt the report itself was intended primarily to sell access to that. It wasn't Fladlien's usual good stuff and his reputation with me suffered greatly -- near terminally -- as a result.
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  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    The problem is a lot of people use upsells incorrectly these days. Instead of creating something that makes using the front end product easier or more effective they will instead just take something away from the front end product and then offer it as an upsell.

    Balls to those people.

    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    Sorry, but that's just a ridiculous comment. People who do not use upsells are NOT ineffective marketers. I have been marketing for over 6 years and I know exactly how to do upsells. It doesn't mean I use them every time. There are times where I care more about helping people than making a few extra bucks - I guess that's the difference between some of us.

    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    you need to accept and embrace upsells...
    Um... no, people don't. They don't have to accept anything. If your customers are complaining about the way you are upselling then maybe you would actually do better to sit back and LISTEN to your customers for a change instead of TELLING them the way it should be. Then again, maybe that's only what us ineffective marketers do...
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  • Profile picture of the author NerdGary
    This is a weird post.
    I just don't see the logic... sorry.
    Upsells typically mean the main product isn't strong enough perhaps?
    That's the way I see it.
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  • Profile picture of the author theemperor
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

    Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
    It depends, based on most of the claims I see in the WSO section, if they are true, then the $500-$5000 they will make from a typical WSO is peanuts in comparison to how much their method makes.

    If they are telling the truth, then rather than create upsells their time is better spent on the method they are selling rather than on product #2 the upsell.

    The WSO is often just a brain dump of the method and can be done in a couple of hours to a day, but creating a new product to upsell would take much longer.

    Coaching is another option but I reckon many warriors prefer not to sell their time either, unless they particularly love doing coaching and helping people.

    So in summary it makes perfect sense to not upsell in many cases. I'd even say that the lack of an upsell can be good sign that the product is quality.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gary Ning Lo
    I never got any complains about upsells what so ever..

    Personally when i buy online products, i love upsells..

    Even if i don't buy them i learn from them .i.e how the sellers has setup the upsells, sales page, follow up email etc.

    Cheers,

    ~Gary
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeTucker
    It is interesting how everyone sees this differently... For me, upsells are annoying because of the extra step. Why didn't you just throw it in with it at the beginning as part of a full package and just charge me more? Jumping through extra hoops to get everything you are offering is a waste of my time, and I find it difficult to forgive people who waste my time.

    And because I am the center of my own Universe, I know that everyone puts out all of their products and create different salespages just for me.
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  • Profile picture of the author JimWaller
    I can see both sides of this coin. Upsells can be great for all involved if they make sense in the context of the product or system. In some cases or niches, they absolutely don't make sense and should be avoided.

    <rant>There have been times when I had to pass on an upsell or a OTO because it was "out of reach". I'm not saying you should avoid upsells due to potential buyer's fiscal abilities, but as a consumer, I do sometimes HATE having to jump through hoops to get what I want. I REALLY hate when upsells form an endless loop of exit pops that bring you back to where you've already been. That is buyer's remorse just waitin' to happen! </rant>

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  • Profile picture of the author matsanti
    Upsells are just fine, had them with my product and that it is only offered to increase productivity though they are not a necessity in order for the product to work. Subscribers can still make the initial product to work even without the upsells. This being the scenario then I would definitely have no problems with offering or being offered upsells/upgrades.
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  • Profile picture of the author bagpuss0001
    Upsells are fine as 'Further reading', but never to fulfill the promises of what it is you just bought.
    Not all products need an upsell. Check out my WSO in my link, its a simple and powerful tool but doesnt have a natural product to upsell.
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  • Profile picture of the author HeySal
    Well, I sure am glad that you put in the line about exceptions.

    My last product I wrote in response to a genuine need I saw in this forum for the information I have. It isn't something that just anyone could duplicate without the right educational background. It's not something that I care to continue as a course of business, though. That doesn't make the information less valid.

    This is a bit of rehash but it's the way I feel.

    I'm not real excited about buying a product that is just a light-weight teaser for the real one either. While I think a continuum is a good thing to look for, the "up-sell" isn't necessarily what I want to see at all.

    I might look at other products the person has created and see what the their flow is, but an "up-sell" has become such a diluted idea that I tend to avoid them. Once a technique hits the mainstream, it becomes abused by every Tom, Dick, and Harry that wants to make a buck.

