Upselling Examples: 13 Real-World Strategies to Help You Generate More Sales
Upselling examples are awesome to help inspire your own strategies.
But the problem is it’s not always easy to decipher what works and what doesn’t.
So, in this blog post, we’ll break down thirteen real-world upselling examples so you can see how other brands gain the benefits of upselling.
By the end, your brain will be brimming with new ideas for how you can upsell your customers and start making more revenue (and profits) today.
Sounds good? Let’s jump in!
13 of Best Upselling Examples to Learn From
There’s hundreds of ways you can upsell your customers. But not all upselling strategies are created equal.
So, here’s thirteen of the best ways to upsell. We’ve chosen these upselling examples because they’re effective, but also relatively easy to implement.
Let’s get into them and see what upselling tactics you can add to your store today.
1. Checkout upselling example
The first upselling example comes from cosmetics brand Duradry. Here you can see Duradry automatically adds shipping insurance to each order for $0.95 at checkout.
While this simple upsell might not seem like much, it can have a massive impact on profitability.
Think about it - if you’re generating 10,000 orders per month, this upsell can generate up to $10,000 in pure profit for you.
And even if we assume that 70% of shoppers opt out, and re-shipment of insured orders costs you $400, you’re still looking at $2,600 in additional profit per month.
One of the key things to note here is that the shipping insurance is automatically selected to increase conversions on the offer.
Because as Richard H. Thaler says in his book Nudge; “The combination of loss aversion with mindless choosing implies that if an option is designated as the “default,” it will attract a large market share. Default options thus act as powerful nudges.”
So, nudge your customers to spend an extra few cents on shipping insurance at checkout. Then sit back and watch your profit margins increase.
2. One-click upselling example
The next example of upselling is one click offers. One-click upsells are offers that you display between checkout and your order confirmation page.
This upselling technique is super powerful because:
- Purchase intent peaks right after checkout
- Customers don’t need to re-enter payment details
Plus, with a tool like ReConvert, you can personalize these one-click offers via segmentation and triggers.
This is a game changer because the more relevant you make your offers (e.g. based on cart contents or shopping history) the more conversions you’ll get.
So, with OCUs you can offer highly relevant products, with minimal friction and instantly convert a portion of your customers into a second purchase.
3. Thank you page upselling example
Your thank you page is another great place to upsell customers to a higher order value. Seriously, most eCom retailers just use their thank you page as a placeholder.
But this is a mistake when you consider that your thank you page is essentially a landing page, which gets viewed by highly qualified shoppers, not once, but 2.2 times per order on average.
The beauty of thank you page upselling is that you have customer data (from their recent orders) to deliver personalized offers here.
The biggest eCommerce company in the world, Amazon, uses that you page recommendations to great effect (We’ve all fallen for those irresistible suggestions) - so it’s certainly a strategy worth testing on your store.
4. Product page upselling examples
The next upselling example comes from eyewear brand Warby Parker. When choosing a pair of glasses from their store, you get prompted to upgrade various aspects of the product.
In the above example, we can see how we’re presented with two options to upgrade the lenses for blue-light filtering (+$50) and light responsive lenses (+$100). Warby Parker also offers various other upgrades such as Anti-fatigue functionality and different frame construction options.
This type of upselling is great because it’s unintrusive - you’re simply presenting shoppers with the various options and allowing them to build the perfect model of glasses for themselves and their budget.
Another example comes from bike manufacturer Cowboy. Above you can see how they provide customers with the option to upgrade their bike from the Core product to the Performance model which includes additional features like fast charging and an in-built wireless phone charger.
Presenting various upgrade options on your product pages like Cowboy and Warby Parker is a fantastic way to help customers find the best product to meet their needs - while also generating additional revenue for your business.
5. The personalization upsell example
The next upselling example is from premium luggage brand Away. Away offers customers the opportunity to personalize their products for +$50 extra.
This allows you to get your initials or other messages on your luggage. Customers can choose from different personalizations, text and colors.
Now, upselling personalization may not be possible for every brand, however it is a clever way to allow customers to get a more meaningful product - while also generating additional revenue for your store.
6. Subscription-based upselling example
Upselling customers into a subscription is a great way to generate more revenue. Now, the thing with this method of upselling is that you’ll typically make less money from the initial sale.
‘What? How is that upselling?’ you’re asking. Well for example, cosmetics brand Wild offers customers a 33% discount + 15% off future orders when they subscribe.
If we assume that the average customer remains a subscriber for 6 months (probably a conservative assumption) then Wild generates £90 off each subscription they sell.
That’s an almost 400% increase when pitted against the one-off purchase revenue of £25 for a single product.
Subscription aside, one of the key learnings from Wild’s upsell funnel is that they never present more than three options at any one time.
This is because presenting too many options at once increases decision fatigue. And decision fatigue is the enemy of conversions. If shoppers need more time to think, chances are they’ll never come back to complete the sale.
As Barry Schwartz says in his seminal book ‘The Paradox of choice’: “The downside of abundant choice is that each new option adds to the list of trade-offs, and trade-offs have psychological consequences. The necessity of making trade-offs…affects the level of satisfaction we experience from the decisions we ultimately make.”
So, when designing your upsell offers, keep your customers satisfied by only presenting only 1-3 options at a time.
7. Pop-up upselling example
Pop-ups are another great strategy to upsell customers. For example, furniture retailer Living Spaces deploys click-triggered pop-ups which offer product insurance.
In this instance, customers are spending a large sum on a piece of furniture, so having the option to add 5-years damage cover is a logical decision for many shoppers.
The key here is to have your pop-up triggered when a customer clicks ‘add-to-cart’. The data tells us that pop-ups triggered on a customer action convert much better than time-triggered ones.
