Upsells are good, profitable, and almost required to afford many types of advertising.

Holding a customer hostage is downright evil!

I purchased a low cost ebook around a month ago.  They had a one-time offer come up immediately after the sale.

It was a video sales letter.  Ok, fine.  No problem.

But there was a problem…not with the video or the offer.  I never even heard the offer because I was so frustrated with what was happening.

There was no way to bypass the video.  You couldn’t click “No, thank you.”  And you couldn’t check how long the video was either.

They were holding you and the product you purchased hostage for an unknown amount of time.

It’s rare that I close off an upsell page as I love to see good marketing in action, but this was ridonkulous!

Check my email and there’s the download link.  So I got what I ordered.  After that upsell I’m not surprised the product was disappointing, but I learned a lesson…what not to do in an upsell process.

When I go to the electronics store, I expect them to ask me to upgrade to the extended warranty.  I don’t expect them to take me hostage and force me to listen to their 20 minute sales pitch about it!

Rule #1 of post-purchase upsells is give the customer control.  There should be an easy to find button for them to bypass the upsell.

Rule #2 is make the upsell related, but not the exact same benefit.  If you’re selling an internet marketing product on SEO, offer one on social media as an upsell.  They’re likely interested in both subjects.  Or offer a product on conversion.  They may not jump on this as quick, but it’s obviously a related subject.

Don’t sell them another ebook on SEO that covers something they thought they purchased in the first product.  That’s good way to anger a customer who just bought.

Make it related to the original offer.

You need to test different prices for post-purchase upsells.  I often sell something that’s the same price or even higher price here.  If you have two different products you could offer, test running them in a different order.  Product A then Product B.  Then flip it to see which direction produces the best results.

A pre-purchase upsell is when you mention just like Amazon, “Customers purchasing this were also interested in…”

I’ve found these products often work best priced 25% to 50% of the original product price.  So a $40 product may have a $10 to $20 upsell.  Again you need to test it, but you won’t have much space to recommend a product here.  It’s mostly sold on title alone.

Keep it an impulse purchase just like the grocery stores stock their checkout lanes.

If you’d like to use the same tools I use for pre-purchase and post-purchase upsells, check out

Not only can you run a multi-product upsell funnel, but you can split test and track the exact results you’re receiving from your offers.  This is in addition to everything else the software does including full shopping cart, email follow-up, ad trackers, affiliate program, and more.

Give it a free test drive at

You can check out the pricing options after your trial by clicking the “Package Prices” in the top tab.  Please note this is the system I’ve used for years now and I do earn a profit from recommending it.

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Terry Dean
Terry Dean

Terry Dean has been in full-time internet business since 1996 and has helped thousands of entrepreneurs get started online through his articles and products. He lives in Ocala, Florida with his wife and 2 dogs. Find out more about how his step-by-step courses can help you today.