Angela Rollins

Steal This Strategy: SimpleShot’s Cross-Sell Popup with a 36% Add-to-Cart Rate

Popups that appear on add-to-cart are one of the most effective ways to increase average order value (AOV).

And not enough brands use this strategy.

Many ecommerce stores include recommended products on product pages, but those can easily get lost in a sea of content. Plus, it’s not necessarily the most impactful time to surface your cross-sells.

Add-to-cart cross-sells appear in the moment directly after a shopper has verified their interest in your product. So it’s the perfect time to share add-ons they’re likely to enjoy.

One brand that has mastered this technique is SimpleShot.

SimpleShot’s cross-selling popup has earned the brand a whopping:

  • 36% add-to-cart rate
  • 17% lift in AOV
  • 82% rise in purchases on a key accessory

Learn how to apply this strategy to your ecommerce store with a full breakdown of SimpleShot’s cross-sell popup. Then build your own with a cross-sell popup template.

<background>SimpleShot: The backstory and growth challenges<background>

SimpleShot is a DTC slingshot brand founded by Nathan Masters in 2011. After years of crafting his own slingshots by hand, he launched SimpleShot to bring cutting edge slingshot design to the masses.

Today, the company is a go-to-brand for slingshot hobbyists and pros alike.

SimpleShot founder Nathan Masters using a slingshot

But achieving growth hasn’t been without its challenges.

The primary challenge: An inability to use ads consistently for growth.

Slingshots are in a gray area of whether they’re categorized as weapons, which can’t be advertised. So sometimes ad platforms allow SimpleShot to run ads and other times they don’t.

When allowed, the slingshot retailer’s ads can get shut down at any time. So it’s a risky channel to invest a ton of resources into.

Instead, the SimpleShot team pours more effort into their owned channels. Specifically, their website and email marketing program.

With a heavy reliance on owned channels, the brand needs to do everything they can to maximize conversions from their website traffic. And customer retention is crucial to growth.

There are three key pillars SimpleShot relies on to make that happen:

  • Putting customers first through education and support
  • Cultivating relationships through email marketing
  • Guiding the customer experience through an optimized conversion funnel

This add-to-cart cross-sell popup fits into that third pillar.

<customer-experience>The necessity of the cross-sell to improve customer experience<customer-experience>

Many of SimpleShot’s customers come new to the sport of slingshotting. So the brand needs to set customers up for success from their first purchase so these slingshot newbies fall in love with their new hobby—and their slingshot.

And that comes down to using it. If a customer buys just a slingshot and no ammo, they’ll have nothing to shoot. And replacement bands will give them the ability to keep practicing after their first set wears out.


Jacob Forrest

“It’s cheap enough where people can get a slingshot and really never use it. And that’s our worst enemy. When people use it, they become dedicated customers. We have a very high returning customer rate. And that’s because when people actually use a slingshot, they realize how much fun it is and they love it.”

~ Jacob Forrest
Head of Marketing, SimpleShot

So that ideal first purchase includes ammo and band sets.

While the brand offers multiple options in each category, clay ammo is the best option for new users. It helps new slingshot users gain confidence and do less damage on missed shots than with steel.

Clay ammo that SimpleShot sells

And there are band sets that are made for clay ammo as well.

So buying the right products for their slingshot leads customers to love the sport and come back for more.

And it’s up to SimpleShot to create an effective cross-selling strategy to encourage this behavior.

<accessories>Getting the right products in shoppers’ carts<accessories>

To encourage customers to buy everything they need to get into slingshotting, SimpleShot has always offered 20% off on accessories when buying a slingshot.

But until the team launched the cross-sell popups, they had a hard time communicating that offer so that customers would take advantage of it.

Shoppers would check out without considering accessories. Or they wouldn’t know which ones to choose, ending up with add-ons that aren’t suited for beginners. Or they’d get overwhelmed by the options and not get any accessories at all.

So the brand launched popups to show the offer right after a customer adds a slingshot to their cart. And used those popups to highlight the products that would create the best experience for most people.


Jacob Forrest

“When we put the right product in people’s hands, that will result in them having a better experience. So I know they’ll be back.”

~ Jacob Forrest
Head of Marketing, SimpleShot

<popup>The anatomy of SimpleShot’s high-converting cross-sell popup<popup>

This is SimpleShot’s add-to-cart popup:

SimpleShot's cross-sell popup that appears when a shopper adds a product to their cart. It offers 20% off accessories and features three products

There are several things that maximize this popup’s success.

The headline emphasizes the discount available to shoppers. It includes the name of the product that was just added so they know these add-ons go with the slingshot they’re about to buy.

The popup also visualizes the discount on the pricing for each item. 

The “add to cart” buttons make it easy for customers to add the products to their cart in one click without visiting the product pages.

And the “add all to cart” button streamlines the buying process even more and reduces the necessity to make a choice on each item individually.

And the “see all 20% off accessories” button allows shoppers to browse other options if what they’re looking for isn’t in the popup.


SimpleShot's cross-selling strategy has led to:

  • 82% increase in clay ammo purchases
  • 54% increase in ⅜” band set purchases
  • 36% campaign add-to-cart rate
Jacob Forrest

“ConvertFlow did something that we needed to do for so long. That is the exact message we needed to show and we clearly saw a bump in accessory items. We just needed the tool to help communicate it at the right moment.”

~ Jacob Forrest
Head of Marketing, SimpleShot

👉 Read the full case study.

In other words, the SimpleShot team is getting the exact products they want into shoppers’ hands. That creates a great first-purchase experience that leads to better customer retention.

