Product augmentation examples

Advantages of Product Augmentation

Augmentation, which delivers differentiation, will provide the product/firm with:

  • Clear positioning in the marketplace
  • Unique product features/benefits
  • Competitive advantage
  • Stronger appeal to certain target markets
  • Willingness for consumers to pay a price premium
  • Customer loyalty, as they become accustomed to the additional value
  • Additional price margins, if the augmentation provided is relatively low cost

Product level Models

A key opportunity to differentiate a product in the marketplace is by augmenting the product. This principle as highlighted in the product levels model of marketing, which highlights that a product should be considered on the basis of the following levels:

  1. The core benefit
  2. The actual product
  3. The expected product
  4. The augmented product and
  5. The potential product

Please refer to the articles on the three product level model in the five product level model available on this website for more information.

What is product augmentation?

The word augmentation means to make larger or to expand. In marketing terms, it is a set of associated services and other benefits that are provided to a consumer in addition to the actual product that they are purchasing.

That is, product augmentation is anything that adds value to the customer OUTSIDE of the actual product design and its product features. In most cases, the product is product through additional services or information.

The goal of product augmentation

Product augmentation allows marketers to differentiate their product more clearly in the marketplace. This can be especially important to fairly generic type products, such as breakfast cereals, loaves of bread, and commonly used software.

In each of these cases, it may be difficult to generate a significant competitive advantage through the product design only – and product augmentation provides the opportunity to deliver additional benefits to the consumer that may generate additional market share.

The other advantage of product augmentation is that many of the additional services are relatively inexpensive to provide and do not overly add to the unit costs. Therefore, the overall product offering may be seen as having significant value, without a significant underlying cost structure.

Examples of product augmentation

Here is a list of some potential ways that a product can be augmented – these augmentation ideas may or may not be appropriate for all categories of products…

  • Providing a free replacement of the product
  • Having a warranty period for repairs
  • Having recipe ideas on the packaging
  • Having a QR code on the packaging
  • Having a code to access free online games
  • Having a discount coupon for a future purchase
  • Having interesting information on the packaging
  • Donating a percentage of the sale to a charity
  • Having a loyalty program
  • Access to special events
  • Newsletters and information sheets
  • Free seminars
  • Free advice
  • In-store entertainment
  • Priority ordering
  • Priority queuing or seating
  • Early access to new products
  • Future price guarantees
  • Access to a relationship manager
  • Free gifts
  • Hospitality and events
  • Free coffee/snacks in a store
  • Online product support
  • Free delivery
  • After sales follow-up
  • Ability to package purchases (bulk deals)
  • Financing the purchase
  • A free trial period
  • Some form of a customer club
  • Online customer-firm interaction
  • Friendly, efficient customer service
  • Restroom facilities
  • Online information/support
  • Updates on new products
  • Future special offers
  • Future discounts and coupons
  • Free product upgrades in the future

The three level product model
The five level product model