Products vs Services


You might have wondered at times, ‘should I sell a product or should I sell a service’. Perhaps you’ve felt that if it’s tangible then selling it would be easier. Or perhaps it occurred to you that selling a service is solely dependent upon your creativity, stripping you of the confinement of a ceiling.

So what is a product?

It is anything that can be seen, touched, or felt. Always ready for sale to customers. An item of which status of ownership is transferred from one to another.

Service on the other hand can not be owned since it lacks physical identity. Hence it is intangible. It is an activity carried out for someone else.

Services, unlike products, are more about building a relationship. It is more about trust. As for the latter, it is regarded as fulfilling a need or want for a customer.

Due to the nature of a service, it is much harder for one to evaluate its quality. However, assessing a product’s state of quality is exceedingly easier.

It is the same with returning policies. Wherefore products would be easy to return, services would not.

Then there is the obvious. Lifetime. Products can stay on the shelf until a customer comes over and sweeps it off. But if you were offering a service and it wasn’t consumed, then you can’t ever sell it. Say you had a hotel and wanted to sell a room for the night, but you weren’t able to.

This is why services are delivered as per request, whereas a number of products are usually kept in stock should the company need to redecorate their shelves.

However, to earn more revenue, firms started to wrap their products with value-added services. A method imposed to offer more to customers. An action that intertwines products with services.

A perfect example would be restaurants. They sell food (product) which is enveloped with a service (waiting staff).

Truthfully, there isn’t any difference between selling a product as opposed to a service. Both are completely reliant on one’s sales pitch.

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