The service sector has been mounting radically for more than fifty years, to the extent that in the developed world, more people make their living from producing services than making manufactured goods. In fact around three-quarters of the population in the US and the EU are employed in service industries. Services therefore have a key impact on national economies. The subject of Services Marketing has grown in response to this. Of late however, manufacturing and technology industries have also identified the need to provide services not only as a means of adding worth to the physical products which they market but also as the basis for a different orientation to the management of their businesses.
Difference between Products and Services
Three major types of attributes are helpful in understanding the difference between products and services.
Search attributes: aspects which can be assessed prior to purchase or consumption.
Experience attributes: aspects that can only be assessed after consumption.
Credence attributes: consumers lack the information necessary to make evaluations even after consumption.
Characteristics of Services
- Inseparability of production and consumption
- Heterogeneity (or variability
Services should be Tangibilized. Why?
Services are intangible by nature. You can’t see, touch, smell, or taste them before you buy them. This intangibility often makes services difficult to depict in clear and meaningful ways. Many companies’ inability to depict their services tangibly leads to the following symptoms and conditions:
- Difficult to conceptualize
- Difficult to evaluate
- Uncertainty and perceived risk
- Difficult to promote the offering
- Difficult to control service quality
- Difficult to set prices