    I think I'll just stick to due dilligence on the product creator to find out if the first product is even going to be an enticement and worry about upsells later if the product I already bought blows me away.
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  • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    Never buy a product WITHOUT an upsell...
    Toby,

    I think JohnMcCabe, CDarklock and others have exposed flaws in this curiously sweeping piece of IM advice and reasoning, but if you remain committed to this line of thought moving forward, I have a simple question:

    Should IMers who adopt this reasoning for the presumptive good of the trade demand a refund if they purchase a product and make the horrifying discovery when the sales process ends that they hadn't been asked to spend more money?

    Gawd, the serial refunders looking for new and better excuses must be loving this thread. The italicized passage immediately below remains fiction, at least for now:

    From: John Doe IMer
    To: Jane Doe IMer
    SUBJ: I want my money back pronto!

    Ms. Doe,

    As an IMer and an IM coach who practices what he preaches by ALWAYS including an upsell and teaching his students NEVER to buy a product without one for the continued good health of the trade and its professional JV partners worldwide, I choose to do business ONLY with those clear-thinking IMers who ALWAYS offer upsells. I didn't realize you had no upsell until AFTER I paid for your product. This is bad for IM and a horrible way to do business. Don't you realize you're leaving money on the table and screwing your JV partners? The nerve of some people who call themselves IMers!

    I doubt that you even have JV partners. What clear-headed IM professional looking for affiliate and JV opportunities would want to do business with a woman stupid enough not to offer an upsell? These poor people suffer from unsubscribes every time they do a mailing. If they mailed for you, not only would they get unsubscribes, they'd also have no chance to make money from a back-end sale to ease the pain of the unsubscribes!!

    Why? BECAUSE YOU DON'T HAVE ONE IN CONTRAVENTION OF THE GENERALLY ACCEPTED IM APHORISM THAT YOU *MUST* HAVE ONE AND THAT FELLOW IMERS *NEVER* SHOULD BUY A PRODUCT WITHOUT ONE!!

    Get a clue, lady. And send me back my money or I'll file a chargeback and put you on the "bad seller's" list. We IM and JV professionals know exactly how to deal with amateurs like you. Not offering an upsell is a clear sign that you're a hack and maybe even a scammer, and I demand a refund!

    John Doe

    P.S. Consider this a friendly dispute for now, one IMer to another. I'll escalate it into a full-blown dispute with your payment processor if I don't get a satisfactory result from you in 24 hours.


    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    Serious question: Did you pay a fee to hear this advice, and then adopted it for your business? Did you incorporate this advice after seeing it proffered on an IM forum?

    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
    IMHO, what IMers need to embrace is common sense -- all while constantly questioning the conventional wisdom and being on the lookout for approaches that sound good (and are designed to confirm biases), but are exposed as sweeping generalizations or the byproducts of insular thinking when subjected to the barest of scrutiny.

    Patrick

    P.S. I think upsells and cross sells and upgrades and OTOs can be designed in tasteful ways that speak well of IM and affiliate marketing -- all while creating value to the IM consumer and providing legitimate affiliate profit opportunities whether the economy is good or bad.

    But inelegant, gimmicky and deceptive upsells and cross sells and upgrades and OTOs make consumers wretch and are viewed as nothing more than just another IM "trick" to separate people from their money. Some Warriors have openly shared their feelings in this thread about being treated like cash cows and not customers. I can't help but wonder how many Warriors reflexively will be inclined to dismiss them as haters or whiners and people who don't "get it."

    There was a particularly hideous "upgrade" scam last year in which more than 100,000 IMers got roped into enrolling during the free "prelaunch" phase of a purported data-entry "opportunity" -- only to be told later that they only real way they could profit was by purchasing a $126.95 "Pro" software package with a continuing monthly charge of $29.95. This software purportedly would make the lives of "Pro" members more efficient by providing a tool that would improve the speed at which data could be entered -- while setting the stage for them to create enormous riches.

    Enrollees unwilling to pay for the "Pro" upgrade still would get a data-entry tool, but it would be slower . . . than . . . painfully . . . slow.

    Here, verbatim, is part of the pitch. Mind you, IM customers were NOT told these things when they signed up for the "free" affiliate "program":

    With PRO Upgrade Software an entry takes up to 1 minute. Without takes up to 3 to 5 minutes.

    With PRO Upgrade Software you may repeat address for entry with a click of a button. Without you need to re-enter all address data manually.

    With PRO Upgrade Software many fields will be already filled in. Without you need to re-enter all address data manually.