A click is a proxy for customer intent - and the more intent a customer has, the more likely they are to accept your upsell offer. This is the same reason why checkout and post-purchase upsells work so well.
We think that testing out an image on this pop-up would yield better conversion rates, but without breaking down the data it’s tough to say.
If you’re thinking of adding pop-up upsells to your strategy, we’d recommend checking out Get Site Control’s awesome data-backed pop-up post to guide your testing.
8. Cart page upselling example
The next example of upselling is from Warby Parker (It’s worth pursuing their site for upsell inspiration).
In this upsell example, Warby Parker subtly presents an upsell on their cart page. They offer customers 15% off their order if they add another pair of frames to their cart.
This type of ‘buy one get x% off a second’ is extremely powerful for boosting your AOV. In fact, if you use ReConvert’s conversion monster template, we build upsell offers using this formula.
So, you simply input the discount percentage you’d like to offer and ReConvert automatically builds a complete post-purchase funnel for you.
For these offers, 15-30% typically works best. This size of discount is a sweet spot that generates lots of conversions, and also helps retain the most revenue for your business.
Another checkout upselling example comes from MeUndies. Above you can see how they combine the subscription upsell we mentioned earlier and present it on their cart page.
This works well because the customers immediately see the subscription discount applied to their cart. Beyond cash savings, subscribers also get free shipping and returns - a nice emotional perk that helps nudge customers to the recurring payment plan.
9. Cart drawer upselling example
If you’re using a cart drawer, it’s also an excellent place to upsell customers to a higher basket.
For example, cosmetics brand Glossier uses their cart drawer to present an upsell offer - reminding shoppers that they can save $7 when they buy two of the same item.
This type of product bundling (more on that in a second) is a simple, but powerful way to motivate a portion of your customers to spend more money on your store.
We love how it’s not intrusive - unlike pop-ups which let’s face it can be slightly annoying, the cart drawer is much less distracting.
Glossier also pairs their upsell offer up with a free shipping progress bar - which visually motivates customers to spend even more money to unlock shipping.
This simple upsell combination of discounted product bundling with a free shipping threshold has the power to turn a $20 order into a $40 order with very little effort.
10. Product bundling upselling example
Product bundling is an age-old upselling tactic that retailers use to help boost sales, deliver a better customer experience and offload slow-moving stock.
Above you can see how omewares brand Brooklinen display product bundles on their category pages to entice customers to order a complete set of new sheets.
As you can see, these bundles are significantly cheaper than purchasing all of the products separately. This discounting strategy is a great way to encourage customers to spend more.
It’s especially powerful when you have several products that go well together as it helps customers get everything they require, without the need to research each item individually.
But product bundling isn’t only for complimentary products - you can also just offer a straight up discount as Native does here:
Allowing customers to save when they build a bundle of the same products and get a disocunr like this is a wonderful way to boost profit margins - especially if you’re selling relatively inexpensive items.
11. Post-purchase email upselling example
So far, we’ve discussed on-site upselling examples. But you can also upsell customers via off-site via email marketing like Adidas does above.
The idea with sending post-purchase upsell emails is the same as putting offers on your thank you page. You already know what the customer bought, so you can use segmentation to deliver ultra-relevant offers.
In Adidas’s email, they recommend related products to compliment the customers initial order. Now, technically this is a form of cross-selling, but for the sake of the post we thought it was an excellent example of how to increase sales from your Shopify store, with very little effort.
12. Product comparison upselling example
Amazon is known for their ability to upsell. In fact, Amazon reports that cross-selling and upselling generate as much as 35% of overall profits.
So it’s no surprise that they have a few awesome upselling examples to learn from. One of our favorites is their AI-powered product comparison engine.
As you can see above, when I search for a laptop, Amazon suggests three alternative laptops all at higher price points ranging from $10 to $120 more expensive than the item I viewed.
This simple table allows shoppers to compare product specifications, reviews and find the best laptop for their needs within their budget.
13. Free shipping threshold upselling example
We already touched on Glossier's use of the free shipping progress bar above. However, we feel this strategy needs its own spot on the list of upselling examples because it’s so powerful.
See, most customers hate paying for shipping. And if they’re within a sniff of unlocking free shipping, most are likely to add a few more products to cart to get it.
Above, you can see Native implement this strategy on their cart page. They remind customers how much more they need to spend to unlock free shipping.
So, this raises the question - ‘Where do you set my free shipping threshold to increase profits?’ Well, every store has different numbers - e.g. fulfillment costs and profit margins can vary.
That said, a good place to start is to take your median order value (the order value in the middle of your store’s order data when organized from lowest to highest). Then add 15-30% to this figure.
The number you’re left with will, in theory, appeal to the largest segment of your customers to spend a little more and unlock free shipping. Of course, ensure you crunch the numbers so that your free shipping threshold makes sense for your business.
Use These Upselling Examples to Make More Sales Today
Upselling examples are great to give new ideas about how to upsell on your store. But as with most things in eCommerce, you won’t know what works until you roll up your sleeves and get testing.
Upselling can help you radically transform your business. But not every upselling example we’ve covered above will work for every store. What we can say is that by far and away the easiest to implement and typically most effective upsells are post-purchase upsells.
Post purchase upsells hit customers when they’re in peak buying mode - plus they don’t interrupt the original buyer's journey. Unlike with pop-ups and other more intrusive upsells, post-purchase upsells appear after the initial sale is already secure.
So, if you’re looking to start upselling, we’d recommend adding one click upsells and thank you page offers and go from there. Not just because you can add them in seconds with ReConvert, but because that’s exactly why we built ReConvert in the first place.