Consumer Gaps in SA banking industry

Essay by singhs14University, Master's May 2008

download word file, 12 pages 3.0

The service sector is large and includes many different kinds of organisations. Kotler defines services as any activity that one party can offer that is essentially intangible and does not result in the ownership of anything. Its product may or may not be tied to a physical product.

The characteristics of services are intangible, heterogeneity and inseparability. A service is an activity rather than an object. Services cannot be touched, precise standardisation is difficult, there is no ownership transfer, production and consumption are inseparable, it cannot be patent, and it is not perishable and cannot be stored.

There are several challengers in the Service Industry. Because services are intangible, it is difficult to understand how customers perceive their services and evaluate service quality. Performance varies form provider to provider, customer to customer and from day to day. Consistency of behaviour is difficult to assure because what the banks intends to deliver from what the customer receives.

The production and consumption of many services are inseparable. In the banking industry, quality occurs during service delivery, usually in an interaction between the client and the contact person from the Bank. Thus, Coutis (1998: 28) speaks of the three “truths” about most services, which are:What the product or service really isWhat the service provider “knows” it isWhat the customer “knows” it is & what non-customers “know” it is, may not coincide with the customers’ view.

The marketing mix in the Service Industry includes 7 P’sProduct: The range quality and level of services provided.

Price: Service prices charged and the perception of value obtained by the customer.

Place : Location, accessibility, distribution channels, means of communication.

Promotion: Word by mouth communicationPeople: Delivery of service by representatives of the organisation.

Physical evidence: Physical environment, colours, layout, noise, furnishingProcess: The ‘how’ or service delivery, Attitude,