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Upselling & Cross-Selling: Service or Disservice?

Upselling and cross-selling… it can feel like a dirty thought to many of us in the beauty industry.

Our natural desire to help our clients look great but feel even better often has us shying away from recommending additional treatments, services and products for fear of seeming ‘salesy’ with our clients. But “upselling” and “cross-selling” are just words, and our guilt trip is just a mind-set.

Successful selling doesn’t make you a sleazy salesman trying to line your pockets by selling extra stuff your client doesn’t need. When done tactfully, offering your clients' treatment upgrades and add on services or recommending retail products they didn’t know they needed, actually encourages customer loyalty, improving their overall experience and satisfaction with your service.

The key to a successful upsell or cross-sell is relevance.  Always offer a service or product that will either augment or improve the original booked service or product.

What do I mean by that? Well, there’s slim chance that your client will upgrade to a one-hour body massage when they’ve booked in for a lunchtime brow tidy, right?... no matter how good a body massage would make your client feel… it’s just not relevant to her original wants and needs.

But your client would most likely see the benefit in upgrading to a brow sculpt and adding a brow tint. By upselling and cross-selling these two simple but relevant services, not only have you immediately increased your turnover and profit, but you have also taken a step towards building a deeper relationship and increasing the lifetime value of that client.


If you can make your customer feel like
an upsell is helping them win, then you’ll both win.

Her gorgeous, freshly sculpted and tinted brows are going to make her feel just as good as having that one hour body massage (win)… and being relevant to what she originally wanted, that client will now have greater trust and confidence in your recommendations (deeper relationship) as well as continue to rebook these two services in the future (customer lifetime value).


Did you know that the probability of selling to an existing client
is 60-70%, while the probability of selling to a new client is 5-20%?

Successful upselling and cross-selling is based on understanding your customers’ needs (relevance) so they don’t feel like they are being ‘sold’ to but will most likely understand that you are genuinely offering them the very best solution for their beauty needs.

Here are some upselling and cross-selling practice examples you can implement into your customer experience:

  • During appointment booking: Listen to your client and understand their needs for that appointment. When booking, clients will often tell you what they have got going on in their lives… eg: (client) I have a function to attend, and I need my lash extensions done. (you) Great! How exciting… how are your brows looking? Would you like me to also book some time for you to have those tidied up and tinted?
  • On check-in: Welcome and acknowledge your client's purpose for their visit. (you) Hi, welcome back. Are you looking forward to your function this weekend? (Client) Yes, I am. It should be a great night. (you) Well, I’m looking forward to giving you some gorgeous lashes and brows. I have a little extra time right now, and I’d love to also get your skin make-up ready with a quick smoothing skin peel… would you like me to pop one on while I do your brows?
  • On check-out: Reaffirm your client's service choices and offer relevant home care advice. (you) I hope you have an awesome time at your function. Your brows and lashes are looking on-point. As I mentioned to you during your peel treatment, your make-up will sit on your skin a lot better now that the dead skin build-up has been removed. I recommend that you apply a few pumps of Hyaluronic Acid to your skin after each cleanse in order to keep your skin looking super hydrated and dewy…oh, you’ve run out of cleanser? Well, this starter kit has everything your skin needs... (etc, etc).

Remember… Upselling and cross-selling
isn’t just a sales tactic; it’s a customer happiness tactic!

Give it a go with some baby steps. Before you know it, it will fall naturally into your conversations with your clients and your business will flourish!

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