How to Upsell Your Clients (and Make Them Happy in the Process)

Trying to earn extra business from your existing customers can be a real struggle. The hard-sell approach used by many agencies can often alienate your clients; but ignoring upsell opportunities can really damage your cashflow. Thankfully, as these 6 tips illustrate, it’s possible to upsell your clients from low-end services to top-tier packages – and make them happy in the process!


6. Tailor your offers to each individual client

The first rule of successful upselling is a simple one – never, ever use a one-size fits all approach. Upselling has an understandably bad-rep, with customers everywhere regularly bombarded by emails and promotions that try and separate them from their hard-earned money, in exchange for a product or service they neither want nor need.

Successful upselling needs to be personalized and highly-targeted. You need to take the time to single-out individual clients, and choose a service that you genuinely believe would be beneficial for their business. Focus on the benefits of your upsell, and explain why you’ve decided to promote a more expensive service to your client. Use your knowledge of the client and their business, talk through the problems their business faces, and explain how your more expensive service can solve them. Don’t shy away from talking openly and honestly about your upsell – simply explain that Yes, you’re paying more – but you’re also getting more value in return.


5. Remind your clients of your full range of products and services

It’s easy to assume that you current clients know your services inside-out. However, your clients are only human – and it’s highly likely that’ll some of your products and services have slipped-under their radar. By reminding them of your full-range of products and services, many customers can effectively upsell themselves – discovering top-tier services that might add the extra functionality and benefits they’ve been looking for.

To take the hard-work out of upselling, choose one of your existing products, and periodically send relevant clients a promotional email highlighting it. Explain what it is, and why you think it would be a great match for their business.


4. Don’t be afraid to downsell customers

‘Woah!’ I hear you cry, ‘downsell? Why would I want to do that?!’

If you think a client is overpaying for a service they don’t need, tell them. Downselling doesn’t directly benefit your business – it’s a decision made purely for the client’s best interests. Whilst you’ll lose short-term revenue from downselling a client, the increased trust and gratitude of your client could well have positive implications for future revenue. They’ll trust your brand, and understand that your business has their interests at heart. Six-months down the line, they’ll be incredibly receptive to a big upselling drive.


3. Bundle together relevant products

The next time you want to upsell, offer each customer a personalized promotional bundle. Hand-pick the best combination of products and services you offer – customized to their exact needs – and talk-through your choices. This approach to upselling illustrates your intimate knowledge of the client’s business. You can explain how each element of the bundle will benefit their business, and when you drop into conversation ‘…and you can save 20% by buying them all together’, your client will be understandably excited.


2. Offer free trials of your top-tier services

As with all agencies, the SEO industry's big money lies in ongoing services. Unfortunately, big budget long-term commitments are extremely hard to secure, and trying to upsell a client from one of your basic services can be a real struggle.

Thankfully, a simple free trial of your premium services is often enough to persuade your clients to take the leap. In doing so, you can hook your client’s interest and illustrate the value of your services as clearly as possible. Don’t hold anything back – treat them as though they’re a fully paid-up customer, and stun them with your professionalism, customer service and end-results. At the end of the free trial, get back in touch and highlight what you’ve managed to achieve over the last week or 30-days – the number of backlinks you’ve secured, their percentage increase in search traffic and, best of all, the number of new clients you’ve brought in.

They’ll see the benefit of your services crystal-clear, and when you ask them if they’d like to continue on with the service, the answer will usually be Hell Yes!


1. Ask your clients what type of services they’d like to see

If you’re creating or overhauling one of your premium services, ask for feedback from your existing clients. Question them on the pros and cons of working with your business, and incorporate their ideas into your latest offering – creating a highly-targeted service that is obviously designed with your client in mind.

Clients that have a hand in designing new services will feel personally invested in your business. After all, it’s their feedback and advice that has gone on to inspire your new service – it was designed with their business in mind. One of the biggest problems in upselling is proving the relevance of the premium service to your clients; and by asking for their help in designing the service, you’ve already overcome that hurdle. 

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