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Blog/Varun Kundra QA: Unlocking Post-Purchase Subscriber Revenue

Varun Kundra QA: Unlocking Post-Purchase Subscriber Revenue

We sat down with our friend Varun Kundra, co-founder of AfterSell, to unpack subscription-oriented upsell strategy and post-purchase optimization. AfterSell is a software that helps eCommerce merchants scale their stores to 8 figures and beyond with post-purchase upsells and more. AfterSell was acquired by Rokt in Feb 2024. Let’s dive in.

Q: For customers who have just purchased from a brand for the first time, what key moments, timing, or behaviors are most valuable in evaluating and sending them with a post-purchase offer? Are there any upsell or cross-sell strategies you find to be the most “sticky”?

Varun: Our post-purchase offers happen right after checkout, so we encourage merchants to trigger targeted offers based on what was purchased (or collection it was purchased from), cart value, country, and many other options we have available. We have seen merchants who have a deep understanding of their customer behavior, segments, and consumer psychology succeed the most. One of the surprising strategies that is really effective, especially for CPG brands is just to cross-sell more of the same product at a slight discount.

Q: For subscribers specifically, cross-sells and upsells are a great opportunity to integrate more of your brand’s product catalog into their regular routines, whether you’re selling a monthly beverage subscription, toothpaste, supplements, you name it. Do you have a specific strategy around targeting subscription-oriented upsells and cross-sells compared to other customers?

Varun: For sure! One of the things we find the most effective is upselling a one-time product to a subscription. We have been pioneering this with Obvi where we can replace one-time products with subscription both in checkout and immediately via post-purchase upsells. 

Q: In what ways can brands integrate various marketing channels (ie. email, social, retargeting ads) to maximize the effectiveness of post-purchase reactivation campaigns without fatiguing their customers?

Varun: With AfterSell, you can target upsells on the UTM level. This means you show different upsell experiences based on where your customers are coming from. For example, you may want to show a different experience to customers coming from your abandoned cart emails versus those that are returning customers.

Q: Let’s say I’m a new Digital Marketing Manager for a DTC food & beverage brand that does not currently implement any upsells or cross-sells. What would be the easy wins for me to immediately knock out to increase AOV?

Varun: The easiest win right off the bat is a post-purchase upsell with the exact same product the customer just purchased at a 10-30% discount. Offering “more of the same” works great for consumable businesses. If you are providing a sizable discount, you can even test having higher minimum quantities for the upsell. For example, get 20% off if you purchase 2 more packs.

Q: Now let’s say I’m the Growth Manager for a larger, more established DTC brand that already implements the usual post-purchase flows you just mentioned. How metrics and tests could I perform to best optimize and boost existing post-purchase conversion rates?

Varun: Various components can be tested to improve post-purchase performance. There are 3 main factors you should test to achieve the best results. I have included a couple of questions below to ask yourself when you are working to improve your upsell offers.

  • The product you are upselling: How expensive is the product you are offering in relation to your AOV? Does it fit well with the product the customer just purchased?
  • The offer: How much of a discount are you providing? How many quantities does the customer have to purchase to receive the discount? Make sure you are optimizing for the right metric. In many cases, you may want to optimize for product profit per visit (PPPV) rather than revenue per visit (RPV)
  • The layout and copy: Are you showing multiple products on your upsell page or only a single product? Are you using social proof, urgency, and exclusivity in your copy?

Thanks for chatting, Varun!

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