up·​sell | \ ˈəp-ˈsel How to pronounce upsell (audio) \
variants: or up-sell
upsold\ ˈəp-​ˈsōld How to pronounce upsold (audio) \ or up-sold; upselling or up-selling; upsells or up-sells

Definition of upsell

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to try to convince (a customer) to purchase something additional or at a higher cost With a strong correlation between the amount of video consumed and the Internet speed that consumers think they need, providers could possibly upsell customers on costlier broadband packages.— Makeda Easter They start upselling you before you book your vacation by offering upgrades to a higher-class cabin…— Christopher Elliott


plural upsells

Definition of upsell (Entry 2 of 2)

: an attempt to convince a customer to purchase something additional or more costly : the act or an instance of upselling We passed on the products they had used during the massage, which were for sale. Almost every activity, it would turn out, ended with a gentle upsell.— Dan Saltzstein I tend to avoid server upsells because I usually suspect they're trying to push a high margin or past-its-prime menu item.— Michael Nagrant

Other Words from upsell


upselling or up-selling noun
Counter clerks, paid on commission, are typically instructed to pitch more expensive cars, a tank of gas, a damage waiver … It's called "up-selling" in the trade, and can account for as much as 20% of the revenue of some car-rental companies … — Joni James

First Known Use of upsell


1972, in the meaning defined above


1976, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of upsell was in 1972

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Cite this Entry

“Upsell.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2020.

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