Product Line|Important Aspects of Product Line|Principles of Marketing |BBA | BBA-BI | BBA-TT | BCIS|Management Notes
A product line is a group of interrelated products fulfilling the identical needs and wants of the customers under a single brand sold by the same company. Companies often expand their offerings by adding to existing product lines, because consumers are more likely to purchase products from brands with which they are already familiar.
Product lining is the marketing strategy of offering several related products for sale as individual units. A product line can comprise related products of various sizes, types, colors, qualities, or prices. Line depth refers to the number of subcategories a category has.
a) Product-line Analysis:
A marketer should review the actual position of the company’s product line in relation to its profit and sales. He should also review the competitors’ position in the same market area. This analysis will help the marketer to decide whether the company should expand the company’s product line, or improve the existing product line, or remain as it is, or reduce the product line.
b) Product-Line Length:
It refers to the total number of interrelated items the company produces. The general thinking is that the number of items should be optimal or manageable. However, the company’s product line length decision is affected by company objectives. Product lines usually tend to lengthen over time.
c) Modernization Decision:
Although the length is optimal, all the items may not be equally effective. Some items may be weaker in generating adequate sales and profits for the company. Under such circumstances, the company has to modernize such soft items by maintaining or improving their quality using modern technology, or other steps determined by the company.
d) Line Featuring Decision:
Sometimes marketers may select one or a few items in the line to develop them as the ‘promotional’ or ‘leader’ items, as it is not possible to modernize all items in the line. By featuring few items, a company can build up its image in the market. This image will be helpful to boost up the sales of other items not featured, thus generate adequate profits.
e) Line Pruning Decision:
Some items in the line may cause loss or headache to the company. When a company thinks that featuring or modernizing them cannot this problem, the company may drop or remove such items from the line and continue the high margin items in the line. This type of decision is known as the line-pruning decision.
The company may make such a decision when the profits are depreciated by lengthening the items in the line, and when a company lacks production capacity to produce all the existing items.
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