How to Upsell Without Sounding Sleazy

Selling your add-on services can be difficult to master but it’s worth the extra effort to watch your sales increase
How to Upsell Without Sounding Sleazy
Boggero's Services route technician Toney Gragg loads Genuine Joe paper towels into a Global Satellite portable sink unit during setup the morning of a festival.

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“But wait, there’s more!”     

Isn’t that the most common phrase on any infomercial? It sounds horrible but it seems to work. Somehow you called in to buy a blender and you ended the phone call with a new treadmill, a curling iron and some new makeup, too.

Upselling can be tough and you can feel like a used car salesman sometimes. But those extra products or services on each order can really add up. So take the time to offer them to your customers and you will see your sales increase greatly.

The first step to upselling is informing your customers about your full line of products. For years we offered trash boxes, but none of our customers knew. So they sat in our garage collecting dust. Recently we added them to our website and our sales really increased.

The second step is to break down the cost for customers. Show them the cost of adding hand sanitizer to each restroom versus adding a sink. Sometimes the sink is cheaper and it is important to show your customers that you aren’t nickel and diming them.

The last step is to know your local laws and regulations. A couple of years ago, the City of Philadelphia put a law into effect that if you serve food at an event, you have to have hot water on site. Even if the local 5k race is just giving out bananas, there must be a hot-water sink available. Knowing this allowed me to inform customers up front. Some say they will check on that and call me back. But they all call back because they have to have this type of sink or there is no event. That is the best scenario because it makes the city the bad guy instead of me.

You are always going to have customers that don’t want to spend an extra penny on their order. They are strictly calling around for the cheapest service they can find. It is still an order and I will take it. But I won’t waste a ton of time showing them the other equipment or services we offer. 

But every once in awhile you get an event planner who knows how to put on a top-notch event and they are willing to pay extra for a really great experience. Those are the golden opportunities to let your company shine. If they order restrooms, offer tap lights so people can see better. If they order a sink, offer trash boxes for the waste. If they want a restroom trailer, offer attendant service so someone can watch the restroom and fix any problems.

You will be surprised by how quickly that bill goes up and it will really be worth the extra time you spent on the phone with that customer.

About the Author: Alexandra Townsend is co-owner of A Royal Flush, based in Philadelphia.

Do you have any tips and tricks for selling add-on services? Comment below.


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