How To Boost Sales Using Magento’s Rule-Based Product Relations

As an online business with a growing catalog of products, one of the more difficult things to do is finding new ways to introduce your customer to the ever growing number of products in your catalog. Luckily if you have a licensed Magento Enterprise Edition store, there is an easy way for your company to begin connecting customers to new and related products throughout your existing catalog. Using Magento’s Rule-Based Product Relations, it’s now possible to take a straight forward automated approach to targeted merchandising and thus help to boost your sales through cross-selling, up-selling of related products!

What are the Different Types of Targeted Merchandising?

In a physical retail environment there are many ways of introducing new products to your customers. Before being able to take advantage of the Rule-Based Product Relations feature it is important to understand the most popular of these methods. These targeted merchandising methods include Cross-Selling, Up-Selling and grouping Related products.

Cross-Selling
These are products that usually enhance a customer’s overall experience of the product. These are typically product accessories that will add additional benefit to the customer if purchased along with the product itself.

Some examples of cross-selling merchandise include:

  • A digital camera memory card, case or tripod
  • Winter tires that fit onto your new car
  • A belt that looks good with a pair of pants you would like to purchase

Up-Selling
Think of up-selling a product as an opportunity to upgrade your customer to a better model before they get to the checkout. These products can typically be of better quality, greater capacity, or even more a popular item.

Some examples include:

  • More memory in an MP3 player or Tablet
  • Greater number of megapixels in a similar model camera
  • Deluxe version of a BlueRay movie

Related Products
When presenting the customer with a product in your catalog, the customer might not have an exact idea of what it is they wish to purchase. This is where related products come in handy. These types of products are typically only associated or grouped together by a certain category, department or style. These items are usually purchased in addition to or in place of the item the customer is viewing.

Some examples of this:

  • Books of a similar genre
  • An alternative brand of laptop with similar specifications
  • A different selection of cars with a different brand

Related: 10 Real World Examples of Shopping Cart Price Rules

How to Use Magento’s Rule-Based Product Relations

With a pre-existing catalog that might have thousands of unique products, the idea of adding products to each item in your catalog using these methods sounds nearly impossible. However, through the Rule-Based Product Relations feature, automatically targeting merchandise to your customers through the addition cross-selling, up-selling and related products is simple.

Let’s get started by going to the Rule-Based Product Relations feature under the Catalog tab of the Magento Admin panel and select Add Rule. Once you have selected the option to add a new rule you will be presented with three tabs where you can define the criteria which defines how you will add related products that will target your customer as they view products in your store’s catalog.

The Rule Information Tab

Once you “Add” a new product relations rule, the first tab you will be presented with is the rule information tab where you setup the general information for this product rule. The fields for this tab include;

Rule Name: This is where you provide the name for your product rule.

Priority: When multiple rules overlap on a product page or the shopping cart, the priority will determine the sort order of each group of displayed products.

Status: When set to “Active”, this rule will be applied to your product catalog.

Apply To: Select whether this rule will apply to a product’s Related Products, Up-sells, or Cross-sells.

From/To Date: You can select a date range in which the rule will automatically become enabled and/or disabled.

Result Limit: You can set a limit for the number of products that will be displayed. The maximum number is 20, but you can set a smaller limit.

Products to Match Tab

In this tab, set the product conditions to determine which products will have this rule applied to it. These conditions are defined in the same manner as Catalog Price Rules, whereby the products are defined using a product Attribute Set, Category, Price or SKU (there is a new setting in the attribute management page called Use for Target Rule Conditions, which must be set to Yes for the attribute to appear in this section).

Products to Display Tab

In this tab, this is where the product conditions are set in order to determine which products will be displayed in the Related Products, Up-sells, or Cross-sells blocks. The conditions are almost identical to those of the Products to Match tab, with one additional option available. You can determine which products to display based on a price relationship with the Matched Product. For example, if you want to display Up-sell products which are at least twice the price of the Matched Product, you can show only products which are 50% or more of the Matched Product price.

And there you have it! With a few simple steps you can ensure that your customers are always discovering new, related products as you add them to your online store with Magento’s Rule-Based Product Relations feature!

Related Posts:
Setting Up Product Data in Magento: The Basics
Mini Tutorial: Alternative Configurable Products Display in Magento