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Home > Creating order forms  >  Upsells
Add upsells to your order process so you can offer additional products to buyers and boost your average purchase value.
You'll learn:
  • How upsell offers help you sell more
  • The strategy behind upsell settings
  • Ways to display your upsells to customers
  • How to build an upsell form and add it to your order process
  • Tips for managing your upsell sales automatically
Matthew Bixby
Add upsells to your order process so you can offer additional products to buyers and boost your average purchase value.
You'll learn:
  • How upsell offers help you sell more
  • The strategy behind upsell settings
  • Ways to display your upsells to customers
  • How to build an upsell form and add it to your order process
  • Tips for managing your upsell sales automatically
Course Instructor
Matthew Bixby
Related resources
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In this video, you’ll learn all about upsells. Upsells are another way that you can increase your average order value by giving customers who just bought something an easy way to add another product to their order.

It looks like this: someone buys something. Say it’s a fitness program. Then on the next page they see an offer for an additional product or service for an additional fee. “Wanna snag some vitamins to complement your new fit lifestyle?”

You might be thinking, “Couldn’t I just put another order form on the thank you page?” The answer is: yes, you could. But the real benefit of upsell forms is that you don’t have to ask them for information like their card details again. 

They simply have to click a “yes” or “no” button. If they accept what you’re offering, the transactions are lumped together and pushed through the same card they just used on their previous order.

There are a few ways to create one of these, and they work pretty much the same way. You could use an Ontraport Page or a popup Ontraform. On a page, just drag the upsell element onto a page. You’ll get yes and no buttons. Then you set up what happens if they click one of them. It’s a similar setup on Ontraforms. I’ll get into all that in a minute. 

First, Iet’s talk about how upsells work, what the settings mean, and some things to be aware of.

As I said, upsell forms always appear on the page after an order form. If you’d rather offer additional products directly on your order form, that’s something different called an Order Bump, and you can watch the “Order bumps” video to learn about that. 

Here’s a bit of strategy to consider before we jump in. You can connect upsell forms together, creating a sort of ‘funnel’ of options. The idea here is that you can stack your upsell offers together in some sort of logical way. So maybe you offer vitamins, then an exercise ball, and then a yoga mat. If you decide to do this, your setup will be a little different.

Before we start talking about your upsell settings and the options you can use, let’s cover what you need to do to make your upsells forms work correctly. 

Upsell forms are always connected to a main order form. That means that your upsell has to use the same payment gateway as the order form it’s connected to. Since your account’s default gateway is automatically added to your forms when you make them, this should be an easy guideline to follow. Also, If your upsell form is built on a page, that page needs to be published to the same domain as the main order form. 

If you have more than one upsell in a row, your upsell settings determine if you’re going to process every upsell as an individual transaction or if they should be bundled into one transaction. 

Remember that your buyer is going to fill out the order form first. The transaction will run immediately to determine if it’s a valid card, and the question is what happens next.

Let’s say you have three upsell offers in a row after your initial order form. Most people will either say yes or no pretty quickly. This setting is going to determine if you’ll run their card each time they say yes. Or you can wait until they’re done with the series of decisions, and then bundle all the yeses together into one transaction.

Typically bundling them is the better choice because whacking people’s cards a bunch of times in a row can look like fraud to credit card companies. So, they might start declining you.

On the other hand, some folks might worry that if their upsells add up to a bunch of money, the grand total might be declined by a credit card company. If they would have just hit the card for each amount separately, they may have been able to successfully charge for one or two of the items. So your decision here probably depends on whether you’re selling things that cost tens of dollars or thousands of dollars. Anyway, now you’re clear on what this setting does. 

To get to your upsell settings, go to Sales, then Settings, and Upsell Settings. From here you can see the two options. The first is “Bundle multiple upsells into a single transaction.” If you have more than one upsell, this is probably the better choice.

The other is “Process each upsell as an individual transaction.” I recommend using this option if you just offer one upsell after your main order form.

Now, there’s one question that remains. If you bundle your upsells into a single transaction, how long will the system wait for the user to get through all your upsells to then run that bundled transaction with all the products they said yes to? 

Well, That is determined by your account’s timeout period, which is 5 minutes by default. The ‘timeout period’ is the amount of time after someone submits the initial order form until the window for ‘1 click upsell’ functionality closes. So if your customer waits more than 5 minutes to click “yes” on an upsell form, they’ll get an error message telling them they were too late. 

