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Why add-on sales are important to you

As most everyone knows in-store events are a driving force for many game and hobby retail stores. The more people who play in a store, the more money the store makes. However, now that we’re in the age of COVID-19, many retail stores are faced with quickly learning how to upsell, cross sell, and suggest add-on products to every sale. So today, let’s talk about add-ons and how they can help you ADD-ON to your bottom line. See what I did there?

Most game and hobby store owners should be, and are at least, aware of great add on products to increase your retail sales. During every interaction with a customer you should be looking for gentle but helpful times to suggest an add-on item. Most time’s this would be at your register during the checkout process or during a tournament registration, but it could also be any time you are talking to or working with your customer or player. Here are some examples:

  • “Did you need new sleeves for your deck? We just got new sleeve art in!”
  • “Awesome selection! I hope you pull the Charizard, do you want a binder for the new cards in your collection?”
  • “I hope you have a great adventure with that Dungeons and Dragons book. Did you need a new set of dice?”
  • “Thank you for registering for the tournament, did you need new sleeves?”

Let’s use some average prices; Sleeves generally sell for between $5 and $10 [$7.50], card binders $10 to $25 [$15], and dice $5 to $15 [$7.50]. These items are also your higher profit margin items, or the items where you are making keystone or above keystone. They are also the perfect paired items for what you are already selling. Most of your player or customer base are already thinking about these items. Sometimes the act of asking is enough for the add-on sale. The act of asking is also a reminder. You usually don’t know what state of mind a customer is in right before they are making their purchase.

"Sometimes the act of asking is enough for the add-on sale. "

  • Did they remember all the cards for their deck? 
  • Did the person they are buying this for already receive this book as a gift? 
  • I forgot about dinner and now I need to stop somewhere, I need to hurry!

Your customer could be thinking about anything at that moment and you want to gently remind them of things they may actually need or are forgetting about. Every answer is, “NO.” until you ask, or as some people put, “Shooter’s shoot.” Shooter’s shoot is a common basketball term meaning you can’t score unless you shoot the ball. You can’t get the sale unless you ask.

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There is also a huge gross profit reason why you should be looking for add-ons whenever possible. Using the examples above as a rough guideline, a booster pack sale, a role playing game book, and a tournament entry.

  • Booster pack $4, sleeves $7.50 average. Ok, that doesn’t look fair, let’s make it a booster box at $100. Well, your original sale is $100 and an added on sleeve sale is an additional $7.50. I like to call that an 7.5% increase of a sale. Make that a binder (remember I’m using a $15 average sale price), that is a 15% increase.
  • D&D Book $50, dice $7.50. That is a 15% increase of gross revenue.
  • Tournament entry? $5. Most store’s run $5 tournaments at break even or loss and attribute it to marketing expenses. By adding a box of sleeves for between $5 or $10 depending on brand or pack size and you are adding an average $7.50 which is 150% gross and that should put that player’s tournament entry into the profit margin instead of break even or loss. 

By add on selling, you are increasing the potential of your gross revenue and your customer experience. By adding as much as 5% per year can be a huge impact to your bottom line as well. If your store does $100K per year or $1M per year, the extra income just for asking for it is the difference between diversification of a new product line, additional products, or for some paid advertising. Do you already have an add-on sales method? Let us know in the comments below.

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