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Major Components of a Product - Essay Example

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The following paper “Major Components of a Product” looks at product adaptation, which refers to the process through which a manufacturer makes changes to improve an existing product and make it more appealing to a target market usually in new markets…
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Major Components of a Product
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WHY CHANGE? Why Change? Major components of a product Core component This is the physical product and its functional features such as shape, design, color, and composition.
2. Packaging component
This is the physical package that is used to present the actual product to the consuming public as well as distinguished from other similar products by competing producers. It includes the brand name, style, trademark, price and quality standards.
3. Support services component
This comprises the additional benefit offered to the customers and which is provided with the aim of influencing and sustaining consumer purchasing behavior. It includes repair and maintenance services, door-to-door delivery, installation, usage manuals, warranty, and any other product-related services.
Importance of product components to product adaptation
The adjustments in a product’s main components are made in accordance with the particular target market needs and consumption behavior. Research on consumer trends and preferences as well as product class in the market can provide useful insights on how to modify all or some main components of an existing product (Cooper & Edgett, 2009).
Case study of a successful product adaptation process
America’s fast-food franchise McDonald’s entry into the Indian market in 1996 is a classic case of how product adaptability can be used to enter international markets that are culturally different. Other fast-food chains had largely ignored the Indian market before 1990 and those that did ignore the cultural differences eventually leading to their collapse and withdrawal from the market. There is a highly fragmented food market in India characterized by millions of roadside stalls and carts. This represents a large ‘eating out’ culture. However, the market is also significantly influenced by high-pressure groups mainly comprising health and animal welfare activists.
McDonald’s strategy included the exclusion of pork and beef items from its menu considering that 40% of Indians are vegetarians. An alternative vegetable, fish and chicken menu was adopted. The menus, therefore, were color-coded into the green for vegetarians and purple for non-vegetarians. The Maharaja Mac replaced the famous ‘big mac’; chicken patty replaced beef and introduction of spicy menus with less garlic in its sauce. This strategy reflected a much higher degree of adaptability than in other markets but with a market comprising 2% of the total global food expenditure the incentives are indeed very tempting.
The franchise also adopted the exclusive use of vegetable oil as a cooking medium and the freshest chicken, fish and vegetable products were used. Additionally, the franchise allowed customer kitchen tours which assured the customers’ need for healthy processing of food and respect of their dominant religious prohibitions against meat and pork consumption. Read More
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