    With PRO Upgrade Software you may enter as many entries as you wish at one time. Without you are limited to 5 entries per day.

    With PRO Upgrade Software you may enter data for others who also have PRO Upgraded Software. Without you can only enter for yourself and not receive any entries from anyone else who may wish to help.


    On a concluding note, numerous herd IMers -- hundreds or even thousands -- did mailings and created websites for this purported affiliate "opportunity" that offered a purportedly exciting chance to get rich. No verifiable evidence has surfaced that anybody other than the "opportunity" sponsor got paid, but "Pro" affiliates who paid for the upgrade complained that their credit cards continued to get dinged and that getting a refund was next to impossible.
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  • I'm not very sure what some of you complain about.
    • From the marketer's point of view: A properly-chosen and properly-priced upsell can score a 30+% conversion ratio. That's a 30% extra you add to your bottom line by doing virtually nothing.
    • From the customer's point of view: a good upsell that adds value to the original purchase ("would you like some chicken nuggets with your BigMac menu, sir?"), can round up his original order into a complete package, and he will be happy to pay extra for that "completeness".
    So, as long as you offer the correct up-sell or cross-sell, it's a win/win situation for both the marketer and the customer, so why not?
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    • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
      Originally Posted by Anonymous Affiliate View Post

      I'm not very sure what some of you complain about.
      Usually the general inability of the average vendor to provide a properly-chosen, good, and correct upsell.
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  • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
    Without a doubt, upsells are a powerful tool in the hands
    of a skilled marketer.

    Applied skilfully, an upsell is a great way to add more value
    to the customer's purchase and increase your customer lifetime
    value too.

    Applied without sufficient skill however, upsells can be
    a disaster.
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    Upsells are NOT a fundamental at all.

    Fundamentals, are basic, foundational principles that
    need to be applied to generate results in the field.

    Upsells, cross-sells, etc are more advanced stuff that
    you can apply when you have developed the skills and
    judgement on when (and when not) to use them.

    HINT: Smart marketers do NOT ALWAYS use upsells
    in EVERY sales situation.

    Dedicated to mutual success,

    Shaun
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  • Profile picture of the author anton343
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    I see a lot of emails to support desks for both my own IM products and others, and a common theme is people complaining about upsells.

    I'm the first to admit that there is a right and a wrong way to do upsells, but if you are buying an IM product, there WILL be upsells.

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

    Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
    Toby

    I totally disagree. Upsells are there for one thing only " To get more money from you whilst you are in the buying phase"

    If a product needs an upsell to make it work it shouldn't be on sale in the first place. Just another trick to fleece a bit more money from buyers in my humble opinion.

    Anton
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    • Originally Posted by anton343 View Post

      If a product needs an upsell to make it work it shouldn't be on sale in the first place.
      So I guess McDonalds shouldnt be selling BigMac menus at all since they offer you an apple pie upsell in the process... :rolleyes:

      Guys, we're MARKETERS here! Our job is to sell and to maximize our $-per-prospect ratio! It seems like some of you simply dislike selling or something...
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      • Profile picture of the author anton343
        Originally Posted by Anonymous Affiliate View Post

        So I guess McDonalds shouldnt be selling BigMac menus at all since they offer you an apple pie upsell in the process... :rolleyes:

        Guys, we're MARKETERS here! Our job is to sell and to maximize our $-per-prospect ratio! It seems like some of you simply dislike selling or something...
        You dont need the apple pie to eat a big mac mate.

        I said if it needs an upsell to make the original product work it shouldn't be there

        Anton
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  • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

      What is it with these threads today? It's like the fourth one I've posted in that mistakenly makes something a black and white rule.
      Black and white rules are like zero-tolerance policies. They are so much easier than exercising actual thought and judgment. Just point to the rule or policy...

      Mike, you make an excellent point on lifetime customer value.

      If I have a storefront selling, say, cookware and kitchen gadgets, I want people returning again and again. I want them sending their friends and family, and telling their coworkers over lunch.

      If I have a booth at the county fair, carnival or on the boardwalk, I know I'm not likely to ever have another chance at these people passing by. So I know I have to get every nickel out of them that I can.

      With the storefront, my customer lifetime could be measured in years.

      With the carnival booth, it's likely measured in minutes.

      Different situations call for different tactics.
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  • Profile picture of the author Geeked Labs
    I personally like upsells. I have 2 qualifications for every product I offer.

