Conversion Optimization

26 Proven Ways to Boost Average Order Value (+ Examples)

Time to bring down costs and sell more: use these less-used (and non-pushy) upselling ideas to increase your average order value and boost profits.

26 Proven Ways to Boost Average Order Value (+ Examples)

Most strategies to increase AOV in eCommerce start with bringing in revenue from return customers by upselling or cross-selling.

However, the real danger here is that you may be bringing down your LTV. Here’s why:

  • While existing customers do bring in more revenue—they have a certain average purchasing frequency (depending on your product’s shelf value)
  • You may end up cutting that period, which of course brings down the Lifetime from Lifetime Value (LTV)

This is why we've devised 26 strategies to increase AOV without losing out on LTV. 

Let’s go!

26 Successful Ways To Increase AOV in eCommerce (+ Examples)

1. Display and highlight a popular choice

A popular choice shows social proof and helps build FOMO—that in itself can help increase your average order value. 

Note the “buy now goes fastmicrocopy on the product image:

aov increase: display and highlight popular products

Quick Tip: Add best-sellers on your exit-intent popup—don’t forget to highlight added urgency with microcopy.

2. Subtly recommend similar products

By similar, we mean products within the same category or functionality. 

You can also recommend by visual similarity and price range. 

Here’s how Net-a-Porter uses this upsell strategy:

increase average order value: recommend similar products

Quick Tip: you can further personalize your product recommendations by recommending new collections relevant to the product searches the shopper has made.

Check this out: eCommerce Product Recommendations: Strategies, Examples, Do's/Don'ts

3. Personalize recommendations by behavior

91% of consumers prefer to buy from brands that remember them. 

All you would need is to track past buying or product browsing behavior, and provide them a section, as Birkenstock does:

increase average order value with personalization as Birkenstock does

However, if you don't have the data, just yet, pair products by criteria such as colors or intended usage—for example, PSD recommends products by designs:

Create personalization by intelligent product pairing: this will increase aov

Quick Tip: If your product recommendations are low in stock, amp up the FOMO by displaying a simple “low-stock” or “selling fast” microcopy. 

4. Use a mini-cart page for upselling

Popups are an effective strategy to capture the visitor’s attention.

However, you can use a pop-up to create a mini cart page—it helps handle exit intent and provide relevant recommendations:

ways to increase aov: Upsell on cart/mini cart page

Quick Tip: Mini-cart pages can also help improve UX and conversions, as well (if they're kept non-intrusive).

Convertcart Pro Tip 🚀

In case of exit-intent, remember to down-sell with a time-limited element, along with relevant (but, higher priced) product options. 

Consider messaging like “Your Cart Will Expire in XX Hours XX Mins” (use price anchoring for better effect).

Also Read: Cart Abandonment Pop-Up: 14 Amazing Examples (That Actually Work)

5. Offer a smart discount on the cart page

A smart discount on your cart page, such as Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO), can work wonders for your average order value. 

Note how Terra Origin repackages the BOGO offer as “Add 1 more item to the cart to get 1 free”:

how to increase aov in retail: discounted upsell

Tips to increase your average order value of the cart:

  • Remember that your goal is to sell a better quantity at a price that’s above your AOV
  • That’s why, you should employ a pricing strategy for better AOV and LTV (as well as stock clearance)
  • Mark-up the price of a higher-priced/higher-margin/slow-selling product to its MSRP—this helps you accommodate a lower-priced product, and offer a BOGO with ease (which increases your AOV)
  • Apply the principle of a volume discount to your BOGO (which means, customers have to have spent a certain amount to qualify for the BOGO)

Convertcart Pro Tip 🚀

Use the Rule of 100 coined by Jonah Berger, a percentage discount for items priced below $100 works better while a dollar-off discount works well for items priced above $100. This combined with this slashed rate of $19.50 to $10 compels the users to buy.

6. Inform them they’ve qualified for upgrades 

While it’s a good practice to keep your checkout flow as distraction-free as possible, you should make offers they can’t refuse with smart value upgrades such as a free subscription, extended warranty, product insurance, or gifting.

