“Would you like fries with that?”: Upselling serves your customer

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Last week I had a small biz owner come out to clean two chimneys in an old farm house I just bought.  I knew I was going to like him right away because he returned my estimate email very quickly with specific prices & services.  He also said he could clean my chimneys the very next day…my kind of business man!

But here’s what I liked most about the service and what provides you and I a good reminder when it comes to selling.  After he cleaned the chimneys, he also gave me his opinion about some trouble spots I had in the old chimney.  My grate was broken and the mortar inside the chimney was gone, leaving a fire hazard if sparks were to fall to the crawl space below.  And when I asked how much to fix them both, he gave me specific prices.  But the best part is that he had the time and materials to fix the mortar & he just happened to have an iron grate in his truck that he sold me on the spot after showing me how well it fit in my fire place. 

Now to some, it may seem as if he showed up hoping he could up sell me the extra things I needed and make his trip more profitable.  I say…exactly!  He had already gained my trust by serving my needs quickly and professionally, so I valued his opinion.  Could I have saved a few bucks by buying a cheaper grate or bidding out the mortar repair?  Maybe.  But because he had the materials on hand, I didn’t have to think twice.  I was thrilled that he could finish the job I needed.  I appreciated him telling me what else I needed in order to have a safe fire the next day.  I was glad to make his trip more profitable.  And I will refer Chim Chimney to my friends every chance I get.

The lesson is that too often we feel guilty to suggest customers spend any more money than they originally planned.  We make suggestions for the future; but we leave the customer in limbo when they agree to think about it…knowing they won’t think about it and knowing they won’t follow our suggestions.  But I suggest to you this is weak customer service.  If you are the expert, and you know they need the extra product or service, then be bold and tell them they need it.  Then be able to finish the job on the spot.  Customers are starving for small business men and women who will tell them what to do.  Do your customers a favor and show up expecting to provide the value adding upgrades they need.

Take Away:  High integrity experts are highly sought after by your customers.

“One path to your goal is to make it a solution to someone else’s problem”  ~ JBG

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