<quiz>Connecting the customer journey<quiz>

SimpleShot knows that to achieve success, their cross-sell popup needs to be an integrated part of the customer journey.

So in addition to the cross-sell popup, SimpleShot launched a quiz to help shoppers find the right slingshot:

SimpleShot's slingshot finder quiz

Right now, it shows on exit-intent but SimpleShot will soon be integrating the quiz at other points in the customer journey. The exit-intent quiz has a whopping 11.6% conversion rate. That means nearly 12 out of every 100 abandoners now are engaging with the quiz and are back on the path-to-purchase instead of leaving the site altogether.

Then, after a shopper is paired with the right slingshot and adds it to their cart, the cross-sell popup will show—seamless experience!

This combo makes the decision process easy and means fewer clicks to checkout.

<takeaways>7 key takeaways to launch your cross-sell popup<takeaways>

Getting inspired to launch high-converting cross-sell popups for your store? Keep these best practices in mind as you craft your campaigns:

1. Trigger your popup on add-to-cart

Cross-sell offers on product pages can get lost. But if you trigger your popup too early, it could feel aggressive and bother shoppers who haven’t decided to buy yet.

Once someone adds a product to their cart, they have a much higher intent to purchase. So it makes sense to show your cross-sell offers at this point.

Plus, it helps them get to checkout faster by surfacing product recommendations that they can add in one click. Then they won’t get lost on your site browsing and abandon your site.

2. Promote products that create the ideal customer experience

To choose which products to cross-sell, take a lesson from SimpleShot and determine what set of products creates the ideal customer experience.

Then cross-sell the accessories when someone shows interest in the primary product.

For example, personal care brand Billie offers shaving cream, a pre-shave bar, and a razor case when a shopper adds a razor to their cart:

Billie's cross-sell page that appears when a shopper adds a product to their cart

3. Offer products shoppers tend to buy together

Not every brand sells products that are essential to buy together in order to use them.

So you might offer products customers tend to buy together to create a full experience with your products. For example, a toothbrush when someone adds floss to their cart like dental care brand Cocofloss does:

Cocofloss cross-sells a toothbrush in the shopping cart when a shopper adds floss to their cart.

If a customer doesn’t fall in love with the first product, you’ve got a second chance to win them over with the add-on.

4. Show products that are less expensive than the original product

If a customer is anticipating spending a certain amount, asking them to spend more than twice that will likely feel like too much. So you’ll want your cross-sells to have a lower price tag than the first item they add to their cart.

That said, there’s no set percentage of how much your cross-sells should be compared to the first product. It varies depending on the products you’re selling and their value. So experiment with what works for your brand.

For example, if someone is purchasing a mattress, the bedding you offer as a cross-sell will be far less than the cost of the mattress. Purple’s sleep accessories are in the range of 4-8% the price of a $1300 mattress:

Purple offers a pillow, sheets, and mattress protector when a shopper adds a mattress to their cart.

Meanwhile, personal care and beauty items are typically low cost and you can cross-sell other products of a similar price point.

In SimpleShot’s featured popup, the cross-sells are 8-16% the price of the slingshot. That makes it easy for customers to add a couple more things to their cart.

5. Limit your offers to 1-3 items

If a shopper has too many options, they could feel overwhelmed and abandon their purchase.

So offer just one to three products that are most likely to enhance the customer experience and bring them back as returning customers.

6. Incentivize the purchase with a discount or free shipping threshold

A shopper may intend to come back to buy other items they were interested in as a second purchase. But much of the time that doesn’t happen. So it’s essential to encourage shoppers to check out with more in their carts.

If checking out without the add-ons means they’ll lose out on a discount or have to pay for shipping, they’re more likely to want to take advantage of your offer. 

That’s why SimpleShot offers a discount that’s only available when buying a slingshot. Customers won’t want to hold off on a second purchase and potentially miss out on a deal that’s only available now.

Dinnerware brand Year & Day shows how close a customer is to earning free shipping with a visual meter:

Year & Day's slide-in shopping cart showing a free shipping meter, the product in the cart, and relevant cross-sell offers.

Then, the brand offers a selection of relevant products to help shoppers meet the free shipping requirement.

7. Connect your campaign to the rest of your customer journey

Any individual campaign on its own isn’t enough to drive business growth. Achieve more success by integrating your cross-sell offer into your ecommerce conversion funnel.

That means preceding it with a welcome offer and quiz and adding abandonment campaigns to keep shoppers on your website.

<template>Launch an add-to-cart cross-sell popup like SimpleShot<template>

SimpleShot’s success shows that cross-sell popups that trigger on add-to-cart are a tactic that’s worth adding to any ecommerce brand’s evergreen marketing campaigns.

They’re an effective way to:

  • Boost AOV
  • Grow profitability
  • Increase customer satisfaction
  • Help customers find the right products

Create your own add-to-cart cross-sell popup with this customizable template in ConvertFlow:

You’ll be able to launch dynamic cross-sell popups that recommend products based on what’s in the customer’s cart.

SimpleShot built their popup in ConvertFlow: an all-in-one funnel builder that helps ecommerce brands make the most out of their website traffic.

Launch on-site campaigns like popups, quizzes, landing pages, forms, and more to scale your brand—all in one platform.

Create a free account to try ConvertFlow’s suite of conversion tools today.

About the author
Angela Rollins
Content Marketing Manager, ConvertFlow
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Angela is the Content Marketing Manager at ConvertFlow. After marketing for ecommerce brands such as Tortuga, etee, and Dear Brightly, they found a passion in helping fellow ecommerce marketers through content. Angela's work has been featured in the blogs of Klaviyo, GoDaddy, Aspire, Emotive, Buffer, and more.