The world economy nowadays is increasingly characterized as a service economy.
This is primarily due to the increasing importance and share of the service sector in the economies of most developed and developing countries. Economic history tells us that all developing nations have invariably experienced a shift from agriculture to industry and then to the service sector as the main stay of the economy. This shift has also brought about a change in the definition of goods and services themselves.
No longer are goods considered separate from services. Rather, services now increasingly represent an integral part of the product and this interconnectedness of goods and services is represented on a goods-services continuum.
Intangibility: Services are intangible and do not have a physical existence. Hence services cannot be touched, held, tasted or smelt. This is most defining feature of a service and that which primarily differentiates it from a product.
Also, it poses a unique challenge to those engaged in marketing a service as they need to attach tangible attributes to an otherwise intangible offering. While products can be mass produced and be homogenous the same is not true of services. However, the same is not true of the service rendered by the same counter staff consecutively to two customers.
Perishability: Services cannot be stored, saved, returned or resold once they have been used. Once rendered to a customer the service is completely consumed and cannot be delivered to another customer.
At the most he may decide not to visit that particular barber in the future. Eg: a haircut is delivered to and consumed by a customer simultaneously unlike, say, a takeaway burger which the customer may consume even after a few hours of purchase.
Moreover, it is very difficult to separate a service from the service provider. Eg: the barber is necessarily a part of the service of a haircut that he is delivering to his customer.
Core Services: A service that is the primary purpose of the transaction. Eg: a haircut or the services of lawyer or teacher. Supplementary Services: Services that are rendered as a corollary to the sale of a tangible product.
Marketing an Introduction 13th edition
Eg: Home delivery options offered by restaurants above a minimum bill value. View All Articles.
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