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Are You Over Engineering Your Product Or Service

Is It Possible To Make Your Product / Service To Well

Is this Manufacturing Example good business sense?

About twenty five years ago when we purchased a house with a larger garden I invested in a petrol lawnmower. The Briggs & Stratton powered Hayter Hobby you can see in the picture. Now this machine was about ten years old when I purchased it from a lovely elderly couple who were downsizing. The couple had been using as per a normal lawnmower usage from March to November for this time and had maintained it as per the service manual.

Are You Over Engineering Your Product Or Service

Thirty Five Years On

Last week I took the lawnmower out of the shed. Filled it up with petrol and after 3 minutes it was taking the first cut of the year, yet again. Now as you can see from the picture

  • Duct tape has had to be applied in places to substitute the steel housing which after 35 years has started to corrode through.
  • Rust is starting to show on some of the steel parts that were painted rather than being coated
  • Additional bolts have had to be added to keep the roller mechanism in place
  • Apart from regular maintenance yearly oil change and filter clean the item that has needed purchasing was a new pushing handle fatigued about 10 years ago (out of guarantee period)
  • By my calculations the lawnmower operating cost (excluding consumables petrol / oil) has been £4.80 per year

Is the product over engineered or made to well?

How long would you expect a lawnmower to last? My son purchased a Briggs and Stratton powered lawnmower from a well known DIY brand two years ago for £99. The product lasted just past its 12 month guarantee before terminally expiring.
Would I have been disappointed if my lawnmower required replacing 10 years ago after twenty five years service. I think not. When I checkout new ‘branded’ lawnmowers is my expectation that I will buy the mower and it will provide me with twenty five years reliable service.
Could the product quality have been reduced to encourage product failure. Perhaps thinner steel on the body, less robust components within the engine, inferior fixings all of these would have allowed the quality of the product to be reduced and potentially the cost reduced and profit per item increased.

Are You Over Engineering Your Product Or Service

Think about the following marketing definition “Satisfying Customers Profitably” . Are you offering a Rolls Royce engineered product at Skoda pricing. In the case of the Hayter they grown as a brand by providing a certain level of product quality. Therefore when I purchase my next Hayter lawnmower (without the need for them to invest in any advertising or marketing spend) hopefully the brand will live up to my high expectations. Many companies though fail / cease trading though because they are not satisfying they are over delivering and they are not generating sufficient profit to allow their business to continue.
If you think that you have over engineered your product or service and undercharging for it please call click here on 01733 361729 for a chat. For more marketing information click here

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