Would you like fries with that? It’s a common phrase we’ve all heard before – but do you know what it means? Or how our decision about the humble potato affects the establishment selling it to us?
Commonly known as the upsell, that simple phrase we have all heard (more than once) is not just a way for a waiter to entice us to break our no carb rule – it’s a clever way to get us as consumers, to spend more money.
What about us as business owners. What if you don’t sell fries – or even trickier – what if your consumer base is online and you don’t sell a tangible product? What can you do to increase revenue?
Upselling isn’t the only way to get our customers to spend more money. Cross-selling and providing additional services (or value-adds as I like to call them) are also techniques to stimulate your bottom line. So let’s look at how we could make it work.
Michael runs a betting exchange. A website where he provides trading facilities that allows his customers to bet on the outcomes of certain events against each other. The success of the exchange relies heavily on liquidity – meaning his revenue margins are so small, he needs to ensure he has a lot of customers to make money. He also operates in a competitive market whereby consumers have a variety of exchanges to choose from -all offering the same service as him. So what can Michael do to differentiate himself from his competitors, add more value and in turn retain more of his customers?
By examining what his customers do, Michael can better understand where to focus. On a basic level, his customers typically do three things: Deposit money, Make an exchange and Withdraw their winnings (assuming they’ve won of course). Michael can’t do much about the exchange itself but he can certainly look at the deposit and withdrawal process.
Michael needs to ensure he offers his customers options. Can they deposit into their accounts with more than one payment method? What about the withdrawals? Has he provided his customers with choice and flexibility? Can customers instantly access their winnings?
Michael could improve these areas and even differentiate his business from his competitors. He could also increase his customer retention. Michael could implement a company branded debit card on sign up and provide his customers with instant access to their winnings at any cash machine in the world.
It really is that simple. You might not sell fries but there are always ways that you could add more value for your customers. Giving them more options, streamlining processes or implementing a more flexible approach really will help – and you won’t be breaking your diet.
Remember, the key is not to highlight the features – the key is to believe in the benefits for your customers – and the rest will sell itself.