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What is cross-selling?

This article contains general information about cross-selling. The following articles contain instructions on how to use cross-selling in your online shop:

How cross-selling works

Cross-selling is a simple way of increasing profit. The idea behind it is straightforward: when visitors to your shop view a product, they are also shown other articles that are related to it. These can be complementary or alternative products specified by you. Or you can let your shop do this work for you and have it automatically display articles that were also purchased by other customers.
One of the major advantages of cross-selling is that it addresses visitors who have already decided to order something from your shop. The important decision to buy something has already been made by these customers. Now they only need to be persuaded to add other products to their basket or to select a product that you would prefer to sell in place of the one they originally chose.

Cross-selling as customer service

Many customers view marketing material such as e-mail newsletters or online advertising as intrusive but cross-selling is not usually viewed so critically. Instead of bombarding users with advertising messages that are not always very appropriate, they simply receive product proposals instead. Ideally, the cross-selling function performs at least some of the tasks of a well-trained sales assistant in a shop who is able to point out potential additional products or to recommend similar articles that might meet the customer's needs better. In such cases, customers perceive cross-selling as a useful service rather than as simply another means by which to make them spend more. This is exactly the situation in conventional stores, for example at petrol stations: in addition to their core products they almost always sell confectionery, drinks, etc. which are generally viewed positively as an additional service.
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