You know that one of the easiest routes to growing your business financially is to sell more to your current client/customer base. With that in mind, I’d like to invite you to pay particular attention to the way the more traditional brink-and-mortar stores are upselling to you as you do your holiday shopping.

For example, one of the stores I’ve purchased some holiday gifts from this year is Land’s End. When I received my order yesterday, this is what I found:

Landsendgiftcert 1. On the outside of the box was a sticker alerting me to a special certificate inside that would save me $20 on my next order.

2. Inside the box were three more catalogs, one for adults,one for kids, and one for the home. My order was a mix of all three of these things, so it made perfect sense to send me the latest catalogs for both – especially since the stack of holiday shopping catalogs on my coffee table is about to topple over, and I’m not sure I could find the latest ones from them even if I tried. These ones will go on top of the pile. Brilliant.

3. Also inside was another catalog called "Odds and Ends" which just tickled me. I think it’s usually called "overstock items" but I loved this new language. Obviously, this is the sales catalog and even if I don’t look through the other catalogs, I’m for sure going to see if I can get a few more deals, especially because…

4. Also inside was a special gift certificate giving me $20 off my next purchase of $100 or more. So, psychologically I’m thinking that I’m already getting some good deals via the sale catalog, then adding the $20 off, I’m really making out, right? Well, yes, except that I’m spending more money in the first place! But this is how we think… and thus behave as a consumer.

5. I think this was my favorite: The inside of the box was white with large drawings of holidays scenes to color in. Giving me something so easy and unique to engage my almost 3-year-old daughter in while I tend to my newborn all for buying a couple of Christmas presents? Now, I’ve always been a pretty happy Land’s End customer – the only exception being that they don’t sell shoes or swimsuits in my size – but after this sale, I’m becoming a raving fan.

How can you take even one of these ideas and apply it to your offerings? Here are some thoughts:

1. If you sell a physical product, add a catalog of sorts to your package, with a special discount or other offering for additional purchases.

2. For digital products, follow up with an autoresponder with the same information as #1.

3. Add something complementary to your offering ‘just because’. Land’s End didn’t have to send my order in a box with coloring fun on the inside for sure – I wouldn’t have missed it – but it was something thoughtful and unique enough that it will stick in my mind when I consider making future purchases.

Ebsize Now… on the other hand, I also received my order from Eddie Bauer. How did they upsell me? They didn’t – and I spent quite a bit of money with them on that first order, so they really missed an opportunity to make additional sales from me. The only thing they included (besides a catalog that I already have two of) is a card that tells me that they have more sizes available now. Good to know, but there’s nothing that entices me to make an additional purchase.

I’ll keep you posted as more boxes show up on my doorstep – and I’d love to hear about how your merchants are upselling – or not – to you. Just click the comments button below.

Happy shopping!
~ A