Note how Myprotein offers an upgrade to a higher quantity on its cart page along with a free trial to a subscription:

increase aov ecommerce: MyProtein Upgrade option on cart page

Want to know more about why this works? 

We recommend reading: 11 Next-Level Reciprocity Marketing Examples (eCommerce) 

Convertcart Pro Tip 🚀

Another great way to increase your AOV (as well as value) is to offer a service such as the Haul Away from Wayfair (which helps customers throw away their old mattresses):

Wayfair offers a smart service that adds extra value per order

7. Show a discounted upsell after order completion on the thank-you page

Can you increase your AOV after an order ends? Yes—by influencing the next purchase (with exclusive offers or more).

Note this example of cross-selling on a thank-you page:

how to increase your aov: Checkout and Post-Purchase upsell

Quick Tip: You can include a tiered-referral offer to help them bring in new customers (and give better discounts), such as “Give $X and Get $X: they get $X when they spend $X, and you get $X off on every order forever.” 

Also Read: Deliver An Amazing Post Purchase Experience: 17 Ideas (& Examples)

8. Implement the ‘Decoy Pricing’ strategy

Decoy Pricing refers to presenting a higher-priced product as a form of persuasion alongside a low-priced product by projecting it as inferior.

Built Athletics uses decoy pricing with panache within their product page to increase their AOV. It recommends three products with 3 different pricing and flavor options:

customer conversion - aov: decoy pricing

Quick Tip: Recommend products with high product affinity (and ensure they’re close in terms of price by ±15%)—check how Built Athletics does it ↑.

9. Nudge through push – live chat

By this, we’re specifically talking about in-website push widgets, such as this:

Provide recommendations through customer support to increase AOV

These nudges can help achieve a lot of goals, including sending out: 

  • 1:1 support
  • Product recommendations 
  • Humanize your brand

Quick Tip: Try implementing this technique on your checkout flow—use non-intrusive pop-ups like “what would you like for your better half?

10. Combine your upsell with cross-selling

Gymshark combines cross-sell and upsell when selling its apparel. 

It sells a t-shirt and socks, effectively driving persuasion without causing choice paralysis:

retail aov: Upsell +cross-sell

Why is it effective?

An online buyer might be compelled to buy the shirt costing £25 instead of one in the cart or the stock. Either way, it is a win-win situation because it increases the average order value. 

Quick Tip: Don't offer more than two upsell/cross-sell products—ensure the cart value doesn’t increase rapidly. This helps improve customer experience (CX) (and avoid choice paralysis). 

Convertcart Pro Tip 🚀

Upselling and cross-selling work, if done in a controlled manner to avoid loss aversion.

For example, offer a limited-time discount on a top-of-the-line product (say “don’t miss out on this limited time offer—it’s not coming back, like ever”).

11. Offer a side-by-side comparison of similar products  

One of the simplest ways to upsell is to offer a side-by-side comparison of similar products.

It lets the shopper get a full-scope of what they can get out of a higher-priced product.

The ease of comparison of value and pricing removes the need to move back and forth between product pages. This helps visualize the higher value addition—and eventually leads to better conversions.

how to increase aov ecommerce: product comparison

Quick Tip: Instead of comparing competitor products, pit your top-of-the-line product against the bottom-of-the-line product. This helps you subtly recommend your higher-priced product range in one go.

12. Help with a shoppable look

This cross-selling technique is a fantastic way to increase your AOV, without hurting your LTV. 

Here’s why: it includes a down-sell as well as a subtle upsell. 

Just ensure: each product recommendation on offer shouldn't go above 30% of the price of the current product being viewed.

Creating an interactive cross-sell experience helps increase order value average

Convertcart Pro Tip 🚀

Offer a discounted bundle for all the products with a price-anchor in the CTA like, “Shop The Look for $829 $1079.”

This helps because the cart value feels attainable—only 30% more than the current product being viewed.

