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Overstocking Inventory, Personalized cross selling, conversion optimization

Overstocking Inventory a Problem? Try Personalized Cross-selling

SMBs can personalize cross sells and reduce overstock inventory just like big brands. It’s an ongoing problem but a SaaS solution is forever, easy to install and automates cross-selling.
Photo of our Content Strategist, Ian McKinnon
Ian McKinnonFebruary 23rd 20233 min read
Glass building and blue sky.

Many brands and retailers must make the most of their overstock inventory. The market is constantly changing, making it difficult to accurately predict consumer demand and manage the supply chain.

To succeed in this uncertain environment, data and end-to-end visibility into inventory are essential. With better data in place, brands and retailers can make data-driven decisions, stay agile, stay in tune with customer needs and cross sell overstocked inventory as necessary in real time.

The world’s biggest ecommerce brands have been doing this for years already. Read on below about how it works and check out the personalized cross-selling tactics of five top brands: Amazon Fashion (products related to this item), ASOS (Buy The Look), H&M (Style with) and Nike (Complete the look).

What is overstock inventory?

Retailers typically base future inventory needs on past performance. However, recent drastic changes in buying habits have made predicting demand more challenging. The general uncertainty since 2020 has caused a disparity between the amount of inventory brands currently possess and what shoppers are ready to purchase.

Excess inventory can have serious repercussions - storage costs, tied-up cash, product obsolescence, reduced profit margins, and waste. In other words, surplus stock not only takes up resources but also decreases efficiency and profitability.

So how can you reduce overstock inventory and make the most of existing stock?

Accurate personalized cross-selling

Personalized cross-selling is a powerful strategy that ecommerce marketers can use to increase sales and clear out inventory. By analyzing customers' browsing and purchase history, marketers can identify items that complement the clothing items a customer is interested in and offer tailored recommendations.

This increases the chances of customers adding extra items to their cart, completing the purchase, and discovering items they may not have seen otherwise.

However, marketers must ensure that the cross-selling recommendations are accurate, relevant, and not pushy. Bombarding the customer with too many recommendations can lead to decision fatigue and reduce the likelihood of making a purchase.

The bottom line is that personalized cross-selling can be a useful tool for ecommerce marketers, but it should be used thoughtfully and strategically to be effective.

Personalized cross-selling is a game changer

Better customer data delivers more accurate recommendations

Big brand examples of effective personalization

Encouraging shoppers to explore your inventory can be taken a step further with deeper personalization. This means taking your customers’ shopping behavior into account and adjusting the on-site experience accordingly. When done right, it can pay off as it has for some of the world's biggest brands.

Amazon Fashion

Amazon is well-known for its personalized recommendation algorithms, which suggest complementary items to customers based on their browsing and purchase history.

Amazon Fashion’s “Products related to this item” include some odd-ball yet thoughtful recommendations.

Amazon Fashion - Products related to this item

How about some premium insoles to go with your hiking boots?


ASOS has a "Buy the look" feature. This feature suggests accessories and other clothing items that would complement the item a customer is currently viewing. A shopper after this dress…

ASOS product page

May well be interested in these accessories…

ASOS Buy the look


H&M has a "Style with" feature on their website, which recommends items that go with the item a customer is currently viewing.

H&M has a Style with feature on their website

This can help customers discover new items and can also help clear out overstocked inventory.

H&M Style with recommender


Nike has a "Complete the look" feature on their website, which recommends complementary clothing items and accessories based on the item a customer is currently viewing.

Nike product page

Nike's complete the look recommender

The "Complete the look" carousel can help clear out overstocked inventory and can also encourage customers to purchase multiple items.

Personalized cross-selling options for SMBs via SaaS

Big brands employ inhouse data scientists, backend/frontend engineers, merchandising managers, and product marketers to realize personalized cross selling.

But these days SMBs can automate the whole process via website plugins that analyze preference data and recommend the right products in real time.


A husband and wife duo run Sole, a small apparel shop that has increased apparel sales by 48% thanks to the SaaS recommender plugins on their website.

SOLE product page

Analysis of preference attributes on the dress above delivers the recommended items below. The accuracy of the recommendations matters and shoppers searching for the dress above often add related products to cart, reducing overstocking and increasing sales.

SOLE uses personalized recommendation

Final thoughts on overstocking inventory

SMBs can personalize cross sells and reduce overstock inventory just like big brands. It’s an ongoing problem but a SaaS solution is forever, easy to install and automates cross-selling.

Overstocking Inventory a Problem? Try Personalized Cross-selling

Try personalized cross-selling free for 30 days

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