I am guessing that if I were to ask you to name some of the most successful companies you've ever done business with, both McDonalds and Amazon would be on your list. Now this post is not going to sum up all the reasons both companies are enormously successful, but one thing they both do very well is the add-on sale.

In the old days, I still remember when McDonalds' employees asked if you wanted fries with your hamburger and soft drink order. But now they sell them all together in a Value Meal. It is a package of products that go together and essentialy speeds up the decision-making process for customers.

Amazon also is a top notch add-on seller. On your first visit, when you look at different products they offer, they present you with an array of related products that they suggest. Their system has identified these other products as products other customers, who have an interest in the same product you are looking at, have also bought.

On your second visit, Amazon is already building a database on you and your tastes based upon what products you look at (even if you have not yet bought anything from them). With each visit, they learn more and more about you, not in a sinister Big Brother sort of way, but in a way designed to serve you better AND produce more sales for them.

So here is something to think about. What other products or services can you bundle together for your customers? What else do you offer that solve the same problems or serve the needs of the same customers?

For example, many lawyers offer related services when clients need their wills updated. They may offer living wills, powers of attorney, and other related documents to those clients seeking estate planning.

This is the ultimate win-win. The customer benefits because you are looking after more needs than the obvious ones they came to you about. You benefit because this simple approache generates more revenue for your business.

Think through all of your products or services. What else can you offer with them that will benefit the customer? Can you "bundle" them together in such a way that saves the customer money, but still produces more revenue for you?

I'm guessing it is as easy as asking if they want fries with their order.

COPYRIGHT © 2008, Charles Brown


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