You may also like: CTA Button Examples (+ 50 Call to Action Phrases)

13. Offer a minimum dollar threshold for free shipping

Did you know that 9 out of 10 customers find free shipping as the greatest incentive for shopping online? 

How do you apply this:

  • Provide a minimum dollar threshold—and encourage customers to add more products to the cart to avail of free shipping
  • This way you sell more as well as save on shipping costs by fulfilling orders of more products together

Note how Decathlon offers free shipping by giving a subtle message for customers to buy an item for an X amount to avail of free shipping:

Decathlon gentle upsell to increase AOV

Quick Tip: You don’t need to upsell on the checkout page if you have done it on the cart page.

14. Help your customers “experience” products first

No, we aren’t talking about free trials or samples—rather, you can offer a paid sample as Clare does:

Clare providing paid samples for increasing AOV

Quick Tip: This strategy works wonders for hardware stores—consider letting users build their own bundle of paid trial products for a discounted price (along with a solid return policy).

15. Include a powerful upsell with your welcome email

Most brands do send out discounts within their welcome emails—however, what they forget to do is add product recommendations.

Check out this example below, they stay true to the message while presenting a soft sale pitch.

how to increase average spend per customer: Welcome emails

Quick Tip: Include an extra step on your signup form that asks users about their preferences (or goals).

For example, “Which generation do you most relate with?”—base your welcome mail on the option chosen.

We Recommend Reading: 

15 Incredible Examples of Welcome Emails (eCommerce)

18 Welcome Email Best Practices To Drive More Sales

eCommerce Upsell Emails: High-converting Examples(+Templates)

16. Upsell via SMS (with consent)

Whether it’s email, web push, Facebook Messenger, or even SMS, use your common communication channels to upsell products, as BKR does:

Upsell via multiple social channels: tips to increase your average order value of the cart

Quick Tip: Don’t just restrict them to notify shoppers of the ongoing deals and discounts.

For example, if a customer purchased a planner from you last month—use consented channels to reach out to them—introduce your new range of weekly or monthly planners or productivity kits.

Also Read: Conversational Commerce: 21 Amazing Real-World Examples (eCommerce Brands)

17. Perfect the above-the-fold on your homepage

Other than displaying popular categories, using your homepage is a fantastic way to increase your AOV. 

All you need to do is perfect your above-the-fold, as Glasses USA does:

Using the above fold to recommend the best products that have greater value

Tips: How to increase AOV from your homepage:

  • Display the best (and transparent) pricing on your homepage—note how each featured product includes prices of lenses
  • Tune your microcopy to ease the conversion as well as help them spend more on each order (BNPL payment, FSA/HSA fund encashment)
  • Make sure you alleviate the risk as well with your returns policy or a money-back guarantee

Quick Tip: Treat your homepage like an extended landing page—the goals should be helping increase conversions and helping users find your top products.

18. Build better category pages

The next natural step is to rethink how you display products on your category pages. 

Here’s an example of a well-functioning category page that helps increase AOV (as well as aid product discovery):

Category pages can be used to highlight bestselling prducts

Here’s what you can do to increase your AOV from category pages: 

  • Show a featured product along with bestsellers
  • Offer product categories based on popularity, offers, product usage, or customer needs such as height, gender, etc. 
  • Add filters on the same attributes

Quick Tip: Add microcopy that signals trust or opportunity, like “Best-sellers” or “Save $X” to help customers gravitate towards better-performing products.  

You May Also Like: Build high-converting category pages (13 ideas + great examples)

19. Perfect your navigation 

After your homepage, your nav menu is often the first place to discover products—which is why you should always add:

  • Top sellers
  • Relevant offers
  • Top product categories

Note how Pure Encapsulations does it:

Highlight your best-selling products in your navigation as well

Quick Tip: Use your notification bar as well, to highlight your best offers.

Also Read: 18 Brilliant Ways To Convert First-Time Visitors Into Buyers (eCommerce)

20. Tier up the rewards (with flexible payment)

The reward bias makes us chase a lot of things in life.

