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Want some odor removal with that?

January 04, 2012
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If you’ve ever been asked if you’d like fries with your burger or were offered a larger portion at only a slightly higher price, then you understand the concept of up-selling. This business practice encourages one to buy a bigger or better product than they might have originally intended.

It always amazes me to see many auto detailing operations not incorporating an up-selling technique into their sales system. Maybe they avoid up-selling because they’re afraid the customer may get irritated and not buy at all. I’ve found the opposite to be true. Customers appreciate your thoughtfulness in offering them an added benefit they didn’t know about.

Some auto detailing business owners have told me they don’t up-sell because it’s not feasible in their business. They really believed that until I described the up-selling offers used successfully by some of their competitors. Every auto detailing business can implement a successful up-selling program.

A new auto detailing company called me recently. The owner/operator wanted advice on how to increase their profit margin on new customer visits. I suggested adding an interior odor eliminator as part of an up-selling package. He took my advice and instantly pocketed a 60 percent profit on the cost of the shampoo in addition to the initial service the customer purchases.

David J. Mazzarella is the president and CEO of Mazzarella Car Care Systems, LLC, a company, based in Boston, that researches and develops bio-degradable, environmentally safe chemicals for the detail industry. For more information, visit

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