Recently I launched a new product and of course with a new product means new marketing. This product is in a new market that I’ve never sold in before so it has been an interesting process testing and tweaking things along the way.

One thing I’ve discovered in a poll I ran is that there are still certain markets that people are afraid to buy online. Some people have actually let me know that they like the product but, they just do not buy anything online.

This kind of surprised me a little but yet I understand the reason why. Some (not all) marketers online are just unethical with their business practices and it causes people to be apprehensive when buying from any place online.

I’d like to say as a reminder that Honesty is the best policy when it comes to dealing with any customer online or offline for that matter.

Recently a friend was telling me about an online challenge they ran into when placing an order from a place that “appeared” to be a reputable business. Sadly, when it came to ordering they ran into what has been called by some as “upsell hell”.

What happens is you go to buy one product you enter your credit information and click the buy button only to be directed to another offer. Now I don’t find anything wrong with this IF it is done correctly. I’ll get to that in just a moment. In this case, they were presented with offer after offer until they finally got to the end and had spent 3 times what they had planned on. And to top it off, not only had they been pressured into ordering more than intended they were also secretly enrolled into a monthly subscription.

Sadly, I’ve seen this happen too often and it really gives online merchants a major headache.

As I mentioned I have no problem with one upsell I mean, after all, we’re all used to the original upsell “would you like fry’s with that” from a favorite fast food restaurant. In that case, we know we have the option to say no. Online we have to be sure to make it clear what we are offering. If you are presenting the potential customer with an upsell give them the chance to say no if they want to.

Make it very clear on the buttons, “Yes, I would like this special offer” or “No thanks, I only want the first offer”. Plain and simple nothing underhanded, and you are giving them the no option.

If the special offer includes a monthly subscription make it very clear in the order area “I understand by clicking the yes button I will be charged monthly at $x.”

Again honest is the best policy ALWAYS!

By trying to trick the customer into buying something you don’t want, you are creating problems for yourself. You risk the possibility of losing your merchant account. You risk FTC violations, and you create a bad reputation for yourself and other people trying to earn a living online.

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