    1. It exceeds expectations

    2. It makes me a boat load of money.

    Honestly from my experience customers who complain excessively or even refund a product because of an upsell are usually terrible customers (great people 75% of the time) but still TERRIBLE customers. You don't make a boat load of cash with terrible customers.
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  • Profile picture of the author JamesGw
    I can kind of see what you're saying that marketers shouldn't be putting out marketing products without knowing the fundamentals of, well, marketing. It sort of reminds me of people coming on here and asking for basic SEO advice while they have links to their "SEO" services in their signature.

    That said, maybe the marketer just didn't want to upsell something on that product. Or maybe he found that he got better conversions offering the whole package at a higher price vs large + small portions (upsell). The particular product could just be a little project too designed to give back while making a little bit of cash.

    There are too many variables to say whether or not a marketer who forgoes the upsell in a marketing product is actually a good marketer.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve B
      Toby:

      Maybe your point was to get a conversation going about upsells.

      But I totally disagree with you when you say:

      " ... a good upsell should be like when you buy a car. They've got extra options like sunroof, leather seats, mag wheels, etc because some people want all the bells and whistles and the dealer is more than happy to accommodate and take their money. Sure, it's still a car and it works just fine without all those things, but they're damn nice to have!"

      In your example, you're talking about options on a car that are right on the sticker in full view of a consumer who has yet to make a purchase. I don't consider that example the same or relevant to digital product upsells where you first make your purchase, then are blindly hit with the upsell.

      I understand the philosophy behind upsells, OTOs, backend products, etc and I am not personally against them except when I am hit with one upsell after another in quick succession such that I can't even go about my business without closing down a dozen of them! Disgusting marketing!

      Your title to this post was unfortunate because most upsells can't be avoided prior to the initial sale and there is absolutely no correlation, in my mind, between upsells and a seller's authority, experience, skill, or savvy in Internet marketing.

      Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author motive01
    Dennis Gaskill, I totally agree with you 100%
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  • Profile picture of the author dm101
    At the very least, being subjected to upsells is an accepted (if not acceptable to all) nuisance of doing business online. It's akin to being bombarded with commercials just so you can watch the Superbowl on TV. Not too many people complain about that. I remember a time when commercials didn't exist on Cable TV. In fact, no commercials was the initial selling point for cable. Now, commercials are all too commonplace there, yet few complain because SLOWLY, we've all be trained to accept them if we want the shows. Thanks for pointing out the importance and acceptability of upsells! Where would we be without them?
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  • Profile picture of the author Aaron Salian
    Hey Toby,

    I completely agree with you. Upsells is a strategy in any online business. It also provides the buyer of better alternatives once he purchases the upfront product.

    The only thing online product creators musk keep in mind is the factor of providing upsells that add value to the initial purchase. Not the ones that make it impossible to use the front-end without the upsell.

    As long as the front-end delivers the initial sales page promise made by the seller to the buyer, upsells are totally a great way to take the online business to the next level.

    Regards,

    Aaron Salian
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  • Profile picture of the author ezbiz
    Very good point Toby! People should expect the upsells, and it's not that difficult to use your own judgment as to whether or not you want the upsell. But I can see both sides point of view.
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  • Profile picture of the author jasonl70
    a few things came to mind while I read this thread:

    1) most people are complaining about the quality of the upsell, which I don't feel is the point/topic.

    2) others are complaining about their experiences with "upsell hell". Again, I feel this is not really the topic.

    ... both of these are issues about bad upsells.. keep in mind: saying all good marketers should be using upsells is not the same thing as saying everyone who uses upsells is a good marketer.

    3) the WF is a world onto it's own.. the average consumer doesn't get up in arms over decent upselling, doesn't cry about his/her product "being held hostage" via an opt-in, etc. WF members and WSO buyers who have been around here for even a modest amount of time are not represntative of the "typical consumer" by any means.
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    • Profile picture of the author Anjine
      Originally Posted by jasonl70 View Post

      3) the WF is a world onto it's own.. the average consumer doesn't get up in arms over decent upselling, doesn't cry about his/her product "being held hostage" via an opt-in, etc. WF members and WSO buyers who have been around here for even a modest amount of time are not representative of the "typical consumer" by any means.
      This is EXACTLY what I was thinking as I read the posts.

      I think there is a bit more cynicism involved here on the forum when it comes to upsells & such.

      As long as the initial product does what was promised, I don't mind a valuable upsell at all.

      When adding an item to my cart on Amazon, I'm offered several other items to buy in addition - multiple times during one shopping session. Do I mind? Nope. Most people don't.

