Difference between Upselling and Cross Selling

Upselling and cross-selling both are marketing concepts and the idea behind both the concepts is to induce the consumers to buy more products or services from the company, however, there are many differences between the two. Let’s look at some of the differences between upselling and cross selling –

  1. The first and foremost difference between upselling and cross-selling is that while in the case of upselling the seller tries to sell a higher end or expensive product and service to the customers whereas in the case of cross-selling the seller tries to sell other ancillary products along with the product which the customer is buying.
  2. In case of upselling it can be done with single product also the only condition is that a higher variant of product should be available so in case of cars if there is only one model of car but it has many variants than a company can do upselling on that car whereas in case of cross selling it cannot be done with single product rather in case of cross-selling company need to have plenty of products so that it can offer the customers other products along with the product which the customer is buying, so in case of banking one can cross-sell products like mutual fund, insurance and many other such products if the customer has saving account in the bank.
  3. Example of upselling is when one goes to eat burger at subway and instead of normal burger there one eats burger with cheese then this is upselling by subway as they were able to sell cheeseburger to that customer who has come to eat normal burger while example of cross-selling is suppose an individual goes to Wal-Mart for buying jeans but there he or she is marketed shirt and shoes and he or she buys them then this is called cross-selling as customer has gone to Wal-Mart for buying only jeans but there he or she also bought shirt and shoes, hence shirt and shoes are cross products as far as that customer is concerned.
  4. The focus of upselling is on generating higher sales in terms of money so if customer buys a normal car worth $50000 and because of company doing upselling a customer buys SUV worth $100000 than this additional $50000 is the focus of the company while in case of cross-selling the focus is on selling higher number of products even though amount of those products may be less so, for example, a bank cross-selling life insurance or marketing mutual product may involve less amount but still it is done. In simple words in a case of upselling focus is in quality and in the case of cross-selling focus is on quantity.
  5. In case of upselling the product or service is sold on the basis of features so higher the features higher will be the price of the product or service while in case of cross-selling the product or service is sold on the basis of its relation to the main product so banks cannot sell SUV or higher end mobile with while opening new account.

As one can see from the above that though both upselling and cross-selling helps the company in generating higher revenue but still there are many differences between the two as an approach as well as the situation in which it is done is different for upselling and cross-selling.

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