Sunday, April 5, 2009


I, as a consumer (and just about everyone I've asked) really hate the process of "up-selling" --- when you are standing at the cash register, wallet open, credit card out, and the cashier or sales person attempts to sell you just one more thing by pointing out some discount, upgrade or add-on that you might just impulsively buy. Basically it's the "would you like fries with that?" question. "You can upgrade to the large size for only 50 cents." " Did you notice our scented candles are buy one, get one free today?" etc. etc. It's really irritating -- I'm standing here, ready to make my purchase, ready to leave. Don't put me on the spot by forcing me to say no over and over again. I'm DONE! I don't want to be on the e-mail list. I don't want to buy anything else. And why do you need my zip code/phone number? I guess there must be data somewhere showing that up-selling increases sales, but I don't think the customer alienation is worth it.

Our organization wants us to start this practice. They have literally given us a script to recite at the point of purchase, and all I can say to them is good luck with all that. If someone wants to try their hand at salesmanship, fine with me. But after explaining prescription medication to a customer and ringing up their (sometimes) substantial co-pays, I am NOT going to go down a checklist of annoying questions and make the obvious ploy to sell them just ONE more thing.
I think it is disrespectful. I am more than happy to answer questions initiated by the customer, and I'll point out items we stock that may fit their needs. The other day I searched the Web for coupons for prescription products for an uninsured customer. I'll gladly do that if necessary. But I figure if they want fries, they will ORDER the damn fries....!


Anonymous said...

they have started something similar at our company also, basically forcing stuff on people. We are even being tracked on now many of these items are being sold.

The Ole Apothecary said...

The most annoying form of up-selling in retail history was Radio Shack. With each purchase, the RS customer had to give his or her name and address, and it was pushed as a requirement to make a purchase! The process would get you a catalogue in the mail RS abandoned this asinine behavior only a few years ago. Hey, Radio Shack do you have any idea why I avoided shopping at your place because of this harassment?

Anonymous said...

LOL as I thought I was the only one who got annoyed at this.

One tactic I have used is that if I notice it occurring with customers ahead of me is I will tell the cashier right away that I am not interested in what they are selling. They are relieve that they don't have to give the speech as I don't think it is enjoyable for them.


PS - This is my first time visiting and you have a great blog