      But repeat this same process in the IM niche and people start to get uncomfortable.

      All that being said, whether or not you offer an upsell says nothing about your skills as a marketer. I think it's how you go about offering the upsell that says the most.
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  • Profile picture of the author Toby Lewis
    Thanks for all the replies guys! Definitely a very controversial topic and a good one to think about.
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  • Profile picture of the author dagaul101
    Upsells are a way of life for many marketers, but for many newbies it might seem they might feel they are not buying the full product and may wonder why the full product was not offered even at a higher price
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  • Profile picture of the author Kurt
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    I see a lot of emails to support desks for both my own IM products and others, and a common theme is people complaining about upsells.

    I'm the first to admit that there is a right and a wrong way to do upsells, but if you are buying an IM product, there WILL be upsells.

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?

    Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on the whole you need to accept and embrace upsells... and start using them yourself!
    So you're saying I should toss up a crappy OTO just to look like I know what I'm doing?

    Shouldn't the product and person be judged on the product and person, and not some requirement they include a OTO?

    Sometimes people are people first, marketers second. Ever heard of JC Penny? He was one of the greatest marketers of all time. After going public, JC was on the "Board" for Pennys and a vote came up whether to begin a JC Penny charge card.

    The vote was 49-1 "for" a charge card. The only dissenting vote was JC himself. He said he knew the card was good for business, but said he was concerned about his customers going into debt by buying things they couldn't afford.

    JC put his heart before his wallet. Yet, according to the "logic" of the OP, JC Penny would have no right teaching us anything about making money, since credit is a tool used by virtually every other major retailer.

    Maybe some of us that don't have OTOs do so simply because we hate them as customers and don't want to put our own customers through that BS and prefer making a little less money over being a hypocrite?

    If you want to use them, then fine, that's your business. However, making public statements insulting the credentials of those that don't use them is a classic logical fallacy known as an "ad hominem attack"...And if you make your own decisions based on illogical assumptions, what should we think about your own advice?
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  • Profile picture of the author John Redlinger
    I would like to repeat my opposition to upsells. It makes me feel like I'm getting taken advantage of when I go for a product that costs $35, $45, $55. Then you find yourself being urged to buy an "add on" that often times costs a lot more. I believe it adds to the poor reputation internet marketing has to those not involved in it. If you have to have upsells, you should at least give a hint that the upsell is coming and not have it come out of the blue. It is when it is a complete surprise that I feel taken advantage of.
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Lockwood
    Originally Posted by Toby Lewis View Post

    If there aren't any upsells, you should seriously consider why. You are buying a product about "how to make money", yet the person selling it to you hasn't even implemented one of the fundamentals. What gives them authority to teach you about making money if they are doing it ineffectively themselves?
    What if they put everything into the one product rather than hold some of it back to have an upsell?
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  • Profile picture of the author Toby Lewis
    I think you're right Anjine, the acceptability is more to do with *how* the up-sell is offered.
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  • Profile picture of the author barbling
    That being said, several of my products do NOT have upsells...simply because I chose to offer a silver/gold version and forget about taking on the OTO.

    I do have to update that some year.

    It's all about where you choose to invest your energies and what methodology works best for you.

    If you're selling to a MMO audience, offer MRR to a product as a OTO just makes sense (as your customer can then use it as fodder for their business online too).

    If you're offering a How To Make Money During the Holidays product, then offering a collection of Holiday templates/graphics/images/etc. for the customers' website...that just makes sense too.

    I firmly believe upsells should simply complement the original purchase.
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  • Profile picture of the author mrjosco
    As a consumer, this is what upsells say to me:

    "That product I just convinced you to buy isn't as good as I led you to believe. If you really want a full product you need to spend more" - this lowers credibility and I already start to have buyers remorse. Why sell me an incomplete product? Seems unethical to me

    It makes me feel like I have just done business with a sleazy, stereotypical used car salesman. If there is a recurring option, you can bet I have no interest in it anymore. I will also be much more aggressive in determining if the product needs to be returned. I don't want a product that was sold as a complete product and now you are telling me I only received part of it.

    I don't care what market you are in. If you want to cross sell me, within reason, that is fine. But if you keep telling me that what I just bought from you isn't good enough and I need to pay more for the rest then I won't ever buy from you again.
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  • Profile picture of the author mojojuju
    Apparently every newbie marketer in the MMO niche who employs an upsell in his sales process is thereby an expert marketer.
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