You can reach out to Support to have your timeout extended to however long you like. 5 minutes is usually good, unless you have a 20-minute video on your upsell form. In that case, you’d better give people time to watch it. A 25 minute timeout would be best in that case. The downside of a long timeout period is that the transaction won’t process until it’s over which means invoices won’t be sent and products can’t be delivered.

Ok, now that you’ve got a handle on your settings, let’s talk about the ways you can display your upsells to your customers. 

When you create an upsell, you can make it a pop-up that appears after your customer buys from your main order form. Or it can be a page that your customers land on after they buy from your main order form.

Let’s take a look at pop-ups first. If you want your upsell to “pop” after your customer makes a purchase, you need to create an OntraForm.

Go to Contacts, then Forms, and select New Form, then OntraForm. Click “View by type” and then “Upsell” to choose a prebuilt upsell form.  Or if you’ve got a really specific design in mind, click “Start from Scratch” to create your own.

Click “Add block” and “Upsell form” to pick the upsell block you want to use. There is a list to the left with an item called “Upsell form” — click on that. Select “Product” to add your upsell product to your form, and choose your payment gateway. 

Watch the lesson on “Types of offers” for more information on customizing your product settings.

Click “Form Settings” from your pallet to set up your confirmation pages for each of the buttons. This setting tells the system where they’ll go after they click the yes or no buttons. For example, if they click yes, you might send them to a thank you page telling them what’s going to happen next. If they click no, maybe you send them to a page that offers a downsell… something similar but less expensive.

The other type of upsell form is on a page of its own. This will appear after your customer buys just like a normal thank you page. If you want to create this type of upsell form, you’ll use an Ontraport Page. You have a bunch of prebuilt options, including templates for upsell pages and upsell blocks. But you can always use the upsell element if you’d rather create your own form.

Go to Pages, then “add New Page.” Click “View by Type” and then “Upsell Pages” to pick a prebuilt option. Or you can click “Start from Scratch” here. Add your block. Again, either add a prebuilt one here by clicking Upsell Forms. Or -- choose your block layout from the “Build your own block” section. Then drag the “Upsell Buttons” element to your block.

Once you’ve added an upsell to your page, hover over the setting wheel of your upsell block, and click “Edit Block.”

In “Payment Settings” from the sidebar, add your upsell product to your form and select your payment gateway. Click Done when you’re happy with your settings.

Then click “Form Settings” which is also over here in the sidebar. Choose your confirmation pages and click “Save.”

The last step is to publish your page -- on the same domain as your main order form. So if you published your main order page to, your upsell needs to be published to So you might use for example.

Once you’ve got your upsell forms all set up, connecting them to your main order form is actually pretty easy. Just go to your page editor and hover over the settings icon on your order form, then click “Edit Block.”

Click “Form Settings” from the sidebar. Your upsell page is really just a thank you page, so choose your upsell from the “Send contacts here” section. If you created your upsell on a page, pick your page from the dropdown. If you created a pop-up, pick your form from the “Pop OntraForm Lighbox” dropdown.

When things are looking good, click Save. And be sure to publish your page after you’ve set your upsell in your order form’s settings.

Cool! You’re almost done. Let me give you some quick tips for managing your upsell sales. Just like selling anything, you’ll want to create automations to manage the fulfillment of your offers. We have two whole sections coming on fulfilling digital and physical product orders, so check those out.

But there’s one special thing to be aware of with upsells. Since upsells don’t process transactions immediately like normal order forms, it’s possible for someone to click yes and go to the YES thank you page, but then have their card decline for the upsell. So, you should always create automation for customers who may click “yes” on your order form, but their credit card fails.

On normal order forms, your customer would just get an error and know right away that their card didn’t work, but for upsells you’ve got to send them an email to let them know. Here’s how to do that.

Create an automation that has a trigger or a goal set for “Contact submits form.” Select your upsell form, and complete your trigger by selecting “And clicks ‘yes’ but payment fails” Then add an email below that trigger or goal. In your email, tell your customer that their payment failed, and give them a link to an order form where they can buy your upsell product.

Do your victory lap because now you’re ready to upsell your customers. We covered how you can create upsells as pages or pop-up forms. You know how to connect your upsell forms to your main order form by setting it as your thank you page. And you know you need to set up automation to let customers know if their card fails during an upsell transaction. Keep up the momentum and stay tuned to learn about follow-up with abandoned carts!
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