The role of product in the marketing mix is one of the key components that makes the entire process of connecting with consumers and generating sales possible. Along with price, place, and promotion, the product provides the ultimate value to the customer and serves as the entire reason for the marketing effort. When the good or service involved is of high quality and possesses the right type of features to attract the attention of consumers, the potential for success is greatly enhanced.
There are several aspects of the product in the marketing mix that must be considered in order to make the most of this particular component. The function of the product is the most important aspect. Simply put, if the product does not deliver the functionality that is claimed, consumers will shortly turn away from the product and no amount of promotion or competitive pricing will make an impact in the marketability of the good or service. At the same time, if the product meets or exceeds customer expectations in terms of performance, there is a good chance that sales of the good or service will progress rapidly. Product features will also play a significant role in placing the good or service for sale at retail outlets in which the targeted customers can be found.
Another key aspect of product in the market mix is the ancillary services included with the good or service itself. This may be in the form of a warranty associated with the product, or some sort of guaranteed customer service and support after the sale. These additional benefits can go a long way toward helping shape the promotion strategies used with the product, as well as make it possible to command a better price.
The packaging also impacts the role of product in the marketing mix. Typically, the packaging should be attractive so that it will catch the eye of consumers. At the same time, the packaging should be user-friendly, in that the shape is easy to carry and can be opened with relatively little difficulty. The packaging can also be crucial to the promotion aspect of the mix, since the exterior of the package can include important information about what the product can be used for as well as any recommendations for storage and other important aspects.
The role of product in the marketing mix is central to the entire marketing effort. Unless the product has the right features and functions to attract customers, is packaged in a manner that is appealing, and comes along with a reasonable amount of service after the sale, even the best efforts to promote and place the product at the right stores at competitive prices will likely result in lackluster sales at best. Only by having a product that is high quality and can be promoted and placed on its merits will the marketing mix really work to best advantage.