Because services are considered performances, buying a service in comparison to a good (unless it’s faulty or a lemon) is a risky process because an organisation cannot ensure its accuracy or consistency.
A major factor in not being able to ensure consistency is the fact that services are intangible and therefore cannot be seen, felt, tasted or touched. As services cannot be inventoried, fluctuations in demand occur which is difficult to manage. For instance, in the hospitality industry restaurant owners may find that sometimes they are understaffed or overstaffed – but because unlike goods which in most cases can be inventoried, wages still have to paid, even if it’s not a busy night.
The other characteristic to note is that no two services are alike (also known as heterogeneity), which makes service quality a challenge. For instance, how many times have you visited a supermarket and been overcharged because of human error? Because each cashier is different and has different motivations and skill levels, every time you visit a supermarket the service experience will differ (trust me – I know, I worked in one for many years – but more about that later!)
It’s due to this lack of service consistency and perishable nature, that service organisations find it difficult to ensure accuracy and maintain service recovery. This is why it’s important organisations get your feedback!
You may be wondering why I’m telling you about the above, well it’s because at Vent2Me we wanted to demonstrate why you often feel angrier with a bad service encounter than with a faulty good. As seen above, generally when you buy a good you know what you are getting, but with a service a lot of interpretation is required.
Our advice for purchasing a service, is to make sure you do your research beforehand to ensure that the organisation is reputable and has a high customer satisfaction rate.
Until next week!
Cents and Sensibility
Julia Taine, Executive Director of Vent2Me, is a marketing problem solver and mentor. A mover and a shaker, Julia sees a niche in an industry, and takes it, by making it her own. Julia started Vent2Me, because people she knew were struggling with their online presence and their digital strategies. Julia knew she could help these people, and so here she is today.