What is cross-selling and how does ABM enhance it

If you are researching the best ways to generate more revenue by deepening your customer relationship, you should add cross-selling to your road map. It is a very effective strategy to scale your billing while improving lifetime value and customer retention.

Defining what cross-selling is can be very simple, but putting it into practice successfully requires certain skills, such as very careful monitoring of the relationship with the customer, so that nothing affects that loyalty or damages the business relationship.

The sale of related complementary products or services must respond to the customer’s interest to be consistent and sustainable. In this way, by addressing their needs and adding value from there, cross-selling becomes a relatively quick and effective way to increase income, taking advantage of the customer base.

What is cross-selling

As we said, cross-selling is marketing additional products to existing customers. In general, it is about offering the customer products that are compatible with those they are purchasing.

It is a very common strategy in the financial services industry and in the world of software, in which the relationship with the client illuminates new needs and business opportunities.

What would be an example of cross-selling? Offer external memory to a customer purchasing a laptop, or a sales prospecting service or customer experience to whom you have contracted a marketing campaign.

How cross-selling works

Cross-selling to existing customers is one of the main methods in any business because it builds on an existing relationship, in which the seller is familiar with their needs and objectives.

Approached professionally and efficiently, cross-selling is excellent for both parties. Above all, when the seller detects a need or an opportunity for improvement in the client and offers him a product or service that fits perfectly with that situation.

When you’re at the sweet spot in your customer journey, in the appropriate way and through their preferred contact method, they react positively and there is a high chance that they will purchase the recommended product.

The result is usually perfect for both parties: your sales increase and your customers’ satisfaction increases because the product better suits their needs.

Why upsells are important

One of the great advantages of the additional sales is that they can provide a more significant return on investment than attracting new customers. Acquisition strategies usually require more resources than retention and loyalty and require more time to generate results.

On the other hand, persuading existing customers to increase their budgets or try new products or services is easier if the experience has been good and the link is personalized.

A company that knows the changing needs of the customer and offers tailored solutions, distinguishes itself from the competition. The key is to have good timing because timing is everything: the timing of your cross-sell or upsell offer is essential. You have to make an impact with a new proposal in the right situation and time.

Benefits of cross-selling

The benefits of cross-selling are well recognized. It is a proven strategy, which generates higher sales revenue and improves customer satisfaction. In B2B businesses, achieve greater customer lifetime value (CLV) through deeper integration into the client’s business.

The only risk with this strategy is when it is done poorly or unprofessionally. If faced at inopportune times or with an offer of products or services that are foreign to the customer’s needs and interests, cross-selling can be inconvenient.

It can be annoying and ineffective when incompatible or inappropriate products are offered or when the seller is contacted insistently or at a stage of the business in which the offer does not add value.

Cross-selling and upselling: the differences

What is the difference between cross-selling and up-selling? Upselling is a sales tactic in which an update or high-end version of a product or service is promoted. On the other hand, cross-selling consists of offering complementary products.

Cross-selling and upselling have elements in common. They are two different practices that involve approaching existing customers and convincing them to purchase additional products or services. But, in the case of upselling, your goal is to sell the customer a more expensive and more advanced product than you had planned by conveying its additional benefits.

As we saw, in cross-selling the objective is different. Cross-selling never involves encouraging customers to replace their current options with more expensive ones.

Cross-selling and ABM

Another common point between upselling and cross-selling is that in both cases, companies must effectively use their existing and potential customer base to increase sales.

In both cases, these strategies must be well-planned. They can be annoying for customers and ineffective in generating sales if they are not based on adequate data and with the correct timing. A good example is the case of problematic clients, who end up stressing the process and complicating the business, instead of benefiting it.

That is why it is crucial to analyze customer data well to evaluate when and how to move forward with these types of techniques. This allows you to define which customers should be excluded from cross-selling or approached with different methods, such as upselling.

Steps of cross-selling to customers

  • The most important part of any cross-selling strategy is identifying products or services that are compatible and complementary to each other.
  • Then, they must identify the right customers, who are ready for cross-selling. It is about determining who is more likely to benefit, focusing on our ability to add value and improve the customer experience. Remember that identifying cross-selling customers begins with the data that is collected from customers at each stage of their customer journey. Account Based Marketing can be your best ally at this stage.
  • It is also important to ensure that you offer the right products and/or services at the right times and touchpoints. To do this, it is key to organize the information you receive through purchase histories and customer interactions. It is something simple to solve by using good sales and marketing software, with effective CRM tools.
  • The next step is to develop a cross-sell campaign and a customer journey to see when it is best to impact them. In general, to get higher conversion rates it is a good idea to try different approaches to connecting with customers.

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