So, does a tiered discount or loyalty points—here's an example of it in action:

ways to increase AOV through a loyalty program

Here’s how you can use your loyalty rewards to increase your AOV:

  • Offer flexible payment of some sort to bring in higher cart value (think BNPL payment options)
  • Ensure that you offer a free-shipping threshold to hit your AOV targets constantly
  • Remind them of your returns policy to further aid higher-value purchases
  • Gamify the loyalty program (for example, “shop $X in x days, and get 5X loyalty points—offer ends in x days”)

Quick Tip: Segment your loyalty program base by spending capacity—target low-spenders to encourage them to get more of the program.

Also Read: 14 eCommerce Loyalty Programs Backed By Science (Examples)

21. Include social proof within your recommendations 

88% of consumers trust product reviews and ratings as much as personal recommendations. While it’s impossible to highlight every single review on the product recommendations, you can display product ratings:

Product ratings on recommendations that help increase social proof and AOV as well

Quick Tip: Offer a single review along with the product display images—alternatively, you can also use a pop-up ‘quick-view’ to show a mini-product detail page. 

Also Read: 19 Creative Ways to Display eCommerce Products (w/ Brilliant Examples).

22. Offer smart bundles 

Wondering what a smart product bundle looks like—take a look at this example of a product bundle from Thuma:

Ways to increase AOV: intelligent product bundles

Here’s how you can create a smart bundle to increase AOV:

  • Find products that go together with your product and create variations that make sense (Thuma has taken a simple bed frame to build a complete bed)
  • Ensure your product details like product image carousels and descriptions change with the variant chosen
  • Explain why the bundle makes sense to deal with the bundling bias (not being able to use the full bundle)—show the practicality of the purchase or the savings

Quick Tip: You can also offer a variety of rewards like an increase in the quantity, a discount, or a freebie.

For example, if a visitor is browsing through basic, single-tone t-shirts—show them a pack of 3 with the message “let us cover all your weekday lounge needs” (and a discount to save on buying the 3 together).

Also Read: 15 Product Bundling Examples That Convert (& 9 Proven Ideas)

23. Set up retargeting and remarketing ads to promote upsell offers

Another effective channel to upsell products to your customers is your retargeting and remarketing ads.

Based on what a customer purchases or browses on your website, you can display product upsells through these channels to introduce them to something better (and more ‘value for money’).

Retargeting and remarketing can help increase AOV in eCommerce

You'll love: Brilliant eCommerce Retargeting (and Remarketing) Examples

24. Segment your customers based on behavior for better personalization

Personalization isn’t just remembering what they viewed. It’s more about you tuning into their vibes. 

It’s worth remembering: AOV = value across the average order (not every shopper).

Most orders display similar purchase behavior and triggers—thus, you should provide the right things to the right segment. For example:

  • Reward your best customers with perks they want (like exclusive access, control over product designs, etc.)
  • Target low-spenders who don’t spend much or are infrequent customers (use flash sales, cross-sells, or bundles)

Remember: 36% of your customers actually expect this personalization (and you definitely don’t want your top spenders spending less).

Quick Tip: Ensure all users coming in from SMS and email get directly logged-in to their accounts.

Convertcart Pro Tip 🚀

Actively start implementing upselling techniques, when you’ve given enough time to the visitor to find the product they’re looking for and understand the value it brings to them.

Remember to tone down your upsells, to avoid being pushy. 

Want to know how top eCommerce brands use personalization to sell more? 

Also Read: 25 Brilliant Examples of eCommerce Personalization

25. Downselling - a small sale is still a sale

Downselling is another sales technique used by eCommerce businesses to ensure every visitor turns into a shopper by offering them a more budget-friendly alternative. Sometimes, it simply includes offering more convenient buying options to customers after they reject or decline an upsell offer you made.

The image below will help you visualize the difference between these three strategies:

What is the difference between upselling, cross-selling, and down-selling

26. Increase value with co-creation

This strategy helps you get zero returns and charge a premium (all while increasing your AOV). Letting a customer co-create your product, creates exclusivity and personalization like never before—check how Stanley does it:

Use co-creation to create a value add-on, which increases the AOV

Quick Tip: Increase the appeal even further (and add more value), by improving your packaging to add a handwritten note. 

