One way of categorising products is in terms of who the intended consumer or customer is. A broad distinction can be made between goods and services intended for use by individuals and households ( consumer products) and and for use by other businesses ( industrial products).
The three main types of consumer products are summarised below together with the elements of the marketing mix that tends to be emphasised:
Industrial products are perhaps less exciting than consumer products, but they industrial product markets are often significant in terms of market size. For example, all producers of consumer products need themselves to buy industrial products in order to operate!
The three main types of industrial product are:
The marketing mix for industrial products is quite different from that for consumer products due to the features of selling "business to business":
Specialist buyers and sellers: buyers are businesses – will have specialist requirements and more experience. Often dealing with professional “buyers”
Buyer-seller relationship: strong emphasis on customer relationship management and repeat business
Transaction value: purchase value often substantial in a single transaction (e.g. bulk purchase contract)
Quality and Price: greater emphasis on product quality and price (where there are acceptable alternative products). Price is often negotiated by the buyer
Support: greater requirement for after-sales support
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