Using Sales Analytics to Improve Cross-Selling

Essentially a way for businesses to boost revenue and income by offering customers recommendations based on their other purchases or interests, the practice of cross-selling first found its footing in the financial services industry. Advisors used it to introduce clients to a multiplicity of related products. Today, Amazon is probably the most effective cross-seller, as it’s able to leverage its unbelievable cache of customer data to give pinpointed recommendations based on search and purchase history.

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While this can be a highly lucrative practice, certain industries need to be aware of some of the potential dangers of irresponsible cross-selling. This is particularly true in the financial world where cross-selling got it sea legs. The Wells Fargo fiasco from a few years ago is probably one of the best examples of how to not do cross-selling.

In that scenario, management espoused unrealistic expectations and metrics in order to get more cross-selling from employees. This ultimately led to the opening of fraudulent accounts for customers who didn’t ask for them. The point is that while cross-selling can be used to effectively boost corporate performance, it needs to be done in a responsible way.

This is where using sales analytics to improve cross-selling comes into play.

Understand Customer Behavior In New Ways

Business owners want to believe they know their customers. It’s a comforting thought. But the reality is you only know how they interact with you directly. They could be entirely different people the second they leave your location or website.

It’s probably never going to be possible to read people’s thoughts. But this is exactly why having a strong sales analytics platform is so essential for businesses today. Customers are people, and people are complex. You can only effectively cross-sell to people when you take a simplified approach to understand their needs, desires, and motivations.

By taking a deep dive into sales analytics, businesses can do a far better job of gauging how customers are engaging with their products and services. When done well, this should provide helpful information in terms of what other goods will sell well. Getting even more specific, organizations can leverage this data for determining when to offer special pricing on certain products, or if it makes sense to package individual offerings to create added appeal.

Build More In-Depth Ideal Customer Profiles

Regardless of whether your customers are consumers or producers, you need to have a solid profile of them if you expect to have a successful relationship. For both, you’re going to need to have solid demographic information. For consumer ideal customer profiles, this will likely be a more complicated ordeal, but can also pay greater rewards.

With sales analytics, it’s possible to get into the more nitty-gritty aspects of a client’s demographic information. It’s important to build separate ideal customer profiles for different types of buyers — rather than amalgamating your clientele into one “ideal customer.” This will lead to far more targetable insights, which are more likely to entice sales.

Find Unexpected Connections

As already stated, people are complex. You’re not going to know the best way to sell something to someone through surface-level information. To do that, you’re going to have to drill down deeper. Sales analytics can be one of the best ways of doing this.

Analytics tools often allow users to know things about customers those people haven’t realized about themselves, thus enabling the anticipation of needs. That can be effectively leveraged to improve cross-selling capacity. Taking a deep dive into sales analytics can help enterprises discover market opportunities that might otherwise have gone unnoticed.

There are many benefits to cross-selling products. But the value of this sales tactic is much greater when it’s done with focus. Sales analytics can help your organization get the most from its cross-selling.

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