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Upselling & Cross-Selling Ideas for Contractors

Published by Nick Tekavic on August 21, 2023

Upselling & Cross-Selling Ideas for Contractors

Upselling techniques are often misunderstood as aggressive sales tactics, but that’s far from the truth. In reality, we’ve all encountered upselling at some point – whether it’s a restaurant suggesting a larger meal or an insurer offering extra coverage. Businesses use these techniques because they work, benefiting both them and their customers. By mastering these strategies, you can effortlessly increase your revenue without additional costs while providing enhanced value to your customers.

Understanding Upselling

Upselling, also referred to as up-serving, is a sales approach where you propose higher-priced services or add-ons to generate more revenue. This can involve marketing more profitable services or making customers aware of various service tiers you offer. For example, if you operate a cleaning business, you might upsell a customer by offering an upgrade from a basic cleaning package to a premium deep cleaning service.

Unlocking Cross-Selling

Cross-selling is a related strategy where you offer additional solutions that complement the services your customers are already purchasing. For instance, a landscaper could suggest a hedge trim to a customer who’s just requested a lawn mowing service.

Mastering Upselling: Six Effective Techniques

Implement these six techniques to perfect your upselling strategy:

1. Present Service Packages Together

Showcase three service packages side by side to provide customers with options of greater value. This “good, better, best” pricing strategy enables customers to visually assess the value in each package. Include low, medium, and high-level options to cater to different budgets.

Example of a good, better, best pricing plan from

2. Suggest Upgrades and Additions

Inform clients about additional treatments or part upgrades available. The aim is to make customers aware of these add-ons, without necessarily offering discounts.

3. Inform Clients About All Your Services

Upselling reflects your understanding of customer needs. Simply informing customers about new and existing services can prevent them from seeking help elsewhere. To achieve this:

  • Keep your social media pages updated with new products and services
  • Enhance your website with a comprehensive list of services and packages
  • Utilize email marketing to introduce customers to new offerings and upgrade options

4. Expand Services to Solve Problems

To expand your business, consider your existing customers’ needs. Offer services aligned with your current offerings that address customer requirements. For instance, if you notice a customer’s windows need repair, consider offering screen repairs alongside your window cleaning service.

5. Involve Your Team in Upselling

Incorporating your team into your upselling strategy can yield remarkable results, amplifying the impact of your efforts. By empowering your staff to identify and suggest upselling opportunities, you not only enhance revenue potential but also foster a sense of ownership and enthusiasm among your team members. 

By involving your team in upselling, you tap into a collective resource of ideas, insights, and customer interactions that can contribute significantly to your business’s growth. When team members are confident and enthusiastic about suggesting upsells, your business thrives, and customers benefit from tailored solutions that cater to their unique needs.

6. Use Real-Life Examples to Seal the Deal

Validate your upsell by providing real-life examples, such as testimonials and photos, to demonstrate the value of the add-on or upgrade. For instance, show before-and-after photos of a scratch-resistant flooring option when installing flooring in a household with kids or pets.

Upselling Tips and Best Practices

Here are some best practices to enhance your upselling efforts:

  • Address the customer’s original need in your upsell
  • Approach upselling as problem-solving
  • Time your upsell before, during, and after the job
  • Utilize technology for streamlined upselling

Remember, successful upselling focuses on enhancing customer value, building relationships, and fostering trust.

Incorporate these upselling and cross-selling strategies into your contracting business to boost revenue while genuinely benefiting your customers. By concentrating on their needs and presenting valuable solutions, you can master the art of successful upselling.

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