Also Read: Luxury eCommerce Product Page - 20 Best Examples

People Also Ask

1. How to calculate average order value in eCommerce?

Average Order Value refers to the average revenue spent by a customer every time they buy from an online store. 

Use this formula to calculate AOV. 

AOV = Total Revenue/Total Orders * 100 

Let’s say your eCommerce store earned $30,000 in a month and the total orders received were 5000.

AOV = 30,000/5000*100 

AOV = $600 

Your AOV is $600

Wondering why AOV’s important in eCommerce? Average Order Value is a KPI that helps you understand customer behavior—which helps you determine how much your customers are spending on every order—which provides a strong reference for planning your pricing and digital marketing strategies. 

2. What's a good average order value by industry? 

While there is no one “good” average order value, the global average order value is $138. However, the definition of a good AOV changes by:

a) Industry-wise Product Pricing: Higher priced products tend to have a higher AOV while lower priced ones have a lower AOV

b) Global Trends: Some industries will experience a surge in AOV during times of global events (such as wars or Olympic Games) and seasonality

c) Geography: Socio-geographical factors such as weather patterns, buying power, and the uncertainty index affect your AOV. For example, APAC (emerging markets comprising India, China, Japan, and others) are highly price-sensitive markets and have an erratic AOV

c) Device-used: A shocking number of eCommerce stores aren’t usable on mobile—start with mobile UX to increase average order on mobile

3. What is a good upsell percentage for AOV?

A ‘good’ upsell percentage is subjective to where you upsell. Generally, 16% of the eCommerce brands have 1-4% upsells on the cart page. On product pages, 15% of brands have 1-2% upsell rates and 5% have an upsell percentage of 3-4%. 

To calculate the Upsell conversion rate, use the following formula: 

Upsell Conversion Rate = No. of upsells/No. Of times offered * 100

4. Is the average order value inclusive of discounts?

Remember that it’s about your average order (not your customer). Thus, if your AOV comes down to $57, it will factor in the discount the customer is enjoying in their every order.

Keep in mind that your AOV calculation should also factor in the price of gifts and loyalty points.

If you’re struggling with calculating the right amount of discount for your AOV, here are the steps:

  • Set a target AOV (factor fixed costs, competitor pricing, margin, etc)
  • Calculate the current AOV (inclusive of discounts and gifts)
  • Apply the formula “Target Discount=[ (Target AOV - Current AOV)/Target AOV] *100”
  • Add the ‘Target AOV’ + ‘Target Discount’ + ‘Shipping/Packaging Costs’ to create the “Threshold Price” (if you’ve already included shipping in step 1, don’t add it again)
  • Run through all calculations with the mix effect in mind (to ensure you don’t affect your profitability)

5. What are some ways to increase AOV?

1. Display and highlight a popular choice

2. Subtly recommend similar products

3. Personalize recommendations by behavior

4. Use a mini-cart page for upselling

5. Offer a smart discount on the cart page

6. Inform them they’ve qualified for upgrades

7. Show a discounted upsell after order completion on the thank-you page

8. Implement the ‘Decoy Pricing’ strategy

9. Nudge through push – live chat

10. Combine your upsell with cross-selling

11. Offer a side-by-side comparison of similar products

12. Help with a shoppable look

13. Offer a minimum dollar threshold for free shipping

14. Help your customers “experience” products first

15. Include a powerful upsell with your welcome email

16. Upsell via SMS (with consent)

17. Perfect the above-the-fold on your homepage

18. Build better category pages

19. Perfect your navigation

20. Tier up the rewards (with flexible payment)

21. Include social proof within your recommendations

22. Offer smart bundles

23. Set up retargeting and remarketing ads to promote upsell offers

24. Segment your customers based on behavior for better personalization

25. Downselling - a small sale is still a sale

26. Increase value with co-creation

Also Read: How to Increase AOV on Shopify: 27 Upselling Ideas

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