What is an 'Augmented Product'

An augmented product is a core product with added features and services. The additional features give value and distinguish the product from competitors' offerings. Non-physical attributes of an augmented product often provide the consumer with added protection and services that lessen the difficulty associated with its use.  Examples of non-physical attributes include product warranties, post-purchase service, and installation.

BREAKING DOWN 'Augmented Product'

An augmented product allows a company to add services that are tailored to a consumer's individual needs. A company's success in selling an augmented product is heavily dependent on the consumers' perceptions of the value of the additions. Also, the positioning and promotion of the augmented product is crucial for its success. Increased perceived value from the added benefits allows companies to command higher or premium prices.

Augmented Product Example

When considering a computer purchase, consumers have a wealth of options. To differentiate their products from competitors', manufacturers augment their base model with warranties, complimentary customer service, and other features to make their products more attractive. The augmented product with features that are more apparent and that communicate value to the consumer will likely have better success.

For example, consider a college student shopping for a new laptop.  They might need a system with software suitable for essays and documenting lecture notes, gaming features for entertainment, and accessories that protect the device during transport between classes. If several rival computer manufacturers have computers with the same features and operating capacity, the one which best highlights these features will likely be the item chosen.  As an example, in the late 90's and early 2000's, Dell revolutionized the computer industry by allowing customers the freedom and flexibility to augment their systems to their needs.

Marketing the Augmented Product

There are three distinct considerations involved in selling a product. Factors include the benefits the product offers the consumer, the kind of features most often purchased with the product, and the added features which consumers ask for in the product. These three considerations are known as the core, the actual, and the augmented. The actual product includes everything from the product design and features to the brand name and packaging.

The augmented product also includes its ability to be procured from a location when its use is needed. Aside from direct productive augmented product abilities, such as warranties and customer service, there are also complimentary items that can be supplied along with the product. In the case of the computer, this might include case covers, ergonomic keyboards, or tablet devices that assist in augmenting the product.

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